Perfect Pitch: No Measure of Musical Ability

Perfect Pitch: No Measure of Musical Ability

I once saw a YouTube video of a dog demonstrating perfect pitch.  A lovely Golden Retriever sat at what looked to be a makeshift, paw-friendly piano keyboard . Opposite and off screen, a woman played a penny whistle and addressed the dog in German.  The woman would...
What is a Tritone? And, What Isn’t It?

What is a Tritone? And, What Isn’t It?

The word tritone is frequently used interchangeably with the terms augmented fourth and diminished fifth.  Let’s see if we can clear that up. The intervals of the augmented fourth and diminished fifth indeed sound the same when played out of context on a piano,...

Raw Dough and Tea: Diabolical Solfège Songs

I recently discovered that an old acquaintance of mine is a fellow musicianship teacher and has been writing and recording diabolically clever songs that illustrate musical ear training concepts in a refreshing and fun way. David Newman is an accomplished baritone...
What Is Musicianship?

What Is Musicianship?

Anyone who has studied music at a conservatory or college level has taken an ear training class typically called “Musicianship.”  This is where we train our ears to recognize intervals and chord qualities, learn how to perform melodies and rhythms...
The Case for Movable “Do” in Classroom Musicianship

The Case for Movable “Do” in Classroom Musicianship

Against my better judgment, I’m jumping into the fray regarding methods used in the teaching of sight singing. Normally I try to stay away from such conflicts, but I can only take so much disparagement of my beloved Movable Do system.  The last straw is the...