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Elementary Training for Musicians (2nd Edition) Paperback – October 1, 1984
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I'm nowhere near god-like status, and not quite a professional level musician (though I imagine that's not far off if I keep working, which I will), but then - I'm only on page 14.
One caveat, with this, as with all music books, it helps tremendously to have a teacher to point out your mistakes & do the exercises with you. My music teacher keeps telling me that a lot of teachers don't do this method because *they* have to work too with this book. They can't just sit back & watch you read the notes, nor can they give you hour-long dissertations on whatever theory they think is relevant. They have to listen, work, and there are dictations that are meant to be done with this book as well where your teacher sings or plays or taps a part & you write it down or repeat it.
I work hard every week with this book, and so does my music teacher. If I master one exercise in that time great, if I breeze though 5 (yeah right!) fine - I know I'm getting the skills I need, and Hindenmith doesn't skimp, so I know I'm getting *all* the skills I need.
The book is broken down (if I remember correctly) into 3 repeated parts - action, time and action-in-time. Or, pitch, rhythm, and pitch with rhythm. A fourth part is the dictations.
The exercises are also inherently musical, not mindless. My teacher is constantly pointing out "that's an important interval for you to know - see how he's making you sing it?Read more ›
That being said, it's definitely written without self-teaching in mind. From Hindemith's mindset, and that of many pedagogues both living and deceased, the idea of teaching oneself musicianship is about as nuts as teaching oneself surgery or carpentry. Even if it were possible, the same results could be achieved with less time and effort through proper instruction, which Hindemith sought to facilitate with this text. So if you're looking for a self-teaching text, look elsewhere - you are outside the scope of this book.
My only concern about this book, and this could be simply the edition I have, is that it's in desperate need of a facelift. Taking advantage of computer layout techniques could make the exercises easier to read and the pages easier to navigate. Other than that, it's a teacher's dream for working on the nuts and bolts of musicianship.
This book provides activities at a basic level. He is correct that if you can learn and do all of the activities in this book, you will inevitably get a solid grounding in basic theory. You will not only learn about rhythm, pitch, and notation, you will also learn to write down what you hear (an ability called dictation).
The material here is fairly easy for a well trained musician, but very difficult for a beginner, and probably impossible for a beginner without a good teacher. The main thing to note is that this is a very activity oriented approach and was put together by a fine musician who was an important composer, theorist, and teacher.
The nice thing is these exercises are well written and challenging but fun to learn--there are only a couple dull ones that I have found so far.
I am going through it on my own so you don't need a teacher unless you have no musical background. The dictation exercises I am skipping as I get plenty of ear training practice through other musical activities like singing in a chorus, transcribing music from recordings, improvisation, and music composition.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It may seem a bit too serious, but Hindemith is the real deal, this is German engineering applied to music education.Published 4 months ago by James Paul Mahon
This book is absolutely wonderful. Challenging. Hard to do. Worth every second of practice you can devote to it.Published 6 months ago by Dave
Hindemith is the man when it comes to music. I love the first chapter where he does that simple rhythmic explanation. Read morePublished 7 months ago by jk123
What is this, a joke? Speaking of the kindle version, which is junk. Chunks of pages out of order. Completely trashed.Published 7 months ago by Russael
more than i can use right now but hope to get more into it later after intermediate studyPublished 9 months ago by faker on the learning curve
Classic and I am delighted to have it a part of my music libraryPublished 15 months ago by Randy M. Rosenberg