If you think you are far too advanced in years to learn a new instrument, think again. I have it on good authority that music teachers and neuroscientists both agree that it’s never too late for you to learn an instrument. Specifically, neuroscientist Norman Weinberger stated “the brain maintains its ability to change” [throughout life]. Therefore, regardless of whether you had previous music instructions or are learning music for the first time, it is altogether possible to learn music at any age.
It is beneficial for those who are aging to take on new hobbies or activities in order to maintain memory retention and eye-hand coordination. So, as a bonus, know that when in the process of learning or playing music, you are not just utilizing one section of your brain. Rather you are using a host of areas in your brain that are included in the physical process of producing music.
WHAT INSTRUMENTS SHOULD I TRY TO LEARN?
Probably one of the least expensive of instruments, a harmonica can be comforting and enjoyable. If you are serious about learning the instrument, you can buy a ‘chromatic’ harmonica that has the ability to shift into all musical keys by the use of a button-activated sliding bar. Hohner is a top-of-the-line brand for a harmonica. Their chromatic harmonicas are sold for approximately $150. However, you can get a sufficient and less expensive brand through Amazon or music stores for about $30.
Harmonica’s are also sold by each individual key, known as a ‘diatonic’ harmonica. The rule of thumb on these two types is the diatonic harmonicas are mostly used by blues, rock, country or pop musicians and the chromatic harmonicas are used by jazz and classical artist.
If you love the sound of a flute then a recorder may be the instrument for you. As one of the oldest wind instruments known to mankind, it is also one of the first instruments that is introduced when one is learning about wind instruments. The recorder can be used by both right and left-handed persons and can be played alone or in a group. It is great for using outside for meditation. Merely join in playing in chorus with the other sounds of nature such as the wind whistling through the trees and the birds chirping above.
The piano can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be. That is, you can play it using basic chords and chord progressions or you can learn to play more skillfully. It is all up to you and your desire. There are numerous books, teachers and even Youtubes available to help you along the path. Find the music for your favorite tune and try your [left and right] hand at it (LOL).
Though you cannot just jump into playing the guitar, there are three basic chords you can learn right away to be well on your way to making music. The chords G, C and D are the first chords you will need to learn.
The type of guitar you choose can make a difference in the ease of playing. For instance, if you have a problem with gripping with your hands, you may want to purchase a nylon string guitar in opposed to a steel string guitar. The nylon string guitar simply takes less applied pressure to the strings. You must have a guitar that accommodates a nylon and steel string respectively. It does not work to interchange a guitar string type between these very different types of guitars.
Percussion Instruments: Drums or Bongos
Please refer to the Interiors for Seniors blog, Drumming for Seniors, dated October 25, 2020 for an in depth look at the subject of drumming.
“Music in the soul can be heard by the Universe.” Lao Tzu
Call Missy Donaghy with Interiors for Seniors for a FREE consultation 321-279-3301.
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