Sins From The Past

As beginner pianists, a lot of what intermediate and advanced players so seems next to impossible to us. Maybe something like playing 4-note chords. Because it requires to stretch your fingers, and have the hand in the right shape to be able to hit the four notes at the same time. How to be successful learning it then? Get started.

In the piece Scarborough Fair, the left hand had to play 5–3–1 broken chord. That was simple enough. But then, in line 2, even though the notes were same, the fingering mentioned on the sheet was 5–4–2. Why? Because after that you needed to play one more note which you could using finger 1. This was obviously harder than just using 5–3–1 and so I chose to continue using the same fingering. To play the 4th note then, I would just move my hand and play the note with finger 1. Same result, right? Wrong!

Playing three notes and them moving the hand to get to the fourth lead to a break in the flow. I could not press the 4th note while I continued to de-press the 3rd one. This is why it was important to use the fingering mentioned in the sheet. There are times when there is an easy option available. But in this case, there was a right option and a wrong one. Also, I am not sure if the option that seemed easier was actually easy. Hand movements never are. It was just more familiar than the other one.

So yesterday I set out to fix the fingering. I spent a lot of time playing the same two lines again and again so that I can unlearn and relearn. Even now, if I am not paying attention, my hand plays 5–3–1. I need to practice until 5–4–2 becomes automatic.

Its important to recognise one’s mistakes and take corrective action. I am glad that I am doing it. Hopefully the output would be a nicer sounding recording and some new skill development.

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