DDR

Basic Piano Music Improvisation Technique for Hymns

Music improvisation is kind of like losing weight. You see other people successfully doing it but you can never really get it down quite right. I admire those great pianists who can turn an ordinary, boring hymn into a complicated prelude. I’ve always wanted to learn how to do that. I figure, anyone can learn how to play precisely what is printed on a music score. But not everybody can add embellishments and grandeur to a plain piece. When people want me to play a hymn, often they also add, “Can you make it sound cool too?” They just don’t know how much I long to make it sound “cool.”

improv_church.jpgWhen I ask these accomplished accompanists the secret to their talent, they usually tell me, “I don’t know how to explain it. It just happens.” It seems that learning how to improvise is something that just gradually occurs little by little until one day you play something and you realize what you played is not what is on the music score. I wish somebody could actually think, pinpoint, and explain what happens when they improvise and share that knowledge to thirsty musicians like myself.

Luckily, I once had a piano teacher who was close to that point. She accompanied her church every week with grandiose, glorious, complicated fluff all from just reading off the church hymnbook. There is one secret that she taught me that made a world of difference in the hymns I play for my church. I like to call it the “left chord inversion sequence.”
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June 25th, 2007 | 9 Comments | DDR, Miscellaneous, Money, Music

DDR Series Part III: Dance Praise, a Christian Alternative

In my previous post for this series, I revealed alternative ways to play DDR on computer. I didn’t mention this program because it deserved a full article review.

Before I continue, I want to thank Digital Praise for the complimentary copy of Dance Praise. I really appreciate it.
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December 21st, 2005 | 18 Comments | DDR

DDR Series Part II: Free, open-source DDR for Computer

Note: Since this program deals with freeware programs, I have also included this article in the freeware review.

Continuing on the long-awaited sequel to the Dance Dance Revolution series, I bring you Part II! In my last article, I gave a crash course introduction to the concept of “DDR” and DDR games. As promised, I said that I would reveal how to play DDR on the computer.

Why Play DDR on the Computer?
At home, I attend the Fil-am International SDA church. About 50% of the members there are of Philippines decent. Now, for some reason, DDR seems to be prevalent with the Asian population. During one of our church parties, some of the kids busted out the DDR Extreme for PS2. That night, I was hooked! I wanted to play DDR at home and bring it to my boarding school so that my friends and I could stay up all night DDRing (which, by the way, we ended up doing many times). Problem was … I didn’t have a PS2, or a PSOne, or an Xbox, or a Gamecube. And I didn’t feel like buying one either. I only had a computer. Surely, there must be a way to play DDR on PC. But, how would I connect the controllers? Were there already controllers that hookup to USB or parallel ports? If there was a way, how did it work?
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December 18th, 2005 | 1 Comment | DDR

 
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