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This book was introduced to me by my trumpet teacher and I am ever thankful for it. It has shaped my learning with self-fulfillment, confidence, and though I am only a beginner I can improvise well, learn better, and improve faster and with more accuracy. Provided you stick to the (simple) method, and teach your mind and ego how to behave, you'll make progress in leaps and bounds. For me, one of the best buys in the music category. 5 stars.
C'est une œuvre de développement personnel très bien écrite qui parfois décourage mais le plus souvent motive tout musicien, quel que soit son domaine ou son niveau. Pour ma part, ce livre m'a aidé et m'aide encore. Je conseille à tous ceux qui notamment peuvent trouver dur l'apprentissage de la musique . Merci Kenny.
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133 internautes sur 136 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
This is a great tool to quiet your "inner critic."15 mars 1999
- Publié sur Amazon.com
I am only about 3/4s through this book, and I couldn't be more enthusiastic. I happen to love Kenny Werner's piano playing--always heard him and thought "Well, I'll never sound like THAT!"-- only to read his book and have him address this very attitude with unbelievable accuracy. I've already changed the way that I practice my instruments, and I just put some of his approach to work in a 3 day recording session with some players that I admire very much. While I had couple of brief self-doubt meltdowns, the whole experience was so much easier than I had even hoped for, and yes, even "effortless" at times. I know that changing my perspective, and my expectations made a huge difference in my ability to enjoy the moment, and as a result, the music that came forth. I am recommending this book for anyone who has ever played a musical instrument--at ANY level--and stopped, even if it was a long time ago. This book explains what might have gotten in your way of the music-making experience. I also want to recommend it to those of us who play professionally but are either frustrated with our own progress or just not enjoying it as much as we did when we were young. There's no reason music can't be that fun again.
67 internautes sur 70 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
You will enter a safe place, where nothing can harm you.9 août 2005
- Publié sur Amazon.com
I've heard a lot about Mr. Werner's Effortless Mastery title. In fact, I know a band whose two primary musicians constantly bicker about whether this "effortless" approach is viable. After years of hearing about it, I decided to find out for myself.
The book starts out with one basic premise: you are an aspiring, practicing musician, looking to "break through" to higher grounds of playing. Many people are at this stage, but have a fear of unfamiliar musical territory. The bulk of this book is dedicated to removing this fear.
Werner's approach to doing so is by breaking down negative programming that's been beaten into aspiring musicians worldwide throughout their music careers. Some have a fear that's instilled by their teachers, who constantly tell them they're not good enough, not perfect enough, not smooth enough. Others have this fear imbued by "great" musicians - those who seem to push the boundaries and perform inhuman feats on their instrument. According to Mr. Werner, all this negative programming eventually becomes an insurmountable barrier for advancement - unless it is reversed and positive programming is imposed on the musician. Who will impose this programming? Most likely, it will be the musician himself.
Again, the basic premise comes into play: you must work on your technique, learn new music, and address your weaknesses. That is a given, and there is no way around it. However, you must also have a positive outlook while doing so - otherwise all the imperfections you've ironed out during practice will come back to haunt you in performance.
Some of the initial chapters reveal in great depth Mr. Werner's personal experience. In his younger years, he went through all the negative programming himself, and has learned (and continues learning) how to reverse it. It is from the standpoint of this experience that he approaches the subject-matter.
Through gradual guidance in the later chapters (and the three meditations on the included CD), Mr. Werner tries to help the student create a personal space, in which the student is master. By revisiting this space and learning to practice and perform from within this space, the student will become the master and reveal his inner voice. Don't expect to become an overnight master effortlessly, however: Werner suggests that learning to play from within the space will require relearning the instrument from scratch. This is a slow process at the beginning, but becomes natural as time goes by.
Unfortunately for many, a lot of the points made in this book are self-evident, or at least should be. Nonetheless, his encouraging tone instills the belief that mastery is possible. In the end, the student will hopefully realize that mastery is, by definition, effortless.
Some sections of this book are specific to particular instruments. Werner is a pianist, so quite a few examples are piano-related; he also talks about some other common jazz instruments, notably wind and brass. To my dismay, the guitar isn't mentioned, but the general pointers in the book allow this approach to be taylored to any instrument, and even to activities beyond music and arts in general.
41 internautes sur 42 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Werner teaches us how to reach our potential as musicians..3 juillet 1999
MICHAEL ROYAL (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Publié sur Amazon.com
This is a truly a great book...it indentifies, and deconstructs fear and inadequacy in the realm of music performance...Werner explains the many reasons why musicians do not play up to their potential...he offers a direct access to applied musical experience and virtuosity by way of 1.) establishing a new rapport with the music/ instrument <THE SPACE> 2).honest self-realization (getting rid of the need to sound good, the necessity of being detached, so that "...we can be honest without becoming depressed". 3). New practice techniques <THE FIVE MINUTE TECHNIQUE> 4).Affirmations <MUSIC IS EASY/THERE ARE NO WRONG NOTES/EVERY NOTE I PLAY IS THE MOST BEAUTIFUL SOUND I HAVE EVER HEARD, I AM GREAT, I AM A MASTER, and a bonus CD, which is a guided meditation of all of the above. He talks about the "Monk Principle", and facilitates shifts in thinking, like, MUSIC IS NOT HARD, JUST UNFAMILIAR. He has many inciteful suggestions, "Mimic Playing", and "PLAYING FAST" to name a couple, all of which are designed to "rewire" the way we view ourselves. In short, he shows us how to give ourselves permission to be great musicians. Add this book to your regime, and I guarantee, you'll be cookin'! Thanks Kenny!
37 internautes sur 41 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Kenny's Really Got It!19 août 2000
L'évaluation d'un enfant
- Publié sur Amazon.com
I read Kenny's book while I was at sea for 3 months, and listened to the CD many times. My playing has really opened up, and I think he's right about all of it. When asked about effortless mastery, Bird said,(paraphrased) "Learn all the technical stuff and then forget it,just play!" That is strictly analogous to practicing correctly, and entering the space. Werner's remarks about the importance of learning the melody, how our minds ruin it for us because we continually rush through the music thereby missing what in fact we are after, practicing up-tempos by just "wiggling your fingers", his observations RE: Bill Evans and Horowitz videos, his "get real time" approach to self-assessment about how to really improve, how to practice, the distinction familiar and unfamiliar as opposed to easy and difficult, and his concept of the Learning Diamond...it is lovingly written... it encourages and shows how to give ourselves permission to really play from our hearts...and effortless mastery emerges from that...boldly insightful and generous.
95 internautes sur 112 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile
Some interesting insights, but beware of important errors15 mai 2005
- Publié sur Amazon.com
This book could be described as an attempt to apply pseudo-Zen teachings to music practice and performance. While it contains some valuable thoughts, much of it is totally impracticle, idealistic, and in conflict with how musical development actually works.
At the beginning, Werner claims "Innovation IS Jazz!" and he fills half a page with "proof" of this assertion. First, I do not see the relevance of this page to the rest of the book. Second, Werner is not an jazz innovator; if he knows the secret of jazz innovation, why hasn't he produced any innovations?
There is some valuable advice in the "fear" chapters. Werner describes some harmful mindsets many students get into when they are practicing, listening, teaching, and composing.
The affirmations Werner recommends are useful if you do not really enjoy playing or if you are not satisfied with your current ability. While they won't actually make you play better (at least not much better), they may be able to help you overcome mental blocks that are preventing you from enjoying the experience of playing music. (It is supposed to be enjoyable, as many musicians seem to have forgotten these days!)
There are far too many specific points to go into in this review, but I will highlight a couple.
First, Werner thinks interference from the "mind" while practicing is destructive. I disagree. When practicing, the execution of a passage should never be repeated thoughtlessly. After each repetition, you should use your "mind" to decide what was correct about that execution and what needs to be changed. Through this constant process of self-correction, your playing becomes more and more refined. If you merely play things over and over again without thinking, this will occur much more hap-hazardly, if at all.
Second, Werner believes that things need to be practiced to TOTAL mastery before you move on to something else. This is both silly and dangerous. First, you will never achieve TOTAL mastery over something in the way Werner sees it. There is always room for human error; it is always possible to botch something no matter how thoroughly you have mastered it. Second, it takes far too long to reach the point of mastery Werner is talking about for it to have any practicle value. It would take years to accomplish much of anything by this method. There are far more efficient practice methods that allow you to improve much more quickly. It is simply not necessary to achieve total mastery over every single little thing you practice.
I could go on at length, but those are some of the more important criticisms I have of the book. I recommend it for some of the valuable insights and advice it contains, but the reader needs to think critically about what he actually adopts into his practice routine.