Did you know that the legendary Harry Connick Jr is not only a prized pianist but also an Emmy & Grammy Winner for Outstanding Music Direction (2004 & 2011) and is now on the Walk of Fame for Music Recording (2019).
So you guys remember that I started homeschooling our youngest son again. We gave him a chance at going back into mainstream schooling again, and it just wasn't the right time, so we pulled him back out. He's been great since. However, I'm not musically inclined and he THRIVES off of playing a musical instrument. Since music is such an important part of life, we have never ever taken the ability to play away from him. In fact, we constantly encourage.
Each day when we start our day, we do our core classes then we break for a bit, eat lunch, then get started on the fun stuff to end the day. Art & music are two of our favorite classes because we both participate as “students” and just let our creativity flow. I'll do some crafty projects while he works on drawing, playing the viola, and now learning to play the piano. When I was approached by Playground Sessions to collaborate, I jumped at the opportunity.
According to Science of People:
Music and its effect on memory has been a heated debate in the scientific world, but researchers now have evidence that the processing of music and language, specifically memorizing information, rely on some of the same brain systems. Researchers have also uncovered evidence that suggests the music we heard as teenagers has a greater emotional bind to our brain than anything we’ll listen to as adults. This idea of musical nostalgia is a fun exercise for anyone, but is most impactful for people suffering from memory loss, including those with dementia or Alzheimer’s.
Guys, this program is FANTASTIC!
I'm seriously not just saying this either. EVEN I am learning to play the piano and I never thought I would learn. But I guess, you really can teach an ol' chick new tricks!
So what is Playground Sessions and how can you learn with Harry Connick Jr. and other awesome artists?
They are online piano lessons where EVERYONE gets to enjoy an immersive environment of discovery and interaction where you learn faster and have more fun in the process. Playground Sessions‘ innovative piano software teaches you how to play the piano with interactive lessons featuring your favorite songs. When you love the tune and know the rhythm, the learning comes more naturally and quickly.
Pick from Pop, Rock, Classic Hits, R&B, Traditional, and Classical genres, arranged at Rookie, Intermediate and Advanced levels. What's even more awesome, these songs are taught by some of the world's best musicians and instructors such as Quincy Jones, Harry Connick Jr, and David Sides.
So while my youngest and I are both learning how to play, there are a few things that I learned that I didn't know about. Since I've never played an instrument, I wanted to make sure that I was doing everything the right way. So below, you're going to read what I learned.
Learn How To Play the Piano with Harry Connick Jr.
Use Proper Posture
I sit most of the day doing blog work, but it's so much different because I have this super nice comfy chair in my office. But I learned that my posture while playing actually helped play better and kept me focused. It's amazing how a “little” thing like sitting up straight, shoulders back, feet on the floor the right way does for piano playing. I always used to laugh at the pianists who would “flip” their tux tails out, but now I get it… I totally get it.
You won't Instantly become Mozart
Look, they are great at teaching, but you have to put the work in. You can't practice just once and bang out Mozart's 42nd symphony (he only wrote 41 btw). Ideally, you should practice at least 15 mins a day. If you can't do that, 15 mins every couple of days is fine, but you have to actually practice.
Make mistakes and learn from them
Just like anything else that you learn in life, you will make mistakes. Go ahead and make them. In order to learn how to play the piano, you have to make mistakes on the piano. Make a note of what you did wrong and fix it. If it's a series of notes that are faster than your fingers can go, look up some exercises that could help your fingers get up to speed.
Enjoy your learning experience
If you don't enjoy playing, stop. Take a break for a bit. Read a book, play some basketball, anything. Sometimes if you're focused on something too much, it becomes a chore and isn't fun. If you're anything like My son, he hates chores and will take hours to do 1-2 things that typically only take 5-10 mins to do.
Although it ranks high on many people’s bucket lists, learning to play the piano is still thought to be pretty darn hard. In the age of instant gratification and distracting dog/cat videos, people really just won’t stick with it. In fact, the conventional piano lessons dropout rate in the United States is about 85%.
Well, leave it to 28-time GRAMMY-winning producer/artist Quincy Jones to come up with an innovative solution. Jones co-created Playground Sessions (www.playgroundsessions.com), which is now the #1 rated piano learning software/app for PC, Mac and iOS and boasts a whopping student retention rate of more than 80 percent. Wow!
How Does Harry Connick Jr. do it?
By making online piano instruction fun and easy—combining game-like scoring and real-time feedback, with video tutorials and a full library of songs at every skill level. And here in 2019, Quincy wants to talk about how GRAMMY and Emmy winner Harry Connick Jr. has partnered with Playground Sessions this year and is now the lead music teacher in the app!
Both of these artists want to get more people out of the audience and in front of their keyboards to enjoy the many benefits of playing the piano. And it’s working — PlaygroundSessions now teaches 1 million lessons a month!