Category Archives: Music

Deliberate Dissonance

My music teacher wanted me to compose a piece using just six tones (essentially, a mini twelve-tone piece). On the surface, it seemed like something that would be right up my alley, because it’s a type of puzzle. I tried … Continue reading

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Reading Report: Things You Learn in Your 50s

Piano Lessons: Music, Love & True Adventures by Noah Adams, A– Switching gears from that long fantasy novel, I moved on to this relatively short (248-page) memoir by Noah Adams, former host of NPR’s All Things Considered. In this book … Continue reading

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In addition to my weekly music lessons and composition assignments, I’ve been reading music theory books and websites, listening to recordings, and watching various music-related YouTube videos. I mentioned some things I’d seen online to my teacher, and he said, … Continue reading

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A Couple of Things I Learned Last Year

If you need to survive in outer space without a spacesuit, you should not hold your breath. Having a lot of air in your lungs will cause your lungs to explode. Ouch! So let out as much air as you … Continue reading

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Musical Thinking

It had never occurred to me before that music and thinking are so much alike. In fact you could say music is another way of thinking, or maybe thinking is another kind of music Ursula K. Le Guin

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Music for Writing

Listening to Into the Trees by Zoe Keating. Good music to listen to while writing, or anytime

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Powerful Music

The problem with writing while listening to soundtrack music is that the grandeur of the music does not always match the writing. I’m listening to the soundtrack to Inception. It’s big, powerful music. While listening to it, I could be … Continue reading

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Favorite Composer: Ryuichi Sakamoto

I was once so in love with a piano piece that I tried to learn it by ear. It was a tune called “Sonatine” from one of my favorite albums, Ryuichi Sakamoto’s BTTB. The letters BTTB stand for “Back to … Continue reading

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Tuned In

I always have a song stuck in my head. Always. It’s like having the radio on all the time. And my brain comes up with some obscure stuff for me to listen to. This morning it was playing an orchestral … Continue reading

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Your Mom, the Singer-Songwriter

Dear Marshall, You seem to like the sound of my voice. When you were very young,  I tried to sing baby songs to you and found that I didn’t know all the words. So I started making up my own … Continue reading

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