Making Music and Having a Blast

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In her follow-up to Making Music and Enriching Lives: A Guide for All Music Teachers, Bonnie Blanchard offers students a set of tools for their musical lives that will help them stay engaged, even during the challenging times in their musical development. Blanchard discusses issues such as finding an instructor, selecting the right instrument, and choosing a college or conservatory. The book includes lessons on music theory and history as well as a guide to finding additional materials in print and online. Blanchard’s strategies for making practice productive and preparing for auditions are useful tips students can return to again and again.

Paperback, 472 pages.

"A fantastic book—filled with practical advice and real-life scenarios. I wish I could have read this before I regretfully quit my piano lessons." - Sean Covey, author of the bestselling The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens and The 7 Habits of Happy Kids

"A fabulous source of information to answer EVERY imaginable concern or query that a music student (or their parent) may have... I'm just a bit sad that Bonnie didn't write this back in the dark ages when I was a kid.... I needed this book and I know I would have adored it." - Alexa Still


Table of Contents

Preface: The Long, Winding, and Exciting Road to Becoming a Musician

Part 1. Getting Off to a Good Start
1. Tips and Tricks for Fast Success
2. The Surprising Truth about Talent
3. The Top Mistake New Musicians Can Make
4. How to Persuade Your Parents to Buy You an Instrument
5. Where and How to Buy Your Instrument

Part 2. Getting the Most from Your Lessons
6. Are Private Lessons for You?
7. Finding the Perfect Teacher
8. How to Be a Great Student
9. Is It Time to Change Teachers?
10. Singers: You Are the Instrument

Part 3. Using Practice Tips for Faster Results
11. The Attitude of Success
12. Get in Gear with Goals
13. How to Fit Practice into Your Already Busy Life
14. Quit Wasting Your Practice Time
15. Shake up Your Practice Routine

Part 4. Solving the Mystery of Music Theory
16. Note Names on the Piano, Sharps and Flats, and the Chromatic Scale
17. Major Scales and Key Signatures
18. Intervals
19. Minor Scales
20. Chords and Arpeggios
21. Chord Inversions, Figured Bass, and Cadences

Part 5. Tune in to Classical Music
22. The Middle Ages and the Renaissance
23. The Baroque and Classical Periods
24. The Romantic Period
25. The Contemporary Period
26. Why Listen to Classical Music?
27. Hey, Listen to This!

Part 6. Becoming a Skilled Musician
28. Learn the Tricks to Become a Confident Sight-Reader
29. Intonation: You Can Learn to Play in Tune
30. Musicality: The Difference between Playing and Typing
31. How to Memorize without Having a Brain Freeze

Part 7. Performing with Confidence
32. Put Concerts and Contests into Perspective
33. Conquer Your Fear Factor
34. Ace the Audition

Part 8. Avoiding Stumbling Blocks along the Way
35. Finding the Middle Ground: A Guide for Frustrated Students and Their "Helpful" Parents
36. Student to Student: Advice from Teens
37. Brace Yourself for Braces
38. Help! I Want to Quit
39. Thorny Questions from Students: You're Not Alone!
40. Is All This Hard Work Worth It

Part 9. Making Beautiful Music Together
41. Have Fun and Make Friends When You Play Music Together
42. What Can I Do If I'm Bored in Band or Orchestra?
43. Concert Etiquette, or Dude! When Do I Clap?

Part 10. Where to Go for More Info
44. So You Want to Be a Music Major?
45. Choosing a College or Conservatory
46. Getting into the School of Your Dreams
47. Preparing for the College or Professional Orchestra Audition
48. Music Professions: Ways to Live by What You Love
49. Life as a Professional Musician: Is It for You?
50. Lessons about Life You Can Learn from Professional Musicians

Appendix A. Music Theory Review
Appendix B. The Musical Periods
Glossary of Musical Terms
Reading, Browsing, Watching, Listening: A List of References

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