Why Alfred's Basic Piano Library?
We all know that listening to music has a positive effect on people of all generations. In the extreme, music can raise the spirits of those in nursing homes and relieve some suffering for those with Alzheimer's disease. Babies in cribs frequently respond to the sounds of music by smiling or humming along. When you get right down to it, listening to music makes just about everyone feel better than they did before the music started.
Performing music, however, includes all of the above benefits and more. Some studies indicate that young music students achieve better grades in school than those who did not study music. Teenagers frequently find their social lives improving when they get to perform for friends or at school functions.
Knowing all this makes you wonder why everyone doesn't take up a musical instrument while they are growing up. There are a number of reasons that come to mind, finances being a common one. But in many instances, I think young people now have so many activities to choose from that music education is challenged as never before. There are a number of motivators that can help young students choose music lessons as a preferred activity and remain in lessons longer. One of them is for their piano teacher to choose a piano method that combines a solid music education with a fun-filled approach that will enhance the student's musical experience.
When Willard Palmer, Amanda Vick Lethco, and I first decided to create Alfred's Basic Piano Library, we agreed that from the beginning it needed to be musically sound, and equally important, bring a sense of enjoyment to young students. The cover had to look like "this is really going to be fun." The explanations had to be clear and concise, and the music had to be very special. With so few notes and rhythms to play at the earliest level, the quality of the music still had to have as much appeal as the popular music young folks listen to on their digital devices.
And now, many years since the introduction of Lesson Book 1A, how have teachers responded? While sales figures for other methods are hard to come by, it is our opinion that the number of books sold of Alfred's Basic Piano Library over the last two decades is more than that of any other piano course. However, while all this is important, what matters most is that you and your students enjoy making music together.
Morty Manus, Co-Author of Alfred’s Basic Piano Library