Why I’m Against Teaching Western Classical Music

I like the song Never Enough from the movie The Greatest Showman a lot. In fact, it’s on my bucket list. Here’s me playing it. It’s not perfect. I learnt it mostly by ear. The melody by ear and the chords partly by guitar chord sheets. I like the song so much that it’s actually …

No, you can’t talk unless you read a book

Imagine saying this to a child: “No, you can’t open your mouth and talk unless you are reading from a book.” This would be extremely odd, isn’t it? Surely a child or anyone should be able to open their mouth and say something – how they are feeling, describe the weather, objects, their lives, etc. …

He Didn’t Like Tennis When he First Started it

I was having a chat with a dad who’s training to be a tennis coach. He said that he had to ‘force’ his son to pick up tennis and his son didn’t like it at first. However, his son started to like the game when he developed some skill in it and started going for …

How Much to Practise a Day?

I often get asked by parents how much should their child practise each day? This is obviously a very subjective question and you are likely to get different responses depending on who you ask. Here’s my response: it depends. If the student is motivated to practise the piano without having someone or something to urge …

What Type of Music Can You Play on the Piano?

When I was a teenager, I would listen to the soothing piano music that’s played in the heart-wrenching drama serials on the telly. I love the music. The music spoke to me. I felt connected with the music. So, I decided that I wanted to learn to play the piano. My mum and I went …

Manifesto of Music Lessons

I am uncovering better ways of teaching piano by doing it and helping others do it.Through this work I have come to value: Playing by ear over reading notes at all times Creating your own music over executing other people’s works at all times Performing frequently over taking graded exams Improvising using scales and arpeggios …

Music Students Taught the Traditional Way Versus How Joseph Teaches

Scenario A student who is taught the traditional way A student who is taught by Joseph What instrument does the student need? An acoustic piano is required. Annual tuning is required. Takes 2-3 persons to move the piano. A keyboard with full sized keys and a sustaining pedal is the minimum. Most students upgrade to …

Why I Stopped Teaching Piano the ‘Traditional’ Way

When I taught piano many years ago, maybe it was 20 years ago, I taught students the way I was taught – focus on passing exams by learning three exam pieces per year. As part of the exams, I will practise all my scales and arpeggios diligently. Needless to say, the focus during lessons is …