Author Archives: leonharrell

Ask Leon: How does notation for transposing instruments work?

Ask Leon

Burningwood asked, Hi Leon, I wanted to know something about transposition. I understand intervals already but how do I know whether to transpose up or transpose down when writing music for transposing instruments like the english horn? This is a great questions … Continue reading

Posted in Ask Leon, English Horn, Transposition | Leave a comment

Understanding Music Theory – Lesson 24 – Octave Equivalence

In our last lesson we learned about octaves and octave numbers. Since a pitch has the same letter name in any octave it considered to be a part of a pitch class. A pitch class is a term used to … Continue reading

Posted in Acoustics, Intervals, Octave Equivalence, Octave Numbers, Octaves | Leave a comment

Bass Clef Sight-Reading Exercise Worksheet

Bass Clef Sight Reading Exercise Worksheet

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE FREE EXERCISE (Want even more free bass clef sight-reading exercises? Try PianoMarvel free for 30-days. You’ll improve your music reading skills immediately) Hi One Minute Music Lesson Fans, Continuing my series of exercises and worksheets on … Continue reading

Posted in Aeolian, Bass Clef, Free Download, How to Read Music, Sight-reading | 1 Comment

Top 10 Free Sheet Music Websites

Sheet Music

[Edit from Leon: Get access to over 1200 pieces of piano sheet music for free for 30-days. Check it out here.] Here are a list of 10 of the best sites online for free sheet music. My two personal favorites … Continue reading

Posted in Free Sheet Music | 4 Comments

How to keep a practice log and journal

Practice Log

If you want to make progress quickly when practicing your instrument or learning to play new pieces, a practice log and journal is crucial. Studies have shown that any activity that you track will result in a higher favorable return on your time invested. … Continue reading

Posted in Free Download, Practicing Techniques | 2 Comments

Review: Composing Music by William Russo

Composing Music by William Russo is one of the first books I recommend to all my composition students. It has a very interesting approach in its methodology and is perfectly suited to the total beginner and the seasoned veteran alike. This … Continue reading

Posted in Composition, Review | Leave a comment

Ask Leon: Is it a key change?

Question Mark

Wedgie from Yahoo Answers asks: I was recording my GCSE composition today, and I asked my teacher what he thought of it. He said it was in the B to A grade region (in his opinion). I asked what I could … Continue reading

Posted in Ask Leon, Keys, Locrian, Modal Mixture, Modes, Phrygian | Leave a comment

Treble Clef Sight-Reading Exercise Worksheet

Treble Clef Sight-reading Worksheet

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE FREE EXERCISE (Want even more free treble clef sight-reading exercises? Try PianoMarvel free for 30-days. You’ll improve your music reading skills immediately) Hi One Minute Music Lesson Fans, Sight-reading and learning to read music can be a … Continue reading

Posted in Free Download, How to Read Music, Phrygian, Sight-reading, Treble Clef | 4 Comments

Ask Leon: Diminished Scales and Chords

Octatonic and Diminished Scales

Anthony from Twitter asks: Do you have anything that can help me with the diminished scale for guitar and also for diminish chords? Let’s start with defining what the diminished scale is. Jazz and blues musicians often refer to this scale as … Continue reading

Posted in Ask Leon, Diminished Scales, Diminished Seventh Chords, Octatonic Scales | Leave a comment

How to Read Music – Lesson 23 – Octaves

An octave is an interval. The interval of an octave is the distance from one pitch to the same pitch 12 half steps away. When you are reading octaves on sheet music they always fall with one note of the … Continue reading

Posted in Intervals, Music Posters, Octave Numbers, Octaves | 1 Comment

How to Read Music – Lesson 22 – Overtone Series

In this lesson we will learn about the overtone series. Musical tones with pitch are actually comprised of several higher and quieter sounds called overtones. Overtones are the upper frequencies that resonate when a tone is played. If a piano … Continue reading

Posted in Overtone Series, Overtones, Timbre | Leave a comment

Free Preview of “How to Read Music Easily in 30 Days”

How To Read Music Easily In 30 Days

  Hi Fans of the One Minute Music Lesson, My new e-book How to Read Music Easily in 30 Days has been released and I wanted to share a preview of it with you. In this 43 page preview you will begin … Continue reading

Posted in Free Download, How to Read Music, Update from Leon | 1 Comment

My New Book is Coming on May 28th!

The book is DONE!

Hi One Minute Music Lesson Fans, It’s done!!! Well almost, anyway. I am in the final editing stage for my book How to Read Music Easily in 30 Days which will be released on Monday, May 28th. I am so … Continue reading

Posted in Update from Leon | Leave a comment

Recommended Listening: Ravel’s Miroirs, Movement 3 – Une Barque sur l’Ocean

Today I thought I would post a favorite piece of mine that doesn’t get enough play because it is so difficult to perform, but so beautiful to listen to. This piece is the third movement from Maurice Ravel’s piano suite “Miroirs“. This … Continue reading

Posted in Recommended Listening, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Short Sight Reading Exercises

Sight Reading Genie

Sightreading Genie by PracticeSpot.com is a great tool for beginning sight readers. This tool allows you to choose from 4 difficulty levels and proves you will a large amount of short musical examples to play. It is designed for piano … Continue reading

Posted in Accidentals, Bass Clef, How to Read Music, Interactive Tools, Pitch, Sharps, Sight-reading, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Sight reading agility

eMusic Theory Piano Keys

Do you test your sight reading agility? Today I wanted to post a tool that is useful for practicing your sight reading agility. This Piano Keys trainer from eMusicTheory.com allows you to adjust the difficulty level from beginners to advanced. This tool … Continue reading

Posted in Accidentals, Enharmonics, Flats, How to Read Music, Interactive Tools, Ledger Lines, Naturals, Notes, Piano Keyboard, Pitch, Sharps, Sight-reading | Leave a comment

New Book Update: 4-18-12

Hi fans of the One Minute Music Lesson, I wanted to give you all an update on the progress of the book. After collecting responses from you guys I am hearing that you want a book aimed at teaching you … Continue reading

Posted in How to Read Music, Update from Leon | Leave a comment

Ear Training Game: Speaker Chords

Speaker Chords

Ear training can be difficult and frustrating because you need a couple essential elements to be successful. 1. You will need material to practice that is at your skill level. 2. You will need a variety of material, so you don’t … Continue reading

Posted in Chords, Ear Training, Roman Numerals | Leave a comment

Guitar Fret Trainer Tool, Learn the Notes of the Fret Board

Fret Finder Screen Shot

Once again, one of my favorite sites for music theory tools has done it again. This time Ricci Adams site MusicTheory.net has created a guitar fretboard trainer that is different than any other I’ve seen. This Fret Trainer allow you … Continue reading

Posted in Accidentals, Flats, Fretboard, Fretted Instruments, Guitar, Sharps | Leave a comment

Chord and Scale Fret Finder Tool (For Guitar, Bass and Mandolin)

Learning the notes of scales and chords can be a laborious process and often times students need a good resource for checking the accuracy of them. Although you can learn how to construct chords and scales from memory there is … Continue reading

Posted in Bass, Chords, Fretboard, Fretted Instruments, Guitar, Mandolin, Scales, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Great tool for practicing sight-reading

[Edit from Leon: I’ve found an even better tool for sight reading. Check it out here.] When learning to read music you will need materials for practicing. One of the hardest things about learning to sight read is having enough … Continue reading

Posted in How to Read Music, Rhythm, Rhythm Counting, Sight-reading | 6 Comments

Finding your inner motivation to grow as a musician

Finding your inner motivation

As a teacher, getting students to get into the right mindset to grow musically is one of the toughest nuts to crack. Staying in that right mindset is also one of the toughest aspects of continually improving your musicianship. This difficulty … Continue reading

Posted in Motivation, Practicing Techniques | 5 Comments

63 days and counting! My new ebook is coming out on May 28th

New Book Coming Soon

Hi fans of the One Minute Music Lesson, I am very excited to tell you that my new ebook will be released on May 28th. However I can’t tell you the title or what it is about yet because I don’t know. … Continue reading

Posted in Leon's eBooks | Tagged | 1 Comment

I’m giving away 25 FREE private music lessons!

[ Sorry this give away is now over, but don’t miss out on the next one, sign up for my free newsletter and receive notification when the next give away will be.] As you may know I have begun offering private music … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Acoustic Fingerpicking for Beginners

Acoustic Fingerpicking for Beginners Lesson 1a by Lisa McCormick of GuitarTricks.com Instructor: Lisa McCormick, Speciality: Acoustic Fingerpicking  Website: GuitarTricks.com This four-step fingerpicking pattern is a powerful building block for fingerstyle guitar. For this pattern, play the sixth string (Low E) with a … Continue reading

Posted in Acoustic Finger Picking, Guitar, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Understanding the Guitar Fretboard

Guitar Fretboard

In this guest by post by Dan Vuksanovich, from WhyISuckAtGuitar.com, we will explore the guitar fretboard. The guitar fretboard can be a bit confusing for beginners, or even for people who have played other instruments, such as the piano, where … Continue reading

Posted in Fretboard, Guest Post, Guitar, Intervals, Tuning | 2 Comments

How to Read Music – Lesson 21 – Specific Intervals

A specific interval is the distance between any two notes measured in halfsteps. A specific interval will be different from the generic interval because the generic interval is the number of lines and spaces, which will not line up with the number … Continue reading

Posted in Intervals, Specific Intervals | 5 Comments

How to Read Music – Lesson 20 – Generic Intervals

An interval is a musical measurement between two notes. A generic interval is the measurement of the lines and spaces between two notes. To find the generic interval between two notes begin by counting the number 1 on the bottom … Continue reading

Posted in Generic Intervals, Intervals | 2 Comments

How to Read Music – Lesson 19 – Triplets and Duplets

Triplets are 3 notes that fit in the same rhythmic space as 2 of the same notational value. Triplets are used in simple meters when we need to show a rhythmic value that would normally be found in compound meter. … Continue reading

Posted in Compound Meter, Duplets, Eastman Counting System, How to Read Music, Rhythm, Rhythm Counting, Rhythmic Values, Simple Meter, Triplets | 1 Comment

How to Read Music – Lesson 18 – Eastman Counting System (Compound Meters)

The Eastman Counting System is a method of counting rhythms using a mixture of numbers and syllables. In this lesson we will continue learning this system with the compound meters. The 3 basic rules for counting any compound rhythm are: 1. … Continue reading

Posted in Bars, Compound Meter, Eastman Counting System, How to Read Music, Rhythm, Rhythm Counting, Rhythmic Values, Time Signatures | 3 Comments