Thursday, January 11, 2018

January update, New Completion Certificates, Piano savings, Piano pedal

    I continue with 'Eine Kleine Nachtmusik' from Unit 3 - Lesson 3.  It's  a fun challenge. I am walking through the song step by step not worrying about timing right now.

   I start every practice session with the C, G, and F scale as well as a Right Hand Hannon ascension.

   I am still getting better at 'Good Morning' and doing better yet on 'Ode to Joy'.  The point is, I am still learning songs.

   I have also been playing the melody Christian Dedication fairly well.  I really want to add some simple chords to the song.  I have a foal of learning at least 4 of the Kingdom melodies before I buy any more piano accessories.  I can tell the synthesizer sounds rather off sometimes and I am saving up but I am really learning on the keyboard I have just fine.  I played for Kathy(Wife) and she tripped me $5 for the cause.

   I did purchase a pedal for the piano from ebay.  I am not using the left yet, but I have been trying to add the right sustain pedal into my practice.

    Lisa my Teacher created new Certificates of Completion that will be awarded upon completing each Unit.  I am currently working on Year 1 - Unit 3

Here are the Units I have Completed:
Year 1 - Unit 2 Completion

Year 1 - Unit 1 Completion
Pre-Beginner Piano Lessons Completed

Note Reading Crash Course Unit Completed
Chords Unit Completed

Monday, December 18, 2017

The Forward Climb

    I just started 'Eine Kleine Nachtmusik' from Unit 3 - Lesson 3.  It's going to be a fun challenge. Not a lot of notes, It looks to be all about timing and rests and will take a lot of practice.

  I am still working on and getting better at 'Good Morning' and doing better yet on 'Ode to Joy'.  The point is, I am learning songs, and even though the lessons do get harder through the windshield going forward, they do not look so bad in the rear view mirror attained.

   So I keep going forward and learning knowing the mountains ahead are climbable. I may be slow, but I am not one to give up.

To play and what to play, that is the question.

To play and what to play, that is the question. 
 A comparison of three keyboards 

   By comparing and listening to music keyboards and digital pianos on Youtube I am forming opinions about their sounds as well as comparing features.  I want compare how much I am willing to spend to get the sound and features I like.  I have decided I want a Digital Piano rather than a Synthesized Keyboard for a more piano sound and feel.

    After expressing an interest in the Alesis Recital Keyboard($200) and Yamaha P45 Digital Piano($349) to Lisa.  She messaged me with a comparison.  I do not know if they used the most comparable voices available and they were in two different rooms, but of what heard I must admit I liked the deeper voice used on the Digital Yamaha P45 I listened to since even better.  I have listened to many other videos separately of each piano using headphones for the clearest sound.  Other than the cost, a Yamaha consistently wins for me but an Alesis Recital is definitely the more affordable price.

   I will need to stick to these for cost reasons, it is only a hobby after to keep my brain active after all.  I have the 61 key eMedia Keyboard that works fine for now.  I do not need more than 61 keys quite yet.

    I want to learn to really play Piano including a few Theocratic songs before I invest in a Digital Piano.  But I do like the better sound of Digital Pianos more than the synthesized sound on the keyboard I have.  It has to be bad when my untrained ear can hear the difference by comparing on Youtube.  I look forward to having a better keyb… er… Digital Piano in our living room.  Sales happen, and I have time as I learn.   So I must be patient….. and learn.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Our 61-key eMedia Keyboard

Our 61-key eMedia Keyboard
Our 61 key eMedia KB outside during the summer of 2017 - Can't do that with an upright
   After seeing our interest in learning to play, Jay L. brought us over a 61-key eMedia keyboard for us to practice on.  With some work we made a place for it to live inside our small place.
  Our 61 key KB with middle C4 in the middle, starts at the C2 octave and goes to the C6 octave above with a last C7 note thrown in.  At my skill level this covers all the music I will be playing for quite some time.  As for the quality of this inexpensive KB, my ears do not know the difference in sound quality yet anyway.

Will I ever get a KB longer than 61 keys?

   I have chosen not to spend money on a KB.   If I ever get to the point I need more than 61 keys to play the music I learn to or my ear comes attuned enough so that my KB starts sounding off to me, and also, we have the funding THEN we may reconsider it.  As this KB is valued new for sale at $199.00 an upgrade would cost over $200.  I would wish to consider semi-weighted keys which are not really weighted at all just simulated to at least have a certain feel of it.  Compromises.

How about an upright?

   The other option would be to find a decent used upright that often (at least for non-name brands) seem to really lose their value quickly but are still often in the hundreds.  Like many things I suppose, new players want a new piano that they know has no issues.  I can indeed understand that viewpoint and I would agree with it, if I we were flush with funding and played often enough to consider an upright.  For us though music is just a hobby to pass some time and to share with Friends.  This would also only be considered on the outside chance both Kathy and I started playing rather well.  An upright would take a bit more room than even the longer KB option.
         I have played Kathy’s Mother Marion’s Kohler & Campbell upright console piano 1982- 780000  41" Satin Walnut  before while visiting.

Our Keyboard Pictures
  We updated the set for our RAM Camera Mount for making progress videos on the KB .  The course teacher said she liked the setup and angle. (Left) Note: We since updated and mounted on the wall behind the keyboard, but the long horizontal plane made it very hard to keep tight.  So I attached the RAM mount to an extra music stand, see blog post

We appreciate our keyboard from deep inside it’s heart. We Thank Jay for adding it to our lives.

Monday, November 20, 2017


     I love the idea of learning and sharing new things and have many interests and find it limiting that I have had just to choose just a couple interests to explore at a time.

     I would love to program and have tried it but my brain would not allow.  I have to limit myself because my memory, and my learning ability is limited.  It is not fun to have interests in so many things in life only to be hindered by one's own brain, free time available throughout life, and man's currently limited life span as well as finances also hindering a person.

     Our brains were designed to be so special, only to be hindered by imperfection and a world system that does not allow us as individuals the time or resources to explore.  I have tried my hand at many hobby's but music has been a common thread.  I have tried KB before but did not keep at it. I tried flute as I love it too, but could not get the aperture, I like guitar but have a hard time with chords and strumming and it's hard to say to give up on an interest, but it is on the side for now anyway.

    For me and my abilities, I seem to be doing well with piano with the Piano Video Lessons course I have been using, and want to follow through and keep at it.   It is only a hobby for me, but it keeps my mind as active as it is able to do for me.  I have to do the best with the brain I was dealt with, and to learn the best I am able to do.  To do any less with what I HAVE been given would still be a loss.   I will keep trying to learn and continue to be encouraged to move on with piano at whatever pace I am able.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

New camera tripod mount

   I frankensteined a new camera tripod setup using RAM mount system parts attached to an extra music stand tripod for a better view for future camera sessions and recordings.  

    The interface RAM mount plate is screwed a 2x6 block with a hole on the bottom to fit the top of the music stand.  

   This will a be much more flexible for future camera sessions and recordings with my teacher to give her a better over the shoulder view of the student.  

   My previous three set-ups were to mount the RAM mount system 
   first to two heavy 2x8 layers sitting on the corner of table in the picture which was awkward to set up, 
    I then mounted it to the keyboard table which worked, but the camera moved as I played, 
   and then I mounted it to on the wall over the keyboard which didn't quite extend far enough from the wall to over the kb, and the long reach made it hard to keep tight enough to stay in place. 

   I feel this new setup will be the best setup yet.  I will have to use for my next video or lesson with the teacher to find out...

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

PVL Nov bonus Patreon reward

  This month Lisa the Teacher is offering a November Bonus for $10 Patrons! Video Mini-Lesson reward.

   It is a valuable bonus reward in that, normally a $50 dollar monthly Patron gets only a 5 minute recorded video assessment.

  I am set up for my check-up on Sunday Nov 12th at 11-11:15am
  I have been stuck on Unit 3 Lesson 1 - (Free Youtube lesson video) since August 4th trying to learn to play the both the notes at the same time I play the 'chords' to 'Good Morning'. I also practice "Ode to Joy' regularly' with 'Christian Dedication' as an ongoing goal song.

 Thumbnail of lesson-1-34-time-dotted-half-notes-33
Thumbnail of lesson-1-34-time-dotted-half-notes-33
Sunday Post Lesson Update: The live Mini-Lesson allowed Lisa to give me some immediate and important feedback to me on what I could do give my practice sessions more value to me. While having me keep practicing my current songs 'Ode To Joy' and 'Good Morning' she is also having me move onto the next lesson Unit 3:Lesson 2.