Home Forums Piano Related Discussions Member Profiles Greetings from Cali

2 replies, 3 voices Last updated by  Ongaku 2 years, 1 month ago
Viewing 3 posts - 1 through 3 (of 3 total)
  • Author
  • #5323


    Greetings All,

    My name is Ken and I live on the Central Coast of California. I’m 62 years old.

    Prior to signing up with Jaak in 2012, my only other instruction in piano was back in the early ’90s lasting for about 6 months. This was with a classical pianist teaching a piano method developed by a jazz pianist. I was trading my computer work for the lessons at the time and wish now that I would have continued. Life and career got in the way and that was that.

    I tried a local piano teacher in early 2012 that lasted all of 3 lessons. It became apparent we were not on the same page so that ended.

    Shortly after that I found Jaak and knew almost immediately that I could learn what I needed from his course.

    About a third of the way into the course I had a back injury that pretty much sidelined any further advances with my playing but now it is time to get revitalized. Hopefully I won’t need to go all the way back to “Train Trip” but whatever it takes I will get through it this time.

    I will be doing the Sight Reading course as well.

    Full disclosure, I actually consider myself more of an aspiring keyboardist than an aspiring classical pianist. Since the ’70s I was always drawn to the sounds created with analogue synthesizers and over the last year or so I was able to put together a little recording studio in my house. I have a large collection of synths, both digital and analogue, some of them vintage and others made in the last couple years. I was very pleased to see major manufacturers today embracing analogue technology again.

    Though I love the sound of an acoustic piano playing classical music, I also love tinkering with sound and most of the music I find myself making today would probably fit more in the realm of ambient. I hope that doesn’t get me kicked off the forum. 🙂

    If there’s one thing my years as an engineer taught me it’s that basics and fundamentals are the keys to success, so that’s why I’m here.

    Hopefully some of these other members will be chiming in soon. I’m looking forward to having great discussions with you all.

    Thanks Jaak for putting up the forum and for all of your help over the past few years. It is time for me to get disciplined and do this thing right.



    Dennis Dooley

    Hi, Ken.

    Welcome to the forum! It is always nice to hear from other mature students.

    It is interesting how we know what we need when it comes to learning the piano. Like you, when I discovered Jaak, I knew he had what I was needing, though I had never been able to put the finger on it.

    I did the sight reading course — one of the best inestments of my time. It is helping me tremendously.

    I think it is so cool that you have a recording studio in your home. Maybe someday we will have the pleasure of hearing some of your music.

    In my mind, the idea of learning piano (and music in general) is to provide a stepping stone to where our musical passions lead us. So don’t be concered about being kicked off the forum — I am all for diversity.

    I am concentrating on an outdoor project to get it out of the way, but by this fall I want to put much more focus on Jaak’s course, and I expect I will be providing links to my “homework”. In my career I always felt I learned as much from fellow participants on workshops and training seminars as I did from the instructors, so I plan to take full advantage of this online community by sharing a lot my work.

    Glad to have you on board. And I hope you get a lot out of Jaak’s guidance.



    Hey Dennis,

    Thanks for the welcome and thanks for the review of the sight reading course.

    I kind of figured I’d be hearing from you. We really need to entice these other members to start posting. This can be a really great resource once it gets going.

    BTW, we have something else in common (besides our “mature” age), My wife was born and raised near Quebec City and even had a restaurant in the city back in the old days. As a native Californian, it was quite a shock the first time I saw that much snow and ice in one place. Beautiful province Quebec.

    Yes, the studio has been a real life saver. Since my back surgery, I no longer sleep through the night which gives me a lot of constructive music time in the wee hours of the morning. Putting on the headphones, choosing a voice and then just playing whatever comes has been very good therapy.

    I suppose I’m long overdue as far as setting up a YouTube account to share my music. I’m not entirely sure what happened at the beginning of this year. but I stopped trying to learn other people’s music and just kind of let myself go without any real intention or direction. When it started sounding something like music I would reach up and hit the record button. I did this routine a couple dozen times without paying much attention to the results and was pleasantly surprised when I finally reviewed the audio files.

    There was a fluidity to the music that had never been there before and listening to the recordings of my playing became a very different hearing experience than what I was hearing while playing.

    The biggest benefit from all this was the confidence boost and the realization that if I got my basics in, I could actually achieve the level of playing I had always envisioned.

    Anyway, yea, I need to expand my audience from the 4 or 5 people who have actually heard my music. It is, after all, a form of communication and if you spend too much time talking to yourself, people start looking at you funny.

    See you soon,

Viewing 3 posts - 1 through 3 (of 3 total)

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.