Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Kids Say the Darnedest Things When They're Struggling With a Piece of Music

A beginner was playing in the key of Bb for the first time and wasn't too happy with the results. I also sensed a lack of preparation, likely because the key wasn't too fun yet...

ME: If you don't practice a piece you don't like, it's like trying to vanquish your enemy with a dull sword. You'll just nick it, and make it mad. You want to go after it with as strong of a blade as possible.
KID: Like Escobar!
ME: Who?
KID: Escobar. It's a sword in the legend of Arthur.
ME: That would be Excalibur.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Kids Say the Darnedest Things About Counting

During the all-important lesson on quarter note triplets (something I emphasize with my students, since I wasn't taught the concept properly until my junior year of college in percussion methods class), the following happened...

ME: So what do you get when you tie two eighth notes together?
KID: A whole note?

Friday, December 12, 2014

Kids Continue to Say the Darnedest Things About Unusual Accidentals

While shopping for a solo, a student ran across a less-familiar one...

KID: What is E-sharp again?
KID: E-flat.
ME: Nope. Think for a second; that can't be true.
KID: F-flat?

Monday, December 08, 2014

Kids Continue to Say the Darndest Things About Classical Composers

Once again, during shopping-for-solos, the "list of 3" idea came up...

ME: This one is by Bach, who was of course a major composer. If I asked you to name me three classical composers, he'd likely be on the list, right?
KID: Yup.
ME: So who would the other two be?
KID: Let's see. Adam Levine...
ME: Wait, what?
KID: The lead singer for Maroon 5.
ME: Right. Ha, clever...
KID: But seriously, Beethoven and Mozart.
ME: There you go.

Friday, December 05, 2014

Kids say the Darnedest Thigns About Minor Keys

While shopping for solos, a middle schooler said he liked the major-key fast movement of a certain solo, but not the minor-key slow movement, which he described as a "creepy ghost song."

Thursday, December 04, 2014

Kids Say the Darnedest Things About Their Pracitce Habits

Today, a student was very honest with me regarding the preparation of a portion of the All-Region music...

KID: Before we start this one, I have to tell you...I really haven't practiced the second half of this ├ętude.
ME: Well, I appreciate your honesty--but you really shouldn't have told me that yet. Suppose it goes really well this time?
KID: Then God actually loves me.

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Kids Say the Darnedest Things When They Forget Their Music

A beginner showed up to a lesson without his method book, and I wanted to know why...

KID: I forgot my music again.
ME: Did you just leave it at home by accident?
KID: I forgot where my mom put it.
ME: So why did she have to put it anywhere? Do you leave it on the floor or something?
KID: Yeah, kinda.

Monday, December 01, 2014

Kids Contniue to Say the Darnedest Things About Classical Composers

As often occurs during shopping-for-solos, Bach came up, and one of the things I mentioned was that Bach had 20 kids...

KID: So they'd be the Box. B-O-X!
ME: Except it wouldn't be spelled that way. We have a student group at the college called "Music Bachs"--B-A-C-H-S.
KID: But he wouldn't get that joke, since he was deaf.
ME: Bach wasn't deaf; that was Beethoven.
KID: I always get them mixed up. I know that one of them was deaf, and one of them had weird hair.
ME: They both had weird hair...