When I begin working with new piano students, I begin by asking them about their musical goals. Often, they’ll say that they want to “improve” by learning a bunch of fancy left-hand accompaniment patterns. Whether they play jazz, rock, pop, or whatever, they dream of watching their left hand fly up and down the lower part of the keyboard under the melodies they play.
While I do show them some new patterns to play, the biggest change in their playing comes when I lead them through the process of playing the left-hand accompaniments they already know with a higher degree of rhythmic flexibility.
In other words, they develop true fluency.
If you start out by learning more complex stuff, you’ll often sound exactly the same as you did before, but while playing more notes. And ironically, this can make you become even less fluent than when you started, since you’ll have to slow down and think too much about what you’re playing. Also, the more you play with your left hand, the less fluent you’ll usually be with your right hand.
Watch me explain and demonstrate it all here:
Piano Myth-Busting #12: “You have to learn lots of accompaniment patterns”
The more rhythmic variety you can bring to what you already know, the more your music will flow!
Enjoy the journey,