Modular Phonetic Rhythm, The Foundation and Workbook 1
Modular Phonetic Rhythm represents a significant advance in the teaching and application of rhythm.
Published: Sep 23, 2008 Updated: Nov 9, 2015
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Modular Phonetic Rhythm, The Foundation and Workbook 1
Publisher(s): Anderson Music Publications
Size: 8.5 x 11
Product Code: MPRS-FW1
Modular Phonetic Rhythm represents a significant advance in the teaching and application of rhythm. Eliminating many inefficient aspects of rhythm education, Modular Phonetic Rhythm streamlines the traditional educational approach, resulting in a reflexive reaction to rhythm.
Evolution in Music Education
The difficulty in the study of rhythm has always been its abstract nature - and its mathematical implications. Contrary to popular opinion, being good at math does not guarantee or even indicate the potential for musical proficiency. My observations over the years have supported the theory that musical tendencies are often the outgrowth of communication skills, such as language. Music engineers often show high aptitude in math but not necessarily musicians.
Rhythm has traditionally been taught as a function of math, particularly fractions. Though accurate, this approach has missed one of the most fundamental facts of rhythm. Rhythm is a language and is, as such, phonetic not mathematical. The average student exposed to the math orientation of rhythm has rarely absorbed the essence of rhythm and rarely even becomes proficient at reading rhythm. This often becomes a lifetime barrier to the developing musician.
There is a strong correlation between the ability to spell and strong fundamentals in phonics. Phonetic skills allow us to “sound out” words, even words that we’ve never seen before! We understand the principle of sound as it applies to phonetic combinations. The "sight" of the letter combination triggers a reflexive "sound"; reaction. If rhythm could be broken down into phonetic units, then rhythm would become an easily recognized aural language.
Using the word umbrella as a model, we count 8 letters but only 3 syllables. If we attempt to pronounce this word as 8 sounds u-m-b-r-e-l-l-a, the sound is one of a speech impediment. But if we pronounce it as 3 syllables, we get um-brel-la. This is considerably easier to pronounce as 3 sounds rather than 8 sounds. Modular Phonetic Rhythm approaches rhythm with this syllable orientation.
As in most large systems, the fundamentals are surprisingly limited but the combinations and applications are seemingly endless. Consider how many numbers we have, yet they are all based on the numbers 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 How many words are there in the English language and yet we only have 26 letters in our alphabet!
Modular Phonetic Rhythm is based on 26 basic rhythm syllables. These rhythm syllables vary from 1 note to 6 notes and from 1 beat to 4 beats. It is divided into 4 levels based on the subdivision of the beat. Ties and rests are approached as extensions or displacements respectively.
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There are a few things in music that students and players avoid. These are things like learning to read and knowing the notes of their own instrument. It is hard on guitar - but not so hard on ukulele. With the right guidance and plan of attack. IT IS EASY.
Reading can be thought of on many different levels. 1) the ability to slowly and painfully work out the written music. 2) the ability to hear the music by looking at the notation. 3) the ability to notate< your ideas in standard music notation. 4) the ability to read music as you read a book or an article. 5) the ability to communicate with other musicians in the written language of music. 6) the ability to learn songs that you have never heard.
Rhythm is in-separately linked to strums. Using the Modular Phonetic Rhythm System developed by Chuck Anderson this series of lessons starts with the core four strums all ukulele players use, need to lknow and throughly digs into the many variations possible.
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Just browsing over both books, they look fantastic! I'm a guitarist and uke player for over 25 years and was thinking about writing a ukulele book but you've already written what I think are the best, most comprehensive and thorough books I've ever seen for the instrument. I just might end up buying every book you've written and I'll be giving my highest recommendation for your books to my friends and students. Thank you so much for taking the time to write such great books! — Peter Rhee
Aloha, Curt, All I can say is WOW! What you have accomplished is simply incredible! All the best — Glen Hirabayashi, The Aloha Boys
Folks, if you haven't stopped by Curt's site, do so right now! ..And get his books, they are fantastic. This guy knows his stuff and is able to pass it along too. — Alan Johnson Proprietor, The 4th Peg
I can highly recommend Curt's Uke books — I have four of them and they are excellent. — fatveg — Portland
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