Viewing entries in
Resources

Comment

Should I Quit My Job? When is it Time to Change?

should i quit my job? On New Years Day at 1:30 AM, I was having a conversation with this guy who works at a Financial firm in NYC. He asked me if I am going to make lots of money in 2014.

I said that i would like to make a lot of money without having to compromise my passions, so that I can make money doing the things that I love.

"But that's almost impossible."

I told him about what I do and he was impressed. He said he wishes he could do the same with his passion: Golf.

He said he would love to be able to teach Golf and pursue that as a career but he is not as good as the pros and there is already too much competition to create a career out of it. On top of that he already has a job that takes up a majority of his time.

This isn't a new thing.

There are millions of people out there who are working at office jobs they dont like but receive a consistent salary.

This is one of the biggest dilemmas of our lives.

Do I prioritize making money or should I put my passion first? Why can't I do both?

If I prioritize money and get a job, I will end up working 40-70 hours a week working for someone else, without much time for myself, but I will be making a consistent salary.

If I prioritize my passion, I run the risk of not making much money but I am creating my own project and chasing after my passions.

The question comes in: When is the right time to change?

Of course, there are exceptions to all this... Some of us have found jobs that we enjoy immensely. This article is not for you. Go back to what you were doing...

Change is good. Change is important. The world around us is always change. WE are always changing, every second of our lives. Sometimes change happens very quickly. Other times it feels like it takes years for changes to occur. For the most part, I like to look at change as a very important key to my happiness. It keeps things exciting. It keeps me on my toes and interested. Without Change I belive life would be very boring.

-------------

The biggest obstacle in our way is the Fear of Uncertainty. Most of us don't like uncertainty. We want to have a set salary so we know how much we will be making by the end of the year. We want to have a routine to keep us in line. We take the same route to work so that we are not late.

What will happen to me if I quit?

This fear is so powerful that it can completely consume you to the point where you get to age 60 and ask yourself, "Where did all the time go?"

The only way for you to find out is to do it. Nike was right when they said, "Just do it." Sometimes the best way to learn something new is to throw yourself in and figure it out. And Yes, its a scary thought that you will have to sacrifice your salary in order to pursue what you love. Yes it will be hard and you will struggle, but things will work themselves out. I promise.

There is something really special about creating something from an idea in your mind. To plant a seed and to give it your all and watch it grow and care for it as it slowly emerges to form your beautiful creation... From your idea.

-------------

I once met a man on the street in Santa Cruz. He started playing piano at age 75 and by 83 recorded an entire album from scratch. All from his head. Songs that were just floating around in his mind and he went and grabbed them. He wanted it. He was willing to go through the struggle to make it happen.

This is for the person who feels that internal itch: that impulse to want to change their life.

I say, Go for it! You only live once and you are never too old to try something new.

I am certainly no expert (but then again who is an expert at Life?).

Here are a few words of advice from my personal experiences:

Evaluate your current situation. Look at the entire picture.

Everything good takes some degree of struggle in order to happen. Enjoy it! Live for the Challenge.

There is no prescription for Life. To each his/her own. Go and find yourself.

Think about these key question:

1. If you could be doing anything else with your life, What would you do?

2. What would be your ideal lifestyle?

3. Why?

4. What is in your way?

5. How will you achieve what you want?

6. Are you willing to take on the challenges and the struggle in order to make it happen?

7. Are there other people already living your dream lifestyle?

8. How are they making it happen?

Maybe you can put in a few hours after your day job towards making your passion project come alive. Maybe you can collaborate with someone in creating something great. Baby steps, baby steps, baby steps...

But Please! Do yourself the favor and make an effort to try.

I guarantee you, it will be gratifying.

Dont let yourself get to the point in your life where you regret that you never took action to go after your passions.

-------------

I will never forget this article: Top 5 Regrets of the Dying.

The first one is: I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

The second is: I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.

Most people realize it too late, but its something I've heard countless times.

I'll leave this one for the great Mark Twain.

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."

Mark Twain

-------------

I dont expect you all to agree with everything I say, What do you think?

Comment

Comment

Top 5 Regrets of the Dying

an old womans hands- Regrets of the dying

This Article is originally from Collective Evolution.

A palliative nurse recorded the most common regrets of the dying and put her findings into a book called ‘The Top Five Regrets of The Dying.’ It’s not surprising to see what made the list as they are all things that touch each of our lives as we struggle to pay attention to and make time for things that we truly love. Below is the list of each regret along with an excerpt from the book.  At the bottom is also a link to the book for anyone interested in checking it out.

One thing on regret before we get to the list. It’s important to remember that whatever stage we are at in life, there is no need for regret. The process of regret is one that provides nothing but suffering for ourselves as we begin to allow the past to dictate how we should feel now. Instead, we can use the past as a reference point to understand what adjustments we would like to make moving forward. The adjustments do not have to come out of pain, sorrow, regret or judgment, but simply a choice to do things in a different way. We are learning all the time, we can very quickly slow that learning process down by getting stuck in the idea of regret. When it comes to making changes, be at peace with the past and remember that each moment is a new choice.

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

“This was the most common regret of all. When people realise that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honoured even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made. Health brings a freedom very few realise, until they no longer have it.”

2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.

“This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women also spoke of this regret, but as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.”

3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.

“Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.”

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

“Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.”

5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

”This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content, when deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again.”

Source: The Top Five Regrets of the Dying: A Life Transformed by the Dearly Departing

Comment

Comment

5 FREE Web Sites to Learn Piano

  lonely piano in the middle of new york city

Learning Piano can be incredibly beneficial to your life in so many ways. When one studies music, you begin to open up doors to your creativity and a new side to yourself. (See: The Importance of Music in Your Life) Many scientific studies have proven that music has incredible effects on our mood and ability to learn.

Most importantly, Music can be learned at any age. I have met plenty of people who started learning an instrument at age 40 and found it to be a wonderful exploration of a whole new side of themselves. In fact, I started playing piano at age 18, unlike many of my friends who started at age 5.

I believe its good to meet with some instructors to get opinions on how to approach learning the piano. Talk to other musicians and find out ways to learn piano as efficiently as possible. If you have any questions: Contact me.

Here are some resources to get you started:

1. www.musictheory.net

This site has great ear trainers and tests to help you learn how to read any clef. Even more, it has tons of valuable information for anyone wanting to learn some Music Theory. Highly recommended for any level!

2. www.zebrakeys.com

ZebraKeys provides you with 50 beginner lessons to get you started with playing. Once you complete these, you can move on to the next step of learning your first songs.

3. www.free-online-piano-lessons.com

This site also has plenty of reading material for those who want to learn about Major and Minor scales, chords, Popular chord progressions, Learning how to read…

4. www.gmajormusictheory.org

A wonderful site with FREE workbooks and lessons to get you started on some Music theory. Very detailed and comprehensive lessons are available at this site. Created by an actual college music professor.

5. www.pianonanny.com

A site that has some basic lessons to get you started on music theory and improvising in Jazz music. Check it out!

I dont get paid to drive traffic to these sites. These recommendations are from my own experiences.

Comment

1 Comment

Teach yourself Anything You Want for FREE!

This post is based off my personal experiences in the last 3 years. If you feel like something else should be added to this, contact me, or write it in the comments section.

Learn things on your own for free. Free information free education Hack college

Its true, you can teach yourself just about ANYTHING you want. There are no gimmicks and you dont have to spend a dollar. All you need is some time and an openness to explore and try new things. Your motivation and desire to learn is what will fuel you through this.

Information + Self Experimentation = Teach yourself Anything

Throughout the entire process of building Piano Across America I have done almost EVERYTHING myself. Its mostly because i didn't have the money to pay people to do tasks for me, so I figured, why not just do it myself?

The equation above is a simple explanation of how I taught myself these skills:

  • Jazz Piano
  • Photography
  • Video Editing
  • Wordpress + HTML
  • Building groups and Management
  • Organization and Productivity
  • Videography
  • Piano Moving
  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Music Science
  • Producing Video
  • Making money on the internet
  • Making money on eBay

Information

It is everywhere, but how do you find it and how do you know what to trust?

The 2 Greatest sources of FREE information right now are books from the Library and the Internet.

These are MASSIVE gold mines of News, Information, knowledge, Advertising, theories, and even lies.

Its important for one to remain skeptical of ALL opinions until you can read multiple sources that confirm it. Too many people believe the first thing they hear at the coffee table, when the truth has already been distorted.

Right now, with a few clicks I can be listening to a lecture about Physics, learning volumes of Bach Inventions, watching a TED talk about sustainable energy, and learning about how to manage my daily activities.

The hardest part about finding information is SEARCH. Even Google can be convoluted with too many Ads and not enough meat to bite into.

Knowing how to search Google is key to finding the right information. (See: How to Use Google Search Effectively)

Its certainly not as easy as 1-2-3 because everyone works differently.

We all learn and retain information in different ways. But after spending almost 21 years of my life in school systems I can tell you for sure that I've learned just as much by simply living my life, reading books, and exploring new ideas on my own than sitting in a classroom and memorizing facts.

Experimentation

Experimentation (also known as Practicing the craft) is the key to your confidence and learning how to do something better.

You can gain heaps of information and memorize tons of facts, but if you have never applied any of that information to real life, then all of it is useless. Experience is key to learning anything.

For example, I couldn't speak Spanish after taking it in High School. But when I went to Dominican Republic for 2 weeks and started meeting people I was able to pick up words and phrases instantly.

By the 7th day of traveling I was able to have longer broken-spanish conversations with locals. I even made a few close friends who I still speak with via Skype.

As with anything, there are some drawbacks to doing everything yourself. When it comes to learning a skill like Piano, you may miss important details or become impatient and rush through critical lessons forcing you to go back and re-learn things. Which is why I recommend finding a Mentor.

Finding a Mentor

There have been many instances throughout the last 3 years where I hit a roadblock in my exploration of the Piano. I would reach a new level of understanding on approaching a piece of music, but somehow became stuck using the same ideas over and over again and not continuously challenging myself.

Sometimes I would keep persisting on my own until i found a way out. And other times I would need a guide to help me open those new doors.

I found that the times I met with a mentor/teacher were 100% valuable. He opened my mind to a new way of looking at the Piano and showed me the things I missed in my self exploration.

One thing that can help is creating a group of people who are learning the same subject. This would be a place where you can meet every week and discuss each others findings. It will only benefit each others minds in doing so.

ACTIVITY:

Make a list of 7 things you want to learn in 2013. Write them down and then start with some Google searches. Check out TED talks, StumbleUpon, and Twitter. Look up books on Amazon in the subject you want to learn. A lot of the times you can find so much free information, you wont have to buy anything.

1 Comment

3 Comments

10 Things I Learned from Super Storm Sandy

hurricane sandy super storm sandy I got to experience Super storm Sandy on Long Island at my parents home and in NYC during the aftermath. It was certainly an incredible experience being without power in lower Manhattan. It was as if there were 2 separate cities. The uptown part of Manhattan was bustling and very busy while lower Manhattan was practically empty and after 8 PM became completely pitch black and empty.

What was really appalling was the line of Taxi Cabs that I saw waiting for gas on 11th Avenue at 11:30 PM, 3 days after the hurricane. And for weeks after there were lines at all Gas Stations. Some had even run out of gas. Prices reached around $5/gallon and even more.

I ended up playing piano in Union Square, 2 days after the Super Storm hit us and it was definitely something to remember. Below are 10 things that I learned from experiencing Super Storm Sandy in New York.

1. The Northeast is very much at risk of Hurricanes and Natural disasters. I never thought this was true until Hurricane Sandy hit us. In the last 3 years we have had 3 major storms tear through the Northeast United States. This is only just the beginning. Something like Sandy could hit us again and it could be worse next time.

2. Always have an Emergency Plan. It is essential no matter where you live to be prepared for any type of emergency and to have multiple options. When the emergency comes, it comes very quick, leaving you with little time to get your life together. Plan Safety routes, food options, Gasoline, Transportation, gathering of essential items.

3. Arrange a safe house or a friends home within 50 miles of your home in case you have to evacuate and stay somewhere else for a few days. Also make sure that safe house has plenty of food and supplies.

See: Super storm Sandy: Volunteering in Far Rockaway

4. Watching people wait on 5 hour lines for gasoline made me realize how important it is to learn how to be independent of material goods. This is much easier said than done, but if it is possible, learn ways to become independent of gasoline companies and supermarkets. If you can find a way to do that, you have battled half the mess. Cell phones are another big one that most people cant live without. One way to be independent is to plant your own garden or grow some vegetables at home. It takes minimal time to set up and can be very rewarding.

5. Traveling and living out of my van has prepared me more for events like this. I call it un-spoiling the self. If you have never tried to survive with very few material goods and money you may be missing some important lessons everyone needs to learn. Learning to live a life of simplicity is incredibly freeing. When you have a basement filled with objects and possessions, you are tied down and your object end up owning you. What if everything you knew disappeared tomorrow? Would you be prepared?

“Traveling is a brutality. It forces you to trust strangers and to lose sight of all that familiar comfort of home and friends. You are constantly off balance. Nothing is yours except the essential things – air, sleep, dreams, the sea, the sky – all things tending towards the eternal or what we imagine of it.” — Cesare Pavese

6. Its better to be over-prepared than under prepared. My family wasn't as prepared as we should have been for this mess. We were out of power for a week and without a fridge we were dependent on a cooler with only a small bag of ice. Make a list of essentials that you would need for another hurricane and keep it on the side for any kind of emergency possible. Be prepared for the worst. Hope for the best.

7. The ability to leave everything behind and start anew is a FREEDOM in itself. If you have too many responsibilities in the city that has recently been destroyed, you will be trapped. This is another idea that is all too difficult to achieve, especially when you have an important position at a company.

8. Never panic. There is no room for it and worrying about things only gets in your way. Instead, focus directly on the solutions and options on getting you out of the problem. Bickering and Argument only brings you back a few steps.  I believe that with a positive mind and focus on solutions, you can get yourself out of problems do occur but things usually end up working out.

John Lennon - "There are no problems, only solutions."

9. We're all in this together. Sandy didnt just affect those who were poor but also those who are wealthy as well. She certainly did not take any exceptions. Walking through the churches and seeing the lines of people waiting for food and clothing made me realize that in the end, we are all in this together. Planet Earth is our home and its time that we respect her for the beauty that she is and the blessing that she gives to us.

 10. When you lose everything you own you begin to realize what truly matters in life. When i volunteered in Far Rockaway, New York I saw people who were literally removing everything from their home to be thrown away. These people were totally distraught from the destruction and the new reality they faced. But what can you do? Looking at the past wont get you very far. Its deeper than money and material things and it all boils down to the people in your life, how you treat them, and how you treat the world around you.

3 Comments

4 Comments

There is no such thing as Overnight Success

Its plain and simple. Dont let anyone tell you otherwise. There is no such thing as Overnight Success.

No one ever became really successful without Hard Work. It takes time to develop yourself, to develop your craft and your build your ideas towards success. Even those Pop Celebrities on TV who give the impression that they made it overnight, had to work incredibly hard to build their network and

Everyone knows the famous 10,000 hour rule from Malcolm Gladwell's book: The Outliers. And it makes total sense. No one is truly a genius without putting in years and years of hard work, experimentation, and discoveries.

Patience is a virtue. This is something one has to develop. Its sort of like building stamina when you work out. You have to build patience and stifle your desire to want results right away. Learn to enjoy the PROCESS of what you do. I mean if you cant find the patience, then maybe you dont really love doing what you're doing.

I cant stress enough the importance of experimentation and making small mistakes, especially in the beginning. You learn more from experience than sitting in a classroom of people. If you dont know what you're passion is, go out and try it, you have nothing to lose.

One of the most important things you have to tell yourself is that later on in life you will regret the things you didnt do than the things you did.

Lastly, I believe the most important thing you can do for yourself is RE-DEFINE what Success is. There are more than 7 billion people in the world and each person has his/her own version of what success is. Be careful of generic ideas and people that try to give you those answers. Seek out and find them for yourself.

4 Comments

1 Comment

Improvise Your Life: Finding Freedom Within Your Life

What does it mean to Improvise your Life?

I started using this phrase because of the feeling of complete freedom I got when I traveled across America without a plan or without any specific time limit. I just sort of went with the flow and made decisions impulsively and on the spot.

Improvise your life is also a little play on words. In many ways you can improve your life if you stop planning every moment and live within the moment, letting life guide you.

I remember a moment when I was driving through New Mexico and came across a bunch of bikers at a rest spot. They told me to take a different route going north. And without much research I went with it impulsively. That same road led me to discover an amazing strip of mesmerizing desert where I experienced the most amazing sense of solitude ever in my entire life. Read more about that amazing desert, here.

mesmerizing desert in new mexico

Of course its not always good to live impulsively and improvise. I believe its important to have a balance of routine and improvisation in life. I find that when I fall into some sort of routine pattern, I get restless and need some kind of jolting change to reinvigorate my life.

Since returning from my travels, I've become much more spiritual in my thinking. Its not something I can really explain logically, but there were many moments where I felt as if I was meant to meet certain people and have certain conversations. There were many moments I had while traveling that felt like it was meant to be. And I think it had alot to do with the fact that I was open to anything happening. Many people will justify it as God placing these things there and that is fine. Everyone has their own interpretation: It is all relative.

I find that sometimes in life it can be incredibly freeing not knowing or having some sort of explanation for everything. There is a sense of risk that is invigorating when you are open to letting life guide you and introduce new people, places, and things in your path.

Explore this idea on your own. Take some risks (within reason). Try something different today. Meet someone new. But be reasonable with yourself and take baby steps. You have nothing to lose .

Improvise Your Life.

What do you think of this?

1 Comment

Comment

Before Piano Across America, I Tried 17 Other Ideas...

Dotan negrin street pianist piano street(The Photo above was taken in 2010 on my first solo Road trip across America. I was working as an assistant and truck driver for a Photographer. This was the first inspiration for Piano Across America.)


After college (May 2008), I had so many ideas and things that I wanted to do in my life. Graduating with a BFA in Theater, I started Auditioning for Union and Non-union gigs in New York City.

I was working various jobs at the same time. I spread myself too thin and didn’t have the time to devote to everything. Eventually I had to make sacrifices and throw out ideas.

Here are some of the things I tried after college.

  • Start a Theater company- ‘08
  • Write my own Screenplay -‘08
  • Auditioned for acting jobs all over NYC - ‘08-‘09
  • Ebay business: selling shoes and clothes - ‘08-present
  • The Creative Forum: An artists group-‘08
  • Internship at Stuart Howard Casting- ‘09
  • A Web Show about the best places to visit in NYC- ‘09
  • Day Trading in stock market -‘09
  • Create a web series about a group of 4 20-somethings in NYC -‘09
  • Create a Youtube channel and start making funny videos every week -‘09
  • The Shakespeare Forum: An actors Shakespeare group-‘09
  • Create a one man show with the piano and multiple characters-‘09
  • Internship at Avalon Artists Group Agency -‘09
  • 4 small non-Union theater works -‘08-‘10
  • Assistant for Photographer as a truck driver -‘10
  • Started DJing again to get jobs at local bars/clubs -‘10
  • Created a Blog about Piano music ‘10
  • April 4, 2011- Piano Across America

If at first you dont succeed, try and try again until you do.

I wrote this to show the importance of self exploration and pushing yourself to discover your true passion. Dont settle for mediocrity.

Comment

Comment

There are So many More Important Things Than Music... Why Should One Study it?

Music why study it? This is a very important question for every musician to answer. As a musician, I think its important for one to be clear about why they are pursuing music in the first place and continue to explore that meaning throughout the rest of ones career.

There are so many more important things we need to focus on in the world like: Government, Medicine, Technology...

For me, Music is something that is a never-ending exploration. I have always been infatuated and moved by meaningful pieces of music and I have chosen to take a risk and pursue it as my main craft in life. But Why? I could become a business owner, an employee, a doctor...

Part of it has to do with the fact that I am able to make my own rules, inspire others, and make a decent living while enjoying life to the fullest. I dont think that life should be spent sitting at a desk or doing something I dont enjoy.

But it will only take you so far if you focus just on music for the sake of personal gain and satisfaction. Without a higher purpose, it only becomes a pursuit of ones ego.

One has to figure out his/her own way of using Music to change the world. And even further, its important to constantly redefine that meaning for yourself.

Why do you play music? Why do you think Music is Important?

Comment

Comment

Why You Must Attend Live Classical Music

vivaldi robert mcduffie phiip glass piano violin carnegie hall

A little while back, I got complimentary tickets to see Robert McDuffie and friends perform Vivaldi’s Four Seasons and Philip Glass’ Four Seasons at Carnegie Hall

There’s something really monumental and spiritual to see pieces of music that were written 300 years ago.

Vivaldi’s Four Seasons is one of the greatest Baroque pieces ever written and it has lasted this long for a reason. I never really took notice for it until I saw this performance.

Think about the music you listen to today and how easy it for an amateur musician to throw a few samples together to create a “masterpiece” and receive unbelievable recognition and money.

The music, art, and literature that was written 500 years ago (even 100 years ago) took hours and sometimes years of painstaking trial and error to create the true masterpiece that it is. These are the musicians we should really be celebrating.

The reason why you need to see Classical music live is because it’s one thing to hear it from a radio, but its even more spectacular to see musicians playing and speaking to each other through their instruments. What moved me so much was the way the music became a piece of theater and the musicians, the actors. You begin to understand the true meaning behind the music and you can feel what the music does to the beat of your heart. It’s heart-wrenching gripping drama!

philip glass carnegie hall robert mcduffie vivaldi 4 seasons

Comment

1 Comment

5 Best Web Sites for FREE Sheet Music

free sheet music free music classical rock pop free sheet So much music that has been written down in the last 1000 years.

Here are the 5 Greatest resources for finding FREE Sheet Music on the internet. Guaranteed!

(I dont support stealing of music. This is only for learning purposes.)

1. http://www.pianofiles.com/

A Sheet music sharing site. Email and request from other users!

2. http://pianolicious.blogspot.com/

Variety of recent Pop and Rock hits.

3. http://www.free-scores.com/

Variety of Beginner-Advanced Classical Sheets.

4. http://www.mutopiaproject.org/

Open source Classical music of a wide variety.

5. http://imslp.org/wiki

This is the GREATEST resource of Classical and some Jazz sheet music I have ever seen. It is incredible and a true work of art. It is a hub for learning and expanding your mind. There is more information here to last you 100 lifetimes.

1 Comment

Comment

"How You Practice and Prepare Defines Your Outcome"

practice makes perfect preparation I had a conversation with someone who was making the same mistake over and over again on the piano. And what I told her is that because she wasnt practicing correctly from the beginning she has ingrained in her mind that the wrong fingering is right.

In a way she has to erase what she learned and correct the mistake.

This brings up the point above: The way you practice and prepare defines your outcome. Which basically means that what you do in the beginning of a project is more important than the end result. If you dont pay attention to this, you are setting yourself up for mistakes which will in turn force you to go backward and relearn things. This applies to Everything and Anything. Not just in learning the piano.

The same applies for a group activity or business project. If you sit down with your group and flush out all the details by being very specific about the actions you will take to arrive at your desired results, you will avoid many of the arguments that would ensure if you hadnt made that preparation. Its important to discuss all the details before taking any action. Rushing will only get you to make something that isnt fully developed.

Preparation is everything.

One of my piano teachers once told me a story of how he was able to play a Bach piece incredibly fast because of how he practiced the same piece really slow for an entire week. His mind put the puzzles pieces together so that he could play it at any speed and any way he wanted. It shows you that if you rush and are impatient, you will only set yourself up for disaster.

“Practice means to perform, over and over again in the face of all obstacles, some act of vision, of faith, of desire. Practice is a means of inviting the perfection desired.”

Martha Graham

---------------------------------------

“It's not necessarily the amount of time you spend at practice that counts; it's what you put into the practice.”

Eric Lindros

Comment

25 Comments

The Importance of Music in Your Life

 

1. Music is the Key to Creativity.

Music fuels the mind and thus fuels our creativity. A Creative mind has the ability to make discoveries and create innovations. The greatest minds and thinkers like Albert Einstein, Mozart, and Frank Lloyd Wright all had something in common in that they were constantly exploring their imagination and creativity.

Listening to instrumental music challenges one to listen and tell a story about what one hears. In the same sense, playing a musical instrument gives you the ability to tell the story without words. Both require maximum right brain usage which not only exercises ones creativity but also ones intellect.

The strength of all the Arts including writing, painting, dance, and theater have the ability to create a similar effect.

2. Music makes Education more enjoyable.

Music can be very engaging in the classroom and is a great tool for memorization. I'm sure if more teachers used  song to teach the multiplication tables, kids would retain that information much quicker.

My spanish teacher in 10th grade used a song to teach us the past tense endings and even today, I havent forgotten the song. It's as if she imbedded it in my mind and now I will never forget it.

Besides the obvious, Music teaches us self discipline and time management skills that you cannot get anywhere else. When you study an instrument on a regular basis you work on concrete ideas and take small steps to achieve larger goals. This way of thinking organizes the wiring in your brain to start looking at Learning in a new light.

In raising children, Music education can be used to keep kids focused and keep them off the streets. Instead of running around and causing mischief, your child may be practicing piano or rehearsing music with friends.

Unfortunately, some forms of music can influence children in negative ways. It is well known that music has a power to influence the way we dress, think, speak, and live our lives. Profane and violent lyrics can have a negative influence on children.

Looking back at my High School days, I notice that I followed the herd when it came to listening to Hip-hop and doing things that were “cool” to look tough and be like the “Gangsta” image that was portrayed. When I got to college, I realized how much it pervaded my lifestyle and when I got into Jazz, my entire lifestyle began to change.

3. Music is the Language of the Universe.

You’ve heard this time and time again, but what does it mean exactly? Music is universal in that there are no boundaries to understanding music. Even animals like Birds, Dogs, and Whales can understand music to a certain degree.

It transcends all boundaries of communication because you can speak and tell stories to someone on the other side of the planet, even though you both don't speak the same language. But I believe its important for one to have an open mind in order to be in touch with that sense of understanding.

Many people immediately push away certain styles of music without having explored what it has to offer. Not all styles will appeal or resonate with a person, but one may discover a new part of ones self when you are open to all the possibilities.

4. Music has Spiritual Powers.

No one really knows where Music came from but there are many theories that suggest music predates the existence of Mankind. One of the most commonly known uses for music was religious and sacred tribal events. In Mayan civilization music was used in celebration of a victory at war and even at the burial of influential figures.

Some of the earliest recorded moments in Music took place in the Medieval times with choral pieces for church prayers. Much emphasis was placed in the organization and use of specific harmonies to create moods that would illicit a spiritual experience.

Even today, many people claim that music is the key to God and to a holy, more fulfilling life through the Church.

5. Music can Create a Mood and make you feel Emotion.

Music can whisk you away on an extended journey. Music can make time feel frozen. Music also has the power to suggest movement. All these things deal with the human senses.

I’m sure you can remember a moment where a song has made you particularly sad or very excited and happy. But how does organized tones create such an effect on our senses? No one really knows why or where it comes from but there are many studies that have been done to show that there is an agreement of which emotions pertain to certain scales, chords, and harmonies.

Read this amazing Wiki on Music and Emotion. Part of what inspired me to play piano when I was in college was that I became obsessed with how certain Jazz musicians were able to convey sadness and a state of melancholy through this one piece: Blue in Green. Think about what would driving be like without music or entering into a fancy restaurant?

6. Music Brings People Together.

What is amazing about music is that it is imbedded within all of us. Everyone can understand it and feel something if they open themselves up. Playing music with other musicians is an incredible feeling. Some people describe it as rowing down a river together.

There is a certain type of connection that comes when you make music in a group. The same is true for those who are listening to music in a group and interacting with music through Dance. This type of behavior is rooted in our history and our discoveries as human beings.

I’ve had many experiences where a random person would ask to play with me and within an instant we were having a dialogue via the piano or guitar. Its a level of playing around, communicating, and copying each other that creates the connection. Many of those moments have been some of the most rewarding experiences of my life.

25 Comments