Monday, November 12, 2018

How to Develop a Great FLUTE Embouchure

CatalĂ : Detall de l'embocadura d'una flauta tr...
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Learn how to develop a great flute embouchure and you are well on your way to being a great flutist.

Embouchure is a French term for the position of the lips and facial muscles used when producing a sound on a wind instrument.

Keep the following steps in mind...

1) The facial muscles and lips should be relaxed.

A tight embouchure with the corners of the lips pulled back and lips stretched produces strain and stress, a puny sound, and tires the player quickly.

Strained facial muscles inhibit the air from flowing freely out of the body. It's like putting your hand over a garden hose--the water is slowed down.

Try these exercises...
a) Pout as if you are unhappy or angry.
b) Imagine the corners of your mouth are reaching down to the floor. 
c) Roll your bottom lip out and try to hold a pencil with your bottom lip.

2) Keep the lower jaw relaxed as well.  Imagine this...
a) You are holding a golf ball in your mouth.
b) Your lower jaw is falling off your face onto the floor.
c) Try to yawn with your lips closed.

3) Concentrate the strength and power in your abdominal area. 

That's where the airstream originates.  You need a fast airstream pushed from the abdominal muscle up through your lungs and out the mouth. If your lips are strained, this gets in the way of that rushing air coming out and your tone is not nearly as vibrant as it could be.

Keep these important elements in mind and you will develop a great flute embouchure.



Saturday, November 10, 2018

How To Choose An ELECTRIC GUITAR

PRS Standard 22 Platinum Guitar
PRS Standard 22 Platinum Guitar (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
For a music aficionado, the electric guitar is the instrument that offers the greatest thrill. Many classes offering courses in guitar playing have sprung up. Hence purchasing the right electric guitar will help you to enjoy your learning experience. Here are some easy to understand tips that will enable you to make a correct decision in purchasing your electric guitar.

Are all the guitars the same?

No. There are many types of electric guitars available in the market. The right guitar depends on the sound that you are interested in. While some guitars can easily switch between jazz, blues and rock without any perceptible difference, the others cater to only one type of sound. Choosing the sound that you want will simplify your purchase decision. Besides, the sound you also need to take into account the location of the neck on the guitar. The two most common types of positions are the "set-neck" and the "bolt-on" necks. The set-neck allows you to keep on playing longer than bolt-on. The meeting point of the neck and guitar is tighter to allow the sound to move freely between the two.

The only disadvantage of set-neck is that it is difficult to repair or replace once it is damaged. The bolt-on style is available with the cheaper versions of guitars. The design is simple, locking the neck in a slot of the guitar body. Musical experts consider that this type of neck style does not give good quality sound and cannot be played longer, but this is more due to the type of materials used. If you don’t mind spending money for a superior quality sound but not a durable electric guitar, go for a set-neck.

What are frets?

You can choose the electric guitar based on how wide and long the neck is. 21, 22 and 24 are the number of frets that you can get with the usual guitars. The guitars from Stratocasters have 21 frets. This gives you a shorter neck but opting for large frets will let you play more easily. Jackson guitars have higher frets. The number of frets you should choose will depend on the number of notes you want to play. A higher number lets you play more sounds.



Friday, November 9, 2018

ORGAN REGISTRATION: 9 Tips for Registering BACH - Prelude and Fugue in B Flat Major, BWV 560

Cesar Franck
Playing the Prelude and Fugue in B flat Major, BWV 560 with convincing registration will result in more authentic performance. Organists who practice this piece should know general rules for choosing which stops to use. With this piece, the registration for public performance should be different than for practicing alone. If you are searching for the best ways to register this prelude and fugue, read the following 9 tips.

1) Do not change the registration in the fugue. Although it is possible to add a reed stop in the two-part cycle, such as this, the length of the piece does not suggest the need to stop changes after the prelude. Since this prelude and fugue last only about 3 minutes, it is better to play with one registration throughout.

2) "Organo Pleno" registration. The traditional way of registering a prelude and fugue in the German Baroque style is to use "Organo Pleno" registration or a principal chorus. This concept means that you should build a pyramid of principal stops, starting with the principal 16' or 8' and building upwards (4', 2 2/3', 2 etc.)

3) Use mixtures both in the manuals and the pedals. Try out the mixture alone on the main manual and see if it is based on the 16' (starts at 5 1/3' level) or 8' (starts at 2 2/3' level or higher). If it is based on the 16', then use 16' stop in the manual together with it. Otherwise, playing with 16' is optional.

4) Add flutes if the mixtures are too harsh. Check your mixtures and see if you like their sound. In some Neobaroque-style organs, the mixtures are really high-pitched and sound harsh. In such case sometimes it is OK to omit the mixture and use higher principals and mutations instead (1 1/3' and 1').

5) Check if the principals are not too narrow. In many Neobaroque-style instruments, the principals are quite narrow in diameter. In such case, try to add 8' and 4' flutes for more rounded sound. However, under normal circumstances, principals and flutes should not mix in the Organ Pleno registration.

6) Couple the manuals if you want. If you have more than one manual which has a principal chorus as well, you can couple them both. This way your registration will be even more powerful.

7) Add pedal reeds for more spice. Use the powerful 16' and/or 8' reeds in the pedal division, such as Posaune and Trompete. If you decide to use only one reed stop, the first reed you should add is Posaune 16' and not Trompete 8'. This is because in Central Germany in the Baroque period, even relatively small organs very often had Posaune but not Trompete.


8) Check the balance between manuals and pedals. Once you choose the manual and pedal stops, try to listen to the overall sound ensemble. Since it is a polyphonic composition with highly independent parts, both manuals and pedals should be clearly audible but not too loud in comparison with each other.

9) Practice registration. It is best to practice using only the soft stops, such as 8' and 4' flutes with 16' in the pedals. This way your ears will not become tired and you can practice for a longer period of time.

Remember these tips when you practice or perform the Prelude and Fugue in B flat Major, BWV 560 in public. It is a good practice to listen to different recordings of this piece on historical organs and to compare the registrations in each. Since every organ is different, try to follow your taste and ears based on your idea of the "ideal Baroque sound" for this composition. This way your playing will become more authentic and you will use your organ more convincingly.

    By Vidas Pinkevicius
    By the way, do you want to learn my special powerful techniques which help me to master any piece of organ music up to 10 times faster? If so, download my FREE Organ Practice Guide.
    Or if you really want to learn to play any organ composition at sight fluently and without mistakes while working only 15 minutes a day, check out my systematic master course in Organ Sight-Reading.

    Article Source: EzineArticles


Thursday, November 8, 2018

History of UKULELE Music - You Can Get in on the Fun Too!

English: Martin Ukulele 1930 - Style 3K Martin...
Martin Ukulele 1930 - Style 3K 
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Instrumental ukulele music is on the verge of becoming just as popular as mainstream ukulele music is. People are finally starting to realize that the ukulele is capable of making very good music. This instrument has been around since 1879 and it is just now being realized how it can make such enjoyable quality music.

When the ukulele has first invented the Hawaiians were not impressed with the beautiful music that the instrument was capable of making. It wasn't until around 1915 that the ukulele popularity came over to the mainland. It was after that the craze of the ukulele began which raised the popularity of the instrument. No matter what the history is behind it, the ukulele is now Hawaii's most popular musical instrument.

There was a great demand for ukuleles, which meant that production had to increase substantially. Of the original creators, by 1910, only one of them remained and he couldn't keep up with the demand. New competitors entered the field after time offering unique designs. Although there was a great deal of competition, there were still enough orders that each business was still being flooded.

The competition took a turn when the mainland guitar manufactures started making ukuleles around 1915. The Hawaiians where angry when it was learned the mainland manufactures started stamping "Made in Hawaii" on their Ukuleles. The Hawaiian ukulele makers created an original stamp that the legislature backed. Sometime in the 1920's, mainland makers started mass-producing the ukulele.

Today we are seeing surges of ukulele music popularity coming back. Hawaii is home to many musicians who have devoted their lives to playing the music of the ukulele. The ukulele is very light and also very portable which means that it makes it very easy to practice it.

Even though ukulele music has been around for over 130 years and it is still a very popular musical instrument choice. The music has a lot of history behind it but no matter what the history is, it is now a very popular instrument in world-wide. Even now the demand of ukuleles is growing in South America and other unexpected places.

The ukulele is the little brother of the guitar family and is usually seen with four nylon strings. The volume and tone of the instrument depend solely on the size that it is. They come in four different sizes and are enjoyed by countless individuals all over the world. The three smaller ukulele sizes are the soprano, concert, and tenor, and are tuned to the Key of C with the reentrant "my dog has fleas" tuning. The largest ukulele, the baritone is tuned to the Key of G like a guitar and the baritone ukulele is tuned exactly as the 4 smallest strings of a guitar. All guitar players can immediately play the baritone ukulele, although they may not know it.



If you are looking for a really fun instrument to learn, you do well to find a ukulele.

There is a world of fun you can have with a ukulele. You don't have to be a musician. You do not need any special musical talent. We know this is true because we have been around ukulele folks for over 20 years now. We have repaired ukuleles, hunted ukulele parts, made banjo ukuleles for several years. And now we try to seek out ukulele items that are quality and worth their cost. And certainly, we will help you if we can.

Keep Strumming... Keep Smiling...




Tuesday, November 6, 2018

BOB MARLEY Quotes - A Man With Something to Say

One Love: The Very Best of Bob Marley & The Wa...
One Love: The Very Best of Bob Marley & The Wailers (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Few musicians are as well known in the field or ska or reggae music as Jamaican singer-songwriter, musician and Rastafarian Bob Marley. In addition to his unique and powerful musical style which is still popular nearly 30 years after his death, Bob Marley quotes taken from his music and from his comments resonate with many people who have experienced aspects of his living. Like many other famous people who are quoted on viewpoints they may hold, Bob Marley quotes run the gamut of emotions and philosophy from joy to pain to philosophy.

Favorite Bob Marley quotes will probably vary depending upon the life experiences of the person who listens to them. Many of his quotes have to do with music, which is to be expected, but many are quotations about life in general expressed in his music. He states "Who are you to judge the life I live? I know I'm not perfect and I don't live to be. But, before you start pointing fingers, make sure your hands are clean."

Finding quotes about the subject of music is not difficult. Often, even the most devoted scientists and philosophers of great note recognized the importance of music in our lives. Music quotes are simply a recognition of its power and strength to impact lives and to change the life. You would expect music quotes from one of the music masters such as Johann Sebastian Bach, but a quotation on the subject of music coming from the likes of Albert Einstein has even more impact because it is so unexpected. Einstein stated "If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music... I get most joy in life out of music."

Another popular source of quotes about today's life and culture comes from the television show "Sex and the City". Sex City quotes are popular both as humor and as commentaries on the culture and social mores of today. The writers of the program began by writing about women they knew and made the show work because it was portraying real women living and working in the city. Sex City quotes have a way of describing this lifestyle in an honest and pithy way.

The viewpoints of all these people are reflected in the quotes they leave for posterity, and yet the quotes we remember and use over and over are the ones that are most like our own viewpoints. To be able to point at a quote from a famous person such as Bob Marley and realize that this famous person has expressed MY viewpoint on the specific subject tends to validate my own viewpoint to myself and to those around me. Even if their viewpoint as expressed in their quotes is different than what is currently held by oneself, it may be the avenue to a change in viewpoint, or at least a more reasoned foundation for the existing philosophy.