Tried to jam to YK's Paradise Regained - Yes, Wakana still in action : )

His_Cifnes

I like Yuki
Ahoi together : )

As the title says, I've tried to jam to Yuki Kajiura's "Paradise Regained", which I find is one of the most aesthetic and beautiful songs she'd ever made. - A beautiful masterpiece with Wakana as front singer. This song is slow but VERY powerful.

The song was played in development phase 3, which means both hands playing different tones. I tried to keep the momentum as good as possible, which worked out most of the time.. - Yes I know it's far from being perfect, but keep in mind it's Take 1 "first try". : )

A more recent version is not yet recorded, but will appear as soon as practice level raises.
Got a new instrument which still needs set up and mastering until it's ready. - As soon as Take 2 is uploaded, we can compare differences in sound and timing. (The specific playlists on this YT channel contain each version of every song.)

Anyway, if you decide to give this first recording a try, I'd like to ask you also leave a helpful comment. I'd like to get as much useful response as possible, in order to improve wherever possible.

--> [ Paradise Regained ]

So, what's your opinion about this recording, and do YOU have helpful comments to help improve? * __ *

Cif ~
 
I am not sure how you recorded your playing but the primary thing I noticed was the tempo. It seemed like you were rushing.
 
First of all THANK YOU for your advice.
It is always very helpful to hear other people's opinions in order to find possible problems that I may not have noticed myself. So feedback is always appreciated!

--> Yes, I know what you mean when you say I was kind of rushing.

Thing is, I am playing with moving scores on a screen, which tells timing and tones in real time. So far so good.. but the problem could be me.. myself: I'm not yet far enough into training, so I need to look at the scores AND the keys at the same time, which of course does not work.
Currently I still need to look onto the keys in order to find the right chord position. I always was asking myself how musicans can freely play anything while constantly looking at their scores. - I want that too! :D - Would be very helpful, especially with fast pieces.

So in my case, I need to look up at the scores, see what's up now and coming up next, then look down onto the keys, find the chord position, and kind of guess when the next tone needs to be played. - And then look up, read the next piece of the scores again.. and so on.

That's why I suspect my timing is kind of off, as I am guessing the timing, which works out most of the time, but sometimes it's off too hard... and becomes obvious. (In this video I was too far ahead twice and late once.)

I wonder how I could advance to find the right chords without looking onto the keys.
Currently I am having tons of fun by trying to just play and play and play and play multiple titles every day (> 2 hours). I know where each chord is located (fast access also possible.. but only when I look onto the keys), but when I try to play blindly, it's rarely working out.
The offset is atleast one tone away. In theory one could feel the position by realising where there are the two half tones and three half tone keys... but in practice you don't have the time to do that each time.
Might have to do with practice-by-playing and gain confidence by succeeding. ; ) - But why learn the hard way, if there is a better way.- Any ideas?
: )

Cif ~
 
I don't play any instruments, only dabble in singing a little, so I can't give specific advice.

What I will say is that you probably need to get comfortable doing the basics - running scales, working on your finger positioning.
You can't look at two things at the same time (score and keys) and you're not playing slow music either.

I can understand getting excited to try out music you enjoy, and by all means do this from time to time, but I think there's still a lot of foundation-laying work to do on the basics every day over time to become more fluent and fluid.

For me as someone who likes vocals, I also struggle with wanting to sing along to my favorite music and not doing all the preparatory work on my breathing, posture, tone, and all the other exercises that are building blocks. If I do them sufficiently and consistently, I will suddenly find myself singing the songs more confidently and consistently. But the exercises and warming up are not always fun.

That may be where having a teacher/coach would be helpful to guide and make sure you do the reps.

Hope someone else can give you more specific (and useful) advice...
 
Hi Cloistered Flame! o/ - Thank you again for your great advice!


> I don't play any instruments, only dabble in singing a little, so I can't give specific advice.

Ohh! Then your voice is the instrument. : ) - A thing that I am always astonished about! Also how to team singers up, and how everybody does his/her magic to make it "sound right" for the group.
Supposedly that's much harder than playing an instrument using hands.

Only thing I (believe to) know is, that when singing, and you need to yawn, the breathing technique needs further attention, right? : )


> [practice the basics]

Ahhh yes.. I should take more time to do exactly that.. - I now have booked an online course (which is passive, so I can watch their advice videos at any time and at any pace that I choose), just to learn and practice the basics, and the stuff that builds up onto them, etc, in order to become more confident and have faster and more precise key access to any note that needs to be played.

Thing is, as you say, the actual training is not as fun as "just" playing the songs. This is what I suppose makes people stop learning or slows down progress, as one tends to spend time with things that are fun, rather than doing stuff that (would be essential but) is not fun.
Luckily I have an aim in learning, and so hopefully learning and mastering will be fun also... especially later when you see the results... play songs precisely and faster (but more calmly), than ever before. * ___ *


> [Scales and finger positioning]

Each of those is an important bit, right. - I suppose my problem lies within the positioning of fingers. - Especially when jumping. I have attached a short piece of a song, that I currently practice. (will be uploaded when I finally can play this without mistakes)
Currently, after three days, I can already play this, but I somehow cannot finish without atleast one or two mistakes... just because it's so damn fast. (130 bpm, each second atleast one tone..) - Timing is quite good with this song... this time atleast, becaue there is hardly any waiting for the next note, as it is so fast.

There are two things that I have noticed practising and playing this fast song:
1) I can find tones faster and became more precise in other, slower songs
2) jumps between chords that are exacly next to each other, do work out fine. Jumping to the 2nd to next or previous neighbour works out in most cases, but then jumping to something far away.. like D to C#m only works properly in about 80% chance, when not looking onto the keys while playing. - Works out perfectly fine when I look at the keys.

This is a problem, because with a song that fast, I cannot look onto the keys with each chord. I need to know how the song continues... fast!
One could, of course, cache everything into the brain at fast and difficult parts, and then simply play what you have learned, but that's obviously cheating, as it wouldn't help when playing more than 10 or 15 songs in a row. (It becomes hard and harder to remember everything in such detail with so many songs.) - So technique, practice and calming confidence wins over learning each of these difficult parts.
That's already one lesseon learned. ; )

As for the attached picture:
The black marker is progressing horizontally through the notes, then next line, etc.
After three days I somehow have kind of a feeling "where am I now with both hands and each finger" and how to get the next tone from here. - But with jumping this is still a gamble. Works out most of the time, but atleast one or two times in the whole song (screenshot does not show the complete song), one or two fingers jump too short or too far, and makes the note sound weird.

I wonder what happens if I just continue and play this over and over. Hands have continously adapted more and more, but will they finally learn where the chords ARE, and not any longer where they "should" be, simply by playing this part over and over?


> That may be where having a teacher/coach would be helpful to guide and make sure you do the reps.

Hmm.. I have always hesitated to get a teacher or coach, since this is a serious step.
Not only because it could be cost intensive, but mainly this makes the whole process less fun, as you are then bound to a specific time and day, where you HAVE to be up to for all of that and where you need to take your time for practising stuff that the teacher wants you to practise.
But perhaps (and most likely) if it is a good teacher, he will see what the problem(s) is/are, and can then create a plan what to go for first, what's 2nd priority, 3rd.. and so on.

In comparisation, currently I can freely choose when I am up to practise, when the time is right (and when girl friend let's me off home works for one or two hours xD).

Supposedly a teacher sent a song like in this thread, would perhaps find soo many things that need to be addressed, that I could spend a life time learning (and a fortune) until he/she is finally satisfied. ; )

I'll keep your advice for later though. - First let's see how the online practising works out, and if this is of any help. This is time independent, luckily.

Alright. I DO appreciate your advices and will make use of them, of course. Further on I cannot thank you enough for taking time for reading and understanding. - Means a lot to me. : )


> Hope someone else can give you more specific (and useful) advice...

Always appreciated. - I suppose you have already nailed the next steps, so there wasn't much to add. : )

Thanks again,
Cif ~
 

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Hi Cloistered Flame! o/ - Thank you again for your great advice!


> I don't play any instruments, only dabble in singing a little, so I can't give specific advice.

Ohh! Then your voice is the instrument. : ) - A thing that I am always astonished about! Also how to team singers up, and how everybody does his/her magic to make it "sound right" for the group.
Supposedly that's much harder than playing an instrument using hands.

Only thing I (believe to) know is, that when singing, and you need to yawn, the breathing technique needs further attention, right? : )


> [practice the basics]

Ahhh yes.. I should take more time to do exactly that.. - I now have booked an online course (which is passive, so I can watch their advice videos at any time and at any pace that I choose), just to learn and practice the basics, and the stuff that builds up onto them, etc, in order to become more confident and have faster and more precise key access to any note that needs to be played.

Thing is, as you say, the actual training is not as fun as "just" playing the songs. This is what I suppose makes people stop learning or slows down progress, as one tends to spend time with things that are fun, rather than doing stuff that (would be essential but) is not fun.
Luckily I have an aim in learning, and so hopefully learning and mastering will be fun also... especially later when you see the results... play songs precisely and faster (but more calmly), than ever before. * ___ *


> [Scales and finger positioning]

Each of those is an important bit, right. - I suppose my problem lies within the positioning of fingers. - Especially when jumping. I have attached a short piece of a song, that I currently practice. (will be uploaded when I finally can play this without mistakes)
Currently, after three days, I can already play this, but I somehow cannot finish without atleast one or two mistakes... just because it's so damn fast. (130 bpm, each second atleast one tone..) - Timing is quite good with this song... this time atleast, becaue there is hardly any waiting for the next note, as it is so fast.

There are two things that I have noticed practising and playing this fast song:
1) I can find tones faster and became more precise in other, slower songs
2) jumps between chords that are exacly next to each other, do work out fine. Jumping to the 2nd to next or previous neighbour works out in most cases, but then jumping to something far away.. like D to C#m only works properly in about 80% chance, when not looking onto the keys while playing. - Works out perfectly fine when I look at the keys.

This is a problem, because with a song that fast, I cannot look onto the keys with each chord. I need to know how the song continues... fast!
One could, of course, cache everything into the brain at fast and difficult parts, and then simply play what you have learned, but that's obviously cheating, as it wouldn't help when playing more than 10 or 15 songs in a row. (It becomes hard and harder to remember everything in such detail with so many songs.) - So technique, practice and calming confidence wins over learning each of these difficult parts.
That's already one lesseon learned. ; )

As for the attached picture:
The black marker is progressing horizontally through the notes, then next line, etc.
After three days I somehow have kind of a feeling "where am I now with both hands and each finger" and how to get the next tone from here. - But with jumping this is still a gamble. Works out most of the time, but atleast one or two times in the whole song (screenshot does not show the complete song), one or two fingers jump too short or too far, and makes the note sound weird.

I wonder what happens if I just continue and play this over and over. Hands have continously adapted more and more, but will they finally learn where the chords ARE, and not any longer where they "should" be, simply by playing this part over and over?


> That may be where having a teacher/coach would be helpful to guide and make sure you do the reps.

Hmm.. I have always hesitated to get a teacher or coach, since this is a serious step.
Not only because it could be cost intensive, but mainly this makes the whole process less fun, as you are then bound to a specific time and day, where you HAVE to be up to for all of that and where you need to take your time for practising stuff that the teacher wants you to practise.
But perhaps (and most likely) if it is a good teacher, he will see what the problem(s) is/are, and can then create a plan what to go for first, what's 2nd priority, 3rd.. and so on.

In comparisation, currently I can freely choose when I am up to practise, when the time is right (and when girl friend let's me off home works for one or two hours xD).

Supposedly a teacher sent a song like in this thread, would perhaps find soo many things that need to be addressed, that I could spend a life time learning (and a fortune) until he/she is finally satisfied. ; )

I'll keep your advice for later though. - First let's see how the online practising works out, and if this is of any help. This is time independent, luckily.

Alright. I DO appreciate your advices and will make use of them, of course. Further on I cannot thank you enough for taking time for reading and understanding. - Means a lot to me. : )


> Hope someone else can give you more specific (and useful) advice...

Always appreciated. - I suppose you have already nailed the next steps, so there wasn't much to add. : )

Thanks again,
Cif ~
That was a detailed response!

Vocal music is a wonderful thing. It's why we are fans of Kajiura's music, because she makes full use of vocals.

I'm glad to hear that you're taking a course. It's a good start. My vocal coach said recently that music is like an ocean - a life-long journey of learning - so after you're done with this course, you'll probably find another opportunity to learn from someone else or perform.

Another thing I would suggest is looking at opportunities to play for others or play with others. There's a lot you learn (or confirm) about music by creating it with other people.

I sang in my church choir for years and a lot is absorbed from others as you select, score, arrange, practice, refine, and eventually perform, different songs in different genres. It is an accelerant to your private practice as you get to test things out and see what works.

Have a fun and productive journey ahead!
 
Hi Cloistered Flame! o/ - Thank you again for your great advice!


> I don't play any instruments, only dabble in singing a little, so I can't give specific advice.

Ohh! Then your voice is the instrument. : ) - A thing that I am always astonished about! Also how to team singers up, and how everybody does his/her magic to make it "sound right" for the group.
Supposedly that's much harder than playing an instrument using hands.

Only thing I (believe to) know is, that when singing, and you need to yawn, the breathing technique needs further attention, right? : )


> [practice the basics]

Ahhh yes.. I should take more time to do exactly that.. - I now have booked an online course (which is passive, so I can watch their advice videos at any time and at any pace that I choose), just to learn and practice the basics, and the stuff that builds up onto them, etc, in order to become more confident and have faster and more precise key access to any note that needs to be played.

Thing is, as you say, the actual training is not as fun as "just" playing the songs. This is what I suppose makes people stop learning or slows down progress, as one tends to spend time with things that are fun, rather than doing stuff that (would be essential but) is not fun.
Luckily I have an aim in learning, and so hopefully learning and mastering will be fun also... especially later when you see the results... play songs precisely and faster (but more calmly), than ever before. * ___ *


> [Scales and finger positioning]

Each of those is an important bit, right. - I suppose my problem lies within the positioning of fingers. - Especially when jumping. I have attached a short piece of a song, that I currently practice. (will be uploaded when I finally can play this without mistakes)
Currently, after three days, I can already play this, but I somehow cannot finish without atleast one or two mistakes... just because it's so damn fast. (130 bpm, each second atleast one tone..) - Timing is quite good with this song... this time atleast, becaue there is hardly any waiting for the next note, as it is so fast.

There are two things that I have noticed practising and playing this fast song:
1) I can find tones faster and became more precise in other, slower songs
2) jumps between chords that are exacly next to each other, do work out fine. Jumping to the 2nd to next or previous neighbour works out in most cases, but then jumping to something far away.. like D to C#m only works properly in about 80% chance, when not looking onto the keys while playing. - Works out perfectly fine when I look at the keys.

This is a problem, because with a song that fast, I cannot look onto the keys with each chord. I need to know how the song continues... fast!
One could, of course, cache everything into the brain at fast and difficult parts, and then simply play what you have learned, but that's obviously cheating, as it wouldn't help when playing more than 10 or 15 songs in a row. (It becomes hard and harder to remember everything in such detail with so many songs.) - So technique, practice and calming confidence wins over learning each of these difficult parts.
That's already one lesseon learned. ; )

As for the attached picture:
The black marker is progressing horizontally through the notes, then next line, etc.
After three days I somehow have kind of a feeling "where am I now with both hands and each finger" and how to get the next tone from here. - But with jumping this is still a gamble. Works out most of the time, but atleast one or two times in the whole song (screenshot does not show the complete song), one or two fingers jump too short or too far, and makes the note sound weird.

I wonder what happens if I just continue and play this over and over. Hands have continously adapted more and more, but will they finally learn where the chords ARE, and not any longer where they "should" be, simply by playing this part over and over?


> That may be where having a teacher/coach would be helpful to guide and make sure you do the reps.

Hmm.. I have always hesitated to get a teacher or coach, since this is a serious step.
Not only because it could be cost intensive, but mainly this makes the whole process less fun, as you are then bound to a specific time and day, where you HAVE to be up to for all of that and where you need to take your time for practising stuff that the teacher wants you to practise.
But perhaps (and most likely) if it is a good teacher, he will see what the problem(s) is/are, and can then create a plan what to go for first, what's 2nd priority, 3rd.. and so on.

In comparisation, currently I can freely choose when I am up to practise, when the time is right (and when girl friend let's me off home works for one or two hours xD).

Supposedly a teacher sent a song like in this thread, would perhaps find soo many things that need to be addressed, that I could spend a life time learning (and a fortune) until he/she is finally satisfied. ; )

I'll keep your advice for later though. - First let's see how the online practising works out, and if this is of any help. This is time independent, luckily.

Alright. I DO appreciate your advices and will make use of them, of course. Further on I cannot thank you enough for taking time for reading and understanding. - Means a lot to me. : )


> Hope someone else can give you more specific (and useful) advice...

Always appreciated. - I suppose you have already nailed the next steps, so there wasn't much to add. : )

Thanks again,
Cif ~
There's a saying (I heard from TwoSetViolin on YouTube) that is similar to "if you can play slow, you can play fast". (I may be quoting it not exactly).

What I take from this is try to practice by slowing down your piece, if your app allows, playing slower (25% slower or 50% slowe) will allow you to get the flow of moving across the keys on the keyboard accurately and in time (don't mind that it's slowe). By the time you're confident and return to normal speed you will find that you can more confidently play the piece at normal speed.

This works for vocal practice or any other form practice to be honest. Definitely for playing instruments.
 
Ree : )

> Vocal music is a wonderful thing. It's why we are fans of Kajiura's music, because she makes full use of vocals.

Yesss, that's why we like it that much. - Enjoying her melodies, her play on piano AND her play with the vocals.
It is like you said... music is an ocean of opportunities and possibilities. : ] - And it never gets old. * ___ *
Of course.. life long learning applies for many many things in life. - Music too, of course. : ) - Development goes on, and therefore even if (in theory) one could absorp all the knowledge, you'd need to keep learning, because others constantly create new content.. and new knowledge of potential value for oneself.


> Another thing I would suggest is looking at opportunities to play for others or play with others. There's a lot you learn (or confirm) about music by creating it with other people.

Creating is quite a new challenge. Never actually created music. Only always replicated. - Playing with others is .. hmm.. I suppose not yet possible. I need to get key access precision and timing right first.
Playing FOR others is possible already, but unfortunately in my close environment nobody likes Kajiura's music. :/ That's why I learned non-japanese titles also. (All linked on the Youtube channel in numerous versions, so I can link em if necessary.)

Thing is, if possible, I'd wish to be able to play YK's music before other creator's music. Be it Fiction Junction or See-Saw.
Everything else is of less priority for me. - I know, this is not good, as learning works with all kind of music, BUT I enjoy YK's music best. : ] - And enjoying the music, enjoy playing and learning is (imho) VERY important for quick progress. It needs to be FUN and as success comes, it's not just fun but also SOOOO rewarding. - Feels just right and I want to keep going like this forever. Her music is just... the best. : ]
If I could find somebody to jam with or for, who likes (or comes to like) her musik too... then why not? : )


> I sang in my church choir for years and a lot is absorbed from others as you select, score, arrange, practice, refine, and eventually perform, different songs in different genres.

I suppose it's best to see how others do it, and keep what you need from them. : ]
It's just that YK's performances unfortunately are not fully shown, so you could see how and what notes she's playing or going over.
There are, however, some short moments where you can see her playing, which is often helpful and astonishing at the same time. She's all over the keys at the same time, and sometimes I can manage and copy that. - I have found out, that coming back to something that is too difficult now, might be completely fine next time. - That I am already doing.


> Have a fun and productive journey ahead!

Thank you - you too!! : ))
Clearly there is daily progress and the momentum keeps going. I just hope it remains fun in the future too. If so, I cannot see why it could stop one day. - It's so fun and rewarding. - Even though in my local environment there is nobody who enjoys her music too, but myself.
 
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What I take from this is try to practice by slowing down your piece, if your app allows, playing slower (25% slower or 50% slowe) will allow you to get the flow of moving across the keys on the keyboard accurately and in time (don't mind that it's slowe). By the time you're confident and return to normal speed you will find that you can more confidently play the piece at normal speed.

This works for vocal practice or any other form practice to be honest. Definitely for playing instruments.

> There's a saying (I heard from TwoSetViolin on YouTube) that is similar to "if you can play slow, you can play fast". (I may be quoting it not exactly). [...]

Yup, the tool can also slow down up to 50% of speed.
And yes, it is true: Slowing down gives you the time to access the right chord, but it needs to be done without looking on the instrument. That's the critical point, I suppose. Else you cannot take anything from that.. just that it worked out slowly, and with enough practice you'll get faster reading and playing at the same time.

In my practice I constantly find myself looking on both, which works out most of the time, but this way a constant performance is impossible. The next performance is guaranteed to be different with that. And in the end I cannot guarantee error free playing.
At times, I even find myself enjoying her music and the vocals so much, that for a split second I am forgetting to read the next note, and... that's it again.. :D - Just too much magic to become overwhelmed with. ; )

Anyway, imagine if eyes could remain on the sheets, one wouldn't need to refocus on the keys, start the optical search of where I am and where to go to next with each hand, play it the way it needs to be played, and while that is happening, already look back on the sheets to find out how to continue.. and so on. - If my theory is correct, one could save atleast 50% of time, when the eyes remain on the sheets.
Having more time gives confidence and... imagine: One could be playing ear candy in the meanwhile, not just the keys on the sheets. \o/
I wonder if I could reach that level one day.. ^^'''

Cif ~
 
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