Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Left to my own devices

My piano instructor has something going on this week, so I have another week all on my own to work on my piano playing. Yesterday I had one beer too many and couldn't really "practice" the piano, but with a whole other week to go before my next lesson, I didn't mind sacrificing one night, even if it is a night when I would normally be working very hard. It's not like I don't have a lot to work on. My instructor has asked that I be able to play any half-diminished, diminished, or augmented chord when it is just called out. He sensed I was having difficulty picking out chords when looking at a piece of music or playing a new song - and he is right, of course. It is probably my single biggest weakness. I had thought that as long as I played new tunes and played them with some proficiency, I would naturally get better at finding those esoteric chords in sensible arrangements and inversions, but my tendency to "stay safe" has made me unable to realize that sort of improvement. It makes sense then that my instructor just wants me to memorize the chords and work on putting them into songs once I have mastered them. Over the weekend, I started trying to play them, but again, I didn't work at it for very long. Since I don't have a lesson tonight, I'm going to try to create a lesson atmosphere and just work on those chords around the cycle of fifths. Should be challenging.

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