Category Archives: popular music

My weekly breather in El Cerrito: Teaching munchkins in the East Bay (Piano lessons in progress–Videos)

I always look forward to my weekly getaway to El Cerrito because I can take wholesome deep breaths without choking on toxic Central Valley air. Besides, I also get to teach a few delightful munchkins and adults. While the visit … Continue reading

Posted in "Fur Elise" by Beethoven, Mary Poppins music, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano instruction, piano instructor, piano lesson, piano lessons, piano pedagogy, piano playing and phrasing, piano playing and relaxation, piano practicing, Piano Street, piano student, piano students as composers, piano studio, piano teacher, piano teaching, piano teaching repertoire, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, popular music, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, slow mindful practicing, slow piano practicing, Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, Teach Street | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Are Adult Piano Students Stigmatized?

Here are riveting quotes from two adult students: The Italics are my emphasis. 1) “I feel like I’m in the adult student ghetto, where much latitude is given and few results are expected. We’re all supposed to be doing it … Continue reading

Posted in "Just Being At the Piano", adult piano students, adult piano students say the darndest things, athletic coaching, athletic training, authorsden, blog, blogger, blogging, California, classical music, classissima, classissima.com, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, El Cerrito piano studio, Fresno California, Fresno Famous, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano lessons, piano pedagogy, piano practicing, piano society, Piano Street, piano student, piano teacher, piano technique, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, playing piano, popular music, publishers marketplace, publishersmarketplace.com, satire, scales, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, teaching piano scales, teaching scales, technique, Theory, word press, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Letting my hair down with a snatch of “Let It Be!” (VIDEO)

The piano room was a mess yesterday with music strewn about. Two ’60-’70’s era Beatles albums were excavated from a pile of sheet music, hard bound theory texts, and Urtext editions of Beethoven’s sonatas. Foraging a big carton of stuff … Continue reading

Posted in 100 years, 6 degrees of separation, 77 Sunset Strip, adult piano students, Amsterdam Avenue and 74th Street, arpeggios, athletic coaching, athletic training, authorsden, Bach Inventions, Baroque music, Baroque trills, Beatles albums, Beethoven, blog, blogger, blogging, boxing, boxing lessons, California, Caroline Scheer, casio privia 110, cdbaby, Classical era, classical music, Classical period sonata, classissima, classissima.com, Creative Fresno, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, El Cerrito piano studio, Facebook, Facebook friend, five finger positions, five finger warm-ups, Five for Fighting, Forever and Always, Fresno, Fresno Famous, fresno filmmakers alliance, Gospel Music, Guitar Center, humor, keyboard technique, Major and minor scales, memoir, mind body connection, MTAC, music, music and heart, Music Teachers Asssociation of California, piano, piano addict, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano scales, piano society, Piano Street, piano student, piano teacher, piano teaching repertoire, piano tuning, piano warm-ups, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, playing piano, popular music, publishers marketplace, publishersmarketplace.com, Ralph Cato, satire, scale fingerings, scales, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, sparring partner, Steinway and Sons, Steinway M grand piano, Steinway piano, Steinway studio upright, talkclassical.com, Taylor Swift, Teach Street, teaching piano scales, teaching piano to teenagers, teaching scales, technique, teenagers, The Beatles, Uncategorized, video performances, whole body music listening, word press, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Music Comes from the Heart

Musical expression arises from the deepest part of ourselves so as we relax into the here and now, focused on the flow and shape of phrases, our arms, wrists and fingers work together as an ensemble to produce an artful … Continue reading

Posted in "Just Being At the Piano", 20th Century music, Amazon, arpeggios, athletic coaching, athletic training, California, cd baby, cdbaby, classical music, counterpoint, Creative Fresno, dream piano, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, El Cerrito piano studio, Evelyn Glennie, Facebook, Fresno, Fresno California, gymnastics, humor, keyboard technique, Major and minor scales, memoir, Mildred Portney Chase, MTAC, music, music appreciation classes, music history, music teachers association of california, musicology, Musictogether.com, New York, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Northwest Bronx, Northwest Fresno, Oberlin Conservatory, New York City High School of Performing Arts, percussionist, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano lesson, piano maintenance, piano pedagogy, piano room, piano society, Piano Street, piano student, piano teacher, piano teaching repertoire, piano technique, piano warm-ups, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld.com, popular music, Romantic era music, Romantic music, scales, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, sports, Steinway M grand piano, Steinway piano, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, technique, trills, Twenty five Progressive pieces by Burgmuller, uk-piano-forums, video performances, whole body music listening, word press, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Rekindling Marble Hill memories, and a remarkable twist of fate

I was deeply moved to have discovered the Marble Hill Reunion site which inspired my own cherished memories of the projects in the Bronx where I romped during my childhood and early adolescence. My family moved from Featherbed Lane near … Continue reading

Posted in 6 degrees of separation, Album for the Young, Amtrak station, antique pianos, antiques, arpeggios, authorsden, Bronx dialect, classical music, Creative Fresno, dream piano, El Cerrito piano studio, Facebook, Facebook friend, Featherbed Lane, Fresno, Fresno California, Fresno Famous, humor, Major Deegan Highway, Marble Hill Projects, memoir, Mrs. Elston, music teachers association, music teachers associationo of California, my space, New York, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Northwest Bronx, Northwest Fresno, Oberlin Conservatory, New York City High School of Performing Arts, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano finding, piano lesson, piano pedagogy, piano room, piano society, Piano Street, piano student, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, popular music, public school 122, rats, roaches, Romantic era music, Romantic music, satire, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, Sohmer upright, sports, Steinway piano, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, Twenty five Progressive pieces by Burgmuller, used piano, used pianos, veterans, veterans housing, vets, WW II veterans | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Teaching Piano to Teenagers: Classical, Pop, Taylor Swift, Liz on Top of the World and more (Videos)

There’s always room for flexibility in choice of repertoire, especially when teaching teenagers. Alex, 18, had taken lessons during primary school, took a long break and returned to the piano as a senior in high school. His first request was … Continue reading

Posted in 100 years, Album for the Young, arpeggios, athletic coaching, athletic training, authorsden, Baroque music, Bay area, California, cdbaby, Circle of Fifths, Classical era, classical music, Classical period sonata, Classical sonatina, counterpoint, Creative Fresno, Dario Marianelli, dream piano, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, Faber Primer Piano Adventures, Facebook, Fig Garden Village, five finger positions, five finger warm-ups, Five for Fighting, Forever and Always, Fresno, Fresno California, Fresno Famous, Fresno Piano Store, gymnastics, humor, J.S. Bach, Jane Austen, JS Bach, Kabalevsky Op. 39 Children's pieces, keyboard technique, Latour, Liz on Top of the World, Major and minor scales, memoir, MTAC, music appreciation classes, music teachers association, music teachers association of california, music teachers associationo of California, Music Teachers Asssociation of California, musicology, Musictogether.com, my space, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Northwest Fresno, Oberlin Conservatory, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano finding, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano pedagogy, piano purchase, piano room, piano scales, piano society, Piano Street, piano student, piano teacher, piano teaching repertoire, piano technique, piano tutorial, piano warm-ups, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, ping pong, ping pong balls, popular music, Pride and Prejudice, scales, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, sonatina, Steinway and Sons, Steinway grand piano, Steinway M grand piano, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, teaching piano to teenagers, teenagers, tennis, Theory, uk-piano-forums, video performances, word press, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Teens, popular music then and now, Taylor Swift, throw in Five for Fighting “100 Years”

Today was by no means a first for me, a long-haired musician raised on Bach, Beethoven and Brahms teaching a teen some pop tunes by John Ondrasik and Taylor Swift while I sailed through the universe of “Liz on Top … Continue reading

Posted in 100 years, 6 degrees of separation, 77 Sunset Strip, arpeggios, authorsden, Bay area, Bill Haley and the Comets, Bob Dylan, Bronx, Bronx dialect, California, cd baby, cdbaby, Classical era, Creative Fresno, Dario Marianelli, dream piano, Edith Piaf, El Cerrito, El Cerrito California, El Cerrito piano studio, Elvis Presley, Facebook, Featherbed Lane, five finger positions, five finger warm-ups, Five for Fighting, Forever and Always, Fresno, Fresno California, Fresno Famous, gymnastics, humor, J.S. Bach, Jane Austen, Johnny Mathis, JS Bach, keyboard technique, Liz on Top of the World, Major and minor scales, memoir, music, music appreciation classes, music history, music teachers association of california, Music Teachers Asssociation of California, Music Together, my space, New York, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Northwest Bronx, Northwest Fresno, Oberlin Conservatory, New York City High School of Performing Arts, Old Fig Garden in Fresno, Pete Seeger, Peter Paul and Mary, pianist, piano, piano addict, piano instruction, piano lesson, piano room, piano sale, Piano Street, piano student, piano teacher, piano teaching repertoire, piano technique, piano warm-ups, Piano World, pianoaddict.com, Pianostreet.com, pianoworld, pianoworld.com, popular music, Pride and Prejudice, Romantic era music, satire, scales, Shirley Kirsten, Shirley Kirsten blog, Shirley Smith Kirsten, Sohmer upright, sports, Steinway and Sons, Steinway grand piano, Steinway M grand piano, talkclassical.com, Teach Street, teaching piano to teenagers, technique, tennis, The Beatles, Twenty five Progressive pieces by Burgmuller, used piano, used pianos, Van Cliburn, Well Tempered Clavier, word press, wordpress.com, you tube, you tube video | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment