Learning `Ukulele with Curt

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The Elements of a Successful Music Program

The areas of studying that would be considered part of a well rounded music program.

“You’re born with a spark... to search for the truth, for the best you can be. Practice. Discipline. Preparation. Try and try again. Then one day you‘re on top and they say you're an overnight success, ”a “natural.” You smile, you know.” - Anonymous

Here are a few of the elements that would be typically covered in a well rounded musical education.

Technique

Technique is the physical control and coordination needed to play an instrument or sing. It is involves position, efficiency of motion and effort, as well as exercises to develop specific physical skills.

I'm a firm believer that your never going to do anything musically that your fingers haven't done before.
Curt

Theory

Theory is the body of principles behind music. It includes scales and chord building, intervals, progressions, resolution, harmony, motion, power, color, chord substitution, keys and time signatures, rhythm, melody, etc.

Ear Training

Ear Training is the development of the active and passive capacity to relate to music aurally. It includes the ability to recognize and reproduce melodic and harmonic intervals, chords, chord progression, rhythm, melody and harmony.

From a core foundation of the principles of music you can build and derive additional information from that same foundation.

Basically, just understanding it all works.

Reading

Reading is the ability to reproduce music from written notation. It includes five phases; note recognition / alternate note locations, rhythm recognition, fingering considerations, communication terminology and interpretation.

Repertoire

Repertoire includes the songs within a musician's performance ability. These songs maybe memorized or read. They may be literal reproductions or creative interpretations.

Improvisation

Improvisation is the ability to spontaneous create melody over a predetermined chord progression. It involves scales, alternate fingerings, arpeggios, intervalic development, sequences, embellishments, superimposition, rhythm, motifs, development techniques and idiomatic considerations.

Musical Idioms

Musical Idioms is the study of music and the musical styles it involves well developed categories as; Rock, Blues, Country, Jazz, Bluegrass, Classical, Folk, Urban and Fusion. It also includes subdivisions and specializations.

Songwriting

Songwriting is the creation of original music based on a single melodic line with a chord progression. Lyrics may or may not be included.

Arranging

Arranging involves the choice of instruments, tempo, rhythmic feel, form, intros, endings, interludes, solos, harmonies, and instrumental accompaniment of a song.

Composition

Composition is the creation of original music based on multiple simultaneous and compatible melodies. It historically involves the classical forms but frequently includes more sophisticated levels of contemporary music.

Orchestration

Orchestration involves the choice of instruments for a composition. This choice is based on the ranges and colors of the instruments which best represent the mood and creative intent of the composer.

Interpretation

Interpretation involves the ability to perform a song or composition in a unique and personal way. These skills involve a interrelated set of disciplines which include, theory, ear training, technique, dynamics, embellishments, phrasing, and rhythmic flexibility.

All this leads to the development and nurturing of the artist within us all.

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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