Making Music and Having a Blast!

Making Music and Having a Blast!

A Guide for All Music Students
Bonnie Blanchard and Cynthia Blanchard Acree
Distribution: Global
Publication date: 08/26/2009
Format: Paperback 32 b&w illus., 81 music exx.
ISBN: 978-0-253-22135-3
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2010 AAUP Public and Secondary School Library Selection--rated outstanding

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.

Author Bio

Bonnie Blanchard is author of Making Music and Enriching Lives: A Guide for All Music Teachers (IUP, 2007).

Cynthia Blanchard Acree is author (with Cliff Acree) of The Gulf between Us: Love and Terror in Desert Storm.


“Including lessons on music theory and history as well as a guide to finding additional print and online materials, this useful and fascinating book offers students a set of tools to help them stay engaged, even during the challenging times in their musical development. ”

“Making Music and Having a Blast! is an entertaining guide full of interesting stories and inspiring examples. This unique book offers real-life advice and the tools you need to achieve your musical dreams.”
 — Gil Shaham, violinist

“The Music for Life series stands alone as an incredible resource for musicians—whether performing or teaching. Music for Life deserves a standing ovation!”
 — Gerard Schwarz, Conductor, Seattle Symphony

“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

“Bonnie Blanchard shares the teaching tricks that have worked so well in her own studio to produce successful students who are energized about their lessons and their music. . .[Her] entertaining style makes this series a thoroughly enjoyable read.”
 — Bradley Garner, University of Cincinnati College, Conservatory of Music and The Juilliard School

“Wonderfully comprehensive . . . easy-to-read. This is a great book that every teacher will want to own and refer to often. It is the kind of book you will want every one of your students—and their parents—to own as well!”
 — American String Teacher

“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. 4/28/2010”
 — Alexa Still,

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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

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