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All you need to know about country music

When many people think of country music, they think of sad songs about lost loves, broken down trucks and runaway dogs. In their minds, they are hearing all of these woes sung in the traditional twangy country accents of the south. However, these perceptions of country music are far from where this style of music has evolved. Today, country music is one of the most popular genres of music, normally outsold only by rock and pop genres.

The beginning of country music

Created in the late 19th century, country music has under gone many changes over the years. Now we have many sub-genres to this type of music, with some of the sub-genres being commonly played on top 40 radio stations.

The instruments used

To understand country music, it is helpful to know about the instruments commonly associated with it. In country music, one of the most common instruments used is the fiddle (or violin). Some of these instruments can be expensive, but most are relatively inexpensive and are very easily transports since they tare light in weight and not overly large. When country music first ‘hit the scene’, the fiddle was practically the only instrument used as accompaniment.

However, as the country music style became more popular, the addition of other accompanying instruments became normal. The banjo became popular in some country music pieces in the mid 1800s, while the guitar did not break into the country music scene until the early 1900s. Electric guitars did not become a regular instrument in country music until much later in the 50s. Country musicians also use the piano (introduced in the 1930s) and the drums (used since the 1960s). Rarely used, but distinctive sounding instruments are used in certain country songs: the accordion, the harmonica, and the washboards.

The Roots of country music

Country music has roots in several different styles of music. Its beginnings started with the settlers that came from Europe. Most people couldn’t read or write, so songs were created to pass history down from one generation to the next. Country ballads have changed a great deal. They went from the original songs about objective, though gruesome, events to more personal, subjective ballads without all the gore.

Today, the sound of country music can sometimes be very similar to other genres of pop and rock. Some country musicians, like Shania Twain, have many songs playing on stations that aren’t considered “country”. There are also musicians, like Sheryl Crow, who are considered pop/rock, but have songs popular on country stations.

How to find a great Piano for beginners course

Classes that involve piano for beginners would include an introduction to reading and understanding the keys, chords and how to read musical notes. The piano is unlike any other instrument and sounds wonderful as stand-alone music or as part of a group. The intense sound of a piano is one that captivates audiences with power or soothes them with serenity.

Explore the world of piano for beginners

Budding musicians always find it exciting to explore the world of piano for beginners. Whether this is their first venture playing the piano or being used as a reminder of forgotten skills, a starters course is a terrific way to develop or improve skills.

The most popular place to find a piano for beginners class would be a local high school or college university music department. Occasionally, instructors will offer piano tutoring to non-students. Students, on the other hand, will have a variety of choices within the music curriculum. Otherwise, a quick visit to a local specialty music store may provide leads on potential instructors.

How to select the best instructor

When learning piano , it’s important for hopefuls to select the best instructor by evaluating his/her experience, educational background and accomplishments. The popular instructors will possess some type of music degree or an equivalent amount of musical experience. A potential instructor should be interviewed regarding their history in music, fee requirements, length of classes, policy on missed sessions, etc. If the learner’s schedule is particularly hectic, he/she may wish to enlist the help of a private tutor as opposed to a group instructor.

Group lessons

Music lessons offered in a group will be scheduled by the instructor and will be less flexible toward each individual learner’s schedule. This is not to say that group lessons are not an excellent way to learn piano for beginners because they are. Simply put, private tutors are better for anyone with a hectic or unpredictable schedule. For example, a private tutor will have a more flexible schedule and may be willing to work around that of the learner’s daily routine.

Online courses

Online courses, on the other hand, offer learners with the option of learning piano for beginners in the comfort of their own home at any time during the day or night. After all, where else could you learn piano in your pajamas? My guess is that nowadays most people by far use online classes to learn to play the piano. Such classes are way more convenient and cost effective.

The most fun way

Perhaps that most fun way to learn the piano for beginners is to just start playing. Some of the world’s most famous musicians are self-taught, so don’t be afraid to go solo until you get comfortable with the keys and each of their unique sounds. Online lessons are the best way to start, but there is nothing wrong with a little practice before signing up for class. In fact, the more familiar you are with the piano, the sooner you will be on your way to the Grammy awards. Hey, you never know!

Use Piano Sheet Music To Play Your Instrument

If you look all over the internet you will find that many sites offer free piano sheet music for just about every instrument. When looking for sheet music especially piano sheet music there are many different genres to choose from and this makes finding the music much easier. There are even sites that offer free sheet music. At the turn of the century arrived piano sheet music became very popular among young adults, many people were playing the piano and parlor music became the new trend to sweep the country, this made sheet music very popular. So much so, that every home had a piano and often at least one member of the family could play it.

Learn to read music

It takes practice to read sheet music

Sometimes it is hard to read sheet music, this is not because it is hard in general it just takes practice, the more you practice reading the sheet music the better you will become at it. When learning any instrument and you want to learn like a pro you need to learn the sheet music, understand it and process it.

Music directors and other musicians use sheet music for different songs and it covers many different vocal ranges and instruments. It will only teach you how to play songs and compositions by rote. Nonetheless, not everyone is blessed with the ability to play songs by ear. Musicians back then publish their songs in these unbound sheets of paper. Going back to the 19th century most of the songs in the USA became popular by sheet music. In the past not all songs were written down so most of the popular might have been lost.

Many resources

The Internet has brought forth many resources for musicians, from one-click access to research of songs, pieces, and bands, to easy access to catalogues full of thousands of instruments and other products that can be ordered and shipped directly to them with a few simple clicks. As pieces of music get complicated for the person playing it, the notation of the music becomes more complicated.

In you want to play the piano you should learn at least the basics of reading sheet music. This and much more you will learn at Piano for All. I have bought this course myself and have written a review of it.

What you need to know about Indian Classical Music

The system of Indian classical music known as Raga Sangeet can be traced back nearly two thousand years to its origin in the Vedic hymns of the Hindu temples. Unlike Western classical music which has written scores, an Indian classical performance is based on improvisation, and anywhere from 10% to 90% of the performance could be improvised, depending on the creative imagination of the artist. The music is rendered orally to the disciple by his guru, popularly known as guru-shishya (teacher-student) parampara (tradition).

The Raga – The heart of Indian music

The very heart of Indian music is the raga, the melodic form upon which the artist improvises his performance. A raga is a scientific, precise, subtle, and aesthetic melodic form with its own ascending and descending movement consisting of either a full seven-note octave or a series of six or five notes.

Every raga is characterized by its own particular mood. The acknowledged order of these nine sentiments, or emotions, is as follows: romantic and erotic, humorous, pathetic, anger, heroic, fearful, disgust, amazement and peaceful. Each raga, in addition to being associated with a particular mood, is also closely connected to a particular time of day or a season of the year. Thus, through the rich melodies and rhythm of Indian music, every human emotion, every subtle feeling in man and nature, can be musically expressed and experienced.

In terms of aesthetics, a raga is the projection of the artist’s inner spirit: a manifestation of his most profound feelings and sensibilities. The musician breathes life into each raga as he unfolds and expands it. Each note shimmers and pulsates with life and the raga is revealed vibrant and incandescent with beauty.

The Tala or rhytmic cycle

The Tala is the rhytmic cycle of a raga

The tala, or rhythmic cycle of a raga, plays an equally important role in expressing the mood. There is a unique relationship between melody and rhythm. The intricacies depict the complexities and sophistication with which they are woven together. The division in a taal and the stress on the first beat, called sum, are the most important feature. The most exciting moment for a seasoned listener is when both the musicians, after their individual improvisations, come back together on the sum.

A part of Western Culture

No article about Indian music would be complete without mentioning Ravi Shankar. Due to him Indian music was introduced in our part of the world. He was a great musician and even influenced the Beatles. Today, Indian classical music is a permanent part of Western culture. Many composers and musicians have been influenced by our music. The openness, will to learn, and sincere enthusiasm of Western audiences are a continuing source of inspiration and delight. Indian music is one of the highest forms of music existing and nourished through its rich cultural heritage.

Piano–A World Of History And Class

Piano class and historyThis article covers some of the history and the class of the piano. The first company in Britain that manufactured pianos was the Broadwood. They made big and excellent sounding instruments. By 1820 however, the piano had moved to Paris through the brand Erard. Erard piano’s have also been manufactured in London and a famous one is queens Victoria’s Piano. They also invented the double action where the piano could be played even the key was fully up allowing for rapid playing.

All manufacturers used this technique as time went on.

The first piano’s

The first piano’s had 5 octaves but by 1810 they had become 6 and by 1890 7. In the 19th century, piano’s were tougher to play. They required muscle power to depress the keys to produce good quality music. However, as time went on, softer strings were made that reduced this tension. Today, Electronic keyboards are simple to play and give you the option of a piano with out its bulk and weight.

Today piano’s

Today, piano’s come in 2 versions: the grand piano and the upright piano. In the grand piano, the strings go away from the keys making them large. For these piano’s, big and spacious rooms with high roofs are required. Only then can they be enjoyed to the full.

Upright pianos are more compact and sleek. The strings extend up and down so they can be smaller. Yamaha produces some of the best products in this line.

A modern day piano has 88 keys and miner. This key set represents all 7 octaves and the miners as well.

All modern musicians face a problem

All modern musicians face a problem however. Due to the large evolution of the piano, the compositions of great composers like Mozart and Chopin are no longer meant for these instruments. The instruments that these composers used no longer exist. So a long and arduous task of interpretation is required before they can be played on the modern pianos.

Beautiful sense of music

But, pianos have still got that beautiful sense of music about them. Today musicians like Yanni control your emotions using this instrument. Some even believe that piano music can help cure health problems. Indian classical music has such measures in its music.

Pianos have always been attractive to people who like beauty and romance. They have been appealing to classical tastes as well. Producing cheerful, and beautiful music, the piano can never be forgotten. That is why so many people own them in their home and why even more wish they had one of their very own to sit at and play. There are not many things as relaxing as sitting down at your piano after a long hard day’s work.

You Need To Practice To Play The Piano

There is no substitute for practice while learning to play the piano.  By spending a couple of hours with your instrument every day you develop a special relationship with it. That way you’ll get the most out of your piano lessons and you will play better every day.

Regular Practice Routine

You need to have a regular practice routine that contains certain constant elements (such as warm-up exercises) as well as variable elements that address your current avenue of study.  And performing doesn’t count as practice.  Although playing gigs, performing in Church or for your personal enjoyment is an essential part of your musical development, it won’t replace time in the practice room.

There are times, however, when you just can’t maintain a regular practice routine. But you still need to practice to play the piano. All the other elements of your life crowd in and you find you have to grab a spare hour of practice wherever you can.  It seems futile to embark on any long-range practice projects that will require weeks or months of steady work, because you know it won’t happen.

So should you give up?

Improve your musicianship

Must you put off the idea of improving your musicianship until you have more time (and are you sure that time will come)?  Here’s an alternative – I call it “target bombing.”

You have an hour to practice.  Find something to practice that is not currently in your arsenal.  It could be a lick, a scale, a set of chord voicings, a section of a tune, a transcribed solo, anything.  But this is important:  it must be small.  Don’t set a general goal (e.g., mastering the McCoy Tyner style of pentatonic scale improvisation).  Instead, select a little piece of business (such as a particular pentatonic lick to be learned in 12 keys).  Assume that this is the only opportunity you’ll have to learn this particular item.  Tomorrow you’ll move on to something else.

Target Bombing

Approach the hour’s practice with this attitude: “What can I do within the next hour to permanently improve my musicianship in one very small but measurable way?”

More specifically, “What can I do to master this one item so that it will be self-reinforcing, so that it will immediately begin to show up in my actual performances?”

Your plan is to devour this one small thing so completely that it can’t slip away.

If it’s a lick, make it a short one and learn it in several keys.  Work out the fingering.

Play it over random ii-V progressions.

Solo over a few tunes and work that lick in wherever you can.

If it’s a chord voicing, practice it in 12 keys, work it into tunes, and make sure you can make smooth transitions to and from other voicings.

If you don’t get it by the end of the hour, you lose it forever.  But if you ingest it fully enough, then it will immediately begin to show up in your performances.  It will become a small element of your style and you’ll never lose it.

This is target bombing.  It’s intense, focused, and can be tremendously effective and satisfying.  Although at first it may be a method that you use because you can’t find time for the more traditional, routine-oriented practice, you may find it so successful and fun that you make it your primary approach.

Small steps

After all, you climb a mountain with thousands of small steps.  Take each step so well that you never have to take it again.

I’ve seen this approach work wonders for many students, and I use it all the time myself.  I’ve also seen it fail miserably for others.  It requires a type of tunnel vision, a willingness to gnaw on one thing for one hour without letting other concerns intrude.

How To Find The Right Online Piano Lesson

When you’re ready to start learning the piano, you might want to take an online piano lesson to see if the piano is really for you. For many people who have always wanted to learn how to play music, the piano is their first choice. If you look online for piano lessons, you will find there are many choices available. The key is to narrow down the websites that offer online piano lessons and focus on the one that can help you achieve your musical goals.


There are certain things you should be looking for before you sign up with any online company. One of the top things on your list of requirements should be that the site has received good reviews and been used by many people to learn how to play the piano. Make sure to read testimonials and customer reviews. You want to be sure that real people have successfully used the program to learn how to play music.

Ability to learn at your own pace

Another thing to look for is the ability to learn at your own pace. Make sure you can complete each lesson plan within your own time frame before you move on to the next one. You also want to be sure each lesson is easy enough so you can grasp the lesson concept on your own. Don’t move forward without being 100% confident that you are ready to learn something new.

Learning online is a good option for those people who are busy with other activities outside of the home and can’t fit in another outside appointment. When you learn in your own home, on your own time, there is no pressure to be at your lessons at a scheduled time. This aspect alone can make online piano lessons very appealing.

Eliminate the need to find a qualified piano teacher

When you learn online, you can also eliminate the need to find a qualified piano teacher in the area where you live. Testimonials from a number of other people should indicate satisfaction with the website you choose to sign up with. You want to be able to rely on lesson plans that are going to take you from an inexperienced piano player to one that is confident enough to play for friends and family when they come over.

You will be excited about the progress

You’ll be excited about the progress you make when you take online piano lessons. You will learn to listen to music and play songs back on your own piano. Friends will be surprised to learn that you take your lessons online. One introductory online piano lesson is all it takes to convince you that online learning is the only way to go.

Why And How To Learn Piano Chords

If you are playing several notes at the same time, then you are playing piano chords. Simply put, when multiple notes are played together, piano chords are achieved. The chords then come together to form a melody. Every song that you hear has a melody and it is through each melody that music is achieved. Sound complicated? Well, that’s ok because it really isn’t as difficult as it sounds. Read on and we will explain why and how to learn piano chords.

Variety when playing

As a musician, whether it be professional or hobbyist, you will need to learn the various types of piano chords. The more that you understand about piano chords, the more variety you will have when playing. If you want to write your own music, you not only need an ear for tunes, but also the understanding of how to make them come together. A good instructor will introduce you to piano chords during lessons.

By gaining an understanding of what sounds good and what doesn’t, you will have the undeniable edge over other budding musicians.

It actually comes down to memory

Every piano has 88 keys and while it may seem intimidating to learn piano chords, it actually comes down to memory. When typing on the computer, you know which keys to press in order to make a lowercase letters change to uppercase, right? By studying piano chords, you will begin to understand which keys to press at the same time in order to play a chord. During your introduction to learning piano, an instructor will cover some of the basic chords and you will come to know their sound when you hear them. After enough practice, you will be able to immediately identify piano chords by ear.

Several other ways to help you learn piano chords

There are several other ways to help in your learning of piano chords, including instructional books, tutorials and videos. In the beginning, it may even help to label the keys until you have a better understanding of each of their unique sounds. As you progress in your learning, you can remove the identification labels and play using any arrangement of sheet music. Learning to identify notes will play a large part in your understanding of piano chords. As you move through your studies, you will learn all of the terminology associated with piano playing and the definition of each.


Learning piano chords is a very important part of the process, but it does require a certain degree of patience. Always remember that time will lessen the difficulty and, before you know it, you will be playing and identifying piano chords by ear. While it may seem intimidating at first, you will soon begin to notice the ease of playing piano chords will come naturally. Happy tunes!

Don’t Buy A Piano Until You Read This

Generally speaking, when looking for a new piano, buy the best piano you can afford. The first thing is to decide how much you can afford to spend on a piano without breaking your budget. Remember, a piano is an investment. A good quality new piano will cost upwards of $2,000-$3,000 (easily several thousand dollars more if you want to spend that much), but that piano will also last you a long time. If it’s well-taken care of, a good piano will last about 50 years before needing to be rebuilt.

A used Piano

If your budget is tight, consider purchasing a used piano. They can be a good value. The best bet when you purchase a used piano is to buy from a reputable dealer so that you don’t end up with a piano that needs a lot of work to make it play and sound good. If you’re buying from a private party consider having a piano technician check it out before you purchase it. The small investment you will make to have it checked out can save you serious dollars down the road. Remember that a piano may look good on the outside but need a lot of work on the inside (strings may need to be replaced, pins may need to be fixed or replaced, etc.) So it’s best to have a professional look at it before you purchase.

Purchasing a piano for a child

If you’re purchasing a piano for a child who is just learning how to play and you’re not ready to invest a lot of money into a piano, an older used piano in good condition may work just fine. When I first started playing piano I played on an older piano. My parents didn’t invest in a new piano for a few years because they wanted to first be sure I was interested in learning how to play and was going to use a piano. They didn’t want a big object sitting in their living room that was only collecting dust. But they did make sure the older piano we had was in good working order and was kept in tune.

Tight Budget

If your budget is tight, my suggestion is that you opt for sound quality over the look of the piano – especially if the piano is going to be used by someone who is learning how to play it. A beautiful piano case can add major dollars to the cost of the piano and can have the same sound quality as a lower-cost piano that doesn’t have a case made with expensive wood.

If you find you truly can’t afford a new or good used piano right away, then consider renting rather than purchasing a poor-quality piano. An option is to see if you can arrange to use a piano at a friend or relative’s house, or possibly at school or church. But, if the piano is for a child who is taking lessons, renting may be the better choice unless the piano you’re using is easily accessible nearly every day. A child may quickly lose interest in learning how to play the piano if the piano isn’t easily accessible for him or her to practice on.

When you look at pianos, keep in mind that longer strings in a piano generally produce a better sound. If you’re looking at uprights, look for a taller one. If you’re looking at a grand piano, the strings are horizontal so a longer piano will typically produce a better sound but will also take up more space.

Expensive but better

Some of the more expensive pianos such as Steinway, Bosendorfer, Bechstein, and Mason and Hamiln will better retain their value better than a less-expensive piano although most pianos retain their value fairly well. Some pianos, such as Steinways, typically appreciate in value over time. That’s one of the reasons to consider purchasing the best piano you can afford. Personally I can’t afford one of the above mentioned brands but I own a Yamaha. You’ll also typically have less repair issues on a better quality piano.

What are some of the differences between an expensive piano and a less-expensive piano? Yes, sometimes it seems like you’re paying more because of the “name” or “brand” of the piano. While that may be true in some instances, it’s not the norm. Less expensive pianos usually have manufactured wood material underneath the veneer and the veneer itself will be of a less-expensive wood. They also may have synthetic materials in the piano action, and have high tension stringing scales, to name a few particulars. Higher quality pianos will have hardwood underneath the cabinet veneer, lower tension stringing scales, wool cloth in the piano actions, and are typically tuned and regulated before leaving the factory. But, there are instances where fancy beautiful cases are holding interior parts that are of sub-standard quality. To avoid getting “taken,” do research before you shop and use a reputable dealer.

Digital Piano

If you’re not sure how much your new piano is going to be used, you might want to consider a digital piano. A digital piano is both an acoustic piano and an electronic piano. They are today’s version of the roll player pianos. You can play these pianos if you want but can also have them play music for you whenever you want.

Space is a big consideration when buying a piano. Pianos are approximately five feet wide and two and one-half feet deep. You’ll also need an additional two feet of depth so the piano bench can be moved out to sit on comfortably. Grand pianos usually take up most of a room because people have a tendency to showcase them. They are not put against a wall like most vertical pianos are.

Enjoy the process

Shopping for a piano can be a fun experience. Enjoy the process. Look at and try out several pianos at several dealers before buying a piano. Get a feel for the piano. Pay attention to the feel of the keys and the sound of each piano so you can decide which piano is best for you.

This is why you should learn to play piano

Let’s look at some reasons why you should learn to play Piano:

You can become smarter

Studies have shown that those that play a musical instrument in school, do better with their studies than those who do not. It is said that playing musical instruments has a therapeutic effect on the brain. By playing piano from a young age, they develop ones reading skills, a child’s ability to learn, and they also raise the child’s IQ. Adults can benefit also because it makes one able to focus better resulting in effects such as more mental focus and improved memory.

Learn Discipline

Many people who play music are very disciplined. You have to be disciplined in order to master the instrument you are playing. You need to set aside time each day to practice, practice, and further practice. While many people goof around watching TV and Gossiping, you have to set that time aside to practice piano.

Playing piano relive stress

When you hear soft soothing music, it can de stress many people. We all need days when we need to just sit and soothe our minds. Life can be hectic and stressful. Playing piano can relax you by calming the mind.

A sense of achievement

If you’re new to playing a musical instrument, getting your first piece right can be very frustrating. However, once you achieve this, you can have an overwhelming feeling of achievement and satisfaction.

Playing piano is fun

Learning how to play piano can be very hard work, but most people who play will tell you that playing piano is a whole lot of fun. This to me is the best reason why to learn play piano. Once you get better playing your, you will be able to demonstrate what you have learn to families and friends.

You may even choose to go further with your skills and aim for playing piano  at a professional level. Playing musical instruments opens up many possibilities which can only be a positive thing. We are sure that by learning to play a musical instrument, your life can only be enriched.