102 – Learn to play the rest of Debussy’s First Arabesque

11Jan10

I started learning the piano when I was about 7ish and had lessons for 10 years. I’ve performed in a load of little concerts and used to take part in an annual music festival where I often came second to the same guy who even beat me one year with a broken arm. A BROKEN ARM! As you can see I’ve come to terms with that (more or less!)

I love playing the piano and am so grateful for the lessons I had growing up and the nagging to get me to practise (which I still didn’t do as much as I should’ve). For my 21st birthday I got a digital piano who has been christened Clive (I have an odd habit of naming some of the things I own, they’re the closest I’ll get to pets as I’m hopeless at looking after living things) and we ended up joining a band and releasing a single! When I was practising my scales whilst growing up I never thought it would lead to me being in a band!

These are some people I’d love to be able to play like…

Tim Minchin – I’ve seen him live and had major piano-playing envy! He is so funny and awesome live

Ben Folds – Some brilliant songs, you have to see him live. I couldn’t decide whether to be amazed or completely jealous so just did both!

Sam Tsui – I just mostly wish I could sing like this guy, check him and Kurt out on YouTube

Anyway, thrilling autobiographical section aside, one of the pieces I started learning when I was having lessons was Debussy’s First Arabesque. This is how it should sound…

…however my version stops at around 0:36 as I never got round to learning the rest.

Those 36 seconds have had a lot of mileage though, for several years I worked in a piano shop and it was my standard demonstration piece (it sounds a bit fancy and if you mess it up you can pretend its just some funky ‘modern’ composition). I must’ve played those 36 seconds hundreds of times (and the cunning thing is you can endlessly loop it if 36 seconds isn’t enough!) but I feel like I should finally conquer the remaining three minutes or so.

I’m going to get practising so watch this space (or just stand outside my house and listen. Actually, don’t do that, that’s kinda weird)

Jo x

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3 Responses to “102 – Learn to play the rest of Debussy’s First Arabesque”

  1. 1 Liz (Mum)

    I’m learning such a lot about you from your blog – hope that doesn’t make me sound like a bad mum! I look forward to hearing you play this. x

  2. 2 Embarrased father

    Not as good as Madness. Think it features in the film Frankie and Johnny. Look forward to how it sounds on our piano!

    • 3 Embarrased father

      Wrong again (about which film). But nothing new there…………….


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