Category Archives: Music

The Many Benefits of Having A Self-Playing Piano

A player piano is a musical instrument that plays music that has been captured using perforations on a paper roll or digital memory on a computer disk. It creates music that can soothe your soul and relax your mind, just like every other musical instrument. It can elicit strong emotions and pique people’s imaginations. That isn’t all it can do, however.

Modern pianos

Modern pianos are working with digital files and can be managed from your phone or iPad, and these player piano systems are almost undetectable. No unsightly boxes dangle from your piano, and you don’t need to load any CDs or rolls. Furthermore, a live artist can sit down and play your instrument without using a self-playing device much like a typical piano.

Having a self-playing piano has many benefits. Here are some of them.

Improves Concentration For Multitasking

Playing the piano teaches you how to focus on two or three items at once. Being able to play a musical instrument attracts a lot of attention. It not only expands the social network but also inspires others to do the same. Mentors and peers will often offer positive criticism to a good student.

In specific ways, playing the piano necessitates a great deal of dedication and hard work to click several keys in time to preserve the pedestals’ timing. As a result, playing the piano strengthens one’s multitasking abilities and the ability to break attention.

Increases Your Memory Capacity

The brain is stimulated when you play the piano. The activated parts of your brain become more extensive and, therefore, more involved as you learn and play songs. In musicians, the areas responsible for handling audio and information are more evolved than in non-musicians. As a result, playing the piano improves the ability to memorize audio content.

Increases Music Appreciation

When given a choice, most people choose to listen to music styles they are already familiar with. There’s no way to tell if you like other models until you’ve been exposed to them. Working with a piano will expose you to a wide range of musical styles, from classical to jazz. This is also one of the most significant advantages of the piano in particular.

Although many other instruments have limited uses, the piano can be used in a wide range of musical styles. While many people associate the piano with classical music, pianos and keyboards are also used in various other music genres, including rock and more contemporary songs.

Greater Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence is described as the ability to identify and use emotions in oneself and others to direct one’s thoughts. Learning to play music requires deep listening, which is a normal and necessary part of the process. This type of listening also makes you more sensitive to slight changes in voice tone during a conversation. This sensitivity heightens empathy and positively affects all interactions with coworkers, friends, and family.

Improved Ability To Make More and Better Interactions

Participating in piano recitals or simply performing in front of a group of friends will help you gain trust in sharing your talents and hard work. All of the rehearsals leading up to the show will teach you about commitment, self-discipline, and goal-setting.

The more piano events you engage in, the more people you can encounter in the musical world who share your interests. Chatting with other piano players will help you gain a better understanding of the instrument and increase your interest in it.

Better Ways To Cope With Stress

For many people, stage fright is a significant issue. You can better deal with performance stress when you practice your skills in front of friends and family at home. Since success is such a big deal, you’ll spend more time teaching commitment to achieve goals.

Promotes Happiness

One of the most significant advantages to personal health benefits is the ability to sit at the piano and express yourself while tuning out the rest of the world for a brief moment. Playing the piano, in particular, consumes so much of the brain that it is often used as a welcome diversion from worries.

Learning the ability is an excellent way to calm your racing mind. Muscle memory gives you a sense of pleasure when you play the song, the feeling of having complete control over your fingers. This condition is associated with happiness, mental wellbeing, and improved life satisfaction, and emotional resilience.

With all of the advantages that a self-playing piano can have, it may be a brilliant idea to invest in a player piano system to turn your living room into a concert hall. Who knows, maybe one day, like all those great pianists, you’ll write an incredible piece that will be remembered for all time. And if you don’t, you’ll live a happy and safe life regardless. It’s a win in any case.

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Top Tips On Choosing The Perfect Drum Set To Kickstart Your Drumming Career

So, you want to kickstart your drumming career, but you don’t know where to start? This article will take care of your needs. Starting your drumming career will require you to get the right drum set for the job. With the many varieties in the market, it’s challenging to choose the right set that fits a starter. Many drummers get stuck on the criteria to use to find the best set in the market.

First, you need to understand the purpose of your drumming career, which will outline your priorities. After that, you can then visit the many choices to select the best. This article will highlight some tips to use for the best selection. Read on for the guidelines.

1. Purpose

It might be you are kickstarting your drumming career, as well as your drum-playing techniques. If so, you will need the most straightforward drum set, which you can use to learn to play the drums. If you already know how to play the drums, you can go for the most sophisticated set you already know. In line with deboband.com/best-drum-set/ review, it is essential to know the various drums available and their use before buying them. If going into full-time drumming, it’s vital choosing the best type that will last with your career.

Also, it would be best to consider the purpose of the drums. Will you use them for live performances, for recording your music, or just for training? If looking for a set you can perform or record with, it’s crucial going for electronic drum sets that get amplified to produce the best sound or cover an expansive area.

2. Setup

Drum setup is among the critical factors to consider when choosing a drum set. You will need a set that is simple to set up for better playing. This situation will mean considering the number of pieces that come up with a single set. There are different drum sets to choose from. You will find a simple 3-piece set and the complete setup, which comprises five drums with cymbals.

The more drums and other equipment you have, the more complicated it will be to set them up and play. Also, the more drums you have, the greater the sound varieties and vice versa.

3. Drum Set Size

When choosing the best drums to start up your career, it is crucial to consider the set size. Size matters a lot in drumming. To ensure you play the drums with ease, you must be comfortable with their size. It is essential to ensure the drum’s height, width, pedals, and cymbals are of the right size for your playing. If you are a beginner in everything, you can consider getting a size that an average person can play comfortably. For instance, you can get a set that a 5-ft tall person can play comfortably. If shorter than the average size, you can consider getting some of the best varieties made for kids.

4. Drum Heads

It is essential to check on the drum heads and pick the best set meant for a beginner. Checking on the drum heads is recommended as they significantly affect the drums’ sound quality. Better tuned heads produce the best sounds than the regular drum heads. Most beginner drums always have the best heads and are tuned to produce the best sound. However, if looking for more sophisticated drums, it’s important to get deeper into this to get ones that will perfectly fit your needs and preferences. If you are good at tuning the heads, you can pick any type and work on their tuning manually to get the best, clear tones.

5. Cymbals

Will you require drums with cymbals? Some drum kits come fully installed with cymbals, while others do not. Cymbals greatly determine the sound that will get produced by your drum set. Buying a set with them might mean paying more, but it’s worth every penny. Most drums come with the hi-hat, ride and crash cymbals, while others only come with the hi-hat.

Some cymbals will sound better than others, depending on the make and how the drum is tuned. If you are a beginner, it’s crucial choosing a set with all cymbals for the best sound quality. If working on a tight budget, you can buy the drum set and get the cymbals later.

To conclude on this, it’s crucial to check on the setup, purpose, set size, drum heads, and cymbals when choosing the perfect drum set to kickstart your drumming career. However, the cost also matters. If you want to get the best brand that produces the best sound equality, you need to set your budget higher as the drums will cost you more.

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Exploring The Unreleased Music In Prince’s Vault

It’s been five years since Prince died, but his estate continues to churn out new music from the prolific artist. 

Jon Wertheim reports on the unreleased songs – 8,000 by one estimate – locked away in Prince’s vault and the newly unlocked album, “Welcome 2 America”

Watch the 60 Minutes piece below.

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Spotify Launches Car Thing, A Smart Player For Your Car

Between work commutes, taking the kids to school, daily errands, and road trips, Americans spend countless hours on the road. It’s no surprise, then, that there are over 70 million user-generated driving-related playlists on Spotify. No matter where you’re headed, Spotify is the perfect companion in the car, thanks to the many ways to listen to Spotify and our curated playlists, like Daily Drive and Songs to Sing in the Car. And today, Spotify announces their newest exploration: a limited release of Car Thing, a new smart player that fills your car with music, news, entertainment, talk, and more.

Currently available to eligible users in the U.S., Car Thing enables you to play your favorite audio faster, so you’re already listening to that hit song or the latest podcast episode before you’ve even pulled out of the driveway. Switching between your favorite audio is effortless, allowing you to shift gears to something else as soon as the mood strikes. And when it comes to controlling the device, use it in the way that works best for you, whether that’s voice, touch, or physical controls.

The limited release of Car Thing is not meant to compete with in-car infotainment systems. Instead, it’s another step in our larger ubiquity strategy—creating a truly frictionless audio experience for our users, wherever they are and however they choose to listen. 

Car Thing makes the entire experience, from setup to navigation, simple and seamless. 

Here’s how it works:

– Use voice control for easy access. Spotify’s voice search lets you quickly play specific music or podcasts, and can even help you find something new. Just say “Hey Spotify,” then ask for a song, album, artist, playlist, station, or podcast. With four microphones along the top, Car Thing can understand what you’re asking to play, even with the music turned up or your windows down.

– Try the dial for a hands-on way to steer to the audio you love. You can also browse deeper, curating the perfect soundtrack to wherever you’re headed. Use the dial to browse, select, play, pause, and discover.

– View the touch-screen display to see what’s playing. You can also use the screen to see what’s in your library, as well as results from voice search. Swipe to browse further or skip, or tap to play.

– Choose four preset buttons to get to your favorites faster and then change them anytime. They’ll always bring you the newest podcast episodes and up-to-date news.

Car Thing from Spotify is currently a limited product launch, available in the U.S. on an invite-only basis. For a set time, Car Thing is available at no cost (excluding shipping) to select Spotify listeners. Car Thing requires a paid Spotify Premium subscription plan and a smartphone with WiFi or mobile data connection. Eligible paying subscribers only. One Car Thing per eligible subscriber, while supplies last.

Hit the gas and join the wait list at carthing.spotify.com.

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Electric And Acoustic Cellos: What Are Their Similarities And Differences?

Cello is a great instrument you could start learning today, and it comes in two variants you can explore. The first one is an acoustic cello, while the other one is the electric cello. Both have their unique features and characteristics, and you really cannot tell what’s good and what’s not in just a glimpse. Stay with us until the end to see the fine line between these two and which is better for you.

Similarities and Differences of Both Cellos

The acoustic cello existed ages ago, and it became a reliable instrument musicians had. There is no doubt that acoustic cellos are indeed incredible. However, modern versions, which are the electric cellos, started to drive people to a newer and more convenient way of playing music. As a result, these improvements brought confusion regarding their differences. For you to see a clearer picture, take a look at the following.

Let’s dig information about the two cello variants in terms of:

Size and weight

Both types of cellos don’t have a significant difference when it comes to size and weight. There is nothing to argue about it. Manufacturers always ensure that they will produce both types of instruments closer to each other in terms of size and weight. This is to provide the same feeling and level of comfort for everyone who will play either type of cello.

Sounds

The quality of the sound is the big difference between the two. You cannot change or adjust the volume on your acoustic cello, but you can do it on electric ones. Moreover, a more mellow tone can be well-produced by an acoustic cello, which an electric one cannot consistently give. If you want to record your sounds when playing, electric cello is far more superior for this purpose.

Materials

Electric cellos have a more sturdy material than acoustic ones. If you accidentally slip your acoustic cello, it will easily get cracked, but not with your electric one. Why is that so? Although they are both made up of wood, electric cellos have more compact and solid wood blocks, safer for cracks. Since acoustic cellos needed to amplify their own sounds, they should be built only with thin woods and shouldn’t be compressed. As a consequence, it comes as a fragile instrument.

Playing techniques

Electric cellos are easier to master and learn than acoustic ones. However, if you like playing with bands with acoustic instruments, choose to go with the acoustic cellos. Electric cello is the type that most cellists prefer to practice, and for ‘silent’ playing. Both of these have their own playing techniques you can learn, and you might want to settle with the one which you are comfortable with.

Accessories

Both electric and acoustic cellos have strings, bow, shoulder and chin rest, and case. There is no big difference when it comes to accessories, except that electric cellos need an amplifier, mute, and endpin stop or strap. The latter could come optional based on what you need, but rest assured that you can also find those acoustic cello accessories on electric ones.

There is no such thing as a better cello. However, you need to have a deep look at both variants before you decide to purchase, rent, or learn it. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, and it will still depend on your preference. Now that you have the rundown of information in terms of size and weight, sounds, materials, techniques, and accessories of both variants, you can start deciding for your next journey!

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6 Important Things Every Musician Should Know

Being passionate about music is a truly wonderful thing, especially because it is one of the most amazing ways to express yourself. Of course, the most important thing every aspiring musician must have is talent.

However, that’s not always enough. Now, this doesn’t mean that you should know every single aspect of music in order to become a pro, but still, you should comprehend some basics that are going to help you get even better.

It doesn’t matter whether you want to be part of the music industry or not, if you want to always “stay on track” then you should follow these tips that are going to help you achieve that. Let’s check them out!

Top Things Musicians Are Supposed To Know

Stay True To Yourself

This statement refers to anything you do in life. No matter what you do, or want to accomplish, do not ever forget to stay true to yourself.  Frequently, you are going to be tempted to play in a certain way, or sing a song that you do not necessarily like.

You can do it once, or twice, but do not allow yourself to do it all the time because that’s not what true artists do. If you’re a composer, you might be tempted to write a piece of music that is currently popular.

And that’s completely understandable, but if you do it constantly, then that song isn’t going to be valuable. That’s why it’s always crucial to do what your heart desires. Only then you’ll show others what lies inside of you and how passionate you are about your art. If you compromise who you are, then you are going to lose yourself and your identity.

Find The Right Music Equipment

Finding the right music equipment can be a bit stressful and hard to do. Most musicians typically spend hours and hours agonizing over the things they are supposed to purchase. During this process, they tend to make wrong choices and mistakes.

And that’s something that can be quite frustrating and exhausting. Therefore, experienced music lovers at The Sound Junky suggest carefully think this through because audio gear and the instruments you acquire today are going to be with you for many years. The more time you spend focusing on it, the better.

Namely, it’s surprising how many musicians make huge purchases on impulse, thinking that they are doing the right thing. Only later do they realize how wrong they were. Hence you should spend some time researching to see what type of equipment is the best for you.

How are you going to figure that out? Simply by knowing your true needs. Because to be honest, in this situation, the saying one-size-fits-everybody simply doesn’t work. Therefore, it’s of huge importance to be very thorough about it.

What Else Do You Need To Know?

Form

If you have a knack for arrangements then there are some things you must know. You cannot discuss it without a proper understanding of the vocabulary and form to further compliment this understanding.

It’s not enough to simply know what the chorus, verse, and bridge of a song are. For instance, will you know what are you supposed to do when the keyboard player says that you should solo over four choruses of the ‘A’ section and then, later on, tells you to go straight to the coda?

If all of this seems a bit confusing to you, then you should definitely roll up your sleeves and start learning this stuff, otherwise, you are not going to get too far as a musician without understanding what form is, as well as accompanying terminology.

Having A Label Isn’t Always Necessary

Even though due to COVID-19, now may not be the best time (when it comes to popularity and money) to be an artist, it still shouldn’t stop you from planning things ahead. Does it mean that having a label is a must?

It definitely isn’t! If you are your own boss, then you are able to practically control everything, make your own decisions without consulting anybody, record your music at your own house, do anything you can to attract more audience on social media, upload your songs on YouTube, etc.

All of this was practically impossible up until recently. However, things have drastically changed in the meantime, and for the time being, all of us are in a different era of the music industry. Does it mean that nobody should have a label?

No. If you think that having some sort of partner is relevant to you, then you should definitely go to a label to find some type of support that is going to help you go through everything much easier and faster.

Be An Intern or Volunteer

Now, this may seem like a bad idea, however, if you’re just getting started and you are relatively new to this industry, then you should definitely consider doing this. Bear in mind, that a lot of people did this in the beginning.

Namely, they were doing some type of free labor just so that could gain some experience and potentially meet some relevant people in this industry. As time goes by, you will become more skillful and eventually get paid for everything you do.

Furthermore, even if you decide to launch your own management corporation, or a record label, or even to become a publicist, everything you’ve managed to learn and experience in the meantime is only going to benefit you.

It’s Music…Nobody Is Going To Get Hurt

Many musicians, even the most experienced ones, still get scared when they are supposed to perform in front of an audience, even the small one. Even though that’s completely understandable, you have to change this attitude.

That’s because, at the end of the day, you are not a doctor or a surgeon. No one is going to die because of you, so you should do anything you can to eliminate the fear. Even if you have a bad performance, this too shall pass.

Being part of the music industry is both one of the scariest and yet one of the most amazing feelings in the world. You get to connect with people on so many levels. So if you want to give it all and be the best version of yourself, take these suggestions seriously.

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Prince Estate To Release Rare ‘Welcome 2 America’ Album, Featuring Bob Dylan And Janet Jackson Covers

On July 30, the Prince Estate and Sony’s Legacy Recordings will release Prince’s “Welcome 2 America” album, which was recorded in 2010 but never released.  

The album is a powerful creative statement that documents Prince’s concerns, hopes, and visions for a shifting society, presciently foreshadowing an era of political division, disinformation, and a renewed fight for racial justice. 

60 Minutes correspondent Jon Wertheim got a preview of the album as well as the story behind it for a report airing this Sunday on CBS; you can hear the title track here.

Shortly after completing the “Welcome 2 America” album, Prince embarked on a tour of the same name that included multiple performances in several U.S. cities, capped off by the historic “21 Nite Stand” at The Forum in Inglewood, California. 

 

The Deluxe Edition of “Welcome 2 America” includes the complete studio vault album on both CD and black vinyl (accompanied with a hi-res digital download) plus a never-before-released full concert video of Prince’s April 28, 2011 show at The Forum. All vinyl editions will have music on three sides with a collectible etching on the fourth side. In addition, there will be two special color variant vinyl editions of the album – gold vinyl available exclusively from the official Prince store and clear vinyl from Target.

As a companion collector single, fans have the opportunity to pre-order a numbered limited-edition gold-colored 7” vinyl exclusively from the official Prince Store. The 7” includes the studio version of “Welcome 2 America,” accompanied by a previously unreleased live version of the song recorded on May 14, 2011 at The Forum. The live version of “Welcome 2 America” is performed in a medley with the Prince composition “Dreamer,” first released on 2009’s “Lotusflow3r.”

The live concert video features Prince performing with his 2011-era lineup of the New Power Generation, including Shelby J., Liv Warfield, Elisa Fiorillo, and Morris Hayes, additional keyboardists Renato Neto and Cassandra O’Neal, bassist Ida Nielsen, drummer John Blackwell, and dancers Maya and Nandy McClean (The Twinz).

The performance features covers of Bob Dylan’s “Make You Feel My Love” and Roxy Music’s “More Than This” alongside Prince favorites including “17 Days,” “Controversy,” “1999,” and “Purple Rain.”

The Deluxe Edition of Welcome 2 America will be presented as a luxe gold-foil package designed by GRAMMY-nominated artist Mathieu Bitton and GRAMMY-nominated creative director and Prince associate Trevor Guy, complete with a 12”x12” 32-page companion book and embossed vellum envelope containing exclusive Welcome 2 America era ephemera (photographic art print, 23”x36” poster, replica setlist, ticket, VIP invitation and backstage passes).t, 23”x36” poster, replica setlist, ticket, VIP invitation and backstage passes).

Prince – Welcome 2 America Track Listing:

1. Welcome 2 America
2. Running Game (Son of a Slave Master)
3. Born 2 Die
4. 1000 Light Years From Here
5. Hot Summer
6. Stand Up and B Strong *
7. Check The Record
8. Same Page, Different Book
9. When She Comes
10. 1010 (Rin Tin Tin)
11. Yes
12. One Day We Will All B Free

Pre-order HERE.

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The 30 Greatest Rock & Roll Movie Moments

The movies have a long history of glorious rock & roll moments. Whether the story is about gangsters, lovers, warriors or vampires, the right song can jolt an ordinary flick into something loud and wild. 

So behold, the 30 all-time greatest rock & roll moments in film history: from Goodfellas to Hot Tub Time Machine, from Elvis to the RZA, from Lloyd Dobler to Spinal Tap to the Dude.

HERE are just a few of Rolling Stone Magazine’s favorite eruptions of cinematic rockingness. Play these movies loud.

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Brandi Carlile Has Always Seen Herself Clearly. Now It’s Our Turn

In her new memoir, “Broken Horses,” the singer-songwriter Brandi Carlile takes a deep look at how “a mean, scrappy little trailer girl with the wrong clothes” became a six-time Grammy winner.

Read the New York Times article HERE.

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Amoeba Hollywood To Reopen At New Location April 1

Amoeba Hollywood is reopening at their new location at 6200 Hollywood Blvd on Thursday, April 1st! The store will have new temporary hours: Monday – Sunday 11am – 8pm (buy counter open 11am – 7pm).

The store will be following all health and safety guidelines from their local City and County public health departments, including social distancing and mandatory wearing of face coverings over the nose and mouth. 

The line to enter the store will form on Argyle Blvd. Customers who have more than 10 items to sell or trade will line up for the buy counter on Hollywood Blvd. (Customers with 10 items or less to sell will join the main shopping line.)

Opening day will include a special design created by L.A. artist Ivan Minsloff.

Customers will get a limited edition poster as a gift with purchase and there will be silkscreened T-shirts available for purchase in the store on April 1st. Posters and t-shirts will be available while supplies last.

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