Knowing your ABCs is not enough if you want to write poetry. In fact, knowing your ABCs is not enough if you just want to recite someone else’s poetry well. The same is true when it comes to reading and performing music.
Consider the letter M. The letter M is one of twenty-six arbitrary symbols in the English alphabet. By itself, M has no intrinsic meaning. The letter M contributes to meaning only when put into some larger context… as part of the word Music, for example.
Letters are combined into words, which are combined into phrases and sentences, and so on in an upward spiral of meaning.
Likewise, consider the note F#. F# is one of many arbitrary letters in the music alphabet; it has no intrinsic musical meaning. F# contributes to meaning only when put into some larger context… as part of the D Major Scale (D-E-F#-G-A-B-C#-D), for example.
Notes are combined into melodic and harmonic phrases and so on in an upward spiral of musical meaning.
Like the study of any language, the goal of studying music is an expanding sphere of comprehension (to understand), fluency (to speak), and literacy (to read & write). Be patient with yourself as you learn this unique (and untranslatable) language; you didn’t learn to speak English overnight either. In fact, you are still learning English and will continue to do so!
Piano-ology is infused with hundreds of opportunities to listen, speak, read, and write the language of music. Along the way you will discover dozens and dozens of insights and practical suggestions to build your comprehension, fluency, and literacy… rescuing you from the rut of merely “playing by number”.