right and left hand coordination

Just getting started with playing the accordion and have questions? Have a question about a technique? This is the place.
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Philippe
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue Apr 06, 2021 7:21 pm

right and left hand coordination

Post by Philippe »

I am sure this subject has been beaten to death...sorry.
I am trying to play Moscow Nights for two violins (Babaev arr) , which means that there is a comparable quantity of notes to produce with each hand. I have learned the right hand without much problems, then the left hand without problems.. then came the time to assemble them and all I got was painful chaos. Is there a right way to go about this? I am now starting again from the beginning of this small piece as if it was new to me and I make a point of slowly integrating both hands as if there was really just one single melody. Do you have any tips for me?
Philippe :)
Reeka
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Joined: Tue Mar 16, 2021 4:18 pm

Re: right and left hand coordination

Post by Reeka »

Hi Philippe! As Ronen says one should play it very very slowly, phrase by phrase.
If I understand right, you want to play two melodies - instead of the melody with the right hand and the chords with the left hand? That's surely an advanced skill, even if you have a free bass system. Maybe it helps, forst to play the chords with the left hand together with the melody on the right hand side and afterwards to get the second melody which 'hides' within these chords?
Philippe
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue Apr 06, 2021 7:21 pm

Re: right and left hand coordination

Post by Philippe »

Reeka wrote: Thu Oct 07, 2021 9:11 am Hi Philippe! As Ronen says one should play it very very slowly, phrase by phrase.
If I understand right, you want to play two melodies - instead of the melody with the right hand and the chords with the left hand? That's surely an advanced skill, even if you have a free bass system. Maybe it helps, forst to play the chords with the left hand together with the melody on the right hand side and afterwards to get the second melody which 'hides' within these chords?
Hi Ulrike and thanks for taking the time to react to my question. Yes I learn to play on a free bass instrument, which means that in my situation the left hand is expected to play the melody when needed. IMO, however after four months of practice I can say that producing a melody with the left hand buttons is not an advanced skill if one plays a free bass instrument and follows a reputable method. The challenge I face is the same as that of learning to play the piano (as you recall). And if my memory serves me well, the wisdom was to learn to produce both left and right hand notes asap. Perhaps I should learn to be more patient!!!!! ;)
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annadalvi
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Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2020 3:00 pm

Re: right and left hand coordination

Post by annadalvi »

I'll preface this by saying that I don't know how to play free-bass accordion. I do however both play and teach piano. In my experience, when students start learning how to play the piano, there are a few steps that most people have to get through in order to play more complex pieces hands together.

First students learn to play simple melodies with one hand at a time. Sometimes the melody alternates between right and left, but only one hand plays at a time.

The second step is to have one hand play a melody and the other hand hold a note or a chord as accompaniment. For example in Moscow nights, one hand plays a phrase and the other hand plays one chord in each measure (and holds it for 4 beats). That means that there is really no rhythm work in the hand that plays the chord.

Step 3 would be to play the melody in one hand and a steady beat in the other hand. This is tricky for a lot of students if the melody is a mix of quarter/half/whole or even eight notes and the steady beat is all quarter notes. It's about separating the rhythm of the two hands.

Next step would be to have two different rhythms in the two hands, so for example the left hand plays a measure with a quarter note followed by a half note while the right hand plays a dotted quarter note, an eight note and a quarter note, or something along those lines.
This can then be expanded to more complex rhythms and melodies. But it's usually the rhythm that trips people up.

Hope that helps.
Philippe
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue Apr 06, 2021 7:21 pm

Re: right and left hand coordination

Post by Philippe »

Thanks Anna,
I am grateful I had an opportunity to get some guidance from a piano teacher. What you are telling me makes a good deal of sense and reminds me of my own piano student era.
:) Philippe
Philippe
Posts: 33
Joined: Tue Apr 06, 2021 7:21 pm

Re: right and left hand coordination

Post by Philippe »

As a footnote to this thread:

I ask the same question on Accordionists Forum and I got a variety of responses some of them coming from folks who play the free bass or converter, some of them with a life long practice on these instruments. The collective freedom seems to be that there is no right way or wrong way to go about learning right and left hand coordination. It's more like what works for you is the right way. Several participants, including old timers, have indicated their preference for learning both hands simultaneously even if it takes longer. I at this point tend to lean the same way, unless proven wrong. ;)
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