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3.6 out of 5 stars
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Showing 1-7 of 7 reviews(4 star)show all reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on December 31, 2003
I bought the book the other day and breezed right thru it. It's great in that you can skip around the book to the sections you NEED to read (or refresh yourself on). I keep it handy because I often refer to it. It is thorough in explaining various aspects of reading music, playing, etc. The humor interspersed makes it enjoyable to read rather than boring but the humor doesn't detract from the content and lesson. Glad I bought it and you should buy it, too, if you want to teach yourself how to play!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on September 29, 2001
I bought this book 2 months ago and started practicing an hour from it daily. The results were shockingly great and speedy. After a week of practice I would go back and shoot through the preliminary songs as if they were child's play!
My one problem with it is the way you're presented with practice material. It's never specified how long or often you should practice something before moving on. Just be patient and ONLY MOVE ON ONCE YOU'RE COMFORTABLE WITH A PIECE. Do that and this minor problem won't affect you at all.
I really like the play along cd. It does help alot. Also, the humorous way in which you're presented with all of the material this book contains will have you learning great amounts of theory and technique without even realizing it. This book is great as a reference book as well.
So, although it's challenging (sight-reading in particular), you'll soon learn that with a little consistence and assiduity you'll be on your way to "tickling the ivories with the best of 'em"!
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on June 27, 2000
I was looking for an introductory book for adult piano student. Although I could do without the title "dummies," the cartoons, and the jokes, the meat of this book was the best of all the others on Amazon.
Most of the other books teach very little except simple popular ditties. This book actually had -- yes -- scales and other exercises for both the left and right hands, with fingering techniques simply applied, but fully explained.
And for those who want some tunes, there are (in addition to the standard ditties) actually some worthwhile classical adaptions, such as some of the best-known themes from the Bach cantatas.
I was quite impressed with how much basic and even intermediate material was included in the book, and explained with clarity and simplicity.
Since I read music already, I was able to skip many of the first chapters and get right into the practice and technique material, so I can't comment on how clear the music-reading chapters would be for a total beginner. However, I expect that if they are as good as the rest of the material, they should be fine for that purpose as well.
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on August 15, 1999
Contains a wealth of music theory for the beginner, and as such it's a valuable addition to the beginning student's resources. However, it's not a really good exercise book. The CD included with the book contains blurbs of the music examples in the book, but I don't know WHERE they got the performances, which are of uneven quality and are not particularly good for the listener trying to hear a good piano line.
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on April 27, 1999
I enjoyed this book. It's written in the breezy, irreverant style of the Dummies series, which can annoy or ease depending on the author; in this case ease. It filled in many of the holes in my musical education (I was taught by computer).
Still, I would say not to expect miracles. A book (or a computer) is no substitute for a qualified human instructor. It is only an aid, but a good one.
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on June 30, 1999
If you hate the title, I understand. I do too! But the bottom line is that it really is a good intro book for an adult.
If you really don't have a clue why flats and sharps have two different names, but are really the same key, this book explains all.
In reality, I am using the book to teach my children. I read, get the concept then translate.
Worth the money.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 3, 1998
I have some basic knowledge on Indian classical music. I wanted to learn Electronic Keyboard and hence chose the dummies book. The first few pages were great to learn the basics. Once I crossed chapter 4 I was lost. The important thing I wanted to know was the fingerings. There is no mentioning of extending the fingerings from the basic position. I would rather prefer a lesson & practice approach. When it comes to Music (instruments), the approach must be "build one block over other". Precisely a strong foundation. The Author must emphasise more on practice sessions and most importantly the recommended No. of hours for an average beginner to get hold of the piece. I am sure the book will be really useful if I know the basics of (piano) music or if I'm a student in a music school. Last word, very nice to learn basics, misses important aspect....Fingerings....
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