This is what is currently going on for me. I posted this in the piano world beginner's forum in the thread I had started for those studying the Duane Shinn 52 week Crash Course:
My wife has cancer and we will be making a few trips to the Mayo Clinic
in April in preparation for, and then, her surgery. Until then, most
evenings are taken up with her STAR program, which is a physical therapy
designed to make her chances for survival much better, as well as her
recovery from the surgery go better than it might otherwise. So there
is really not much time for piano, between my contract engineering work
and my wife's cancer.
In a situation such as I find myself in,
working with a course of study such as the Duane Shinn 52 week Crash
Course, we will find we have the same issues we would have with taking
lessons with a live teacher. The work load is pretty much the same, as
the teaching style - you MUST show up for regular lessons AND do the
work in between. It really is "black and white", just as it was in
college - either I am doing the work and keeping up or I am not.
Luckily, I was able to get through college, but with the piano, every
time I get started, something else comes up that overshadows that
effort. This time is no different.
What I am doing is playing by
ear, since this is not structured so I can drop in and out as time
permits. Also, I find playing by ear (i.e. figuring out the music I
want to play from recordings) just seems so natural to me for some
reason. The more I do it, the more I realize that music really is a
HEARING art in its most natural form. That really sounds dumb, as if I
am stating the obvious - and I guess I am.
Some day I want to get
back to the 52 week crash course. This course of study really is like
live lessons, requiring, consistent commitment, but I believe the effort
will be worth it in the end. These skills, combined with the ear
playing, would serve as a pretty well rounded musical skill set.
I intend to continue to update this blog as I progress in whatever it is I am doing at the moment, whether by ear or via the 52 week Crash Course.