Tuesday, July 09, 2024

Reading Sheet Music: Discovery 2

Reading Sheet Music for Harmonica
Discoveries #2 (July 8, 2024)

Harmonica Studies by Michael P. Garofalo

I have been diligently working on learning to read standard music notation, sheet music, when
playing the harmonica. I had been using for many years the harmonica tablature notation showing what hole to blow or draw into. Sheet music notation tells me what note to play and the duration and sequence of the notes played. Most diatonic harmonica music books have lessons using a C Major harmonica, the sheet music for each song, and under each note the harmonica tablature. I focus now on the sheet music and ignore the harmonica tablature. I am using the book 'Easy Piano Sheet Music for Kids', by Avgusta Udartseva, while learning, which does not include harmonica tablature.

For me, what are the benefits of reading standard musical notation (sheet music):
1. A better sense of the flow and timing of a composition.
2. There is far more sheet music without harmonica tablature that is readily available.
3. Following traditional musical learning using sheet music is very valuable, and essential for real progress in music playing.
4. Learning to connect names of notes (CDEFGABC) with positions on the sheet music, and connecting these with diatonic harmonica holes for blow or draw notes (20 notes on a 10 hole diatonic harmonica).
5. Learning to read sheet music more efficiently, effectively, knowledgeably, and beneficial for playing properly.
6. I am learning more musical theory each day.
7. The visual spacing of the notes on the sheet music is more useful to precise playing and improving one's anticipation and timing.
8. Improves my learning how to play better.
9. I enjoy learning challenges, tests, new methods and techniques.
10. It is intellectually and emotionally satisfying to make progress in playing music.
11. The challenge of new ways of looking and seeing; new ways of communicating with symbols.
12. Harmonica tablature can be useful, but must be left behind for real progress to occur.

This has been a significant and transformative learning experience for me! Why did I wait so long to learn how to read and play from sheet music? Why did I not take classes from a music teacher? Why did I not take community college or private classes in musical theory and education? Nevertheless, this is all just muddy water gone past under the bridge for a 78 year old man playing the harmonica on his own. I must focus on learning NOW, and ignore my regrets and failings. PRACTICE NOW and enjoy myself.

Harmonica Studies by Michael P. Garofalo

No comments:

Post a Comment