[sdiy] LUMI keys

Donald Tillman don at till.com
Wed Jun 19 19:53:04 CEST 2019

On Jun 19, 2019, at 8:10 AM, Phillip Gallo <philgallo at gmail.com> wrote:
> Don, i agree with the philosophy of your "rant" (also the bag pipes as a practical case).
> Isn't there a bit more, though ?
> The pedagogical tradition includes "play along" - student plays with the teacher.
> The illuminated key clavier idea would seem a close cousin to the "play along" with Mel Bay 45rpm record that came with my Kay flattop?
> I can play "Down in the Valley" to this day!

Every good teacher knows that, in the craft, you have a large number of approaches at your disposal; demonstrating for the student, critiquing their technique, explaining the theory, guiding the student to discover on their own, hitting them with a stick if they're doing it wrong, etc.  And the best teachers know when to use each approach.

Sometimes a "brain dump", sometimes the Socratic Method.

Yes, playing along with the student is an excellent teaching technique.  And play-along records are a great tool because playing with other musicians is a different set of issues than playing by yourself, especially with regards to timing.  A metronome, also, great tool.

But if you're building a gizmo to help teach an instrument... well, there's an enormous tendency to do exactly the wrong thing.  An engineer will often abstract the situation into "problem + technology => solution" and end up building a device that performs the very function that the student most needs to do on their own.

That is the case for light up note keyboards, either in 1969, or today.

  -- Don
Donald Tillman, Palo Alto, California

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