Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Hebrew Music Instruments

Music is a great form of communication; it facilitates religious ceremonies, and celebrates victorious battles. Jubal was the inventor of Hebrew musical instruments. The whole Hebrew history and literature are proving that the Hebrews are really committed to cultivate music. We all remember that after the passage of the Red Sea, Moses and his people sang their song of happiness and freedom.

The time of David and Solomon is the golden age of Hebrew music; it is systematically cultivated and it is the main part of training in schools. Hebrew musical instruments are also used in their private life. Among the Hebrew musical instruments, an important place is given to stringed instruments, such as the kinnor - a kind or farp, the nebel – a lyre, the sabbeka- a lute. Among the wind instruments, we mention the ugab – a syrinx, the qeren – a horn, the shophar – a trumpet, the hafsoserah – a trumpet, the halil – a flute, the sumponyah – a bagpipe. The Hebrew musical instruments from the percussion category are the toph – a drum, the paamon – the bells, the tseltselim – cymbals, the mennan’im – cornets, the shalishim – triangles.

Old Hebrew musical instruments
The bells were very important Hebrew musical instruments; they were attached to the hem of the high priest’s ephod. The cornet is named shophar in Hebrew because of its brightness and its clear sound. Cymbals are also very popular Hebrew musical instruments; two pieces of brass, one for each hand, are clashed together to produce a really loud sound. The dulcimer is a Hebrew musical instrument; it is a kind of lute. The flute is composed of a number of pipes; it is common also among other people from Asia.

The harp (kinnor in Hebrew) is the national musical instrument of the Hebrews; the harp was invented by Jubal and is used as accompaniment to Hebrew songs such as praise to God. The horn is not only a Hebrew musical instrument; it is also used metaphorically for strength and honor, as emblems or power. The organ is a wind Hebrew musical instrument, similar to the Pan’s pipe.

The psaltery is another Hebrew musical instrument, a king of lyre, with twelve strings. The tabret is a one-sided drum, a kind of tambourine; the timbrel is also a small drum or a tambourine. Trumpets are a large variety of forms, and are made in different materials. Silver trumpets are specific Hebrew musical instruments, and are used by the highest priests to announce a war or a festival.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Reasons For Playing Musical Instruments

In this article we will look at some reasons for playing musical instruments. Learning how to play violin or learning to play a musical instrument in general can offer many benefits, if you really want to learn how to do something in your lifetime, then you should think about learning to play a musical instrument.

Let’s look at some reasons why in this article:

Reasons for playing musical instruments - 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 musical instruments 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.

Reasons for playing musical instruments - 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 on your chosen instrument.

Reasons for playing musical instruments - Instruments 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 an instrument can relax you by calming the mind.

Reasons for playing musical instruments - 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 musical instruments is fun

Playing an instrument can be very hard work, but most people who play will tell you that playing an instrument is a whole lot of fun. Once you get better playing your chosen musical instrument, 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 musical instruments 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.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Music Instruments For The Blind

Are you blind but wanting to learn how to play violin? There is hope!

Blind children can learn to play a musical instrument just as well and often even better than, sighted children provided the desire and interest is there. Blind children often have a strong sense of rhythm and musical sensation since their hearing is more in tuned with the world.

Of course the assumption should not be made that just because they are blind they should play a musical instrument. However if a child or an adult who is visually impaired decides that playing a musical instrument is something they would find beneficial, then by all means, there should be every consideration made just as you would for a sighted individual.

There are instruments which are better suited for the visually impaired than others. Most string instruments are a good musical instrument for the visually impaired because the strings can be easily felt in order, especially for the violin, viola, and cello.

The piano and woodwind musical instruments can also make very good choices for the visually impaired when learning to play a musical instrument. They are considered the easiest of the musical instruments to memorize tactilely and are fairly versatile in the musical arrangements they can be applied to playing. However, there is of course no restriction to the possibilities.

It is usually not necessary to find the visually impaired musical student a specially trained music teacher. A teacher that is creative and patient (which we would hope all music teachers are) should be able to help the visually impaired student feel the musical instrument of their choice in order to learn to play it competently. Musical instruments often are able to be handled by the visually impaired simply because their design and structure is quite unique from a tactile standpoint.

Children and adults from all walks of life should learn to play at least one musical instrument. Learning to play a musical instrument teaches so many skills at once that it can be difficult to find a downfall to learning to play a musical instrument regardless of who you are, where you come from, or what type of disability you may bring to the table. It should never be assumed that simply because an individual doesn’t see the world that they can’t fully participate in it. Learning to play a musical instrument is just one way of reaching out through the world and bringing the world as we know it to life.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Musical Instruments (Buying Them)

Before you consider learning how to play violin, consider this article.

If you are a professional musician looking to purchase your next instrument then it is safe to say that you know the difference between the cheapest instruments and the most expensive. However, a beginner may have a little more difficulty without guidance and advice. Just as with any sport, game, or skill it is best for beginners to start off at the lower end of the market and then advance when their skills improve. Visiting the local merchants and online shops will allow the buyer to become acquainted with what the shop has to offer in terms of reputation, pricing, servicing, and expertise. Judging the range of prices online is a great start to deciding what it is that you would like to spend on a musical instrument. Beginners and students should think very carefully before they deicide to spend large amounts of money on a musical instrument until they have advanced to at least the level of a serious amateur where moderate amounts of money spent would be sensible and musically beneficial.

The beginner buyer should listen to the sound of the instrument before buying any musical instrument. New, used, rented, borrowed, or whatever if the musical instrument does not provide a good sound then it doesn’t matter how much money is spent on the instrument, it will be worthless. Buying a good beginner musical instrument requires that the buyer do some homework. Reading reviews, talking with friends or family that already purchased instruments, and remembering to stay within the realm of your skill level will ensure that a good buying decision is made. Quality in an instrument is essential for either the professional or the beginner because a poor instrument is very difficult to play. A poor quality instrument can make evaluating skill difficult and lead to frustration and low self confidence level of the player. Quality instruments will assist with your playing ability and make you sound better. As a general rule: “Always get the very best that you can afford.”

The beginner musical instrument buyer can obtain all kinds of information from many of the local musical stores, teachers, and friends about the experience of buying a musical instrument. There are so many ways to obtain information and advice on musical instrument purchasing that the beginner buyer should feel extremely confident if they have researched the market. The experience of learning to play a musical instrument provides that “joy factor” that keeps a person playing, learning and growing. With a quality, good sounding instrument the beginner instrument buyer will get the most reward and years of musical pleasure.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Music And Your Childs Development

As the mother of a two year old, I am always looking for activities that encourage learning and development. I find that most of the activities we do together that result in learning are purely by coincidence and luck – not by any skill or training I have.

As of late, my son has shown a real passion for music. He has even begun to differentiate between styles of music he likes and dislikes – his preferences are Contemporary Christian and Country, of course those both fall behind any song done by The Wiggles. But I digress. The point is, he is drawn to music and feels the need to express himself in many ways when he hears it.

For example, he has learned different dance moves from the television characters on his favorite programs, as well as from good old mom and dad. He recreates those moves into his own little dance routine whenever he hears a song he likes – even in the car. He is using his creativity and memory to express himself, which I believe is helping build his character. He also tries to sing – well, more like hum – but again, this is another form of expression and he is increasing his vocabulary by wanting to say the right words. He claps to the music and tries his best to keep a rhythm. These are all amazing skills that he is learning and using in his own individual way. This is such a breakthrough age where children begin to graduate from simply imitating to combining what they know in ways to interact with the world around them.

These activities are encouraging many facets of development: physical (clapping, stomping, other dance motions) social (a way for him to interact with those around him) cognitive (he is bridging pathways from what he’s learned to how he wants to use the information to express his own personality); emotional (a definite sense of pride accompanies all forms of learning in children).

If your child enjoys music, you can encourage them by making music readily available for them without having to spend a fortune. I would guess they already have toys that make music. A lot of books play music as well. Even just turning on the radio throughout the day and finding a station that is suitable for you both can be a very rewarding experience. Whether your child is hearing music on the television, radio, or directly from an instrument you are playing, he/she has so many opportunities for learning. Capture those moments and make the most of them!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

How Does A Music Synth Work?

Music isn't just all about violins. There is also music synths. A music synthesizer makes sounds by using an electrical circuit as an oscillator to create and vary the frequency of sounds in order to produce different pitches. As long as the pitch is within the range of frequency that can be heard by a human ear, it’s known as a “musical pitch” (so a dog whistle wouldn’t count) as a musical pitch. You can use a keyboard to vary these pitches at discrete intervals that correspond to the notes on the musical scale. If you put several oscillators together, you can combine several pitches to create a “chord”.

OK, we’ve got pitch down (at least in a very simple sense). How do you vary the tone of a particular pitch? That is done by playing a given pitch with waveforms of different shapes (common waveforms include sine, square, sawtooth, and triangle waveforms). Since the harmonic structure of these waveforms differ, our ears interpret them as different tones. The sound you will hear can also be modified by voltage-controlled amplifiers (VCA) and voltage-controlled filters (VCF).

Synthesizers are able to only mimic the sounds of non-synthetic instruments, but also to create sounds that absolutely cannot be played by anything but a music synthesizer. That is because a music synthesizer is well-suited to delicate manipulations of its oscillators. Nevertheless, it’s a lot easier for a synthesizer to create entirely new sounds than to mimic the sounds of acoustic instruments because the waveforms of acoustic instruments are so complex. Interestingly, once complex sound that synthesizers so far have been very bad at reproducing is the human voice (although improvements are being made in this technology).

The entire electronic music scene would be virtually impossible without the use of synthesizers (no doubt some wish it were). Nevertheless, the number of sounds that a musician has to work with has been exponentially increasing in recent decades, and we have only scratched the surface of the creative possibilities. Imagine the consequences if a machine was invented that could generate 100,000 hitherto unknown colors?

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Music Industry Job Training

The music industry is undoubtedly one of the 'sexiest' fields in which to work, according to a recent survey by the editors of Time magazine. There are music industry jobs that require nearly any skill set that you can bring to the job, and the training required varies with each of the music industry jobs that may interest you. This is where learning how to play violin can come in handy. Here are some general guidelines for finding work in music industry jobs.

Love Music.

It's not a prerequisite for music industry jobs, but loving music of any kind is a definite step in the right direction. While loving music may not be important in a record company accountant's position, it's practically required for anyone who works with artists or in promotion.

Check the qualifications for the job.

In general, most jobs in the music industry require at least a two year college degree - with the exception of performers who can get by without a degree if they have talent. Expect that the more involved the job, the higher your level of education and/or experience will need to be. A record promoter may need to demonstrate networking skills or developed contacts in the local music scene, for instance, and a contracts lawyer will obviously require a law degree. Music teachers working for the schools will need to have a teaching license as well as the demonstrated ability to play an instrument.

The best training is on the job training.

For positions like band manager, road work, publicists and promoters, the best training is through an internship or through your own work promoting and/or managing a band on your own. Some publicists and promoters come to the job from their own fanzines, or have developed a network of contacts in radio and advertising through their college or teen year extracurricular activities.

A degree in music is respected in many music industry jobs.

Colleges that specialize in music education like the Berklee School for the Performing Arts offer training in many different aspects of the music industry. You can study music and performance law, accounting for the music industry, and business management for music companies as well as composition, performance and other music-specific jobs.

Join the band.

One of the best training grounds for a career in orchestral music is your school or college band. If you're already beyond the school years, take advantage of county and city music societies to both train your ear and keep in the practice of playing with others.

Music ministry jobs often require special certifications.

If you have a calling to a job in music ministry, you'll find that many churches and synagogues require that their full time music minister have pastoral training as well as musical training. The American Guild of Organists and the National Council of Pastoral Musicians offer professional certifications at a number of levels.

Music therapists require a bachelor's degree in music therapy from one of the approved universities that teach music therapy.

In addition to regular studies, the bachelors in music therapy requires 1200 hours of clinical practice.

The requirements for training for music industry jobs are varied, but this is a brief overview of the training required for some of the major careers in the music industry.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Choices In Music For Your Wedding

American weddings have come a long way over the years. In a society that is made up of people from so many different cultures, lifestyles, religions, and backgrounds, it is no surprise that the traditions in the wedding ceremony are as vastly different as well. Wedding music is no exception. From the ceremony itself to the party atmosphere of the reception, the wedding music sets the tone for the event.

Traditional Wedding Music:

At most weddings we can expect to hear selections that have come to be known as traditional wedding music. Titles like Ave Maria, the Minuet from Don Giovanni, and, of course, The Bridal Chorus and The Wedding March have long been the standard music for a wedding. Particularly religious ceremonies may include hymns like Amazing Grace and a Jewish wedding almost always includes a hora danced to a medley of tunes like Hava Nagila, and Siman Tov U Mazeltov.

The traditional wedding music holds a special place in our hearts and many think that a wedding ceremony is incomplete without it. The couple must decide whether or not to use traditional wedding music in the ceremony, as well as how much of it to use. If this part of the wedding tradition is important to you, then traditional wedding music is the way to go.

Modern Wedding Music:

Often couples will forgo the traditional wedding music selections and instead include modern or popular music in the wedding ceremony. This practice is so common that some titles are becoming traditional wedding song selections themselves. It is not unusual to hear When a Man Loves a Woman, Always and Forever, or I Will Always Love You sung, performed, or played at weddings today. Often more modern titles like these will appear in a ceremony along with the more traditional wedding music.

Avant-Garde Wedding Music:

As people’s attitudes change and varying forms of wedding ceremonies take place, the choice of wedding music often changes right along with them. Occasionally couples will choose music for their wedding that reflects the stark difference in their personalities and makes a unique and bold statement. While your wedding ceremony is primarily for the couple getting married, it is important to remember that it is an event attended by your family members as well. While you may wish to make an impression on your guests with your choice of music, you should still be cautious not to offend your respective grandmothers. As such, a selection by an artist like Marilyn Manson may never be appropriate for a wedding ceremony. This does not mean that your wedding music choices are restricted to traditional classics or sappy love songs. I once attended a very avant-garde wedding where three couples married in the same ceremony. It was a beautiful event and was made memorable by their choice of music. The couples strode down the aisle to the sounds of Pink Floyd’s Signs of Life, an instrumental track from the album A Momentary Lapse of Reason. It was a wedding ceremony that I will remember forever.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Hearing Aids

Loss of hearing is perhaps as normal, if not more, as losing hair with age. Reduction of hearing can also be caused by illness, certain medicines and in a large number of cases; it could be a birth defect. It can also make it difficult to learn how to play violin.

Diminishing of hearing, however, can be helped with the use of hearing aides, which are electronic widgets that convert sound pressure waves into electricity by a microphone.

The electric impulses are increased and then reconverted to a great deal more strong sound pressure waves by a receiver. These increased waves are subsequently presented to the impaired ear. The goal of a hearing aid is to make speech available to a listener, whatever the technology being used.

How do you know you need a hearing aide? Being sensitive to your bodys need and accommodating to its deteriorating parts is a resourceful and enjoyable way of life. If you:

1. Find yourself asking people to repeat themselves too often.

2. Feel that you understand them better when you are facing them.

3. Find the need to increase the volume of television or radio when nobody else seems to need it.

Perhaps, it is time to see an audiologist and get an audiometric evaluation (AE) done. It is a pain-free method and takes a few minutes. An AE helps a certified audiologist evaluate your Diminishing of hearing and prescribe the right course of treatment.

Many hearing problems are a result of earwax and middle ear infections. Before buying a hearing aide, it is imperative to consult with a hearing aid specialist.

Which hearing aid to choose?

There are various types of hearing aids available in the market today. You need to work with your audiologist to figure out which model suits you best.

In The Ear (ITE) products have the largest custom made styles; In The Canal (ITC) units are smaller and require more dexterity; Mini Canal (MC) units are in between ITE and ITC; Completely In the Canal (CIC) products are the smallest aids produced; Behind The Ear (BTE) are the largest and hugely reliable; and Post Auricular Canal (PAC) is a new device planned to supply comfort and acoustic alternatives.

Your audiologist will be able to guide you through these opportunities as well as with the levels of technologies available in hearing aids. The best technology available is a 100 percent digital aide. This means your hearing aide is a complete computer.

These widgets are wonders of 1990s and allow the highest control over sound quality and loudness. They process sound at extraordinary speed and the output is amazing.

Lastly, if you have suffered hearing Diminishing in both ears, you will need two hearing aids to achieve normal sound balance. Two aides help your central nervous system to process sounds better and filter noise from speech. One aid, regardless how efficient, will give you flat sound!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Music And The Brain

What is the connection between music and the brain? Is it possible that music can help you think better? The research says yes, and after telling you about some of it, I'll let you in on an even faster way to boost your brain power with music.

Music And The Brain - The Research

The research shows that music actually trains the brain for higher forms of thinking. Listening to, and participating in music also creates new neural pathways in your brain that stimulate creativity. An article in a Newsweek (2/19/96) reported on a study from the University of California.

In the study, researchers followed the progress of three-year-olds, split into two groups. The first group had no particular training in, or exposure to music. The second group studied piano and sang daily in chorus. After eight months the musical three-year-olds were much better at solving puzzles, and when tested, scored 80% higher in spatial intelligence than the non-musical group.

Brain Music

A study on music and the brain, done at UC Irvine's Center for Neurobiology of Learning and Memory involved 36 students. They were given three spatial reasoning tests on a standard IQ test.

Just before the first test, they listened to Mozart's sonata for Two Pianos in D Major, K. 448 for ten minutes.

Before the second test, they listened to a relaxation tape.

Before the third, they sat in silence.

The average scores for all 36 students: 1st test: 119. 2nd test: 111. 3rd test: 110.

That's an average increase of 9 iq points from listening to Mozart. It's assumed that their intelligence didn't increase, but that the music put them in a state that gave them better access to the resources of their brains. However, other studies do show that repeated exposure to slow music can permanently increas you IQ, so play that Mozart!

Brain Wave Entrainment

Your brain wave frequencies vary according to the state you are in. For example, daydreaming and meditation usually take place in the "Alpha" range of frequencies. Alert concentration is in the "Beta" range. "Brain wave entrainment" products have beats, usually embedded in music, that your brain starts to follow.

If you listen to music containing beats at a frequency of 10 Hz (in the Alpha range) it will feel very relaxing. This is because your brain will begin to follow this frequency and reproduce the rhythm in the music. You'll generate more brain waves at a 10 Hz frequency and enter a relaxed Alpha mental state. This is the idea behind brain wave entrainment.

This may be why some types of music have certain effects, but not all brain wave entrainment Cds use music. Some use the raw "binaural beats" as they are sometimes called, embedded in white noise, or in sounds of nature. (I have used these products and find them to be pretty powerful , especially the ones for relaxation.)

Whether you use "binaural beats," or just pop a Mozart CD into the player, you can increase your brain power easily. Try it today. It is doubtful that Mozart will harm you, so why wait for more research to be done on music and the brain?

Monday, November 30, 2009

History Of The Electric Guitar

In The Beginning
The guitar’s soft melodic tone made it difficult for people to hear it when being played alongside other instruments. So during the 1930’s an inventive individual decided to change that and invented the first electric guitar. Little did he know, or have imagined way back then how the invention of the electric guitar would significantly affect the course of 20th century music.

Like most new things, the electric guitar had its critics but it quickly won people over because of its ability to allow musicians to play much more creatively and express their own individual styles.

The First Pickup
In 1924 an inventive engineer working for the Gibson guitar company named Lloyd Loar, designed the first magnetic pickup. Using a magnet, he converted guitar string vibrations into electrical signals, which then were amplified through a speaker system. This first pickup was crude, but it was a great beginning.

The First Electric Guitar
In 1931 the Electro String Company was founded by Paul Barth, George Beauchamp and Adolph Rickenbacker, and developed the first electric guitars marketed to the general public. They made their guitars from cast aluminum and were played on a person’s lap using a steel slide much like today's steel guitar. Because of their unusual material, they were affectionately called “Frying Pans.”

The early success of the frying pans prompted the Gibson guitar company to build their first electric guitar, the ES-150 which is a legend today.

The First Solid-Body Electric Guitar
Electric guitars were quickly becoming popular, even though there was a major problem with their construction. Their bodies would vibrate due to the amplified sounds coming through the speakers they were played into, causing what we know as feed-back. The obvious remedy was to build a guitar made with a solid body which wouldn’t vibrate so easily.

As with most innovations, there is controversy over who invented the first solid –body electric guitar. Guitar legend Les Paul in the 1940’s developed his affectionately called “The Log” solid-body guitar by attaching a Gibson neck to a solid piece of wood…a railroad tie, hence the name “Log.”

Around this same time, guitarist Merle Travis and engineer Paul Bigsby developed a solid-body electric guitar that resembled the solid-body guitars that we’re so familiar with today.

The First Mass Produced Electric Guitar
Leo Fender in 1950 was the first to mass produce an electric guitar which was originally called the Fender Broadcaster. This guitar was quickly re-named to the infamous Telecaster because the name “Broadcaster” was already being used by another company. Leo followed this up in 1954 with the most renowned guitar of all time…the Stratocaster.

Leo’s success led other guitar manufacturers into developing their own mass-produced electric guitars. Most notable was the teaming-up of the Gibson guitar company with Les Paul to create the famous Gibson Les Paul electric guitar.

More Affordable Electric Guitars
During the 1960’s and 1970’s famous brand name electric guitars were too expensive for the average person to buy. Less pricey imitations quickly came to market but they were sub-standard in sound and playability. The Japanese, in the 1980’s started manufacturing electric guitars of similar quality to the more expensive American made models, but with much more affordable pricing. This prompted Fender and other leading guitar manufacturers into producing less expensive versions of their classic models. This resulted in electric guitars now being more affordable and accessible to more people.

Today, the Gibson and Fender guitar companies are still producing some of the most well-known and best made electric guitars on the market. But it’s getting crowded with other high quality brands such as BC Rich, ESP and Peavey. Innovative designs, shapes and materials are being incorporated with new technologies to produce better sounding electric guitars.

Modern guitars have built-in software allowing them to sound like other types of guitars. Some are even fitted with pickups that synthesize the sound of different instruments or record the notes in musical notation.

The electric guitar has come a long way with an interesting and inventive past and many in the industry say it has an even brighter future.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Starting Your Own Sheet Music Collection

After you learn how to play violin, you shouldn't just stop your learning there. You should also consider starting a sheet music collection. Sheet music is inexpensive and relatively easy to find. You can find music at yard sales, antique shows and on the internet. Only music that is very scarce or rare is expensive. Most pieces can be found at a price between three and twenty five dollars. Extremely rare sheet music can carry a price of up to a thousand dollars, but few pieces fall into this category. You will find music in any color graphic or subject matter you are looking for.

People collect sheet music in many ways. Sometimes sheet music is collected by the genre or songs. You could put together a history of music in America with a sheet music collection. You could do this with the entire history of our country or concentrate on one time period or decade. The possibilities are endless - be creative when building your collection! Songs have been written about most important events in our history, including wars, plane crashes and natural disasters. Themes such as love or the evolution of images of women in music are popular themes for sheet music collections. Other collectors focus on one composer or cover artist.

Ragtime music from the early twentieth century is popular with collectors of vintage sheet music. This music is considered the foundation of modern jazz music. A ragtime music collection looks great displayed in a room decorated in the Early American style. And the cover art on rag time sheet music looks great displayed in picture frames on a wall or sofa table.

Music written by famous composers is popular among sheet music collectors. This music is readily available in all music genres. Other collectors focus on rare or vintage sheet music. The value of these documents depends largely on the condition of the sheets. Pieces in mint condition will be more expensive. Most sheet music isn’t found in perfect condition. The spine of the sheet was usually broken to make the score stand up in the music stand. Spills, tears and names written on the covers are common because sheet music was often used at parties.

Sheet music displayed in a family room or bar area makes a great focal point. Even people who don’t collect sheet music use it in a display of other collectibles. Collectors of beer, whisky, golf, military, cigars or trains can find sheet music to accent their collection. A few pieces of sheet music with great cover art enhance a display of other collectibles. Collectors of memorabilia from movies or Broadway productions often look for sheet music written for the production.

Any sheet music that isn’t displayed should be stored properly to preserve the condition. Store each set of sheet music in a plastic baggie like those used for comic book collections. Place those bags in a large plastic storage container to protect them from being ripped or crumpled. Store your containers in a dry place away from sunlight or moisture, which can damage the music.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Native American Flute

Native Americans are eager to share their ancestry with their families and friends. One of the ways they do this is through their music, particularly through the music of the Native American flute. They want to ensure that their children have a strong link with their ancient culture, and music is an excellent way to teach non-Native Americans about this culture as well.

Mothers of small children often find that Native American flute music is very soothing for their babies. It seems to have a tranquil and calming effect on children. Songs played on the Native American flute can be introduced during naptime and before bedtime to calm children down. The music often puts children to sleep within just a few minutes. Experts have also recommended Native American flute music to families with small babies that have a hard time getting to sleep.

This music also represents an excellent tool for calming down a baby in situations where there may be difficult transitions for such young children, such as when many visitors come to the home. It is often difficult for small babies to adjust to the confusion and noise created by a large number of people at special occasions, and playing Native American flute music can help to calm a baby down in these circumstances.

The music of the Native American flute is very soft, and it creates a wonderful, soothing background for many situations. It is just the sound for keeping babies calm when there are a lot of people in the environment. Babies seem to focus on the flute sounds instead of on the loud noises generated by crowds. Having flute music playing in a room makes it easier for them to adjust to visitors.

Of course, adults will also enjoy the music of the Native American flute. It is easy to find interesting and unique Native American flute music on the Internet, since many online stores offer selections of alternative music. It is also possible to purchase Native American flutes and sheet music. Several vendors offer musical compositions for the flute, and they sell Native American flutes as well.

Native American flute music is an excellent way to learn about and enjoy the special features of Native American culture. And since songs are often linked to memories, this music offers a good way to preserve the memory of special times.

Sunday, November 22, 2009


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Saturday, November 21, 2009

Songwriting Contest

Have you ever aspired to be a great writer or songwriter? Whether a writer of novels, songs or short stories, do you dream of writing materials to be read by others who admire your talent? Maybe you'd like to write poems to express your feelings on paper. Have you ever dreamed of being a writer of songs to be sung by famous artists?

Songwriting comes from deep within and the lyrics are usually the expression of someone's true feelings. If you have a desire and can express yourself in writing, then you have the making of a songwriter. Whether you're a happy person and can express that happiness into a song, or a romantic person with the capability of writing a beautiful love song, your unique talents can shine through in a song. You can achieve your goals with the vast opportunities available in the music industry. Now that you've learned how to play violin, get your music noticed!

Numerous Ways to Get Your Songwriting Talent Noticed

One way to get noticed is to use your talent by entering a lyrics contest. Many are available now on the Internet. One unique songwriting contest in particular allows you to enter in a lyric and compete for a spot in which an actual song is in the making to help fight the battle against cancer. The song is called "Oceans of Love" and plans are underway to have it recorded by a well-known recording artist once all the lyrics have been chosen.

Some lyrics contests might allow you to enter lyrics and music you've written while others might allow you to enter the lyrics of the song without music.

If you have lyrics and a great tune but no sheet music, there are many programs available online today that will write the sheet music to your song for you with minimal effort. You'll just enter the key notes into the songwriting software and the program actually writes the notes for the sheet music.

Also, you can ask a musician you know and trust to put music to your words. Don't give up just because you don't have the music. Your song could be a hit if you strive to get it recognized.

A Wide Variety of Music

Whether you're into country music, contemporary Christian, gospel, or pop, the music industry offers opportunities for everyone. If you prefer alternative blues, jazz and everything in between, there's a place for you among the music stars. The possibilities of entering into different types of songwriting contests are endless, especially if you have access to the Internet. This is a great way to get started. What do you have to lose?

Don't Wait. Just Go For It!!

Whatever your dreams and aspirations may be and however you decide to achieve them, there is a world out there waiting for your talent. No one will ever know you possess the talent unless you reveal it.

You can get your talent noticed. Think of all the people who have talent but are afraid to venture out for fear of being rejected. There are many very talented people who will always wonder, "What could have been?" Don't let life pass you by. Take a chance and at least explore the songwriting possibilities that are awaiting you.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Music And Personal Encrichment

One of the things a lot of us enjoy is listening to music. As a musician and songwriter, a great deal of my time is spent listening to or creating music. Sitting at my synthesizer and spontaneously playing a tune is also one way I relax and unwind after a hard day. Tickling the ivory is great when you want to relax your mind, and physically energize your body. Somewhat like physical exercise, playing a musical instrument releases pent-up anger and utilizes the extra adrenaline the human body produces when under stress.

Music is also therapeutic and vital to human beings and allows us to escape from the stresses and demands of our hectic and fast-paced lifestyle. Forgetting the worries we carry around with us, music allows us to take a journey to a faraway place, without ever leaving our chair: somewhere pleasant, exciting, and at the same time, stress-free.

Recording our favorite music on CD's, iPods, or creating play lists for our computers, we can simply develop our own compilation of music-to-go and play them in cars, in the gym and while at work. With the latest popular technological invention, the iPod, the prospect of musical fulfillment is endless. The iPod can store a multitude of tunes and enables the listener to have virtually uninterrupted songs to enjoy whenever and wherever we choose.

With all the current technological advances at our disposal, musical expression has come a long way, taking recording music and sound to the next level. Whether you perform music or are an avid listening, most humans will agree: Life would not be as colorful without some form of music to enrich our lives.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Importance Of Musical Instruments

Since times of yore, man has been associated with music. It is the expression of the heart. History tells us that Neanderthal man used bone flute. Evidence also exists that percussive instruments might have been used.

Defining a musical instrument: anything that produces sound can be called a musical instrument. The term usually is reserved for instruments that have a particular function in an orchestra. The academic study of musical instruments is known as organology.

Instruments can be identified by the way they are played and the tone they generate. Wind instruments, using power of the lungs, String instruments where strumming is required and electronic instruments that play automatic by touch of keys. Even the human voice can be termed an instrument as the singer generates the voice through the effort of his lungs and vocal cords acting together.

Wind instruments can be either built of wood or brass. A good example of the former could be the flute while trumpet is an excellent example of the latter. These instruments play when the musician blows into a tube. There are holes which one can open and close with the fingers to produce different kinds of sound.

String instruments are completely opposite. They are played by strumming on the cords. A good example would be the guitar. Some well known guitarist's were the Beatles and Dire straits

Percussion instruments can be played when struck. The sound is determined by the material of which the striking surface is made and the cavity that is left to produce the sound. Drums are excellent examples of such instruments. They are used by rock bands across the world.

We now come to the electronic instruments. This category includes the keyboard and electronic guitar. These instruments often follow other types of instruments. The keyboard for example. It can play virtually any instrument ever discovered. Paddles and other accessories change the sound to match the instrument they are trying to imitate.

Of all the instruments we have talked about, the human voice is the most complicated. Through tightening of muscles, drawing breath in different ways, singers can generate wide ranging voices that affect us in strange ways. In medieval times, minstrels use to sing stories to the common people making them cry and laugh. They use to have immense power over the masses. Even today if you listen to a good singer, you are moved by his or her rich voice and emotions.

Music has always been and will be a part of us. It is straight from our hearts and the purest form of our emotions. The secret to every tradition is held in its music. Classical raaga in the case of India with its charming and emotional touch and haunting melodies from Ireland give us a taste of the mystery that lies in the fogs there.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Musical Instrument

Musical instruments are devices that are used to generate music. Musical instruments are generally controlled by the player or the musician to produce the desired sound effects.

Musical instruments are as old as music, and there are still some traditional instruments that date back to centuries before. Each musical instrument has its own melody, pitch, rhythm, timbre, loudness, and duration, as well as the notes and chords.

There are many kinds of musical instruments. The main categories are: chordophones (strings), aerophones (woodwinds and brasses), idiophones (percussion), and membranophones (drums). Stringed instruments produce a sound when a string is plucked or strummed. The sound depends on the mass of the string, length of the vibrating portion of the string, its tension, and the point at which the string is plucked or strummed. It also depends on the kind of resonating cavity in the instrument. Viola, violin, cello, guitar, mandolin, fiddle, harp, lute, banjo, etc, are some of the string instruments. So when you are thinking about learning how to play violin, you are thinking of learning how to play a string instrument!

Woodwinds and brasses generate music when air is made to enter and vibrate within the instrument. The kind of music depends on the shape of the instrument, the length of the column of air, the method of tone production and the construction of the instrument. Flute, piccolo, clarinet, oboe, horn, mouth organ, saxophone, and bassoon are some of the winds instruments, while the French horn, tuba, trumpet, and trombone are brass instruments. Percussion instruments, on the other hand, are those that produce sounds when struck. The shape of the resonating cavity and the size of the instrument determine the sound created. Some percussion musical instruments include the cymbals, the snare drum, bells, gong chime, xylophone, and the timpani. Drums include the frame drum, the tambourine, the goblet drums, the barrel drum, and the friction drum.

Other kinds of musical instruments are the keyboards and electronic instruments. These include the piano, organ, harpsichord, and the Glockenspiel. Each of these musical instruments has sub-categories within them.

Musical instruments can also be categorized on the basis of their playing levels. Some are suitable for all kinds of players while some are for novices. Expert players have their own preferences for musical instruments.

There are many professional dealers of musical instruments who would be able to provide all types information about each instrument in particular. There are also online stores for musical instruments.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Mozart's Music

The music of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is perhaps the most well-known of any composer the world has ever seen. Almost everyone has heard of how Mozart was composing music by the age of five (some urban legends even claim it was at age two) and performing before kings and queens, dukes and duchesses, before he was seven years old. He created more than 600 compositions, from operas to sonatas to full symphonies, and died tragically, mysteriously, before his 36th birthday in 1791. Some of his more famous pieces of music include Eine kleine Nachtmusik (A Little Night Music, 1787) and the operas Don Giovanni (1787) and Die Zauberflote (The Magic Flute, 1791).

The movie Amadeus (1984) put into popular parlance the idea of Mozart as an immature and spoiled musical prodigy, given to fast living and obnoxious, braying laughter. It also portrays him as having been tormented by a brooding, jealous rival composer named Salieri, who may or may not have killed him. History paints only a slightly less dramatic picture. Born in 1756 in Salzburg, Austria, Mozart was the only son of a professional musician who very early on recognized the boy’s extraordinary musical talent. Today’s critical and politically correct eyes may look with disfavor on the way that Leopold Mozart exploited his son’s musical genius, but at the time it was neither uncommon nor unacceptable to parade child prodigies through the courts of Europe. The young Mozart spent his boyhood at the feet of kings and queens, performing and composing and perfecting his unique musical vision.

He also spent his childhood suffering from various illnesses—tuberculosis, tonsillitis, and typhoid are just some of the many ailments he is said to have suffered. He was a sickly child and each bout of poor health left him reduced in vigor, more frail, and more susceptible to what would, ultimately, kill him. Legend has it that he was poisoned, but recent, more scientific explanation has it that he died of rheumatic fever, even while working to complete one of his greatest musical accomplishments, the Requiem.

Mozart’s music, like his life, defies easy classification. As a product of what historians term the Classical Era (1750-1825), he perfected the prevalent musical forms of symphony, opera, and concerto, and yet he also turned them on their heads. The upper-crust audiences for whom he played were jarred by his complex, mysterious, sometimes raucous music, accustomed as they were to lighter, more frivolous pieces. In 1782, the Emperor Joseph II even told Mozart that his German opera had “too many notes.”

Such a characterization of Mozart’s music may well seem absurd to us today, who have been conditioned to think of Mozart as an unparalleled genius. Even before birth, babies are rocked to sleep by Mozart’s music being piped into their mothers’ wombs. We relax to his music, we grow to it, we learn through it; his music enriches and inspires our lives.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Reading Guitar Music

It is never too late or too early to learn how to read guitar music. Many guitarist start off by teaching themselves guitar music after studying a piece of music on the radio or on a CD. This is a great starting point and will allow you to understand different notes and cords.

Basic Elements

On a guitar, the tab staff has 6 horizontal lines. Each one of these horizontal lines represents a string on the instrument. The line on the bottom of the staff is the lowest “E” string on the guitar. The next line up from the bottom line represents the “A” string and so on. These are the basic elements when you learn how to read guitar music.


When your guitar tab displays numbers stacked vertically in a series, this is an indication to play these notes at the same time. When the guitar tab displays numbers in a series gradually on an incline, this is indicating these notes should be played one at a time. These are the first things you should know when you learn how to read guitar music.

Rhythmic notation

Rhythmic notation is how the songs rhythm should be heard when played. When you first learn how to read guitar music you should try songs you can access on a CD or radio so you can hear the rhythm before you commence learning the chords. Hearing the rhythm will make learning much easier.

A Major chord

An A major chord is the first chord you will learn to play and the first chord you will see when you learn how to read guitar music. An A major chord contains only 3 different notes. No more then 3 notes are used in an A major chord and these can generally be repeated more then once.


The key when you learn how to read guitar music is discipline. Learning good techniques and having an excellent teacher will ensure you get the most out of your lessons. Once you have learned the basics of guitar music, you will find it easier to progress onto advanced guitar music.

Writing guitar music

When you learn how to read guitar music it is important to watch how the music is written. Take notice of the use of the chords in different sections of the music and take note of how easy the chords flow. When you become more advanced and start to write your own guitar music, these techniques will help you.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Getting Your Music Recorded For Free

Now that you've learned how to play violin, you might want to get your music recorded. Generally, the first thing that springs to mind when you need to record a song, is to make enquiries with local recording studios. However, studio charges are generally based on an hourly rate that is often more than your day job pays you.

Once you've saved enough money for this excursion, there are then further worries. Unless you are a regular visitor to recording studios, you may not quite know what to expect. You may not be able to communicate your ideas for your sound clearly to the engineer, who really only understands technical jargon.

As the hours tick by, you will be under the stress of wondering if you'll be able to complete your project before your money runs out. Artists under stress don't generally perform well, but you won't hear this because you'll be out there performing, instead of listening to the performance.

If you have also hired musicians in for the session, you'd also better be a good personnel manager. The longer they have to sit around waiting to be told what to play and how to play it, the more it is going to cost you!

It is in your best interest to use a studio that is the best you can afford. But have you taken the above problems into consideration? Have you planned out your time in the studio in the fullest detail? Do you know enough about the multitrack recording process to know exactly what tracks your song needs? Are you, or your band rehearsed enough to play every track on its own, and in perfect time with all the others in the arrangement? Can your drummer play to a click track? Or do you have detailed drum parts already programmed for your songs? Have you written detailed score sheets for all the session musicians? Do you know what kind of sound they need, and what style to play in? Have you already tried out various mix ideas and sound effects at home, and know how to explain these ideas to the engineer?

If not, you will most likely end up with a recording that isn't quite what you expected. And it will have cost you a small fortune! At best, you will get a good recording that sounds something like you thought it would. But does it sound original to you? Has it captured your unique sound, and conveyed the essence of what you are as an original artist? Does it convey the emotion of the song correctly to the listener?

There is another way to approach the recording process that will solve all the above problems, and could even get you a professional recording for FREE!

All the above jobs are part of the work that is generally done by a PRODUCER.

A producer is someone who has the experience to hear, not just the music, but the essence of what you are as an original artist.

A producer will know instinctively when you have made the perfect take, and will get you onto the next stage of the process without having to waste studio time playing back every take first.

A producer will have your whole sound in glorious 3D in their head before a single note is played.

A producer will have the technical knowledge to know how to translate every part of the process to something the engineer can understand.

A producer has a long list of business contacts who he can call upon at short notice to add whatever is necessary to make the sound you need ... session musicians, arrangers, writers, synth programmers, track editors, equipment rental companies.

Sounds expensive, doesn't it?

Not necessarily!

Although some producers will charge a flat rate for the job of perhaps several thousand pounds (or dollars!). Many work from their own studios, with their own "in-house" session musicians for a royalty plus expenses. Therefore, they become somewhat like a "record company". They will produce a recording for any artist they see potential in, in the hope that their recording will eventually be signed to a major label and make money. Of course, in these instances, you will still have to pay the studio and session musician costs.

Sometimes they will even do the whole job for FREE, or for a minimal flat rate to cover expenses. How can they do this? Well instead of taking a royalty from your advance or sales, they take ownership of the copyright in the sound recording they make. This is fair, because, after all, they put a lot of their own money and special skills into the making of it. So what do you get in return? Of course, you get full use of the recording for your promotional needs!

Furthermore, many producers with their own studios, now also have their own record label. Wobbly Music is one such producer. Whilst you are looking for a recording or publishing deal elsewhere, or whilst promoting your record as an independent artist, your producer will have the right to sell the recording (from which you, as the artist or composer, will be paid royalties) in order to try and recoup their losses or even profit from this mutual deal.

There are now a great number of producers doing deals similar to this. It means you can have a demo made, or release your own recordings for little or no money up front, whilst still retaining the freedom to sign with whoever you wish, or remain as an independent artist. So in effect, you will have a record deal working for you to earn extra royalties in the background, whilst you concentrate on doing what you do best, which is writing and/or performing great songs!

Since this kind of arrangement may not be costing you anything, it is worthwhile trying a few different producers to see whose ideas and style of production gel best with your own view of yourself and your sound.

All producers have their own unique style, just as you, as an original artist, have yours. This "sound" can be heard throughout all their productions with various artists. Look for a style that seems complimentary to your own. In other words, don't use a Hip-hop producer to make your records if you are a Country artist!

Many good producers have a wide range of musical skills, and may also be able to write lyrics, compose melodies, write arrangements, or even play various instruments, such as guitar, piano or drums. All these extra skills could be utilised to give your recordings an extra edge at minimal, or no extra cost.

Finally, now that you are off to find your own producer, here are some things to avoid...

Don't rely on pictures of their studio, and lists of top quality recording equipment to tell you how good they are as a producer. Any piece of specialist equipment can be hired if necessary. A good producer can produce radio-ready recordings on even the most basic equipment, whereas a poor producer, will not achieve such good results on even the best and most expensive equipment.

Don't sign with a producer who doesn't make samples of their previous work available to you. You need to know what experience they have, and get an idea of the audio quality and styles that they can produce.

Don't sign with a producer who comes solely from a DJ background. These producers specialise in remixes of existing records, or "beats". Not in the creation of a new artist's unique sound, or a recording from scratch.

Don't sign with a producer who specialises in a genre of music that is totally different to yours ... Unless you want to change your style to that new genre!

Don't sign with a producer who has no creativity or commercial flair of their own. You don't want a producer who is just going to record everything exactly as you already have it, just to please you. A good producer will see things that you have missed, and will add hooks and sounds to your songs that will attract new listeners, and interest from music industry professionals.

Don't sign with a producer who is asking you to assign publishing rights to your songs. You want to be free to sign your songs to record companies or publishers who may be able to do more for you in the marketing or promotion of them. Once you assign the copyright of your songs to someone, they have exclusive rights to them for the duration of your contract, or even for perpetuity! All a producer needs from you, is your written permission to record your songs, and perhaps sell their recordings or release them on their own label. If so, make sure you get at least the statutory mechanical royalties (currently 6.5%) from these sales!

Don't sign with a producer who only works with one set of musicians. Although many have their own preferred set of "in-house" session musicians, there will be times when your music wont be suited to the way these musicians play. Make sure that your producer has a wide range of musical contacts to draw from.

Don't sign to a producer who promises to make your song into a hit record. Even if the producer has already produced several hits, there is no guarantee that your song will be a hit. Marketing gurus and sales teams make hit records, not artists and producers!

Finally, some producers may ask you to sign an exclusive contract for a certain time period (perhaps 1-5 years). These producers must also be "song-pluggers" or "promoters" who need to protect their interest in you whilst they are working to get you a deal with a major label, using the recordings they have produced. Before signing any exclusive deal, always have the contracts looked over by a lawyer specialising in the music business. Make sure, by examining the production company's track record, that their promise of a major deal looks likely to happen within that time period. You don't want to be wasting five years of your life whilst your best songs are sitting on someone else's shelf, doing nothing!


If you are a Country music writer, you can go to a Nashville demo studio and get amazing sounding recordings using top Country music session musicians. If you are only pitching songs to that specific market, that is great, but every recording they produce sounds like the last.

If, on the other hand, you think your music has wider appeal, or you are a performing artist yourself, you will want to be noticed in the crowd across a wider marketplace. You need to accentuate the part of your sound that is unique to YOU. A good producer will be able to recognise that which is unique to you, and will make sure that your recordings take advantage of that.


Saturday, October 31, 2009

Tracing Gospel Music Back To Its Roots

Ever since some cognitive human beings have set foot on Earth, music has greatly taken part of their lives. Some people prefer to just listen to music. Others enjoy to take a more active approach, for instance, those that want to learn how to play violin. The folks belonging to the days of yore created their own musical arrangements by plucking strings and hitting things like wood, hide, or stone. The sounds of nature have also served as one pleasant musical sound for them. They undoubtedly took pleasure listening to the sound of the waterfalls, the animals, and even the weather-related reverberations.

Music has then taken a further course. Throughout the passing of time, people have invented creative means of creating music. From the schools to the churches, there is music. The music industry has also created varied genres of music for all occasions.

You will often see or hear people preaching about the word of God. The gospel of the Lord is being delivered through the means of other people who serve as His own instruments. Simply listening to His words enlightens your spirit, right? God has often reminded His people to love one another as he loves everyone. He places every creation he has made under His care. Although every person has been created in His image and likeness, still no one leads a perfect life. To put it in a much simpler term, no one is as perfect as God is.

One’s spirituality and faith can thus be manifested by several means. Reading the bible, following the ten commandments of God, praying, singing gospel music, and attending mass are among the typical ways by which one’s spirituality is nourished. They often say that those who sing praise twice. Thus, by singing the gospel music, you are praising twice!

What is gospel music?

Gospel music is a religious music that contains the word of God. Gospel music is at all times used as one medium to praise God Almighty. In varying tunes and arrangements, gospel music can always be heard during the celebration of the mass, praise and worship activities, and healing mass.

There is no limit as to the use of gospel music. You can even make it as your morning praise habit. You can listen to it while driving your car. Or you can let it resound in your house. Some gospel music singers perform the genre in nightclubs and secular settings. These days, more and more gospel music are hence becoming danceable therefore making the enlightening of the spirit more effective.

The Roots of Gospel Music

The gospel music was first popularized by the African-American churches way back in the 1930s. Two styles of the gospel music emerged in those days—that of the black people and that of the white southerners. Despite the two separate styles, gospel music still traces its roots from the Methodist hymnal. There came a time when the artists from the two separate categories sang the gospel music of each other.

The onset of gospel music has marked a phenomenon in America regardless of the distinction between the while and black churches. Indeed, gospel music has reached Australia that gave birth to the gospel choirs of Jonah and The Whalers and The Elementals plus the beginning of the Australian Gospel Music Festival. Norway also gave rise to both the Oslo Gospel Choir and the Ansgar Gospel Choir.

The Influences of Gospel

The trendy pop music had greatly influenced the gospel artists. In turn, gospel music has also influenced the rhythm and blues singers of the 1940s up to the 1950s.

Gospel music has reached the peek of its popularity. Until now, several other gospel musical artists are gaining their own fame for the genre and a lot other patrons are getting drawn on them.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Free Sheet Music - Fact Or Fiction?

The search “free sheet music” (without the inverted commas) on google spews out an impressive 17,300,000 pages. Even the most inexperienced internet-user will immediately realize that the truth cannot be quite so bountiful. I click on the first hit on google (results on yahoo and msn will differ) and am promised thousands of downloadable scores. On closer inspection this turns out to be a number of Irish tunes at most, with most of the promised pieces in fact consisting of links to more so called “free sites”. Funnily enough the owner of the website at one point even points out not to send him any nasty e-mails about the lack of free scores on the site.

So let’s try the second hit. After navigating round the site promising me free scores, I always end up on a page telling me that all of these scores are free to download - for a small fee of 20 Dollars a year. As a user I am starting to feel confused - I haven’t seen a single piece of sheet music. Can I trust this site? What would the quality of the scores be if I paid the 20 Dollars?

Frustrated, I move on to the next search engine result. This site at least has the courage to tell me on the main page that the so-called free scores will cost me 30 dollars a year, yet once again, I fail to detect a single quaver or treble clef. No scores are available for preview. This is starting to remind me of the “free DVD” I get with my Sunday paper. Only that I have to purchase the Sunday paper first.

Yet another site turns out to be just like the first, the promised pieces of sheet music being links to more so-called free sheet music sites. I am starting to get bored of being re-directed. Aren’t there any sheet music sites out there?

The story of my search continues in similar fashion, until I encounter a site that does offer sheet music, albeit a limited quantity. I download a score only to find that the graphics aren’t quite where they should be, and this makes me wonder about the general quality of the scores and the arrangements that are available. Indeed. Why should anyone create a score and put any effort into the arrangement and editing, if they aren’t making any money through direct sales?

Even other hits take me to a site where I am charged $1.60 for the “privilege” of downloading a badly scanned copy of a Bach composition. Hm.

Frighteningly, I also find a site that offers extremely basic versions of John Lennon’s “Imagine” and other music that is in fact still under copyright. This website is clearly an illegal operation, and one that might find itself in the crosshairs of the Music Publishers' Association (MPA). The MPA, as highlighted in a recent article on the BBC Website ( is intending to clamp down on websites selling music still under copyright, or where the arrangements are still under copyright. In a way the publishing world is doing what record labels started a few years ago by actively prosecuting those participating in illegal download of sheet music.

I eventually find a project similar to the Gutenberg Project where people contribute scores freely. The quality seems ok, but I am restricted to pieces by a handful of classical composers, and with anything relying on donations and free contributions, I doubt there are regular updates. However, as with Wikipedia, the authenticity of the product has to come into question. The standard review process that an encyclopaedia has and Wikipedia and other websites dependent on volunteers lack will have to be considered when downloading scores (or any other information for that matter) for free: does the end-user believe all the notes are accurate? When the founder of Wikipedia himself was found to manipulate information on the very site how much can these so-called democratic sites be trusted? Obviously no one would benefit from changing a note in a score, so no one would deliberately manipulate a piece of music. But what are the skill levels of those involved in the creation of these scores? It is highly unlikely that a trained musician would edit these - he would be destroying his own industry to a certain extent. Furthermore I will not be able to find simplified arrangements of a piece, as this is a time-consuming effort, and anyone engaging in such an operation would clearly charge for the service.

After many days of searching, I give up in my quest in search of good free scores.

But what is one to make of all this? Why are there so many sites that don’t actually sell anything, and what is the point of them?

The problem is created by advertising. The people who run these sites own the most obvious url titles (i.e. the web site address) that one might type in when looking for free scores. As an example: if you were looking for free glasses, one might type in Hence, these sites get a lot of direct traffic. Furthermore they have also done a very good job at search engine optimisation, which makes you wonder whether google and Co are actually missing a trick here. Yet as these sites have nothing to sell they try and get the frustrated user to click on one of the many adverts, and many of these are so-called google ads. Every time someone clicks on one of these ads or paid-for links, the aforementioned website earns a small amount of money (so-called click-through). What is even more disconcerting is that some of these ads lead to legitimate sheet music download sites, making it even harder for the user to distinguish between the real thing and some dodgy operation trying to make a buck on click-throughs. This clearly does not help the industry.

Well, what about those free scores then? Well, there are some out there, basically a handful to be found on the five or six legitimate sites that are out there. These sites have the highest quality in terms of the arrangements, the quality of the score both graphically and in print-out quality.

So why no free scores?

Think about it: why should anyone go through the effort of either
A) scanning hundreds and thousands of pages of music, and then offering them for free?


B) creating hundreds and thousands of arrangements for free?

Exactly. If you were to upload loads of tunes, you’d want to make money out of it.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Playing Gospel Music

Learning how to play gospel music is one thing many people choose to pursue when they begin playing music. This is a great way to learn how to play the piano, or other instruments, since it allows you to concentrate your efforts on the chords, notes, and harmonies specific to gospel music. And if you love gospel, knowing how to play your favourite songs on the piano this will only add to the fun.

The piano is one the most beautiful instruments in the world. The sound it emits is enchanting and melodic, while at the same time it can be played with great enthusiasm and dynamics. If you decide to start out playing gospel on the piano, you won’t be limited to just this style, as the piano is so versatile that many people play everything from classical to jazz to rock music on it.

If you are interested in purchasing a piano for your lessons, make sure you are aware of the cost. You might want to start out with an inexpensive piano or keyboard as you learn how to play. Or, there is the choice of renting a piano until you feel confident enough to go out and buy one for your home. This way you can be sure of the type of sound you are looking for.

Once you take your first lesson, you will be amazed at the sounds that come from your own fingertips. You will feel confident and proud as you play your first song, no matter how simple it is. Within a few lessons you can start mastering the chords and scales common to all types of music. Playing any gospel song will be easy once you have the right tools.

If you are interested in learning how to play gospel music, make sure you find the right courses that will teach you the basics of gospel music and music theory. An online lesson series that focuses on the chord patterns and melodies specific to gospel is the best way to familiarize yourself with playing this kind of music. A program that also specializes in helping you learn to play music by ear is also extremely important. Gospel music is often learned and shared simply through listening, which means it is important that you can easily play chords and melodies without the aid of sheet music.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Learning To Read Music - Do You Have What It Takes?

You probably remember those dreaded aptitude tests in school. You know,
those tests that revealed your abilities to perform certain tasks?

Well, it's time to stop dreaming, and put your desire to learn music to the test.

The desire for music is within you, but do you really have what it takes to learn to read music? Discover your own musical capabilities below.

Musical Talent or Not - Does it Matter?

You may not be able to read music right now. You most likely cannot pick up a flute, a guitar or a violin and play a beautiful melody. Even so, everyone around you is always saying how musically talented you are.

Perhaps you can memorize musical tunes on key upon hearing them, create an original song in your mind, or maybe even play an instrument or two without really knowing how to read the music. These are all indications of having natural musical talent.

But, do you have the potential to achieve music?

Even if you have none of the musical abilities above, you can still learn to read music.

Where "natural talent" doesn't exist, learned musical skills can still be used to make beautiful music. Your love and desire for learning and achieving music is what will make the difference whether you have natural talent or not.

Think of your present career. If you pursued what you loved, you were able to
achieve the skill through learning, right? If you're a typist, you learned to type.

If you're a nurse, you went to nursing school.. If you're a mechanic, you attended
a technical school to achieve this. To read music, you must learn it as well.

Question #1: Do I love music enough to learn how to read music and play a musical instrument?

Learning to Read Music for Adults

If you missed out on music lessons as a child or simply forgot what you
learned, it's not too late to develop musical skills. Adults can learn to read
music. In truth, a person who has a real desire to learn might achieve more than a child who is being pushed to learn.

Why? As an adult, you already understand the great potential of having this skill. Having a passion for music will drive you to practice often and develop your skills quickly. Only those adults and children who have a desire to continue with music will actually achieve the skill for life!

Question #2: Are you willing to learn music and be dedicated to practice at this stage of your life?

A Goal for Your Music Skills

Another determining factor for learning to read music is your reason for
learning. There should be a goal in mind while developing this skill. Whether
it's to play an instrument in church, at special gatherings or to have a career in
music, you should have a goal in mind.

With a goal, you'll be pushed to learn even when you don't feel like taking a lesson. This is similar to taking college courses.
You attend the classes because you must if you are going to have a successful
career in that field.

Question #3: Do you have a goal or reason for learning to read music?

If you answered "Yes" to all of the above, read the questions below.

Which instrument do I want to play?
If a skilled music teacher is not available, am I willing to teach myself through online training?
When my music lessons begin, can I dedicate at least 15 to 30 minutes per day to practice?

If you answered "Yes" to all these questions, you're ready to pursue music

Start developing your musical skills today to discover a life-long

Violin Master Pro Review

For this post, I decided I would do a review. I recently came across what looks like an exciting package called Violin Master Pro. So i'm going to go ahead and do a Violin Master Pro Review.

Learning how to play violin can be difficult for some. In addition, it can be costly attending classes or hiring an instructor. I know of a lot of people that simply want to learn violin when they get some spare time and in the comfort of their own home. So is Violin Master Pro the answer?

After looking at Violin Master Pro, in my opinion, Violin Master Pro is the answer. Violin Master Pro is basically a learning system where you can learn to play the violin right from computer. There are 11 video lessons, various exercises, scales, step by step instructions, etc. It's a very large package for learning how to play violin.

In addition, one thing I also like is that the Violin Master Pro comes with a special JamTracks collection. These basically are MP3's that you can play right along with and practice. It's a great way to practice in between lessons. I also find them a lot of fun! So I recommend you check these out. Also, you get an online membership through their website, so I think that's pretty cool as well.

In all, I think Violin Master Pro is a great package for learning how to play violin. So if you want to learn how to play violin, I highly recommend this product. In addition, it includes a money-back guarantee. So you don't have to worry about not being satisfied.

Anyway, good luck!

Download Link for Violin Master Pro.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Instrument Master Review

Ok, another post, and I thought I would do another review. This time I am going to do an Instrument Master Review.

Learning the violin seems to be becoming more common these days. Because of how expensive violin lessons can be, many people turn to the internet. There are many different websites that have lessons. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to learn the violin from most of these websites. Often times the lessons are too complicated and may even have errors in them. It's also hard to try and play the violin while reading text. That is where Instrument Master comes in.

What is Instrument Master? Instrument Master is a video package to teach you how to play the violin. There are 40 separate lessons with video clips, audio clips, etc. I also noticed that there is free sheet music as well as exercises to improve your performance. It's a really nice package.

So how good are the lessons themselves? In my opinion, they are really good. I really like them. It's clear that the creators have put a lot of time into this course. And it really shows in the product.

The only downside might be that some of the bonuses included in this product aren't really needed. For instance, I'm guessing most people won't need the instruction on producing hip-hop beats. But it's still nice that they included it. And who knows, maybe you'll end up liking it.

In closing, I highly recommend Instrument Master. In fact, I'm going to add it to my list of recommended links.

Good luck!

Download Link for Instrument Master.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Music On The Rise

Music is being consumed in more ways than one and at a higher rate then every before. The MTV generation is use to not only hearing their music but seeing it as well. If they see a song that they like they can then buy that songs in multiple media forms from vinyl and CD to digital with DRM (digital rights management) and Mp3 without DRM. If they like the video and the song then they can go to Youtube and view it there until their hearts content. But the digitalization of music has done more. Not only is it easier to view videos but it easier to find and discover new music, acts and bands as well.

MySpace has built a multi-billion dollar network on the backs of up-and-coming acts and unsigned bands and their friends. Myspace and sites like this have exposed many people to new and unheard music and continue to do so at an astonishing rate each day. As a band or act it is now seen as a smart business move and cool to be associated with a brand or land a sync-license in a TV show or commercial. This twenty years before was a direct threat to your artistic vision and classified as “selling out”. But now these things are all used to innovatively expose music to the masses and making it easier to discover it.

Technology has created mega-channels of distribution. Peer-to-peer networks have opened the floodgates to obtaining free music. Furthermore, because digitized music takes of bytes instead of floor space you are now given a wider range of music to choose from at digital retailers. And of course copying CDs have never been easier and soon the CD will be wiped from that equation level just the transfer of bytes in order to obtain your music.

What this means is that music consumption is increasing. Production cost is lowering. Distribution is widening and more acts and bands are being heard. There is a need out there for making the discovery and sharing of music simpler and easier. Music is an identifier for many people and these people are getting larger and larger iPods that just simply need to be filled.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Classical Music

Classical music, like other forms of classical art, has not as many takers as those of light music. Nonetheless, classical music has its fans too and lots more are falling to its charms. Yet, those who turn to it often find it rather beyond their understanding and real appreciation. They are charmed by it, but they cannot critically explain why it appeals them. You cannot rationalize its appeal or beauty.

Another reason why a large majority of people are not very comfortable with classical music is its complexity and a sense of distance from the artist. Light music can be easily sung by ordinary artists with whom ordinary listeners can identify easily. It expresses the feelings of ordinary persons in their own language. Classical music, on the other hand, is rather mysterious and is rendered in diverse styles and it takes years, sometimes a life long time to understand .But its study has its rewards too. The more you study it, the more you enjoy it and the more you find it wonderful and worth the effort and hard work to study it.

The study or appreciation of classical music depends upon your individual taste. A form of music that appeals to you may not appeal to another person. You may come across experts who may try to influence you by their judgments about the quality of music. You may listen to them, but you should not compel yourself to like the music that they like. Or if you come across a much-acclaimed piece of music that you cannot really appreciate, you do not have to blame yourself for not liking it. You may of course try to find out why the particular expert likes a given piece of music. May be, you find some point to learn.

The most important thing about classical music is to listen to it as much as you can. Classical music CDs are available from many sources. If you are a student, your college library may have an abundant stock of classical music CDs. You can listen to radio, watch TV, and go to concerts and recitals. You can also get free downloads from the Internet, if you do not want to spend money.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Choosing The Right Instrument For You

If music is your middle name, then musical instruments are sure to adorn your room. Music is an excellent way to get rid of the blues. And if you are the creative type, then you can compose your own songs with musical instruments.

Musical instruments are mainly categorized by the way they generate sound. All musical instruments fall under one of the following - string, wind, percussion and keyboard, though there may be further divisions and sub-divisions. Examples of string instruments include guitars, violins, ukuleles and cellos. Wind instruments include pipes, sax, clarinet, flute and such other types. Drums, bongos, cymbals and bells fall under the percussions category. And keyboard instruments include pianos, harpsichords, organs and accordions. Over 1000 musical instruments are available across the world, including folk instruments.

If you want to play on your own, then it is better to start with a musical instrument you like, and then gradually master the instrument by joining music classes. Or, if you are wanting to learn how to play violin, I recommend this course. If you like music in general and are not interested in specializing in any particular type of instrument then a keyboard can be the perfect choice. Electronic keyboards nowadays can produce all sorts of sound ranging from guitar tunes to drum beats. A variety of DJ equipments are also available on the market nowadays, which provide creative sound mixing options for the wannabe DJs as well as for the experienced disc jockeys.

On the other hand, if you were thinking of organizing a band then you would need different types of musical instruments. A band normally includes a couple of string instruments, percussions and preferably a wind instrument.

You can purchase your musical instruments online. Choose your favorite instrument from the various websites that you will find on the internet. They often offer discounts if you buy their package deals, which include various types of musical instruments. This can be your best option if you are planning a band with your friends.

Musical instruments can be a costly affair, especially if you are planning to buy the best available on the market. These can set you back by anything from $100 to over $10000. A good Yamaha or Roland electronic keyboard may cost almost $2500. Used musical instruments are often a good choice, especially if you are learning to play a new instrument. For beginners it is advisable to invest in musical instruments in the lower price range.

Musical instruments can also be made at home with items of daily use. Homemade musical instruments mainly fall under the category of percussion instruments. You can make almost anything, from shakers and jingle bracelets to drums and tambourines. You can also make wind instruments such as comb harmonica or kazoo. These help your child to be creative and can keep them busy. And you can now have your own band at home.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Choosing Salsa Music

Looking for the right salsa music is easy once you’ve been exposed to salsa beats long enough. But if you want to groove to the salsa rhythms, here are some recommended CDs that will have you dancing for days!

SALSA FRESCA – This is an excellent CD “for those who love to dance salsa, not just listen to it.” This compilation CD have you grooving salsa style all night long. Its inviting rhythmic beats are particularly good for those who love to Mambo. This CD is even a keeper for non-dancers. A must have for your CD collection!
TONY VEGA GREATEST HITS – Tony Vegas has charm and Latin gentleman appeal that can be heard in his music. His musical style appeals to everyone. It is smoothe and romantic yet energetic and upbeat This is an unmatched collection of Tony Vega hits from 1989-1994. His songs are infused with romantic tones and sensuous Cuban Mambo and Puerto Rican Salsa style beats.
Rough Guide: Salsa Dance ~ various artists – A huge selection of musical compilations put out under the Rough Series. Rough Guide: Salsa Dance is one of the hotter Latin music themed albums to be released to date.
Rough Guide: Salsa Dance vol. 2 ~ various artists – An upbeat album that will have you dancing the instant you hear it! This album is sizzling HOT. You won’t stop dancing because the music is electrifying!
Ultra Mix: The Best of Salsa – This is a must-have CD for any salsa. Some say it’s best suited for listening, while others are convinced it’s one of the best compilation discs for salsa dancing. Go to your local music store of check it out online. You’ll be glad you did.
These CD selections are a great way to begin your salsa music collections. However, some other great tips to finding great salsa CDs is by listening to local radio shows that feature Latin American, Cuban and Afro beats. Most likely you’ll also be able to hear some salsa beats you’ve never heard before. Listening to these types of radio shows exposes you to the different sounds and usually makes mention of the artists that are being played. This will make your shopping experience so much easier.
Also consider checking out your local salsa dance bar or salsa dance studio. The DJ or dance instructor would be happy to tell you what albums and / or songs they are playing.

Check out your local music store or go online to find the above mentioned CDs. I guarantee your neighbors will be banging on your door wanting to know what it is you a re playing. These salsa CDs are that good!

Happy Shopping!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Choosing An Instrument For Your Child

Many parents want to encourage their children to learn to play a musical instrument, to encourage their musical development.

The first instrument is often a music keyboard. These are reasonably priced and stimulate an interest in music even in very young children. Ask your school music teacher for advice, because some of the very low cost keyboards are very limited. The higher priced keyboards play notes softer if they are hit less hard, more like a piano.

Your child may enjoy the sound of a particluar instrument. This can be a major motivational factor, so it is a good idea to go with the child's ideas, at least initially. Many children change the instrument they play in the first few years of their music education.

Many children may find it easier to play woodwind instruments like a clarinet than brass instruments like trumpets and trombones. Woodwind instruments do not require the lip vibrations that brass players need.

Most children's choice of instrument is a matter of chance. It depends on what instrument is favored by visiting music tutors.

There are more professional violinists than players of any other instrument. This is one reason parents often encourage their children to take up the violin. Buying a violin is a tricky business.

You can buy a violin for less than 70 dollars on the Internet. Should you buy it? Never.

A violin is not just a pair of shoes. Shoes are designed to be used and thrown away when they wears out. A well-made violin will last for hundreds of years. The 70 dollar violin above should just be thrown away. Buying one for your child is a waste of 70 dollars.

If your child is taking up the violin, or any instrument, it might be an idea to rent rather than buy, until you see how your child takes to the instrument. That is the point at which you should consider buying.

Buy the best instrument you can afford. Price is definitely linked with tonal quality. Listen to a range of violins, pianos or trumpets being played by the musician in the retailers. You will notice differences between the different instruments. Always buy a musical instrument you and your child like the sound from. Musical training will attune the child's ear to any deficiency in the instrument you buy, and this will detract from the pleasure he or she gains from playing it.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Benefits Of Music

Music has been a part of existence since time immemorial. And, it is everywhere –in the rhythms of nature, the chatter of animals and birds, the babbling of babies, and in the dancing of brooks. Listen and you will hear sweet tunes all weaving a magic of their own.

It is well known that the origins of music go back at least 50,000 years. Music seems to be ingrained in our genetics and tunes are rhythms that are integral to our lives.

Music seems to play many roles in our lives:

• Research indicates the children who learn music are more likely to become doctors, engineers, and computer professionals. Music learning develops areas of the brain responsible for language as well as reasoning. Music is known to sharpen memory. A Rockefeller Foundation study reveals that those who studied music have SAT scores of 427.

• If a child in the womb of its mother listens to music it is born with highly developed intelligence.

• Music molds people—it teaches coordination, teamwork, discipline, and self-expression.

• The therapeutic values of music are well documented. It heals people with mental problems, developmental and learning disabilities, Alzheimer’s disease, brain trauma, and hypertension. That music heals has been recorded in the works of Aristotle and Plato and in the centuries that followed.

• That plants respond to music is reality not a myth. Plants are known to thrive with music and also move towards the sound.

• Children who grow up in a music filled environment are happy, fulfilled, and joyous.

• Music takes the devout closer to god and in religion congregational singing has always worked. Singing hymns lifts any heaviness from the mind and frees the soul.

• When music is played in hospital waiting rooms and so on it ebbs tensions and calms the mind.

• Music has meditative properties and can be used for healing, exercising, and training modules.

• When music plays, people function better. Many find that they enjoy work or activities like cooking and cleaning when music is playing. It erases tensions and lifts weights off the shoulder. Music actually introduces lightness into the body.

• Music reflects the culture of a society and strengthens bonds. It creates a camaraderie and oneness as seen in football matches, military training, and festivals.

• Romance and love would not have so many hues but for music. Music and song have captured feelings, passions, agony, distress, and more succinctly. Through song many a romance have been immortalized. Mating calls and songs are universal in nature.

• Scientists are using music to map behaviors and unravel the many mysteries of the human mind and consciousness.

• Music settles down anger and resentment quickly and also helps us overcome feelings of sorrow and loss. It lifts the mind and spirit out of despair and gives hope. From centuries ago a mother has always sung lullabies to her fussing child lulling it to sleep with softly whispered songs.

• Music has other uses it can raise levels of excitement and cause frenzy. It is used to call armies to war by the beating of drums, to instigate raw emotions during revolts, and to drum up frenzy at football matches and rock shows.

Did you know that while classical music soothes and opens up channels in the mind, rock music can set pulses racing, and chants can send you into a trance. Music used differently has varied effects on human beings. Music can be a panacea or hell depends on how it is used.