And although it dates from the classical era, the Canon chord sequence forms the basis of numerous pieces of popular music, which means you will be able to apply the keyboard skills and theory learnt in this series of lessons to many other song sequences going forward.
Here is an example of how the Canon chord sequence can be made to sound totally modern:
Each module then adds another ‘bite-sized’ piece to your own unique Canon performance, explaining where the new material comes from and showing you how to practice it with numerous illustrations, backing tracks and full audio and MIDI support.
Here’s how your understanding has developed by Module Five:
The Musicarta Canon Project is:
Great for ambitious young keyboard players. If you’re thinking your future might lie in popular music, you want to get a lead and start building a solid foundation of ‘practical theory’ –– straight away. The Musicarta Canon Project has your needs and abilities in mind, and teaches you theory you can use in a progressive, step-by-step way.
Great for classical crossovers. If you’ve followed the traditional approach to learning the piano, you’re probably very good at playing the piano. The Musicarta Canon Project aims to balance your technical expertise with a chord-based keyboard creativity method which leads to free improvisation.
Great for adult re-starters and continuers. Adults who had piano lessons in their youth often feel that they didn’t really satisfy their original creative urge. The Musicarta Canon Project offers a perfect opportunity to revitalise that hard-earned expertise and start actually making music in a structured, supported way.
Perfect continuing education for semi-pro and pro musicians. If you’re already in the music business as a performer, session musician or songwriter-arranger, you’ll know the importance of having the right harmonies and textures at your fingertips. The Musicarta Canon Project is sure to inspire you to keep those ideas coming!
Great for piano teachers and school music departments. Today’s music pupils are demanding a more rounded musical curriculum, and the Musicarta Canon Project is an ideal supplement to traditional music lessons, teaching theory, harmony and improvisation in an attractive, contemporary way.
The Musicarta Canon Project consists of:
The Musicarta Canon Project is available as an Internet download or on a CD. The download file size is 80 MB.
You will be taken to the E-junkie check-out page where you can pay using your PayPal account or your regular credit card.
Once your payment has gone through, you will be sent an email with your secure download link.
You have five attempts and twelve hours to get your download. If you experience difficulties, contact Musicarta via email@example.com.
NOTE: You should temporarily disable any ‘accelerated download’ tool bars you might have installed. These will use up all your download attempts in one go.
To avoid disappointment, try to download outside of peak traffic hours!
If downloading the Canon Project doesn't suit you, you can order it on CD-ROM from TrepStar, the premiere US CD/DVD order fulfillment service.
You will be taken to Trepstar’s retail page where you can pay using any method you wish.
Your Musicarta Canon Project data disc will be dispatched by US Post (airmail for overseas customers) within 24 hours.
You can expect delivery in 2-3 days continental USA, 10-15 days rest-of-workd.
To study with the Musicarta Canon Project you only need:
MidiPiano is an easy-to-use MIDI file player ideal for playing the Canon Project MIDI files to demonstrate the Canon Project musical examples. (All appropriate musical examples in the Canon Project have an accompanying MIDI file in the download/on the CD-ROM.) MidiPiano takes the MIDI (computer music code) file and plays it as a basic sound file while keys on a keyboard light up and a representation of the music scrolls across in a ‘Piano Roll’ pane.
Here's a demonstration of MidiPiano playing one of the Canon Project MIDI files:
(Note: MIDI files are tiny - there's no delay waiting for files to load or buffer in MidiPiano.)
You can see how, with Musicarta and MidiPiano, YOU DON’T EVEN HAVE TO READ MUSIC TO STUDY THE CANON PROJECT! You can ‘see-and-hear’ what to play. MidiPiano can slow down performances, zoom in and repeat sections, so you are sure to pick up what to play.
MidiPiano is just as useful if you do read music – it will help free you up from ‘the dots’ and move you towards ‘seeing the music in the keyboard’ rather more.
Note that MidiPiano requires no special computer skills – it operates just like a normal media player. MidiPiano is a Windows application – Synthesia is a good Mac-compatible alternative.
Every care is taken to make sure your Canon study programme gets off to a good start and moves forward smoothly and efficiently.
‘Preparing to Learn’, the first section of the Musicarta Canon Project, makes sure you manage the resources in the Project download or CD-ROM successfully and are ready to study.
You’re walked through setting up your study environment, organizing your files and audio resources (media players, audio demo files and backing tracks) and launching and testing your free ‘see-and-hear’ MidiPiano MIDI file player.
‘Preparing to Learn’ then goes on to help you get to grips with the key of D major, with its two black keys, F sharp and C sharp. The key of D is an easy one to learn and a great first departure from all-white-key C major. Self-taught musicians especially will benefit from help mastering black-key keys and understanding key signatures, but you do not have to master the ‘Key of D’ material completely before you get on with learning to play Canon arrangements.
The Musicarta Canon Project was originally a series of free-to-view web pages here at musicarta.com. Skeleton modules are still there so you can see what’s covered. Link through to the [Canon Project TOC] here and browse the modules to see-and-hear what you will learn to play and all the theory you will cover.
It’s easy to learn music theory, but without applying your knowledge right away, it doesn’t ‘stick’. That’s why each Canon Project module teaches you both theory and a keyboard skill, and also offers you a practical challenge to exercise your new knowledge – a fragment to play by ear, a similar texture to work out, and so on. The answers are collected in a linked section at the end of the book – with written music, audio and MIDI demonstration files, so you’re bound to ‘get it’! You can get an idea of the audio challenges by skimming through the skeleton Canon Project web pages in the the Table of Contents .
Being able to just play what you hear seems like magic, but like most apparently God-given talents, it’s actually a skill you build over time.
Studying the Canon in depth offers a great opportunity to develop your musical ear. Musicarta’s special audio coaching material helps you start learning to tell just by listening what chords are being used in mainstream popular music. Here’s a sample from the section given over to recognizing the five chords of the Canon chord sequence by ear:
Most modules have audio challenges as well, so the Canon project gives you plenty of practice ‘picking out a tune’.
Practicing on your own is invaluable, but it’s easy to let yourself get away with slowing down, little delays and having a second go at everything! The Canon Project gently prepares you for real-time performance with custom-made instrumental backing tracks and drum tracks at a variety of speeds to support your practicing and inspire your improvisations.
Backing tracks not only help you practice ‘just keeping going’, but also add another dimension of enjoyment to your playing. There is plenty of practical, entry-level advice on handling backing tracks in the Canon Project book and on the Musicarta website.
Learning for free on the Internet is great, but it’s easier to work with everything in one place on your desktop, without having to open numerous tabs to move between modules. With the Canon Project download, you also have the audio files on hand without buffering or bandwidth considerations. A printed-out hard copy on your music stand that you can open and take anywhere means you’re not tied to a screen, and will encourage you to play more frequently – and the more you play, the better you get!
The Canon Project contains enough material for six months’ creative keyboard work or more.
Studying one chord sequence in depth – especially a ‘typical’ chord sequence like the Canon – has well-understood benefits. Musical elements become apparent that no amount of ‘Learn this tune by that person!’ copying can reveal. Knowing one chord sequence really well is a prerequisite for improvisation, for example.
The Canon Project will continue to be a ‘live’ project supported at Musicarta. Further audio challenges and showcase performances will be posted, along with advice and feedback.
For example, watch this Canon Diary video entry from the Musicarta YouTube channel. (The level is quite advanced…!)
In fact, there’s no limit to what you can learn once you start on the Musicarta Canon Project! Buy now and get started straight away!