So, you (or someone in your family) has finally signed up for those violin lessons you've been wanting for ages. What to do about an instrument?
We at Los Angeles Music Teachers firmly believe that for beginners, rental is the best option for the first few months (at the very least). Purchasing an instrument is a very personal thing which requires the development of the musical "ear", or the ability to distinguish the qualities of one instrument from another.
It takes time to reach this point. From our perspective, it makes sense to wait until one has sufficient experience before making a major investment in an instrument.
Another advantage to renting a violin or cello is that size exchanges can be made at any time. As your child grows the size of the violin or cello also needs to grow. At some point, your child will outgrow the first instrument. The rental insurance coverage for theft or damage assures peace of mind, which is particularly important when it is a child who is handling the instrument.
Considering all of these benefits, making rental payments for a time can constitute money well spent. And, if one decides to purchase an instrument later on, Depending on where you rent the Violin, a percentage of what has been spent in rental fees can be applied towards this purchase.
Tips on care and maintenance:
If you have any questions you are welcome to call us for advice on best practices for renting or buying a string instrument like violin or cello. Our teachers will also help answer any questions and guide you as you take lessons. If you're interested in signing up for lessons on Zoom or In Person in Burbank, Glendale or North Hollywood, please contact us at (818)902-1233 or on our website at https://www.losangelesmusicteachers.com/online-violin-lessons-in-burbank-ca.html
Musical performances have always been part of history. Since the advent of the piano, as a musical instrument, performers have always stunned their audience at concerts so phenomenally. History is replete with the remarkable achievements of piano grandmasters such as J. S. Bach and Franz Liszt. Generally, 18th-century musicians opine that music should be performed with good execution as it must possess something to say or talk about. Interestingly, learners can gain the right technical approach to this practice by seeking the best piano lessons in Burbank. Here are some helpful piano training tips that can substantially elevate a learner’s skills when incorporated.
Beginner Drum Beat Breakdown
This is the basic form of showing a student how to count a basic beat and separating it by steps. In this guide you will see the breakdown of the beat and then when it is all together, you will be playing your very first beat.
First we will start off counting 1-2-3-4 and Repeat 1-2-3-4 because he will be playing to these numbers. Each Number represents a beat. And I will show you during the lesson and put it on the sheet for your son. So you can practice his homework with him.
Hi Hat: (If he is a righty, use right hand on Hi-Hat) (If Lefty he plays Hi Hat with his left Hand)
Snare: (If he is a Righty, He will use his Left hand on the Snare) (If he is a lefty, he will use his right hand on the snare)
Bass Drum: (if he is a righty, his right foot will be on the bass Pedal) ( if he is a lefty, His left food will be on the bass.. pedal)
Would look like this below: R-Right Hand, L - Left Hand
Snare: R,L 1,2
Tom 2: R,L 3,4
Tom 3: R,L 5,6
Floor Tom: R,L. 7,8
Crash Cymbal R. Crash
Lesson Number 1 (first Beat)
Tap Hi Hat on Every Number.
Tap on 1, on 2, on 3, on 4 (Count out loud when doing this)
Repeat (Twice) It will look like this when I write it out.
Hi Hat: 1-2-3-4
Next we will add the Snare
Tap Hi Hat and Snare on 2 and 4 at the same time. (So we will Count 1 then have him hit the hi-hat and snare at the same time. So we will count 1, Tap on 2, count 3, then tap on 4) it will look like this.
Tap Hi Hat and Snare on 2 and 4 with sticks
Hi Hat: 2 4
Snare: 2 4
When he’s comfortable doing this, we will tap the hi hat on every number
Tap Hi Hat on all numbers and Snare on 2 and 4 with sticks
Hi Hat: 1-2-3-4
Snare: 2 4
Next we will add the Bass Drum/Pedal
We will be taping the Hi-hat and bass pedal with his foot and we will be doing this at the same time but on number 1 and 3 (So we will tap and step on 1, count 2, then tap and stomp on 3, and then count 4) it will look like this below
Tap Hi Hat and step with foot on 1 and 3
Hi Hat: 1 3
Bass: 1 3
When he’s comfortable doing this, we will tap the hi hat on every number
Tap Hi Hat on all numbers and Foot on 1 and 3
Hi Hat: 1-2-3-4
Bass: 1 3
Next we will put step 2 and 3 together
Now we will slowly put step 2 and 3 together. (On 1 it will be Hi Hat and Bass Drum, on 2 hi hat and snare, on 3 hi hat and bass drum and on 4 its hi hat and snare. Then we will end with a crash cymbal.
Tap Hi Hat and Bass on 1 and 3 and Snare on 2 and 4 I’ve color coded for you. (The Hi Hat will be going all the way through
Hi Hat: 1-2-3-4
Bass/Foot: 1 3
Snare: 2 4
If you're interested in taking Drum lessons on Zoom or In Person in Burbank, Glendale or North Hollywood, we have some of the best drum lessons in Los Angeles. Our drum instructors are picked by interviewing hundreds of drum instructors and we have really high standards on both their teaching ability as well as their personality. If you'd like to talk to one of our instructors or set up a first lesson we have a guarantee that if you don't absolutely love your first lesson you don't have to pay for it. Please contact us at (818)902-1233 or on our website at https://www.losangelesmusicteachers.com/online-drum-lessons-in-burbank-ca.html
The Grand Staff and Clefs
The Grand Staff
This is what is known as the grand staff. It includes the treble clef and bass clef. Pianists read from the grand staff.
Note that the two notes shown above are the exact same pitch. Each is called "middle C."
Clefs in Relation to Middle C
Middle C is the note exactly between the bass and treble clefs, as noted in the image above. It is known by many other names, but for these tutorials I will be calling it "middle C". Middle C is located in a different spot for each clef, but it remains the exact same pitch. To show how each clef is related, here are images of each clef with middle C. Yes, this means that the clefs overlap each other.
The treble clef is also known as the "G clef." The easiest way to remember this is seeing that the clef circles the note G (second line from the bottom).
The image below shows where middle C is located on this clef.
This clef is also known as the "F clef." One way to remember this is that the line between the two dots is F (second line from the top).
Middle C is located on the first ledger line above the staff of the bass clef.
For the tenor clef, middle C is located on the second line from the top of the staff.
On the alto clef, middle C is located on the middle line of the staff.
The tenor and alto clefs are referred to as the "C clefs." Notice that middle C is located at the middle line of each of those clefs.
Why all of the clefs?
Each instrument has a range of notes that it can play. If every instrument read from the treble clef, for example, there would be a lot of ledger lines for lower instruments, which would make the music very difficult to read. Different clefs are assigned to different instruments based on the notes each instrument is able to play.
If you're interested in taking lessons on Zoom or In Person in Burbank, Glendale or North Hollywood, please contact us at (818)902-1233 or on our website at https://www.losangelesmusicteachers.com/online-music-lessons-burbank-ca.html
What Violin Strings Are Best For You?
Most violinists stick with the strings they’ve been using for years, while others constantly seek different strings that might improve their instrument’s sound or make playing easier. These days, string players face a multitude of choices when it comes to picking violin strings, including a cavalcade of E strings that come plated in platinum, gold, and silver, among other materials. Trying every available string on the market to find your dream strings is probably unrealistic, but you can make an educated guess about a string’s sound if you understand some of the qualities of its core and winding materials, string tension, and the general tonal and playing qualities of each brand.
Of course, talking to other musicians about their experiences and preferences is also helpful in building your knowledge about different strings, but keep in mind, each instrument has its own characteristic sound. And while your violin can be adjusted and tweaked, changing to a new brand of strings alone probably won’t make a huge change in the tone or playability of your instrument.
CORE MATERIAL, TENSION & GAUGE
These are the original type of strings and their design goes back several centuries. Typically made from sheep intestines, gut strings are lower tension than synthetic- or steel-core strings and have a complex tone that is rich with overtones. Because of the low tension and winding method, they are more pliable under the fingers than other strings, tend to have slower response, and require players to finesse the sound from their instruments with the bow. Gut-core strings also need more frequent tuning, especially if there is a rapid change in room temperature, like stepping under hot stage lights.
The steel E string was introduced for violins at the beginning of the 20th century and was followed by the other steel-core strings and various windings, usually chrome steel. The steel E quickly became widely used and cellists took to steel-core strings fairly quickly. In general, steel strings have a quick response and a clear, focused, brilliant tone. But, don’t expect a great deal of depth and tonal complexity from steel-core strings.
Normally, classical players prefer other types of strings, but others, such as fiddlers, tend to prefer steel-core strings. They’re also widely used on fractional-size instruments. Generally, they are the least expensive strings on the market.
The violin E strings are available in three different types: plain steel, plated steel, and wrapped steel. The original is the plain steel E. In recent years, a number of steel E strings plated with various materials like tin, gold, and platinum have been introduced. The gold-plated steel E, for example, has a brilliant, clear, pure sound that many like, though they do tend to wear out quickly (the gold-plating wears off, and some instruments tend to whistle when going from the A to open E). The wrapped E has a steel core, usually with a chrome steel wrapping, and tends to have less edge and brilliance than unwound E strings, leaving them a bit warmer and mellower, but slower in response. They might be a good choice for someone who finds steel E strings too shrill or for instruments that tend to whistle when going quickly from the A to an open E. In a situation like this, I recommend the Kaplan Solutions E from D’Addario.
About 40 years ago, the Austrian string-making company Thomastik-Infeld introduced Dominant strings with a core made of Perlon (a type of nylon). They were an instant success, and some would say that Dominant strings changed violin playing forever. Synthetic core is much more stable in pitch than gut. Though “gut-like,” they tend to have a more focused tone with fewer complex overtones. In the last 15 years, other core materials have been used that combine different synthetic materials for a more complex sound, thus the commonly used term “composite” core. While not quite sounding “just like gut,” these newer strings have interesting and sophisticated tonal characteristics.
Though often used interchangeably with string tension, a string’s gauge, or width, is different altogether. Unwound gut strings are a great example of this. Tuned at the same pitch as a steel- or synthetic-core string, a gut string will need to be thicker than other types of strings, even though its tension will be lower. Players who switch to a wider type of string, like gut, may need to have a luthier widen the slots on their instrument’s bridge and nut to accommodate the thicker gauge of the strings.
Still, at a basic level, when shopping for strings, you will be confronted with three gauges of the same string and it’s helpful to understand the differences. Compared to a medium gauge set of the same make of string, a thinner (also sometimes called “weich” or “dolce”) string will be lower tension, with a brighter, more responsive tone, but it will be lower in volume. A thicker (“stark,” “forte”) string, will do just the opposite, giving you a darker tone, but with a slower response.
Though it’s one of the biggest factors determining the tonal differences between different types of strings, string tension is often confused with string gauge. Within specific types of strings, tension and gauge are related, but they are not the same.
Almost all strings, even the least expensive student strings, are available in different tensions: light, medium, and heavy. Gut-core strings tend to have a lower average tension than either synthetic- or steel-core strings. You can feel that lower tension as pliability under the fingers—the strings are easier to press down and you can feel them roll. Synthetic-core strings have a higher tension than gut-core strings, with the darker, warmer-sounding strings (e.g., Pirastro Evah Pirazzi) tending to have a slightly lower tension, although there are some exceptions to this (Thomastik Infeld Blue vs. Infeld Red, which have almost identical tensions). Steel-core strings tune up to a higher tension better than any other types.
When experimenting with different strings, it’s usually best to begin with medium-gauge strings first and then go to a different gauge only if necessary. On some instruments, the higher tension can actually choke the sound.
String winding In recent years, a number of string manufacturers have offered interesting and exotic winding materials, especially for steel-core strings. Altering the winding material allows manufacturers to change the string’s response and tension with such heavier materials as tungsten, resulting in a high-tension string that is thinner than one made from a less dense metal, like aluminum or silver.
A player’s chemistry may also be a factor in choosing strings. Some players, with acidic perspiration, will find that their sweat tends to corrode aluminum-wound strings. The wrapping quickly develops a rough gray surface, which usually doesn’t happen with other kinds of wrappings. Those players might want to try a silver wrapped D, for example.
MATCHING THE STRINGS TO YOUR NEEDS
Each violin, viola, cello, or bass has its own tonal characteristics that may be improved by a skilled luthier. If you would like to fine-tune the sound of your properly adjusted instrument, you may want to experiment with different strings.
Before you begin experimenting, you may want to answer a few questions about your current sound. What is your instrument’s characteristic sound? What strings you are using now? What sound do you want to hear?
Once you’ve addressed these questions, you can use the following guide to get the sound you’re seeking.
If your instrument is too bright, you may want a string that has darker, warmer characteristics. You may want to try something with a synthetic core, like Pirastro’s Obligato or Violino, or the Aricore brand, or Thomastik’s Infeld Red or Vision Solo strings. If you want gut-core strings, consider Pirastro Eudoxa. Pirastro’s popular Evah Pirazzi strings are more brilliant than these others, but still have some warmth compared to the more brilliant strings.
If you are on a budget, try D’Addario Pro-Arté or Super Sensitive Octava strings. While lacking in complexity and character of tone, these can be useful on inexpensive student instruments. If your violin is bright to the point of sounding shrill, a low-tension string, like Larsen Tzigane, may tone down a harsh-sounding instrument.
An instrument that’s too dark may benefit from a brilliant string, like Thomastik’s Vision, Infeld Blue, or Dominant strings, or Pirastro’s Tonica or Wondertone Solo. Gut-string fans may want to look at the new Pirastro Passione Solo or the Oliv. If steel-core strings are your preference, try D’Addario’s stranded steel-core Helicores.
If your instrument is unclear or unfocused, light-gauge versions of the brilliant strings that can help an instrument that’s too dark or dull will usually help focus an instrument with a mushy core sound. Players are frequently looking for more (or occasionally less) volume. Different strings don’t seem to offer much volume difference, but you perceive brilliant, focused strings as sounding louder under the ear and they may project better.
SHOULD YOU MIX STRINGS?
The ideal instrument is balanced on all four strings, with no single string jumping out in comparison to the others. Sadly, the reality is different, leading many string players to mix and match strings to get the best sound out of the instrument.
For years, many violinists and violists used the same kind of string for the three lower strings, sometimes using a different top string. For instance, a standard setup was Thomastik Dominant A, D, and G, and a Pirastro Gold-Label E. Violists have used Dominant D, G, and C, with a Jargar (or Larsen) A. But this has changed with the introduction of so many new strings, so experiment to find the best match for your desired sound. However, strings alone don’t determine the balance.
If you have an unbalanced instrument, the first step should be taking it to a qualified luthier for an adjustment. Sometimes, just moving the soundpost can make a difference. If you want to solve a balance problem by changing strings, start first by trying a different gauge on the offending string. Thomastik introduced the Infeld Red and Blue strings (red=darker, blue=more brilliant) with the idea that you can mix and match them to get a proper balance. Keep in mind that if you mix different brands and types of strings, a difference in tension might affect the sound of the other strings as well. You may also find the difference in actual thickness of strings to be distracting.
Things are a bit different for cellists, who seem to mix and match strings far more often than other string players. For a long time, a favorite set up was Jargar A and D with Thomastik Spirocore Tungsten G and C, though some cellists opt for Larsens on the upper strings. This setup is fairly brilliant. If you want a complete set that is warmer, you can try the new Kaplan Solutions from D’Addario or Pirastro’s Evah Pirazzi.
Lifetime of a String: When to Make a ChangeWhich strings last longer? Given the price of strings, it’s a reasonable question. It doesn’t seem like any one type of string lasts longer. What seems to be most important is how you play on the strings and how your body chemistry affects them. Depending on your sweat and technique, you may need to change strings every couple of months, or perhaps, once a year. Either way, you should wipe off the strings after every playing session. Also, remember, strings deteriorate, the core fatigues, and the sound gradually becomes more dull and dead. The process is so slow that you usually don’t realize it until you change strings.
Choosing strings can be very complex, and you may wonder: what’s the best string? The answer is that there is no best string—there’s only the best string for you and your instrument, so consider your needs and examine your options.
If you're interested in taking Violin lessons on Zoom or In Person in Burbank, Glendale or North Hollywood, we have some of the best Violin lessons in Los Angeles. Our violin instructors are picked by interviewing hundreds of violin instructors and we have really high standards on both their teaching ability as well as their personality. If you'd like to talk to one of our instructors or set up a first lesson we have a guarantee that if you don't absolutely love your first lesson you don't have to pay for it. Please contact us at (818)902-1233 or on our website at https://www.losangelesmusicteachers.com/online-violin-lessons-in-burbank-ca.html
Right now in 2021 the piano/keyboard is the most requested instrument to play by young musicians at least in the U.S. It’s the number one instrument in most music schools with the guitar a close second. It’s probably the most versatile of all musical instruments and is used in every style of music. It can be played or accompany other instruments and is often played as a solo instrument. It also covers a range from the lowest of bass instruments to the highest piccolo sounds.
In addition, many musicians who’s main instrument is a woodwind, string, brass or percussion learn the piano because it is a very visual instrument that makes it easy to learn theory and work out compositions. Many composers think of it as “having the orchestra in their hands,” therefore most of the great composers for hundreds of years were pianists and used the piano to compose and that remains the same currently in contemporary music.
The electric keyboard makes it possible for more parents to be able to afford to buy a piano because electric keyboard companies are able to make them for as low as 50.00 and even good 88 key electric keyboards with weighted keys are less than 500.00.
If you're interested in taking piano, guitar or singing lessons on Zoom or In Person in Burbank, Glendale or North Hollywood, we have some of the best piano, guitar and singing lessons in Los Angeles. Our instructors are picked by interviewing hundreds of drum instructors and we have really high standards on both their teaching ability as well as their personality. If you'd like to talk to one of our instructors or set up a first lesson we have a guarantee that if you don't absolutely love your first lesson you don't have to pay for it. Please contact us at (818)902-1233 or on our website at https://www.losangelesmusicteachers.com/contact-us-for-info.html
Musical performances have always been part of history. Since the advent of the piano, as a musical instrument, performers have always stunned their audience at concerts so phenomenally. History is replete with the remarkable achievements of piano grandmasters such as J. S. Bach and Franz Liszt. Generally, learners can gain the right technical approach to this practice by seeking the best piano lessons in Burbank. Here are some helpful piano training tips that can substantially elevate a learner’s skills when incorporated.
1. Maintain a natural posture
Keyboardists are always advised to maintain a calm posture and portray good deportment when addressing the keyboard. This can be effectively achieved by ensuring a comfortable seating posture while maintaining an appropriate distance from the keyboard for enhanced ease of movement.
2. Ensure proper use of the full arm
As a constituent of the full arm, the forearm provides support to the hand which in turn supports the fingers. It is best to ensure that the forearm is well-positioned to ensure easy movement of the hand (sideways, upward and downward).
3. Make the wrist flexible
Playing with a supple wrist can bring about a seamless execution of gestures. The legendary music tutor, Beethoven strongly advocates the development of a unique feeling of musical impulse when playing slurred notes. This would require the light withdrawal of the hand purposely.
4. Play with a compact hand
By default, the hands are meant to be kept in a compact position when playing the piano. Apart from helping to keep the arm and hand calm, this also helps to enhance finger movements.
5. Flow naturally with the fingers
There is no need to exert force while playing the piano. As a best practice, players should try to keep the muscles relaxed, as well as maintain a natural arch when working with the fingers.
6. Follow the right finger motion (fingering)
It is very easy to play the wrong note when adopting the wrong fingering. To avoid creating execution difficulties, pianists should ensure that they articulate gestures with the right fingering.
7. Try to be consistent
To achieve greater reliability, it is best to ensure full consistency by maintaining a regular hand shape.
8. Understand the structural function
The left hand is the foundation of playing the piano. This is where the bass line which is responsible for clarifying harmonic rhythm, maintaining timing, providing direction, sustaining the rhythmic energy, and setting the tempo is located. Ensure to work with the left hand by listening and building from the bass up.
As it is commonly said, practice makes perfect. Following the best piano lessons in Burbank can set anyone on the right track to perfection.
If you're interested in taking Piano lessons on Zoom or In Person in Burbank, Glendale or North Hollywood, we have some of the best piano lessons in Los Angeles. Our piano instructors are picked by interviewing hundreds of drum instructors and we have really high standards on both their teaching ability as well as their personality. If you'd like to talk to one of our instructors or set up a first lesson we have a guarantee that if you don't absolutely love your first lesson you don't have to pay for it. Please contact us at (818)902-1233 or on our website at https://www.losangelesmusicteachers.com/online-piano-lessons-in-burbank-ca.html
How To Create Suitable Melodies For Your Chord Progression
No matter your level of proficiency, you can create great melodies along with your chord progression using any of the two approaches outlined below.
It is a good idea to use different chord inversions while playing your chord progression. You can try each of the inversions one at a time as you move on with your progression. You may seek the guidance and supervision of an experienced keyboardist on this.
The melodies will be obvious as you make connections with the chords. Bear in mind that you may not actually hear the whole of the melody at once, but you should be able to filter out the skeleton of the melody from what you hear. As you continue to practice, you’ll be improving on the melodies and more parts of it will be coming out. With time, you’ll be able to produce an interesting melody.
At this point, you should not bother about whether you are getting the notes right. Rather, follow your ears. Listen to the melody and continue to make corrections as you deem necessary. Let the process flow naturally and organically. Getting the notes correct will come naturally. The more you practice with the chord progression, the more the notes will fall in the right place. If you don’t like this approach or it is difficult for you to follow, you can adopt the next one, discussed right below.
The approach involves attaching a particular rhythm to your chord progression. Lay it down on a recorder. You can then play it repeatedly. Listen as you play it. If you play the melodies so many times, you’ll be able to listen to them without recording.
After playing the chord progression, close your eyes and try to hear the melody. Try to arrange the musical set pieces mentally. At this point, you should be able to come up with several melodies. You may also record the melodies as you align them with your chord progression. The more you memorize the progression, the easier it will be for you to hear organic melodies naturally. You’ll no longer need to fiddle with your musical instrument to come up with a nice melody.
Instead of focusing on your musical instrument, unleash your creativity. Listen to your head and dig out the melodies in them. Letting your voice run at the same pace with your ears is one of the best ways to come up with nice music.
Of course, there are several other ways to create melodies and music, but the two approaches above are easy to adopt and they are effective as well. Most importantly, regardless of what approach you choose, always let your imagination work. Don’t focus on only instruments. The musical instruments are distractions. They’ll sever the synchronization between your ears and voice. So, it is better to use your voice, record it, and transcribe it. When you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to create nice melodies more effortlessly.
If you're interested in taking lessons on Zoom or In Person in Burbank, Glendale or North Hollywood, please contact us at (818)902-1233 or on our website at https://www.losangelesmusicteachers.com/online-music-lessons-burbank-ca.html
Best tips for Online Music Lessons
How To Get Started Teaching Music Lessons Online
Right now there are a lot of lessons being moved online because of the corona virus. So we put together a list of tips and best practices to help you make the most out of online music teaching.
All of the platforms that are readily available to us are not designed for instruments, they are designed for voice. This means that tone and dynamics are very difficult to hear. The best workaround that I have found is to ask the student to record a video of their playing on their phone or computer ahead of time, upload the video to YouTube as an unlisted video (not private) and send it through as a link.
Even the most basic of phones will likely produce better audio quality than you will find in a video call. The pre-recorded video can then be used and referenced in the lesson as you work on repertoire or exercises. The added benefit of this is that it brings a certain degree of focus, preparedness and organization to a teaching session.
In my experience the most impactful element that affects sound quality is the speed of connection to the internet. While you can ensure that you have a fast connection, you will not be able to control that of all your students. To get the best connection possible you can turn the wifi off on all other devices connected to the same router and at best have an ethernet cable run from your computer directly to the modem so that you are not relying on wifi at all.
A microphone will boost your sound quality too but not as much as a good internet connection from all parties.
Teaching with live video can be very off-putting with regards to sound but you also get used to it. I have found over the years that I can somewhat decipher what I am hearing and pick up some nuances that might sound garbled to others.
Facetime, Skype, or Zoom?My recommendation : Zoom
There are many video platforms that can be used but perhaps the most common ones will be Facetime, Skype, and Zoom.
Facetime and Skype will be excellent tools for one-to-one teaching scenarios and many people are already familiar with how to use the programs, which is a big plus. Skype has the added advantage of being able to send files and text messages while also on the call, which can be very useful for sharing scores, links, and pdfs. Facetime tends to be a bit more stable in my experience as a platform and can have better audio.
Zoom is a popular platform that is free to use for sessions up to 45 minutes in duration. For longer sessions you will need to purchase a subscription. Zoom is very useful for teaching because of the extra functions that it provides and I would recommend investing some time to learn this platform. For this reason I will focus on using the Zoom platform in this article, but many concepts can be applied to other platforms.
Zoom features for music teachingBy the way, I have no affiliation with this company.
Share your screen
The share screen function will allow you and your student to read off the same PDF score. As you are sharing your screen this means that you can open the score in a program (like Preview on a Mac) where you can annotate the score and point out sections with your cursor. Anything that you can see on the screen can be seen on the students screen. Just remember that people tend to be on smallish screens so you might need to zoom in on the score if you want to refer to small details.
Record the Lesson
It is very easy to record a Zoom lesson. Simply hit record whenever you like and a little red dot will appear on the feed showing that the session is being recorded. You have the possibility to pause the recording at any time – perhaps if you want to engage in casual conversation or there is a technical issue – and continue when you are ready.
When you end the session Zoom will take a few minutes to render a movie file that you can playback, upload to youtube or send to the student.
“Turn on Original Sound”
Zoom does have a setting that let’s you get around the dreaded sound quality that we normally experience and it is called original sound. This means that the software stops trying to be smart and detect when you are speaking and just transmits the raw audio feed of the microphone. This is GREAT but it comes with a couple of problems.
This is currently only available to the host, which means the teacher can better demonstrate sound but not the student.
It causes echo.
The sound quality gets better and in part this is because the signal gets a little more complex. The buffering needed to carry this signal puts you slightly out of synch with your student you will get an echo. The solution for this is to use headphones.
The biggest advantage of Zoom is that you can have multiple people in a “room”. This means that you can work with more than one person at a time and have a shared discussion.
When there is more than two people in a room, you can choose to toggle your screen mode from featuring the person who is talking (or making sound) to a grid of video feeds where you can see everyone.
In order for people to join your session you will need to give them a link that looks something like this
“Join Zoom Meeting
When you have a zoom account you will have a default “personal meeting room” link and also the ability to create new rooms with distinct names and links. This means that you could create a room called “Tracy’s Teaching Room” and send out the link to all your students.
When a student clicks on a link the first time they will be promoted to download the zoom app to their device. Once this has been installed for the first time it will simply launch the meeting room directly from the link. The apps are free and easy to set up, even for the technology averse.
If someone comes to a room early, before you initiate the session on your side, they will just see a screen saying that the host has not started yet. If they come in while you are in there with another student they will still get access but you can mute them until it is time to work with them.
One benefit for music teachers is that you can set up multiple webcams to use for your teaching session. I am a guitarist, so it can be very useful to have one camera set up for a shot of my right hand whereas the main camera is the typical view from the front.
To toggle between cameras all you need to do is select what camera you are using from the video icon.
As the host in Zoom, you can mute participants. This is incredibly useful if you are in a group of people and you don’t want to hear the various sounds coming from all the microphones. You can “mute all” or mute one at a time. Participants can also mute and unmute themselves.
Dealing with Dropouts
If the internet cuts out for you or the student the room is still there and it won’t disappear for everyone. This is inevitable at some point so it is nice to know that you or the student can simply fix the problem (usually plugging the computer into power) and re-join a few minutes later.
Best Practices and SuggestionsPreparing Materials
Save yourself a lot of time by making sure that you both have the same materials to refer to. If you have different scores you might spend a lot of time trying to communicate exactly what part of the music you are referring to. It is possible to hold up sheet music to the camera but it is not particularly convenient.
One of the more subtle changes that you will have to make is regarding how you talk and listen. In our regular teaching you might find yourself interjecting simply to encourage or acknowledge something. Online, this will potentially stop the flow of conversation with the inevitable “oh, sorry you go ahead – no you go ahead”. By speaking and then giving a clear amount of time to listen to the response or playing you will make the interaction more effective and less frustrating.
Getting Different Camera Angles
If you only have one camera available, which will be the case for most of you, you can still get multiple points of view by physically moving or adjusting the current camera.
Take a few moments playing around with what angles might be useful in a teaching situation. How close do you need to be to see details and what details are visible at what positions. One thing to remember is that you don’t always need to have your face visible. Of course it is nice to see people’s faces but if you need to see a cello bow hold, perhaps you can adjust accordingly.
If you are on a phone or laptop you will have some ability to maneuver the camera either by tilting or holding the device in your hand. Handholding can be very disorienting for the viewer so don’t do it too often, but it can be useful for getting very specific points of view. If you are using an inbuilt camera on a laptop, don’t be afraid to tilt the screen to get the right angle.
The vast majority of cameras will be on automatic settings and adjust for light as they think is necessary. The only real problem that arises for our purposes is if you have a strong light in the background.
If you have strong backlighting – perhaps a sunny window behind you or a strong lamp – then the camera might think it is necessary to adjust for that light source. The result will be that your face will be very dark.
To fix this, aim to have the strongest light source in front of you, or potentially maneuver your torso to cover a specific back light. As soon as you do this you will notice that your camera adjusts on its own.
If you want to look your best, you will want to aim for a large lighting source – like a window -and a soft lighting source – like a window with transparent white curtains. A small and bright light source will give you harsh highlights and shadow.
A simple layout that works is putting a soft lamp next to your computer screen that lights your face from the front, turn on the overhead room light for a bit of ambient light, and potentially have some light in the background for depth. Of course, lighting can get very sophisticated and you can spend some time experimenting to find a setup that works for your space.
Warmups keep your hands from Hurting
Guitar learners are curious about how to prevent their hands from hurting while playing on the guitar. Truth be told, the simplest and easiest way to achieve this feat is by warming up. As with most exercises, it is always important for people to warm up first before engaging in any strenuous activity which can go a long way in helping to prevent them from hurting themselves.
Warm-ups are essential for both novice and professional guitarists. Before doing anything on the guitar it is highly recommendable for players to perform a series of warmup exercises such as rehearsing, playing a gig or doing some recordings. Just so you know, many muscles, tendons, and bones are responsible for finger movements. This is why it is essential for guitarists to perform some warmup exercises before they even start flailing them around recklessly.
Here are two important things you need to know about these preparatory exercises.
They help to prevent injuries
Ultimately, warming up can be every efficient in helping to improve your playing skills and technique. However, it is also important to note that these little exercises can go a long way in helping to prevent injuries from occurring. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and tendonitis are some common problems that can occur as a result of not warming up before play. Just so you know, that are many guitarists that have been forced to retire from playing the guitar due to problems of this sort. This is why warming up before playing is important as it goes a very long way to help to prevent body injuries.
Warming up should be regarded more like a precautionary exercise than an optional thing. There is no better way to avoid those nightmare experiences associated with hurting hands than this. Now that you know how warmups can keep your hands from hurting on guitar, it is imperative to ensure that you make these activities a norm. Don’t just grab your guitar and let rip without taking the time to do some warming up exercises. Medically speaking, it is advisable to observe some finger stretching routines before setting out to play the guitar.
There is no need to cut your guitar playing dreams short due to your inability to perform proper warm up routines before playing which has finally messed up your hands. In fact, doing so doesn’t even make any sense. The main aim of engaging in warmup routines is to awaken all the necessary ligaments, tendons, and muscles needed for playing the guitar. This can go a long way in preparing the hand and even the mind for the vigorous playing demands you are about to engage in.
If you're interested in taking lessons on Zoom or In Person in Burbank, Glendale or North Hollywood, please contact us at (818)902-1233 or on our website at https://www.losangelesmusicteachers.com/online-guitar-lessons-in-burbank-ca.html
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