Kent D. Smith is a professional piano and drum instructor, and a professional pianist/keyboardist, based in Orange County, California. He holds a degree in music and piano performance from Fullerton College, California.
At age seven, Kent began formal lessons in drums. By age fourteen he was a part-time professional drummer in a popular R&B band, playing gigs in and around the city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. At that same age, he discovered piano and was hooked.
Having started classical piano lessons at age fifteen, Kent went on to graduate with honors from Fullerton College, with a degree in piano performance and general music, including jazz studies. Kent made his living after college as a pianist, keyboardist and sometime drummer in various bands.
Later in his twenties, eager to settle down with a more predictable income, Kent began a parallel career in software development. Now, recently retired from AT&T, he has returned to music full-time. Kent has gained a wealth of professional experience over several decades in teaching, performing, composing, and studio work.
Here, you’ll get a basic overview of your piano keyboard, along with helpful hints for remembering the letter-names of the white keys. (The white keys are each named with a single-letter, taken from the seven-letter musical alphabet.)
Here’s a brand new sheet music offering from Kent. This one is another custom job for piano and keyboard players who read music “a little bit,” but who may have trouble remembering the details about key signatures, or may sometimes be unsure about which piano key belongs to which line or space on the staff.
Perhaps you’re an adult who had lessons many years ago, for example.
Even among some good musicians, music theory is occasionally regarded as more of a “nice to know” thing. Interesting place to visit, but they don’t want to hang around too long.
By contrast, I am shameless enough – dare I say, proud enough – to put forth that I am a music theory GEEK. I like staying “all up in theory land,” and often.
Music theory teaches us WHAT works, and also what CAN WORK. And, if it AIN’T WORKING, it’s usually easier to know WHY, because you possess a systematic command of how rhythm, melody, and harmony work together.
Notice I put rhythm first. Too often neglected — but I put it first in my musical thinking. More on that in other posts.
OK…If you’ve read this far, I guess we have a quorum! Two geeks is always a quorum in my experience. Partly because it’s so hard to find a third geek, on short notice. Anyway welcome, can I get you some coffee? Orange Julius?*