When I was 13 around I started to play some guitar, unfortunately without teacher. So I could play chords, which was mostly enough to help mit with some singing. Around my age of 15 I started to learn and play Hammond organ. With the aim of my parents I could earn some first good money from playing at weddings and birthday parties. Meanwhile I also liked to play a little bit trumpet.
Looking backward I think playing music, especially in public made me more self confident.
As I always had to much interests at the same time, I never could come to a point I could play an instrument very well. And I still like to improve my skill, especially I really like to be able to play piano better.
In addition to “just” making music, I like all technical things around it (because I am en engineer?). When the first software programs for entering notation into the computer I was very fascinated, how easy it is to create own sheets, play the music from this sheets. As it is possbile to export this sheets to midi (or import from midi) and mp3 it is very simple to use the result for training the own voice, e.g. in the choir. Or to use another tool analyzing the quality of the singing based on the midi files.
I am faszinated from creation own music as well. And there are a lot of tools available as well to support with high quality sounds nowadays.
In the beginning I started with CAPELLA, which I will mention later again. This tool is very powerful but a little expensive as well. Nowadays I am using musescore, which is a free tool and I would say even more powerful than the last version I used from Capella. In combination with MuseScore Songbook (not for free, but cheap) for mobile phones or tabs for me it is unbeatable.
After entering different voices (common for choir pieces) it is easy to create separtes sheets for each voice, play the voices with different instruments and volumens on PC or on the way.
That is another tool I like to recommend for practicing singing. Especially if the midi files of a song are available (I produce them with Musescore before) it gets very simple. Just load a file into the melody trainer, select which of the voices you want to train and start. Of course you need to set up your microphone before (e.g. headset), but you will be guided through all the necessary steps during installation.
When training with the melody trainer, you will see how good you hit the notes and how good the timing is during performing.
The price of 48 EUR (2.1.2018) is good for a tool telling you where you could improve without getting be blamed by a teacher.
When I was a kid I did a lot of investigation in electronics even build up my own music mixer and voice changer. Nowadays things are so much easier, just with the help of a good software program. Recently I found the Music Maker from MAGIX very interesting and did already some first exercises (e.g. my 2018 New Year Greetings). It provides a lot of possibilities to create some own music based on digital sound, midi files and own records. Uncountable effects can be added. It is almost like recording in a professional recording studio.
Now here comes the difficult part: I WANT TO IMPROVE MY PIANO PLAYING SKILLS. In general I can play already, so I do not need a introduction about notes, how to play a piano and some simple things you will find on youtube or somewhere else in the WWW. A lot of music sheets are availabe for free (again musescore is a good source), good enough to fill my whole life in practicing playing piano. With a small monthly fee it is also be possible to get access to a huge database of sheets at www.musicalion.com
The following peaces I will practice during 2018 (if successfull list will extended):