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Help: Suitable Instrument

Dave (the ancient mariner) 11 Feb 00 - 08:49 AM
Amos 10 Feb 00 - 11:39 PM
alison 10 Feb 00 - 08:24 PM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 10 Feb 00 - 07:58 PM
JenEllen 10 Feb 00 - 07:44 PM
GeorgeH 13 Jan 00 - 09:58 AM
Easy Rider 13 Jan 00 - 09:03 AM
Helen 13 Jan 00 - 02:23 AM
catspaw49 12 Jan 00 - 09:58 PM
harpgirl 12 Jan 00 - 08:06 PM
Willie-O 12 Jan 00 - 07:53 PM
McGrath of Harlow 12 Jan 00 - 07:43 PM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 12 Jan 00 - 07:28 PM
McGrath of Harlow 12 Jan 00 - 06:32 PM
catspaw49 12 Jan 00 - 04:55 PM
Willie-O 12 Jan 00 - 04:45 PM
Bert 12 Jan 00 - 10:43 AM
catspaw49 12 Jan 00 - 10:41 AM
Willie-O 12 Jan 00 - 10:11 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 12 Jan 00 - 08:15 AM
GeorgeH 12 Jan 00 - 07:58 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 12 Jan 00 - 07:03 AM
Midchuck 12 Jan 00 - 06:39 AM
Escamillo 12 Jan 00 - 05:15 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 12 Jan 00 - 05:00 AM
JenEllen 12 Jan 00 - 02:46 AM
murray@mpce.mq.edu.au 12 Jan 00 - 02:32 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 12 Jan 00 - 01:46 AM
Helen 12 Jan 00 - 01:24 AM
Jon Freeman 12 Jan 00 - 12:52 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 12 Jan 00 - 12:51 AM
Banjoman_CO 12 Jan 00 - 12:34 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 11 Jan 00 - 11:48 PM
Mbo 11 Jan 00 - 11:15 PM
Jon Freeman 11 Jan 00 - 11:13 PM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 11 Jan 00 - 10:46 PM
Jon Freeman 11 Jan 00 - 10:01 PM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 11 Jan 00 - 09:47 PM
Jon Freeman 11 Jan 00 - 09:28 PM
Jon Freeman 11 Jan 00 - 09:28 PM
sophocleese 11 Jan 00 - 08:54 PM
Terry Allan Hall 11 Jan 00 - 08:10 PM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 11 Jan 00 - 07:09 PM
sophocleese 11 Jan 00 - 05:59 PM
Bert 11 Jan 00 - 05:17 PM
clare s 11 Jan 00 - 05:09 PM
JedMarum 11 Jan 00 - 05:01 PM
Michael K. 11 Jan 00 - 04:26 PM
Wesley S 11 Jan 00 - 04:22 PM
kendall 11 Jan 00 - 04:19 PM
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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 11 Feb 00 - 08:49 AM

Thank you Amos, I damn near bought myself a Celtic Harp and joined her.. but due to an old hand injury, doubt if I would be able to play it very well. Just love the sounds... I tried to steer her to piano or keyboard, but after a few trips to the music shops the guitar was the one she really set her heart to. Should anyone want to go to a really helpfull and great place to shop for music and instruments, I highly recommend the, Halifax Folklore Centre, run by Thomas and Marla Dorward. 1528 Brunswick Street Halifax. The staff were excellent. They make and repair all kinds of instruments, and trade them..My daughter is going for lessons there too..Yours,Aye.Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Amos
Date: 10 Feb 00 - 11:39 PM

Na -- ya done right, Davey. The one she wanted being the one she got, the learning will have a major head start. Have her touch it a lot, tighten the strings, loosen them, and run her fingers up and down the strings so it grows more and more known to her every sense -- this can be done before the lessons begin. She can even (should she wish) take ti bed with her -- as long as she doesn't roll over much! :>)

I have one two, and we sankk a fine chunk of dough in her first instrument -- a sax -- and she got wonderfully good on it and then (for a number of reasons) switched to the trumpet. Because of what she already knew, she was able to sit down and turn herself from no trumpet playing to competent for her age in a few weeks of entirely self-motivated, self-chosen, self-guided study. She now plays both very well. But the point is she started out with what she knew she wanted. I wouldn't do this with meal menus, but in music it has served her well.

Say g'night Gracie.

Amos


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: alison
Date: 10 Feb 00 - 08:24 PM

I'd go with the keyboard.. for all the reasons listed above... as for being the "wrong sort" of keyboard... I can only assume that it isn't touch sensitive.... that would be about the only problem I would think is relevant, (or possibly undersized keys)... for your purposes a portable keyboard is a must... and if it has earphones... then the hospital will be happy too..... don't know how they'd react to someone learning a violin down the ward *grin*

Forget that teacher who refused to teach.. find a "keyboard" teacher.. and get their advice... although make sure they teach the left hand too.. instead of just teaching Emma to push the appropriate buttons to make the keyboard do it for her, (that is fun too... but she should learn how to do it herself as well)...

slainte

alison


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 10 Feb 00 - 07:58 PM

Thank you JenEllen... Now Mudcatters who responded very kindly with your advice. Today Emma is the proud owner of a Seagull Guitar. Handcrafted in Quebec Canada.. mahogany maple and cedar wood ... and she starts lessons on Monday. We spent a long time looking and finally found a small bodied, full fret guitar she loves. The keyboard was not what she wanted in the end.. Just wanted you all to know another Folkie starting out... Yours, (ever so proud father) Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: JenEllen
Date: 10 Feb 00 - 07:44 PM

refresh


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: GeorgeH
Date: 13 Jan 00 - 09:58 AM

ER: Depends what you want and where you are coming from; if you've already got some musical skills its rather less critical. However if you're looking to develop "real" keyboard skill then look for a real piano feel with at least some touch sensitivity on the keys, some "weight" to them, and close to full-size keys. The number of octaves is less critical IF you start out knowing the sort of thing you're going to do . .

These days it seems you don't have to pay a fortune to get this in a new keyboard.

(This according to Mrs H who's the one who teaches piano and occasionally keyboard.)

G.


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Easy Rider
Date: 13 Jan 00 - 09:03 AM

What kind of keyboard is the "right" kind?

I was thinking of getting one, even though I play guitar. I think it would make it easier to work out melodies on the keyboard than on the guitar, and I would learn more music theory, faster. My wife also played piano, when she was a kid and would probably take it up again, if we had one.

What do I look for in a decent keyboard? Does it have to "feel" like a real piano?


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Helen
Date: 13 Jan 00 - 02:23 AM

I remember a book which was in the library where I worked about 10 years ago - the book was probably printed 10 years before that so more than likely it is completely extinct by now, but... It was by a woman called Attarah Ben Tovim, I think, who had a music centre where children could come and try out any instrument they wanted. She had a well-thought out theory that certain instruments work for certain people and not for others. It all relates to the size, shape, physical movements, sounds, etc etc of each instrument and how each person relates to that. Some people learn quickly by ear, some learn better by using sheet music. Some like small hand/finger movements some like big movements, some like soft or sweet, some like to belt it out.

It would be worth tracking down some info, or one of her books if you can, because she changed the way I thought about instruments. Your daughter may gravitate to one type of instrument eventually.

It's funny to me that my sister learned piano at high school and I learned flute at uni, but now I play harp which is similar musically (chords, accompanimnet, scales etc ) to a piano and she plays flute. Either way, though, we both attribute our start in music to that primary school teacher and the plastic Musettes. (We were in the same class, but one year's age difference.) We had a school reunion of that class last year and a few of us still had the Musettes and played a tune for the teacher. He loved it. What a great tribute to his enthusiasm & insight that we could still play the same tunes & have so much fun with it 35 years later!

Helen


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: catspaw49
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 09:58 PM

Get well Emma!!! And then play to your heart's content. Keyboard is an excellent choice to start. She will acquire more "accidental" theory and also be able to "see" things better.

Spaw (send me your snail mail addy and I'll send Emma something just for fun in a few months Dave)


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: harpgirl
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 08:06 PM

...I vote for keyboard for ten year old fingers...not a daunting size, skills transferrable to larger piano...violin if she is passionate and very dextrous.... guitar would be harder because it is difficult to play physically at that age...quickest positive feedback with keyboard and with electronic effects young people can be very creative...I agreee with Jon...follow her interests...music hath charms,,,harpgirl


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Willie-O
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 07:53 PM

Yeah, speedy recovery, then start playing.


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 07:43 PM

Get well soon Emma


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 07:28 PM

Willie-O not at Emma's school to my knowledge.

All: she has agreed to try keyboard; she can try violin or guitar later if she lose's interest in keyboard. I hope she will eventually play many other instruments. We still sing together occasionally but my voice is gone (for want of a better term, wanky) She is going in for surgery next week; and will start playing when she feels better. Thank you all for your comments, they really helped in this regard. Yours, Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 06:32 PM

Well, you may get some people start playing the fiddle at 50 and get good, but most of the time that's one instrument where it pays to start early. And so far as folk music goes, the fiddle is queen of them all.

And it comes in the right size for a child.


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: catspaw49
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 04:55 PM

Damn straight!!!

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Willie-O
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 04:45 PM

Not quite. It (a) has steel strings, not nylon
(b) doesn't look goofy
(c) can be upgraded to a regular mandolin by the addition of the four missing strings

Interesting you should bring it up though. Dave you're in Halifax aren't you? Do they not still teach every school kid in the city to play ukelele and have these uke-estras and suchlike? I know that was going on there awhile ago.

(I know...welcome to heaven here's your harp, welcome to hell here's your accordion, welcome to Halifax here's your ukelele...welcome to Mudcat here's your possum's ass?)

Willie-O


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Bert
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 10:43 AM

A mandolin with only four strings! isn't that a ukelele?


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: catspaw49
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 10:41 AM

Nose Flute

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Willie-O
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 10:11 AM

You won't go wrong with having a keyboard in the house, but that's just a start. I think the majority of kids start with piano lessons, as I did, but most who become musicians don't remain piano players. The essence of musicianship is learning to play with other people and piano for all its virtues is usually a solo instrument.

When I was a kid something that helped me develop basic musicianship a lot more than the piano lessons was a couple of years of "Orff method" group lessons. This consisted of small groups of children playing simple instruments such as recorders, glockenspiels, drums, triangles etc. and singing--learning the basics of keeping time with others, harmony, arranging, and so on. For some reason the Orff method is not much heard of these days, its all Suzuki "turning your child into a wunderkid by the age of three".

I started my daughter on guitar a couple of years ago, she worked at it for almost a year, then got involved with flute instead. (An instrument with a lot of virtues; its easy to carry around, and can fit into many different musical styles; folk/celtic, classical, jazz and more.)

My so far unproven theory is that starting a youngster on a mandolin with only four strings on it (single-string courses instead of double) should be a great way to start learning tunes without all the tuning hassles, and the finger pressure needed, for 8 strings. And you very seldom find too many mandolin players anywhere.

Willie-O


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 08:15 AM

Thanks George, your point is well taken about teachers. I want my daughter primarily "to enjoy herself" and not get too technical. I am not looking for perfection, just a kid happy in her ability to perform music; if it goes beyond that and becomes a career, bonus. Yours, Aye. Dave

To the tune, A Soldier and a Sailor went Walking One Day...

And if she plays one note, may she also play ten, may she play a bloody symphony, said the sailor, Amen.


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: GeorgeH
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 07:58 AM

Shit (excuse me) I thought this was a folk music newsgroup; why this sudden concern with reading from music . . .

Whatever you do, encourage her to sing, to develop and stretch her voice. That's a far more fundamental instrument than the piano or anything else . . But the "go with her enthusiasms" is certainly the first rule.

I don't know what prices are like in the US, but in these parts you'd get a perfectly adequate fiddle or guitar for about 25% of the cost of an adequate electronic keyboard (and and adequate real piano is even worse); a suitable keyboard will be fairly heavy. But, as stated, avoid very cheap instruments. If buying a fiddle or guitar it's worth taking someone who plays the instrument with you to make the purchase, and going by their advice. If you're prepared to accept an instrument which is a bit battered in appearance then you'll get (musically) far better value for money (you don't want to see the fiddles in our houshold, but they sound fine). And - in case your daughter changes her mind later - fiddle and guitar hold their value much better than electronic keyboards.

Some 10 year olds find the "mechanics" of a guitar a bit limiting (may depend on the size of the 10 year old!!), but at that age I wouldn't worry at all about the "having to hear the pitch" argument on fiddle - indeed, that's exactly the skill you want her to develop.

To return to my first point - our experience is that it's MUCH harder for someone who's learn music from the "theory and score" to learn to play by ear than it is to go the other way. But ideally develop both sets of skills in parallel (and it's well worth looking round for a teacher who is sympathetic to such an approach - which seems more usual in violin/fiddle teachers than in piano teachers). And you MUST go with a teacher with whom your daughter is happy . . .

(Speaking here as a non-musician in a family of musicians, two of whom teach both "clasically" and by ear.)

G.


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 07:03 AM

We have an excellent supply of used piano's available; professionally restored etc.. but the electronic one is going to be the best option (in hospital use at times) Although my preference is toward acoustic music especially guitar (thank you Andres your advice will be followed) Perhaps she will progress to guitar after learning keyboard. I have been very impressed with the quality of sound from some electronic piano's; and was shown how the key's simulate acoustic touch. Fortunately, I know a music teacher (who also plays the Pipes Mbo) who can advise us on which to buy. Now if we can just get "madame" to accept the choice we are in business. Yours, Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Midchuck
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 06:39 AM

Either keyboard or guitar is the logical first choice. Violin demands a much better sense of pitch - you have to "find" the correct pitches yourself, without help from either keys or frets, and it takes the average non-musician years to get any real music. (It took my wife weeks, but she started with an excellent background in piano and voice.) Either piano or guitar are easy to get to where you can at least accompany singing very quickly.

I am prejudiced in favor of the guitar, since I was given expensive piano lessons that didn't take, then was given a $15 guitar and learned on my own. I had told my parents that I wanted to do guitar in the first place, but they thought I should learn a "real" instrument. I would like to be able to play whorehouse piano, but not enough to put the work in.

I think the following arguments can be made for starting on guitar:

1) If you start the kid on nylon strings, it isn't very loud, and the suffering for the other people in the same house is minimized.

2) You can have your own guitar and take it places with you, and it feels more like "yours" than taking your chances with whatever piano is available. (This doesn't apply to electric keyboards, of course, but I assume we're talking about acoustic music here.)

3) Most courses of formal piano lessons concentrate on playing from sheet music to the extent that the kid never gets any concept of playing by ear until he stumbles onto it himself, if he does. (I'm over 50, so I get to follow the classic rule that the masculine 3rd person singular pronoun includes the feminine by implication. If you don't like it, show some respect for your elders and ignore it!) You can make music sooner if you start with chords and work toward melody, than the other way around.

4) The keyboard, with the black and white keys, teaches that the key of C major/A minor is "right" and all the other keys are abberations. (Did I spell that right? Probably not but to hell with it.) It's like there were "good" and "bad" notes within the 12 tone scale, when in fact the conventional major and minor scales are entirely arbitrary conventions that we of western european descent have gotten used to.

All of the above is simply my own opinion. Whether it's sufficiently humble is a matter of choice.

Peter.


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Escamillo
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 05:15 AM

If you and your daughter choose a guitar, let her test some instruments, with the guide of a veteran sales person, in order to find one that is soft enough for her fingers, at this age. I remember how hard it was for me at age 12 to study in a guitar that was too hard, until I found one more appropiate. Later on, her fingers will grow stronger and she will be able to play any guitar. I think the violin is similar in this respect.
Best Regards - Andrés


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 05:00 AM

Elle, If I had any doubts your vivid description of a violin strangled cat attempting to sing "the old grey mare" certainly sold the keyboard idea. Something I had not thought of.....Earphones and volume control....Thank you I'm off to buy a new keyboard. MY nerves could not take anything else....Shiftworker going home to sleep for a few hours. Yours, Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: JenEllen
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 02:46 AM

Lots of good common sense here folks....

Piano is a great starter. Just for the simple fact that she will be able to SEE her music. I mean, she can have in view, the music, as well as her hands, and it becomes easier to make the necessary changes she needs to create her sound.

I learned violin first, in fourth grade. Had a lovely teacher and lots of family support/encouragement. If you think the pipes sound like a strangling cat, wait until you hear a fourth grader on a violin...

But after that, and learning to read music, it became very easy to translate it to other instruments. Especially stringed ones like guitar and mandolin.

I wouldn't recommend dulcimer or mandolin right away. Let her get the feel of making a joyful noise first, then allow her to choose her instrument.

Is there any way you could find a teacher that will let her experiment? What kind of music programs do you have in your schools? Ideally, I would find a teacher that could teach her to read music, and translate it to a variety of instruments (including her own voice). Sure, it means hearing "the Old Grey Mare" slaughtered in ways you never dreamed imaginable, but it would give her the necessary tools to learn music, and then take it to whatever instruments she chooses throughout her life.

Best of luck, and keep us posted...Elle


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: murray@mpce.mq.edu.au
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 02:32 AM

Dave, With respect to your comment about a violin being cheaper than the other instruments. Be careful with a cheap violin. My wife taught the instrument for some years and she found that some of the real cheapos were impossible to set up properly and would never make a good sound. Some of them have bumpy fingerboards which makes it very difficult, even for a good player, to get proper intonation. They are a dirty trick to play on a kid who wants to learn an instrument. The best idea is to take somebody along who plays the instrument when you buy.

It seems that if you want to be a great concert violinist you had better start as young as you can; but hell, I know someone who started at the age of 50 and now at the tender age of 62 is playing in amateur string quartets. (He was a clarinette player before that, I'll admit, so he already knew something about music.

Murray


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 01:46 AM

A good dose of Aussie two cent common sense, is worth a hundred dollars to me Helen. you have tipped the scale heavily in favour of a brand new keyboard. Thank you all for taking the time to help me decide. All your comments are appreciated very much. Thank you for taking the time. Yours, Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Helen
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 01:24 AM

Hi Dave,

In primary school our teacher taught our class to play a plastic whistle thing called a Musette, so we learned how to read music (not the bass clef, though) and to play along with other people. In early high school I tried to learn guitar from a home-study instruction course, and although I could play chords, and was starting to work on finger-picking technique I never really knew exactly *what* I was doing or how chords & musical keys worked. Then, when I was in 2nd year of uni I bought a flute and tinkered about with that, mostly teaching myself.

When I bought the Celtic lever harp in 1980 I had no idea about the complexities of chords, keys, accompaniment, or how it all fitted together. I really wish that, rather than focusing on a melody instrument like the whistle & flute that I had learned at least the basics of the piano to start with, with the essential theory. I agree with what people have said about the piano: I began to see the big picture of how it all fits together when i started learning the harp - but the piano would have made it click so much better.

I still agree about choosing an instrument which your daughter likes to play, but the foundation which she can get from playing the piano can definitely translate into almost any other instrument.

Even if your daughter starts out with lessons on the keyboard you have and then moves on to the instrument of her choice when she has learned the basics then I think the investment of time & money will pay for itself in the long run.

Alternatively, find a guitar or violin teacher who is committed to teaching the fundamental theory and who is good at conveying that in a way which makes it interesting and meaningful.

Just my 2 Aussie cents worth.

Helen


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 12:52 AM

I think that you can put those sort of arguments for the piano/ keyboard but I know a number of people (mostly a few years older than me) who had piano lessons as children and say "if only my parents forced me to keep it up..." the point here IMO is that the child did not want to learn and therefore got nowhere...

Also, my mother did get to grade 8 piano. I am not a good musician,but in terms of being able to keep time and play with others, "hear" harmonies and basic chords, I as a self taught player with no real training (and a fail at "O" level music in school) can do far more than she can.

I am not knocking proper tuition or anything but I do feel that a peson is going to learn the most from music by doing what they enjoy and that enthusiasm will carry them a lot further than tuition and training alone can do - ideally you have both though (I think).

Jon


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 12:51 AM

The keyboard is probably going to be the choice, she does enjoy playing with the different settings; and it seems to be the best solution suggested so far. How about the Dulcimer is that a difficult instrument to play? Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Banjoman_CO
Date: 12 Jan 00 - 12:34 AM

I would certainly say start her on the piano. I started as a jazz musician (sax). Later I learned guitar, banjo, bass, and some dulcimer. My greatest regret is that I never learned to play keyboard. Everything that you need to know about music; theorie, rhythm, chords structure, and all the rest can be learned on piano. Then it is a simple thing to pick up other instruments.

Banjoman


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 11:48 PM

No Mbo, she thinks that the rousing sound o'the pipes is too much like someone trying to kill a cat, unfortunately. Now if someone could invent a musical instrument that looks and sounds like a Polar bear, we would be in business. Yours,Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Mbo
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 11:15 PM

What! Dave, you mean she doesn't want to play the pipes?

--Mbo


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 11:13 PM

Dave, probably a very good idea to stick around and get more feedback.

In answer to your quesion, a mandolin is not the same as a guitar. A mandolin is a smaler and has 8 strings (in pairs) and is tuned GDAE. A guitar (forgetting things like 12 strings) has 6 strings and standard tuning is EADGBE.

Although playing open chords in G is easier on the mandolin than on the guitar, I think that there are far more open or first position chords available on the guitar and would suggest that for using an instrument to accompany voice, the guitar far more flexible instrument. I do play mandolin but mostly use it for single note melodies.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 10:46 PM

Emma and I sing "Over the hill's and far away" and many silly sea songs together. But she like's everything from Cyril Tawney to Madonna and Celine Dione, including the Spice Girls. I think you are right, I should steer her towards a guitar..But I will stay thinking about it for a while; in case there are other suggestions. Is a mandolin the same as a guitar? Yours, Aye. Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 10:01 PM

Dave, I am no expert but if singing is something that she really enjoys, a case could be made for the guitar as it is very easy to learn to play a few chords to accompany youself. I suppose some of that would depend on what she likes to sing but within folk music there must be thousands of songs that can be accompanied with 3 chords.

I am no expert on music and I'm not a parent but I think that if I was in what I think is your situation, I would be thinking in terms of a small nylon strung classical guitar and it hould be possible to find one that sounds nice and plays well fairly cheaply. UK wise, I have seen somthing along the lines I am thinking of for around £40 new.

Jon


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 09:47 PM

Jon I get a different answer everyday, but she does like to sing. I think that narrows it down to guitar or keyboard as best, from what I read here; but violins are cheaper and versatile as well as portable. What is your opinion on which instrument would be easier to learn first? Dave


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 09:28 PM

Dave, maybe I am wrong in this but have you tried tellig her that you can only afford one at the moment and asking which would mean the most to her?

Jin


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 09:28 PM

Dave, maybe I am wrong in this but have you tried tellig her that you can only afford one at the moment and asking which would mean the most to her?

Jin


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: sophocleese
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 08:54 PM

"Does she want to be able to sing along with herself?" is another question you might ask. Violin's are tricky as self accompianment but guitars and keyboards are much easier.


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Terry Allan Hall
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 08:10 PM

From a strictly practical point of view:

The violin, should she choose to get serious about a musical career, will enable her to make VERY good money, no matter what music she chooses. Every good violinist I personally know (about 50) has more work offered than he/she can accept. The demand far exceeds the supply

Guitarists and pianists, on the other hand, face steep competition always...

Something to consider discussing with her.


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 07:09 PM

I bought her a recorder, but she showed no real interest. After some discussion I bought her a small keyboard and showed her how to play a couple of basic tunes. Including a very childish rendition of Beethovens 9th "ode to Joy" she enjoyed playing that, and occasionally continues to fool around with it. We asked a teacher to give lessons and were rudely informed, that we had bought the wrong kind of keyboard and that she could not teach our child on it. We have since moved to another community because of my work and my daughters illness. My daughter wants to learn Violin, guitar and keyboard, but I cannot afford more than one at this time, and must find a happy solution to this dilemma. I do not read music, or play an instrument myself, other than a little fooling around with guitar, Bosun's Call and piano years ago... So I am making a carefull choice based on you advice, Oh MUDCAT MUSIC GURU's please continue to enlighten me with your choices. I have Champagne taste with Draft Beer income. Yours, Aye. Dave

To the Tune "A Soldier and a Sailor Went Walking One Day"

And if she plays one instrument, may she also play ten, may she play a bloody orchestra, said the sailor, Amen!


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: sophocleese
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 05:59 PM

I agree with the idea of going with what she's drawn to at the moment. Rent the instrument for a month if you can and then if she loses interest you're not badly out of pocket as well. For some instruments it might be wise to find a smaller size to fit her hands.


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Bert
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 05:17 PM

I go with Jon on this one. Even if it's something less common like a tuba or a bassoon, or something really dreadful like an electric guitar;-) Far better she 'learn' what she wants than to 'not' learn the piano.


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: clare s
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 05:09 PM

Whilst agreeing with going with what she likes best, and understanding the piano arguement, I'd suggest the Violin in that it provides the ear training which is (supposedly) learned much more easily at an early age

Clare


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: JedMarum
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 05:01 PM

I agree with Michael. Piano seems to me the most graphic way of understanding how music works, and what she learns later on other instruments will be greatly enhanced.

If, on the other hand she already has a keen interest in one instrument, don't disuade her choice ...


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Michael K.
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 04:26 PM

Without question the Piano.

The fundamental instrument, on which everything else becomes a reference point to, especially in theory, chording, harmony and arranging...should she have ''the gift'' and want to pursue this for years to come.....and it is one of the easiest instruments to learn and get a GOOD sound out of, quickly and with minimal effort.

(But I am of course biased, as I started on piano at age 4...however it facilitated the learning of other instruments, enormously.)


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: Wesley S
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 04:22 PM

She will show the most improvment in the instrument she likes the best. That will be the biggest advantage reguardless of age. Make sure it's fun for her. Any chance you could find a teacher that was willing to teach more than one of them at a time? If children can learn more than one language at a time why not musical instruments?


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Subject: RE: Help: Suitable Instrument
From: kendall
Date: 11 Jan 00 - 04:19 PM

Right on Jon


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