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Introduction

Before proceeding, please be sure you have first read the Introduction in Getting Started and, if necessary, viewed the introductory lessons.

The Big Picture:

In order to create in a meaningful way, you need to have an understanding of how music works. Your knowledge of three scales - the Ionian Mode (also called the Major Scale), the Aeolian Mode (also called the Natural Minor Scale) and the Mixolydian Mode - will serve as the basis of this understanding.

These three scales are important for three reasons. First, the harmonies (the triads and chords) found in most songs come from these three scales. Second, the melodies of most songs come from two of these scales (the Major Scale and Natural Minor Scale). And third, the Major Scale and Natural Minor Scale are used for the construction of entire songs.

The Organization of the 10 Essential Lessons:

Each lesson begins with a 'Learn and Understand' outline. This outline contains all the concepts that will be covered during the lesson. Put the video on pause and read the outline to familiarize yourself with what you'll learn. It's okay not to understand everything. I just want you to be oriented to what you'll learn

The lessons are organized into modules, and each module will begin with a screenshot containing a brief description of what you'll need to either 'Learn and Understand' or 'Do and Practice'. Put the video on pause to read the description then view the instruction.  

Be aware that the 'Learn and Understand' modules address important concepts and, for the most part, do not require you to use your keyboard. The 'Do and Practice' modules contain exercises that you will do with me during the lesson and then practice on your own after the lesson. For this reason, it's best to be at your keyboard when taking each lesson.

Each lesson ends with a series of documents. First, the 'Do and Practice' outline. This outline reviews everything we did together during the lesson and what you will need to practice. Next, the 'Learn and Understand' outline is shown again. Review and make sure you have a good understanding of the concepts that were presented during the lesson. Finally, I will include any document that I used during the lesson but in a bigger, easier-to-read version for you to use while you practice.

Important items to remember:​

  • The lessons are sequential and were designed to be followed in order.

  • An important part of practicing involves using your knowledge from each lesson to figure out things at your keyboard. (This mostly applies to Lessons 1 through 6.) This process of guided exploration is hugely important to your learning. An Answer Video follows each of these lessons to ensure that you're learning everything correctly.

  • Because the lessons are sequential, it's important to have a basic mastery of the material in each lesson before you move on to the next one. 

  • Learn at your own pace and remember that the arts isn't a competition. Rewind and rewatch if you need to. Email me if you have any questions or need clarification about lesson content.

  • Since there's no note reading, I will regularly remind you to be sure you're learning and practicing 3 ways: with your fingers, with your mind and with your ear. This is fundamental to your learning so please do your best to follow this suggestion.

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