Many music books are designed to help better understand written music and theory, but "Primacy of the Ear" focuses on the development of the ear.
"Primacy" outlines pianist and MacArthur Fellow Ran Blake's approach to growing the ear and explains how musical memory is the key to becoming a more potent musician and shaping a personal musical style.
Included are the legendary “ear-robics” exercises, developed by Ran over the course of 30 years as head of the Contemporary Improvisation Department at New England Conservatory of Music.
Also covered: The Auteur Theory and how it translates into music making, developing and differentiating between the conscious and subconscious mind, listening and musical memory, how to learn from your musical heroes without being consumed by them, developing and using repertoire, and how to record your music most effectively.
Primacy of the Ear is Ran Blake’s genius distilled—his teaching and musical... More > philosophy in one volume. Co-written by Jason Rogers.< Less
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People Reviewed This Product
Feb 7, 2011
I read through this book in one evening - but its content ;utterly relevant to the modern day improviser/composer, can inform and inspire the music making of anyone who reads it for a very long time after. On the surface its one of the most clearly thought out aural texts for any music student - delivered plainly and intelligently, full of common sense , the best of the traditional approaches combined with Ran's own deeply perceptive ideas in regard to the evolution of the skill of aural perception. Deeper, are the developmental exercises toward developing a powerful and individual 'aural energy'; orientating perception back toward the ear rather than diffusing it with abstract and visual distractions - and ultimately toward the formation of individual style. As a teacher and player I recommend this book to musicians who are really serious about developing their ear, but also anyone who has an interest in musical sound in contemporary culture.
As someone whom has been lucky enough to experience Ran Blake's teaching in person in various settings over the years, I feel that one of the most remarkable accomplishments of this book is the manner in which Blake and Jason Rogers have been able to encapsulate the essence of such an experiential method in printed word. Just reading the Foreword was tremendously exciting for me. I anticipate using this book for reference, teaching and practice well into in the future. This book was long-awaited by me and many others who knew it was in the pipeline, and was worth the wait!
A fantastic book for anyone who wants a clear methodology for developing their aural skills and allowing them inform the development of a personal sound. This is clearly written, without heavy jargon, with plenty of suggested examples and further reading that does discriminate against any genre. As a university lecturer I plan to incorporate many of the ideas into my the course I take. Thanks
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