Category Archives: Music

Music theory for beginners

Are you interested in learning music? If yes, then here is the simple music theory for beginners which will help you understand the basics of music. Learning music theory can be a memorable journey. Music is a vast subject, and for learning the advanced theory, you are required to pursue academic courses. But with the introduction of music theory for beginners, you can now easily get an idea about the fundamentals of music and along with practical singing ability you will also be capable of understanding the theories behind the keys and the notes. With a good knowledge of music theory, you will be able to recognise what you are playing, and you can then improvise your versions of your favourite songs.

Let us now look at the 5 major lessons for basic music learners:

Lesson 1: Learning 12 keys of music
How will you understand in which key is your favourite song being played? The answer to this question will be found in this lesson. Key is the identifier of the tonal centre of a song. Any particular song that you hear is played using a combination of 12 possible keys on the piano board namely A, A#/Bb, B, C, C#/Db, D, D#/Eb, E, F, F#/Gb, G, and G#/Ab. So when you are singing in key F, if you divert to key C then your song quality and tone will be destroyed. So maintain the key in which you had started singing because all the notes in your song will automatically divert to the original key.
But how will you tell in which Key your song falls? Do not worry, your answer is here. The key signatures will provide clues regarding the key of a particular song. You also need to keep a track of the melody in which a note ends and the chord of the song.

Lesson 2: Idea about major scale
In this lesson, you will understand the importance of major scale. 12 keynotes give rise to 12 different major scales. A majority of the popular songs especially the classical songs falls under the major scales. A common major scale which you may find in most of your songs is the C major. But then you need to identify the major scales based on the whole steps and half steps of the scale.

Lesson 3: Intervals
As per theoretical views an intervalis the distance that is present between two notes. An interval which is played separately is known as melodic interval and if it is played together then it is called harmonic interval. In the case of western songs, you may find the usage of half intervals. This introductory theory will give you an idea about the intervals, but you will be able to understand them while playing practically over the piano.

Lesson 4: Idea about chords of major scale
The Roman numerals that you generally see on the singing notes are known as chords. The chords which have been built on a major scale are generally numbered from one to seven. But this knowledge will be useful to you if you select a song with all major scales and not one specific major scale. Since most of the songs that you will come across are composed on major scale C, hence it will be sufficient for you to know the chord of C. Have you ever noticed the roman numerical one written on major scale C? If yes, then it is the chord of the scale. The chord built on the second note is identified by numeral 2 and then 3 and it goes on consecutively.

Lesson 5: Introduction to circle of fifths
What is the circle of fifths? Confused? It is not some rocket science. Rather the 12 keys all taken together which are present in the piano is commonly known as the circle of fifths. When you plan on improvisation of any of your favourite song, then this circle of fifth will help you. This will also help you in writing music. The three primary chords used in any key can be effectively identified by the circle of fifths. If you take a look at the C major scale and move your eyes clockwise then you will be able to see the circle of keys.

List of Famous Sitar Musical Instrument players

If you are a true music fan, then you will agree that the tone of the sitar is truly the unique and irreplaceable melody present in the music genre. In simple words, sitar music can enhance any tune or song. Origin of sitar dates back to 1700, and the musicians believe that after the downfall of the Moghul Empire the usage of this instrument became prevalent. But the healing sound of sitar that provides you with inner peace is not that easy to master as you think it might be. In fact, some of the most talented musicians have admitted that they find the technique of sitar playing highly complex. So if an individual has developed the ability to play the sitar then they have accomplished a challenging task in the field of music.

When it comes to recalling the names of the great sitar players what is the first name that comes to your mind? Is it Ravi Shankar or is it Vilayat Khan? Either of the two sitar players is of Indian and Middle Eastern origin. This is a natural fact since sitar is the most recognised music instrument of Indo-eastern regions. However, did you ever feel that there can also be sitar players from western origin? In this respect, it should be mentioned that the popularity of Ravi Shankar’s sitar would not have been possible without the help of George Harrison, the lead guitarist of Beatles and a marvellous sitar player himself. You will thus find an assortment of sitar players of different origins in this article.

Check out the names below because some of them may surprise you.

Pandit Ravi Shankar:

pandit ravi shankar copyThere is no separate introduction required for this versatile sitar player who introduced a different side of classical music to the world. After collaborating with Beatles, he was the first one to launch the psychedelic sound globally. Although the maestro had a rough beginning in his earlier days, however completing his 96th birthday this year, Ravi Shankar is now a name that defines “a life well lived”.

Vilayat Khan:

vilayat khan copyBelonging to the famous Khan Family of musicians, Vilayat Khan helped introducing the classical music in the western part of the world. Coming from the Etawah Gharana, Vilayat Khan inherited the musical genes of his forefathers. Vilayat Khan’s great composition can be heard in Oscar winner film director Satyajit Ray’s Film Jalshagar. His works were appreciated by awarding him a silver medal in 1st Moscow International Film Festival.

Pandit Nikhil Ranjan Banerjee:

Pandit Nikhil Ranjan copyBelonging to the Maihar Gharana and the student of the legendary Allauddin Khan, Pandit Nikhil was always considered as a child prodigy and is a notable sitar player of the 20th century. His works were appreciated by conferring him with the Padma Bhushan.

Ronnie Wood:

ronnie wood copyDo you remember Ronnie Wood from famous The Rolling Stones? You may have always seen him performing with a guitar; however, the artist had a passion for sitar and was an accomplished sitar player. The artist is one the sitar players who used electric sitars for modifying the music of sitar.

Anoushka Shankar:

Anoushka shankar copyInheriting the talent of father Pandit Ravi Shankar, Anushka Shankar at the age of 35 years has made her place among the list of famous sitar players. Rather than living under the identity of father and half-sister Norah Jones. Anoushka has been able to develop her own identity and received the British House of Commons Shield in the year 1998. She has been taking training directly from her father and is currently an independent composer and sitar player.

George Harrison:

Geoge harrison copyPopularly known as “The quiet Beatle”, George Harrison was the lead guitarist of the most famous band The Beatles. Creator of some of the immemorial songs like “Within You without You”, “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”, “Here Comes the Sun” and “Something”, George Harrison was eager to learn the melodious music of sitar and hence build his friendship with Ravi Shankar. Further, it was found that George Harrison received training from Shambhu Das, the prodigy of Ravi Shankar. Harrison’s performance of “Love you too” will make you agree to the fact that it is by far the most melodious rock sitar music that has been produced in the industry.

So next time you develop an urge for hearing good sitar music, you know which artist to search and hear.

How to Play Harp Music Instrument – Step-by-step instruction

Can you remember the stringed musical instrument that we used to see on the Christmas card? Yes. You are right – that is Harp, a unique musical instrument, that you can learn easily. However, before starting the training for harp, answer a question to yourself. Are you interested in playing the harp?

If yes, then, here are some easy but essential steps that you must follow to learn how to play the harp.

Step 1:
The first step of your harp musical training is learning about your instrument. You know harp as a stringed instrument, but, do you know, how many types of harp we can play? We can play two types of harp – pedal harp and lever harp. The first one that is pedal harp has seven pedals that you can use to make the notes sharp, flat or natural. The second one that is lever harp has sharp levers at the top, which helps to change the notes.

Step 2:
In the second step of learning harp, you have to learn how to sit and hold a harp properly. It is very important to know the sitting and holding style while playing the harp. As the instrument is large in size, you may use a chair according to the size of the instrument. Sit in such a way, so that your finger can reach to the middle string of the harp. You need to hold the harp in a way so that the shortest string of the harp is nearest to you.

Step 3:
The third step of harp playing is tuning the harp. Tuning is very important to create soothing music from a harp. You may use an electric tuner to tune the harp properly. You must be careful enough while tuning the harp because the notes of the instrument depending on tuning. Be careful, don’t tear the strings. It will be better if you take the help of a musician.

Step 4:
In the fourth step, you have to learn how to play with the strings. You can find the strings of different colours. You have to learn which string denotes which note. For example, the red strings that you can find in a harp, are for Cs and similarly, the blue strings denote the Fs. In this way, you have to learn, which string is A or B or D or E and G. You have to be familiar with the strings so that you can play the strings at high speed. You need to use your fingertips while playing with the strings.

Step 5:
In step five, you will learn about the notes in the harp. While playing a pedal harp, if you want to raise the note, you have to lower down the pedal, and if you want to lower down the note, you have to raise the pedal. However, if you are playing a level harp, then the change in a note will be the half of the sharping the lever. In this case, you must remember that the A, B and E lever must be always up.

Step 6:
In step six, you can start playing the harp. You have to hold the harp by your right hand and then put the finger on the strings and then pull strings towards yourself quickly. You have to pull strings in a way so that each string can create the sound. You have to do this carefully. Otherwise, the sound will collapse. You have to practice this stage again and again so that you become familiar with the strings and the sound. Thorough practice is very important at this stage.

So, are you now interested in learning and playing the harp? One important thing that you must remember that is before start the learning, you have to be very conscious while purchasing the harp. You must take help of a person, who have complete knowledge of harp and its sound quality.

Harp Music Instrument Resource:- 

Find private & home Harp Tutors for all levels

Hope, now you have enough idea about the instrument and the way of playing the harp. So, don’t be so worried. If you are interested, grab your opportunity and flow your talent through the harp.

How to Read and Play Double Bass in Music

People find playing the double bass difficult as compared to violin, but if you are interested in double bass, you can learn this musical instrument very easily. You have to know some tricks that experts use while reading and playing the double bass.

If you want to play the double bass, you have first to read and understand the notes. To read a note, you must know three facts:

  • The name of the particular note
  • The finger that you need to use for that note
  • The string that your finger needs to produce the sound

Now, you think that how will you know these three facts? In that case, you may use any book on music theory. A music theory book provides you with the best knowledge of these three facts. Seeing the particular note, you have to understand how long you need to last on that note and how that will sound. Music, in the case of a double bass, is written in the same way as in the electric guitar. The music in double bass in written in bass clef, which you can understand by studying regarding bass clef.

On the other hand, while playing the double bass, you have to know the differences in the types of strings. In a double bass, you can find two types of strings – thickest and thinnest. A and E are the thickest strings in a double bass. G and D are the thinnest strings on the double bass. While playing the double bass, you must keep it in mind that there is no fret in a double bass, but you need to play the instrument with feel. You have to learn two basic things – bowing the strings and plucking the strings. These are the two ways, in which you can play the double bass. While playing the double bass, if you want to fret and pull a note, you need plucking. In the case of bowing, you can produce the rhythm by moving your finger back and forth with the bow.

At the time of playing the double bass, you can sit or stand in one place; but it is preferred to sit at one place because the instrument is big and heavy. However, before playing the double bass, you have first to adjust your hand and finger positions. While playing the double base at the upper range, you have to shift your hand from behind your neck, and then you have to flatten your hand out, and at the same time, you have to use your thumb to press the string down. This technique is known as the thumb position.

If you want to perform by playing the double bass, then you have to very conscious about your position. To perform on the stage, you have to practice a lot to place your finger at the right position within a fraction of a second. As the strings of a double bass are thick and they are placed at a larger distance, it is quite challenging to move the fingers quickly. However, if you practice properly, then it is as easy as the violin. If you are tall enough, then it is an advantage for you to play a double base because due to the length of your hand, you can manage the strings properly.

To play the double bass, you must have knowledge about the pitch of the instrument. E1 is the lowest pitch in a double base. The range of the top fingerboard of a double bass is D5. If you want to play beyond the top of the fingerboard, then you have to pull the string to the side slightly. You can also play the double bass, by just touching the strings lightly; this will create a glassy sound. The standard tuning that you need to follow while playing the double bass is E-A-D-G, which is same as a bass guitar. So, if you know playing the bass guitar, then it will be easier for you to play the double bass.

So, what are you waiting for? Start your double bass class and be the best double bass player just applying the small tricks of the double bass as we have suggested.

11 Websites Where You Can Learn To Read Music

Everyone likes listening to good music. It energises and provides peace of mind. A person can develop his education of music by learning. Many people think that it is difficult to learn music and requires a lot of efforts.

Many people who love music and do not have any lessons of music earlier gets dishearten that they cannot learn it. In fact, learning music is similar to learning other languages and only requires little efforts. It is as skill and is very necessary for classical music.Learning music only requires practising and determination as any other thing. Various symbols are used in music, and every symbol has its own meaning. These symbols are used in music notes and rhythm.

As technology has enhanced and internet connections are there anyone with the use of technology can teach themselves the basics of music.

Learn Music Instruments: –  http://www.selectmytutor.co.uk/subject/music.html

Here are the 11 websites which help music lovers in learning.

Read Sheet Music (http://readsheetmusic.info/)

This website will help the person to learn the basics of music. It will teach a person all the music symbols and chords. This website also includes various images which help the person to learn music and understand it in a better way. It provides various tutorials where a person can learn the notes and rhythms. Each tutorial present will help in improving the understanding of music. This website also involves various E-books which a person can read and download it for free.

Arts edge (https://artsedge.kennedy-center.org/educators.aspx)

This is an educational media website which provides material for learning music for students and educators. This is a website which includes free audios, videos and modules. It provides professional teaching material for the better development of knowledge of music. This website is also known by the name Kennedy centre’s educational media. The mission of this website is making use of technology in enhancing the education experience in the world of music.

Teoria Music Theory Web (https://www.teoria.com/)

This website was developed in 1997. It includes various topics related to music theory. This site contains articles, tutorials, references and various exercises. It is a website on which no advertisements appears which distracts the person while working on the site. It is a clean site which includes flash sounds and animations which help in visualising the theory of music. The tutorials include questions which are helpful in learning the chords, signatures, intervals, notes and various other functions. This website also allows the person to save the important material on the computer.

Read music with Flash Cards (http://www.musicards.net/)

Flash cards are considered as one of the best ways in learning. Read music with flash cards involves various quizzes which are related to music theory. It includes various notes, chords and symbols and pops up a screen in which the note for which flash card is needed needs to be selected. Once the flash card for the particular note is selected, then it will start displaying questions related to it. By pressing the correct key for the symbol or chord, next question will automatically appear. Through this one can improve the knowledge of note, chord, and interval recognition.

Music Arrangers (http://www.musicarrangers.com/)

This is a website which arranges free lessons for students to learn music. It is a website in which includes various music games and music projects. It helps the students in making their own sounds online with recording, sound effects, and visual effects. It also helps people in writing their own songs by providing music products online. This website was made by Joe Paparone, The Australian composer.

E-music Theory (https://www.emusictheory.com/)

This is a paid website which helps in learning music lessons. By signing up to this website on can learn to read music as this website combine various links together through which music theory can be learned. This website also provides some free resources online. This website will help in learning the lines and chords which are played on different instruments.

Music Theory. net (https://www.musictheory.net/)

This website consists of mainly three tabs. These include tabs of lessons, exercises and tools. The lesson tab includes lessons relating to basics of music theory and music language with some demonstrations which will help in understanding the right place of the music symbols and chords. The exercise tab includes questions related to what all have been learnt in lessons tab. It includes various exercises which will help in retaining the knowledge gained. Last the tool tab which displays various instruments in order to help in practising the chord, notes and intervals.

Ricci Adam’s musictheory.net (https://www.8notes.com/school/theory/musictheory/files/)

This website basically focuses on the fundamentals of music. This website is very easy to use a can be downloaded fully which can be accessible even if the person does not have the internet connection.  This website is well designed which includes the basics of scale construction.

Music Tech Teacher (http://www.musictechteacher.com/)

This site is created by Ms Karen Garett. It is an award-winning website which includes various music resources which help the students in learning to read, compose and write the music. With the use of music technology various exercises, games, quizzes are available on the website.

The Music Notation Project (http://musicnotation.org/)

This website is for people who have already learn the basics of music and want to learn the advanced form. The websites help in exploring the various music notations which will help in making music more interesting and enjoyable. The motive of this project is to help people to go deep into the world of music and discover new notations.

TI: ME (Technology Institute for music Educators) (https://ti-me.org/)

This site includes many programs which help in learning sequencing and notations. This is a paid website, and in order to access the website, one needs to become a member. The website includes various sample material and articles.

At the end, it can be concluded that the internet has become the source of education which provides numerous resources which are helpful in learning.One can easily learn to read music if he wishes. There are lots and lots of sites which help the person in learning and exploring the music world.

How to Play the Trumpet fast, fun and frustration free

Though, the people, who play the trumpet, have been discovering different ways so that they can become the masters of playing trumpet, over 3,000 years. Still nobody has yet got success to find a way to become a professional trumpet player in a very short time. Playing trumpet sometimes becomes the reason of frustration because it is not easy for all the people to play the trumpet.

trump copyIt is actually very much difficult to play trumpet fast, fun and frustration free. So, there have been given some of the steps, ideas, tips and tricks to play the trumpet fast, fun and frustration free.

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These tips are as follows:-

  1. After picking up the horn of the trumpet, one should take three deep trumpet breaths, after than he/she should place the mouthpiece in the mouth. Then finally one should blow air through the mouthpiece until he/she gets a buzz going using the least amount of air and energy.
  2. If the ear is not good enough to hear the music, they he/she should play only one note on the mouthpiece, followed by this one note one step above it. One should continue doing the same for two minutes.
  3. After all this, one should play three notes up, then 5 notes up and finally again back down and should try to play a scale. One should try doing this without any breaks.
  4. The very next step is not to place the mouthpiece in the horn.
  5. After this step, the next step is to blow through the horn for around one minute. Make sure that you blow without playing any notes. Also, make sure that you take deep breaths with this.
  6. Then finally start playing the trumpet with some of the major scales and use long tones. You may start with the C scale (Concert Bb), and you should do it for 5 to 10 minutes continuously.
  7. Then finally start playing arpeggios (1-3-5-8) and then again start the C scale. Do this for 2 to 5 minutes.
  8. After performing all the above steps, you should be warm enough. In case you are not warm, do some lip slurs and then go to higher than E scale at the top of the staff.
  9. Then again begin by playing the G scale (Concert F) just above the staff.
  10. You need to work a lot on expanding the range of playing through lip slurs. For this, you need to begin from C scale (concert Bb).
  11. After all these steps have been performed perfectly, then you are supposed to repeat all of these steps.
  12. In case if you get to the highest note that can be played by you, then you just have to tongue and play that note over and over again.
  13. Then you should try to buzz the lips together so that you may mimic the sound of a trumpet.
  14. While playing trumpet, one must try to breathe in 4 beats and then release air in those four beats so that he/she does not get frustrated.
  15. After practicing of breathing in 4 beats, you need to try to breath in for every two beats and also releasing the breath in two beats.

You can also use a stopwatch or a stopped clock so that you can note down the time how long you can release the breath.

markimgDOES MUSIC REALLY HELP KIDS IN STUDIES AND CONCENTRATION?

All the above-explained points must be followed in a proper way for playing trumpet in an effective manner. These points can definitely help anyone who actually wants to learn how to play trumpet fast and frustration-free. Mostly people get frustrated by playing the trumpet. The most common reason behind getting frustrated is that mostly people do not know the ways how a trumpet should be played. By following these very simple steps, one can easily play trumpet faster than ever again, and also, he/she will find fun playing trumpet. Most importantly the person, who follows the above-explained steps, would never get frustrated as these steps are really very much interesting. All you need to do is just to follow these steps every day and have to make some efforts if you actually want to learn to play trumpet, and it will be really very much easy for you to play trumpet faster. Your speed of playing trumpet will increase every day if you follow the steps everyday.