Saturday, July 31, 2010

...and it's just plain FUN as well!

The effects of music training in relation to brain plasticity have caused excitement, evident from the popularity of books on this topic among scientists and the general public. Neuroscience research has shown that music training leads to changes throughout the auditory system that prime musicians for listening challenges beyond music processing. This effect of music training suggests that, akin to physical exercise and its impact on body fitness, music is a resource that tones the brain for auditory fitness. Therefore, the role of music in shaping individual development deserves consideration.

These are the basic findings in a study by Nina Kraus and Bharath Chandrasekaran  at the Auditory Neuroscience Laboratory and the Roxelyn and Richard Pepper Department of Communication Sciences, Northwestern University.

"A musician's brain selectively enhances information-bearing elements in sound. In a beautiful interrelationship between sensory and cognitive processes, the nervous system makes associations between complex sounds and what they mean," Nina Kraus, lead author of the Nature paper explained in a statement to the media. "The efficient sound-to-meaning connections are important not only for music but for other aspects of communication."

For example, researchers have found that musicians are better than non-musicians in learning to incorporate sound patterns for a new language into words. Their brains also appear to be primed to comprehend speech in a noisy background.
Children who have had music lessons tend to have a larger vocabulary and better reading ability than youngsters who haven't had any musical training. 

And children with learning disabilities, who often have a hard time focusing when there's a lot of background noise, may be especially helped by music lessons. "Music training seems to strengthen the same neural processes that often are deficient in individuals with developmental dyslexia or who have difficulty hearing speech in noise," Dr. Kraus stated.

We think it's just plain fun too!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Discover, Learn and Play Now!

Let us help you to Discover, Learn and Play music. If you’ve been frustrated with hit and miss methods or simply playing songs without really learning music, then we have the program for you!

Our patented 3 step learning process is not a shortcut, it’s a music education tool developed by a professional staff of teachers who have decades of experience at all levels of instruction.

Step 1 introduces you to the concepts in every lesson.  We use simple language and clear graphics to explain each concept as it pertains to your instrument.  Take the time to read and re-read this material.  And come back to it often as it sets a solid foundation for the remainder of the learning process.

Step 2 is a review of the lesson material using our specially designed quizzes.  There are 3 levels of testing that provide a thorough review of all concepts.  You may be asked to choose one answer from a list, match multiple answers, or supply an answer on your own.

We’ve also included ear training examples that help prepare you to apply the concepts to your instrument.

Real time scoring gives you instant feedback so you’ll know if you’re ready to move on or return to step 1 for further review.

Step 3 is where you‘ll apply the concepts you’ve learned to your chosen instrument, and there are a number of ways to approach this step depending on your own personal learning style:

Open the song file to see and study the music you’ll be playing.

Click on the melody only track to hear the song.

Listen to the full orchestrations with both background and melody.

Begin with a few simple exercises that reflect the concepts presented in every lesson.  

We’ve even included our ingenious "note finder" for every instrument in case you need help with a fingering, slide position or note location.  

When you’re comfortable with each song, it’s your time to shine and perform it with the background only track.

Want more information?  Simply click on the MusickEd logo from any page to return to the main menu, and then choose any of the 4 support centers.

Instrument Support includes videos to help the most basic performer get started, from how to assemble and hold your instrument to making your first sounds.

Lesson Support includes specific educational comments for the songs and concepts in every lesson. Think of it as a personal lesson plan; designed especially for you by the professional educators at  As a bonus, the first 5 lessons also include ‘Practice Pointers’ that will help you set a solid foundation for all of your future playing.

Need even more information?  You have access to our extensive Knowledge Base, Glossary and you can even send us an e-ticket from the Custom Support tab. 

And whether you’re a subscriber or not, you can join the MusickEd community for free.  Participate in our educational forums and webinars and be able to stay up to date with all the latest news and info through the MusickEd blog, facebook, twitter and YouTube pages.

So if you’re an absolute beginner, a novice music maker, a professional musician, or teacher, has a world of music for you to Discover, Learn and Play!

Are you a band, choir or orchestra teacher?  We have special academic pricing that can give your students access to our entire curriculum for just pennies a day. Let the Kore Series help make each member of your group become a better player.  Contact for details!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Send Us Your Video!

We want to see and hear you using our product!  Send us a video of you (or your favorite student) performing a song or exercise from the Kore Series and we may just feature it on our YouTube Channel.   Be sure to include your name and any other information you'd like us to know. If we publish your video we'll use your initials and the song or exercise title - we promise to keep all other information private.

Good luck and start recording now!

In the mean time,  check out some of our staff's favorite videos and this goofy 'test' video by yours truly!

Send videos to: or