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The Talent Code by Daniel Coyle

Quick (but informative!) summary/review of The Talent Code by Daniel Coyle.  Link to read the full book here.

Recent posts

Is My Baby Too Young for Baby Music Class?

This is a question that often gets asked or, more commonly, "My baby can't even walk yet!  What could he possibly get out of a music class?  Shouldn't we wait until he can do more things?"

The short answer: the earlier you start, the better!

The long answer:

While the nature of this question is completely understandable, it is flawed logic.  It would be like asking, "Well, shouldn't we wait before she can read more words before reading books?" or "Shouldn't we wait until he can take more steps before we can try walking?"

I make this point not to sound snarky.  As I said, it is completely understandable why parents should ask this question.  You paid money for the music class and all your child is doing is sitting there, or maybe even crying through the whole session!  My point is to underscore the fact that children--especially babies--learn by observing and then by doing.  Presenting the book to the child and letting her flip the pages...…

Muscle Mechanics for String Players

I am pleased to announce that my latest short ebook manual is now live and available for purchase!

Muscle Mechanics for String Players: Achieving Proper Control While Playing a Stringed Instrument is a brief overview of muscle function and how these functions apply to a musician's body. Includes suggestions--with pictures--for stretches that will help prevent musical injuries.

This work was a collaborative effort with Dr. Mark Gomez. Dr. Gomez is an expert in the field of biomechanics. He started working in the field in 1977 and has conducted extensive research, published books and given lectures and seminars in the area of biomechanics.
This booklet is up for sale at most major ebook retailers.  Amazon link here.

Suzuki Early Childhood Program

Flexibility Over Correctness

The goal of any music teacher should not be to train a batch of perfect robots.  As tempting as it is to think that if we just went to enough training or read enough manuals we could formula the perfect system that cracks out perfect musicians every time.  Unfortunately, this is not possible.  Because we are human and we are working with other humans.  And the only consistent thing we can count on is that humans change over time.

Consider a young student just starting out on the violin.  Even IF you managed to get this four-year-old to have a flawless bow hold due to diligent practicing, this bow hold cannot possibly remain the same.  This four-year-old will eventually turn five.  He's going to get taller, his arm length will change, he will eventually need a different sized instrument, and, even if none of this happens, his bow hold will change regardless as he gets more comfortable holding it.  The way you hold and pen to sign your name is not the same way you held a crayon when…

"Why is why so important?" William Fitzpatrick at TEDx

William "Billy" Fitzpatrick  violinist -- educator 
"Process. Life is a process. Process is from birth to death. It's about how you conduct that process, not about 'will I be successful' or 'will I be famous' or 'will I be rich?' Those are irrelevant to the process. If you are clear in doing the process well, if those things happen, that's just the way it is." 
William has had a truly remarkable career, having graduated from the Juilliard School of Music, been first violinist of the New York String Quartet, and served as the director of Chamber Music at the American Conservatory in Fontainebleau, France. 
His musical experiences throughout Europe, Japan and the United States have led him to positions as conductor of the Nashville Chamber and Symphony Orchestras to conductor (and founder) of L'ensemble des Deux Mondes in France, and collaborations with l'Orchestre Symphonique Francaise and The American Symphony Orchestra of N…