I’ve taken piano lessons on and off throughout my life. When I was a preteen for a few years, and when my children were babies. I’ve been back at it for 6 months after a 6-year break.
I love music. I listen to music of all kinds when I write and draw and work out. But I have no talent for music. At all.
There are many good reasons to take lessons as an adult: for mental and physical health, memory and focus, and relaxation. For me, it’s just important to do something I don’t do well. I embrace my suckitude. Every week, I’m humbled by my limitation, and every week, I experience a love that exists only for itself. No ego boost. No showing off.
I have a number of friends with an innate talent and developed skill for music who play at a professional level (singing, guitar, piano, drums), and I will never even come close to what they can do. I value that because it’s real easy to get wrapped up in my creativity and forget how much talent is all around me.
My kids have each been taking lessons for five years. They have a natural feel for music that I don’t. I think it’s good for them to see me struggle and to be better at something than me.
Voices vs Chords
My favorite pieces are classical, especially Bach with his penchant for writing chorale style–4 voices represented on the same staff rather than the usual melody and harmony of chords you probably know. Focus is my weakest skill, so having fingers playing different keys at different times, like a choir with voices dropping in and out, really challenges me.
I’m working on three Tchaikovsky pieces now: The Italian Song, the French Song, and my absolute favorite, Morning Prayer.