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Ear training ( for Piano)

(12 Posts)
mom17 Sun 27-Dec-15 06:27:49

My son is good with sight reading but not good in ear training, solfege. His Piano teacher train him once in a while ( just before their internal exams) for aural. I have been thinking of trying something on our own and thinking if I give some songs to him (just voice) and ask him to listen and try to play on piano. I have few songs in my mind i.e Let it go, Beatles Imagine and Pan's Labyrinth lullaby to start with ? Looking for suggestion on same, any idea is highly appreciable.

Aftershock15 Sun 27-Dec-15 07:04:17

There is an ABRSM aural trainer app (well 2 I think, for lower & higher grades). This helps with the aural part of the exams. Maybe not what you need as you seem to want him to be able to play by ear?

mom17 Sun 27-Dec-15 07:17:28

Yes, I want him to develop that sense so that he can play any song on his own.

Mistigri Sun 27-Dec-15 11:48:21

Aural training and playing by ear are rather different skills, so it depends what you are aiming to achieve.

There are some good (free) aural training apps that focus on skills like identifying intervals.

I would say though that this is a very different skill set compared with playing by ear. My daughter plays by ear a lot and this seems to involve a rather wide range of skills of which probably the most important is a good understanding of keys and chords ie knowing which notes "go together" and therefore reducing the amount of trial and error involved in playing "by ear". I've seen her work out a piano accompaniment from a recording, and she identifies the chords first (but she is primarily a guitarist, a pianist might approach this differently).

mom17 Sun 27-Dec-15 12:01:10

Mistigri, My son is learning guitar also for past 6 months through TAB method. So, do u suggest teaching him all scales and their chord, inversion etc. Since his piano teacher will not teach him before those actually comes Method Books/Grade wise, Can you pls. suggest some good Youtube/other link where he can self-learn all those? Or do u recommend learning all these through some other teacher ?

ShellingPeasAgain Sun 27-Dec-15 17:44:40

Google circle of fifths which gives the relationships between all major and minor keys. Once you know scales you can then work out primary chords of I (built on first note of scale), IV (built on 4th note of scale) and V (built on 5th note of scale), add in vi (built on the 6th note) you have most pop songs. Take a look at the Four Chord song by Axis of Awesome and it will show how it works. Clocks by Coldplay and Someone Like You by Adele only use 4 chords.

As far as playing melodies by ear goes, sometimes it's not so much playing by ear but working it out slowly and then memorising. If you can do that, and add in the chords then you're away.

Ferguson Sun 27-Dec-15 20:51:20

I don't know if any of this might help (and I hope you understand it better than I do!):

www.key-notes.com/solfege.html

These are some other links that might provide some information:

www.8notes.com/piano/

sendmemusic.com/

Probably the definitive books on listening, playing by ear, and recognising what is going on in 'popular music' or jazz are in the Jamey Aebersold series:

sendmemusic.com/jazz/jamey-aebersold-play-alongs.html

I always claim it is useful to UNDERSTAND why the piano black notes are grouped in 'twos' and 'threes', and why there is NO black note between B & C, and E & F. If the student can HEAR the intervals in a scale, that may help towards being able to sing or play them. (I couldn't - which is why I played drums for forty years!)

A tune that illustrates the importance of 'backing chords' is "One Note Samba", though the melody actually has TWO main notes:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=sR9ffDx7-Fg

www.youtube.com/watch?v=TKIKozuoSOA

www.youtube.com/watch?v=167ymNP3Ldc

www.youtube.com/watch?v=wCAKuNBZr70

mom17 Mon 28-Dec-15 16:42:04

Just wanted to know if most of piano teacher incorporate solfege/aural in each session ? or they just get developed over the period when you play everyday ?

CeeBeeBee Mon 28-Dec-15 17:41:30

I would say that a good piano teacher should include aural training within lessons. By aural training, I don't just mean picking out a melody as the term is very broad. They should definitely be doing something with clapping rhythm and identifying time metre an repeating a melodic phrase from the start. As the learner progresses, they should be developing their musicianship which will include sight singing and i find solfege very useful in that. My piano teacher does not do this with me and I pretty much taught myself to sight sing in a major key using solfege.

1805 Sun 17-Jan-16 15:10:16

I don't teach aural skills in every lesson. But I don't like to leave it until the last minute before an exam either.

CeeBeeBee Mon 18-Jan-16 23:22:59

1805, do you get your students to clap rhythms, or ask questions about the music in general and talk about style of music that they are playing? All the little things are IMO aural training.

1805 Tue 19-Jan-16 17:40:44

oh yes, absolutely.
I was thinking more along the lines of cadences, time signatures, intervals etc. I also think its important to develop style early on, so I get my pupils to alter the style of the piece from say a lullaby into a march and discuss what they did differently.

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