The Playground

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New Years & New Resolutions

I think we all have fallen into the trap of setting new year’s resolutions that don’t last a week, especially when it comes to playing & practicing our instruments. I know I definitely have! I personally find it hard to follow through with my good…

Robert Relly

My Story with the Blues [Robert Relly]

Intro: Music of the last hundred years would sound completely different without the Blues. You may have a certain picture in your mind when you think of blues music, but you may not realise how diverse the genre actually is, and how it has seeped…

piano

You & Your Piano: Caring for Your Piano

For a machine, a piano can sometimes be almost like a living thing. It can seem to have behaviours that change with the seasons and the years and the places it lives. Like a family member, it can behave differently depending on the way it…

You & Your Piano: New or Second-Hand?

Previously we’ve talked about the choice between digital or acoustic pianos, and, if you go acoustic, what kind of piano you might choose. If you’ve come this far, you might be ready for the next question – new or second-hand? Those new beauties look shiny…

Acoustic Piano hammers

You & Your Instrument: Acoustic Pianos

In the first article in this series, we discussed the choice between digital and acoustic pianos. For those considering a digital piano, we included some advice, but as to the purchase of an acoustic piano, we decided that dark art needed its own post. Are…

Digital vs Acoustic

You & Your Piano: Digital or Acoustic

This is the first in a series of articles designed to help you choose and care for your piano. Here at Simply Music, we’re not too precious. When it comes to your choice of instrument, many teachers will insist on beginning on a good-quality acoustic…

Songwriting

A Study in Songwriting – Pt 6: Mark S. Meritt

Mark S. Meritt continues our series on songwriting, discussing some guiding principles and idea-generating approaches he uses. Legendary musical theatre composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim noted some fundamental principles that guide his work, the primary one being Content Dictates Form. He also said that his…

Simple

Simple Things Done Well – Pt2

Previously, I talked about the benefit of making the most of simple activities and valuing the journey as much as the goal. But how? As a Simply Music student, your teacher will be regularly on your case about keeping your Playlist alive. Of course, you…

eliette

A Study in Songwriting – Pt 5: Eliette Roslin

Our series of songwriting hints continues with Eliette Roslin, who has taken time out from her amazingly busy life to share the very personal story of her song “Believe”. Eliette sang before she could speak and music has always played an important role in her…

songwriting

A Study in Songwriting – Pt 4: Gordon Harvey

Songwriting doesn’t have to be done balancing pen, paper, guitar and coffee cup on your lap. In fact, most modern pop music is constructed on the computer from the get-go. Gordon Harvey outlines this process through the example of a song by his band Aquiline.…