Reply To: New Player, what lesson frequency would you recommend for me?

Recorder Forum Home Page Forum Teaching and Learning New Player, what lesson frequency would you recommend for me? Reply To: New Player, what lesson frequency would you recommend for me?

Ken In Dallas

Hey Rex… About your Sweet Pipes book: See if it has “SP2318” either on the lower left of the title page or on the lower left of the outside back cover. There’s a different ‘pipes’ book much like this that teaches music notation at the same time for those that need it. I use 2318 and explain notation if needed as I go along.

Assuming you’ve got 2318, notice how the book starts. Unit 1 covers Alto low notes C, D, and E. With the thumb covered it teaches to cover 1, 2 and then 3 holes using the left hand. It looks too simple. Just quarter notes, quarter rests, and some half notes. Too Simple. A self-teaching beginner might quickly pass over it all thinking they understand. I explain to someone I’m teaching that according to the research we’re ‘programming’ at least three parts of the brain: a kinesthetic memory of the feel and location of the holes, a visual memory of the notes on the staff, and an auditory memory of the pitch each produces in addition to the letter names and other things.

And then I point out that if they don’t spend the needed time on what looks too simple, this teacher guarantees it will come back to bite them on the ass. (Did I mention I don’t teach kids?) Pay your dues. Tedious, but required.

I ask students to ‘think’ the note’s name – the word C, D, or E – as they play each note in an exercise because that single letter is the main title under which all those memory pieces will be filed in the most amazing Central Processing Unit yet known. I also tell my students that every place I cut a corner when I was learning – I bought my first Tenor in 1963 – still bites my 73-year old behind.

The Unit then, in Exercises 25- to 29, explores fingering exchanges from this note to that and such, also to be played while ‘thinking’ the note names. Again, it looks too simple, but it isn’t.

And Rex, if you ‘work’ the lesson as I’ve described, I’ll email you a recording I give to students of my slowly playing the upper voice of Exercise 187 in the back of the book – a 14th Century duet of Edi beo thu Hevene Quene, in which the lower voice consists of only the notes from Unit 1. There are twelve YouTubes posted of different ensemble playing the piece. My favorite is by the famous accapella women’s group, Anonymous 4 that you can hear at:

We good? You put yourself out there by posting what you’re doing. Many adults won’t learn an instrument out of fear – of failure or exposure. You should be proud of yourself. You’ll do fine. — k

  • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by Ken In Dallas. Reason: mp3 exceeded website limits