Playing the Piano is such a blessing during COVID lockdown

5 steps to begin your soulful piano playing journey

Being able to play the piano has been such a blessing during COVID lockdown.

I can play the piano at home.
It requires no one else to be able to play.
I can play whatever music I like, when I like – well that is also about who I live with – and fortunately I have the house set up and located where I can play anything anytime.
I can express how I am feeling through the piano.
At those times when I am experiencing painful emotions, I can go to the piano and play myself through them.
And, like you I am sure, I am feeling a lot of frustration and sometimes anger, and definitely uncertainty. 
Let’s face it, we are in demanding times.

So I am, and I suggest we all deliberately build our Musical Treasure Chest of music to play for all those feelings, whether it’s us playing it ourselves or listening to a recording.
Do you listen to Spotify? I love it!!
I have a number of my Spotify Playlists available for you to listen to.
The address within Spotify is @purpletempo.

Also, ta da ta da!
Up until this week, I don’t recall EVER taking a selfie.
Yes I’ve been a tad shy in that department.
Esther de Charon is lovingly encouraging me to be much more visible.
So here I go.
Pamela Jordan in her musical atelier
Hope you find my offerings helpful and enriching, and that you are managing to stay well and happy,

Lots of love,
Pamela

ps if you would love a free Virtual Cuppa Chat, you can easily book in HERE

 

 

 

Make Friends With Your Piano

So how do you do that?

Making friends with your piano is very similar to making friends with people.
Do you like your piano and the sound that it makes when you play it?
Are you practising and playing and being social with your piano or are you happy to be solitary?

As you go along with learning to play the piano and then as your skill grows – playing the piano, being a pianist, then naturally you are not going to like everything about it. If you do it would be unusual. Like any worthwhile endeavour, it is a marathon, and there will be things you love through to things you don’t like or maybe even hate.

In order to achieve the prize or the goal or have the cherished thing that you want,  those things that you dislike or find tedious have to be managed. Talk with your teacher about it is often a good idea, or find yourself a teacher who is supportive.

How do you manage that yourself?
Identify the things you love, or like, or that are boring or tedious, or you may hate.
Simply naming them means you are well on your way to changing it.
The tedious part would most likely be some part of practise.
There are tips and tricks for how to go about practise so that it can become a nourishing nurturing part of your day.

The way that a piano relates back to you, is in the sound that is produced when you play it. If you aren’t liking the sound, then you need to do something about it. Do you have an electric piano and you would love the subtlety and resonance of an acoustic ‘real’ piano? Is it that the piano is overdue for being tuned? If so, give your local piano tuner a call. You’ll be able to Google Piano Tuner in your local area. Maybe your piano is in tune, and it doesn’t need to be refurbished, it’s a healthy piano, but maybe you just don’t like the sound. Is it that you need to change your piano? There are plenty of children learning the piano, and plenty of parents looking for a free or low-cost piano, so there are plenty of people who would be grateful for your piano. You could change your piano to something you do love. This is important for keeping you motivated.

Pianos need to be tuned regularly. An old piano might need to be refurbished. Generally, a piano lasts for 120yrs and undergoes several refurbishments during it’s lifetime. This depends very much on where it lives and how it is treated and how often it is played and so on. Don’t place your piano near a heater or fireplace. Place it preferably on an inside wall. Don’t let animals climb over it. Don’t place a vase of flowers on it. If you have a party, keep the piano covered and don’t have drinks near it, even on a coaster. Treat your instrument with respect and it will respect you back.

Is it in a location that is healthy? Is it in a room where you can open a window? Is it in the middle of the lounge room where it competes with the TV for attention and air time? Is it in a place that you love to be in, and it feels good in there? I have found Feng Shui (the ancient Chinese art of placement) to be highly beneficial.  There will be a practitioner in your area who can help with this.  If not, I know Carolyn McCallum is an excellent experienced practitioner. She will be able to guide you.  www.fengshuiharmony.com.au.

Playing the piano by yourself is inherently solitary. Many people enjoy it for this reason.  It does have the potential for being highly social though. You can play a piano duet with another person.
You might aim at playing to the best of your ability and work at it together over time.
You might enjoy being much less serious about it and be happy to stumble through the music together and laugh your way to the end of the music.
You might enjoy playing with other solo instruments to make great music. There are so many to choose from!
This means you could be an accompanist to a singer or flute player or violinist or cellist or any number of solo instruments. Playing the music together becomes a kind of conversion without words. This can be a very fun, social, enjoyable way to enjoy a friendship with other musicians. There will be an amateur musical group near you that you can join in with. There are also online options now like www.acmp.net.

There are also unlimited options for playing with multiples of musicians.
You can play the piano with two others, three others, four others and so on.  You can play keyboards with a band. You can play the piano with an orchestra. If you look online you will find there are a number of apps to explore where you can join other musicians, anywhere in the world, to play together. www.acmp.net is specifically for playing with other musicians. It’s a wonderful group of amateur musicians.

Lots of love,
Pamela

Seasons of Piano Lessons

The Camellias Will Be Here Soon

There was a different colour on the branch. Something different from the usual shades of green and brown.
A different shape too.
Oh, it’s a bud!
Oh?
In December?
Let’s think about that. When we arrived here in late March 2020, this camellia shrub was fully in bloom. Amassed with champagne pink flowers. Such a delight to see from my Atelier window and to walk past in and out of our cottage.
Now it’s January.
The camellias began to bud in December so there will gradually be more of them and they will all gradually grow into flowers that blossom sometime before March. aha!
An absolute delight to look forward to.

Since March (well before that too) I’ve been in hibernation.
As you know it’s been rather quiet at Purple Tempo.
I’ve been attending to personal family matters that frankly have required most of me.
I’m in the season of caring for elderly parents.
Fortunately, it is something that is shared with my siblings so my role ( after two years ) is now clearly defined and manageable.
It’s just that at times it is overwhelming emotionally.
My strong support team assist and guide me so I stay afloat.
Part of that team is my Bach Flower Essences. They are truly wonderful for bringing me back into balance.
And of course, my biggest support is my piano, my flute and my music.
When I play, especially piano, it aligns me emotionally and energetically and fills my heart.

Which season are you in as a Musician?

As a child, I recall experiencing the joy and wonder of exploring and improvising on the piano at age 10.
I spent many happy hours playing through whole albums of pop music in the long Christmas holidays.
I hadn’t been taught that – I simply explored what was there. Lots of sheet music for me to play.
There was so much to learn in playing through the albums cover to cover.
It was a big part of the spark to improvise. I took parts of the bass line (left hand) and made up the right hand.
Voila! I had a new song.
This is what artists do. They borrow parts of something good and build on it and make it their own. Not plagiarism, but pure Invention. And Reinvention.  And Reinvention.
In the Xmas holidays or any holiday, this is an ideal thing to do in the learning and exploring season of growth as a musician. Actually, it’s simply exploratory play and is good in any season!  (Reminder to self – this is a lot of fun).

What do you think the seasons of learning are for a Musician?

Now, in January 2021 I am ready to return to guiding growing musicians, in any season.
Piano lessons and flute lessons at Seaforth, Northern Beaches, Sydney ( or online) resume from Monday, February 8, 2021.
Email Pamela here