On Screen Piano Tutorial: Count On Me

Standard

The newly updated iOS 11 on iPad is a much wanted feature and I think many music educators can celebrate it.

Due to the chords topic for my KS3 students, I needed a good recording style for piano tutorial. This feature has helped a lot in doing so. I further recorded my voice when I put the video together on the iPad’s iMovie. It’s basic and limited in iMovie but it works.

Advertisements

In the face of little time: Teaching and learning BAG notes on the Recorder instrument

Standard

I’ve been teaching the recorder instrument for a couple of years now and every time I conduct the lessons, there’ always something new to learn.

Recently, I had a situation where I needed to prepare a short performance for our Malaysia Day celebration. It was really short notice and I was wondering how I could possibly get a group of students to sing a patriotic song. It was a little daunting too as I had only less than 5 days to do so.

After much thought, I decided that I would put my beginner recorder students on fast track. They would learn to play their first 3 notes on the recorder by accompanying a patriotic song.

As fast I possibly could, I created the following video in hopes of helping my students learn faster. I have to admit that I did not like the subtitle layout on iMovie. It’s quite frustrating because of the way it appears and I have no control of it.

I used my phone to record the video while the sound is recorded into the iPad GarageBand app. After much transferring of files, I created the iMovie project on the Mac with a split screen. I did not make the lyrics video and took it for somewhere else. Note that I credit the use of the video in the Youtube info box. The result is quite satisfying if not for the subtitle.

The name of the patriotic song is Keranamu Malaysia and it’s a very old but popular song back in year 2000 and it was frequently used until year 2006. Til today, it’s still a classic and it’s easy for beginners to follow along.

This is the score sheet that I use for my beginners: https://www.dropbox.com/s/mvxct82apev03gr/keranamu%20pdf%202.pdf?dl=0

 

A Musical Trip to Brunei

Standard

It’s been awhile since I was here but I took an opportunity to record something musical with an old friend of mine when I was on a trip to visit her in Brunei. It’s great to be able to play friends who can keep up with you.

A wonderful four-hand jazz piano piece, Over the Rainbow that was arranged by yours truly. I had arranged this piece a few years back to perform with a student for a Piano Duet Festival in Penang.

Since it’s been quite sometime that we did something fun, we had to do a fun and simple piece to remember by.

 

With more time, I hope to update on something interesting later on.

That’s all for now.

Making resolutions as I breathe and live 

Standard

It’s now post CNY holidays. My goblin fever is slowly simmering but hasn’t died down completely. I’m still bead over heels for gong yoo, wondering whether I will ever meet such a handsome and mature men. In my dreams maybe. Maybe my one, true God will grant that wish one day when I’m ready or will I be ever ready? 
Anyway, this goblin fever also struck a sudden return to my enthusiast days of being a k popper. I’m currently very hooked on Rain’s dedication song to his newlywedded wife, Kim tae hee. It’s called The Best Present. Very aptly named for the occasion and very very catchy for listeners. Though I still understand very little Korean, but music emotes feeling through sound. You can just feel the love and romance oozing out from the sound of the music. I love the song so much so I learned to play the bass guitar today. It took me this long to try this instrument. The song is in C, so it was pretty easy to catch on the noted on the fret. I love the fact that my first bass guitar cover has a wide range of notes to play with and I think I will get more creative as I play it more often. 

My bass playing  https://youtu.be/XTmow1KNDHY

The bass strings are way thicker than my cellos such that I sometimes use two fingers to press on one note. The tip of my middle finger feels rather raw now but I guess it will only help thicken my fingers faster for my cello playing. Another concern I had was confusing the open strings of cello and bass guitar. I realize it wasn’t too bad. It has only increased my understanding and appreciation of string instruments. Seems like the human brain is quite capable of many things. I will only know get to know myself more as I delve more into these new things.

 I have to admit that the reason we see so few female bassist is because the bass is really, really heavy! I couldn’t last more than 10 minutes in it by standing. Now I understand why quite many bassist do sit while playing. It does make your shoulder ache and since it was my first time, squeezing my right arm over the bass to play the notes was quite tiring after a while. Perhaps it’s a posture issue that I will have to resolve. Soon, I will know. I guess this could also be the reason why I don’t see many bassist with good posture? Perhaps I’m wrong but these are my observation and thoughts. 

While I was showering earlier, I realize I really have a lot of things I want to do. Hmmm…. Time will tell how much I am capable of accomplishing my ambitions. It’s still early in the year and I can’t stress how incapable I am of making resolutions but one thing is for sure, I’m making them as every second, minute, hour, days and months goes by as much as I do and still can breathe. 

Who said late bloomers won’t shine?

Kyrie Eleison Piano Cover/Chris Tomlin

Standard

I found some time to do this and I was playing with some of the equipment that I have at home. It can be tough doing a video with a tight budget but I make do with what I can.

The lighting has to be improved and the sound quality…… Let’s just say I know there’s a lot to work on. XD

Nonetheless, I hope you enjoy it and please support me at my Patreon page.

If you want the lead sheet I used, here it is.

Thanks for your time!

Piano sheet: History by One Direction

Standard

I have to admit I am not a big fan of One Direction. Totally disregard their music when they become a hit among all the tweens and teens that I teach. Then one fine day, I heard History on the radio and I wondered who on earth are the singers to these songs. Surprise, surprise, it is One Direction! Then I discovered their latest hits are actually quite pleasing to my ear.

I was really hooked to History ’cause it sounded very retro to me for some reason. (I am big fan of the 40s to 80s music, so apologies need to be made). Then I started to play the melody around on the piano and then, I just had to add some jazzy chords. I have not been following up very well on my Jazz education since university. However, I was able to write a Jazz piano duet some time last year to perform with a piano student from Penang. Maybe one day I will post that up.

In a way, this will be my latest jazzy cover of a pop song. Hope whoever comes across this will like it. Here’s also a video to have a quick impression.

To download the free pdf:history

history_0001

And here is also my recorded rendition of this cover: