Thursday, 22 March 2007

Seasides Piano Journey

Hello World

I have finally decided to write a blog about my piano journey which started a little over 3 years ago... I am writing this journal in the hope that it inspires those who are later on in life (or come to think of it? at any age for that matter!) and still hold the dream that someday they can just sit right down at a piano and play for themselves, for friends or maybe one day for ££££'s!! (or $$$$'s for y'all over there)

Over the past few years I have met many friends who started playing the piano in later life, their talent is quite often breathtaking and they are all adult beginners...some take lessons with a regular teacher, some are self taught and some like myself have learned to play the piano on the internet. Through my interaction on piano forums and through my music I have inspired others to follow my path and seen many of these people grow into fine pianists in a short space of time!!

I often get emails from people thanking me for inspiring them and letting them know there is a guy out there who is the real deal and they are for ever grateful to me that I showed them the door to his magical website. This is my story, my adventure...I had a dream and now I'm living it, I'm proof it can be done if you want it no matter your age. This is for the dreamers like me.

So lets begin...

I took piano lessons as a child, I was around 9 or 10 years old and that silly boy gave them up after a few years, a decision which has been a deep regret all of my adult life!!!

When my eldest boy was 5 years old my wife decided she would like him to start taking piano lessons and after many arguments (because I grew to hate my lessons as a child!!) I finally caved in to the pressure and a cheap keyboard was purchased to get him started. This decision was to change my life and finally rekindle a burning desire I had long since forgotten about.

We had owned the keyboard for a few months and one night I was thumbing through my sons first beginner book and tried to plink through the first few pages and then it hit me!!!... I suddenly remembered trying to pick melodies out by ear as a child (something I couldn't do back then) and I thought to myself ..."I wonder if anyone teaches to play piano by ear on the internet?"

The following day I typed "play piano by ear" into google and found a website that was going to change my life from that day on!!..The website was called and the rest of this blog is going to tell the tale of my fantastic journey with the help of Mike and all the wonderful helpful pianists (many whom are now my friends) who frequent the forums there and also the many helpful members over at another fantastic piano website I often frequent the piano forums run by Frank Baxter.

So...The journey for me began (at age 37 not knowing a note, chord or scale and without a hope in heck of learning to play the piano by ear so late in life!!) on October 1st 2003, after watching Mikes video on his home page with his dog "CoCo" I decided to chance it (he seemed genuine) so, I paid my money and joined. I made my first post in the forums and said hello in the lobby forum

This is what I said in my very first post :-


Posted - Oct 01 2003 : 09:54:12 AM
I am a new member who is (I get the feeling) going to need some help. My story - I played the piano and started at 9 0r 10 and played until I was about 12 or 13. I was told many times not to give up and that I would regret it. I knew I would, but, I just got bored of practise.

I was always frustrated as a young child that I couldn't play by ear and never really realised it could be taught. I always thought you either could or couldn't! I have always regretted giving up the piano, as I love entertaining people. I DJ in my spare time which only semi-satisfies me, I love the buzz you get from the applause, but, I am only playing other peoples work.

My little boy who is 5 years old has started piano lessons in the last 6 months and to be honest it has given me renewed vigour to get back infront of the keyboard.This time there are no excuses I am going to do it!!


Within pianomagic there is a recital hall where Mike would post up any recordings sent by members to him (if they were good enough) to demonstrate each students growth over time. I must have asked a bazillion questions and sent in loads of recordings until finally I sent something good enough to be posted up (by Mike) in the recital hall (yaaaaaaaaaay!)

It was around 4 or 5 months into my membership and this was the first piece to make it "Can't Help falling In Love With You"...It was customary that when members got their first piece posted up they were required to send a photo and write a little info about themselves.

This is what I wrote back then (I was so excited to finally make it, it was like a dream come true) :-


I joined in October and it has been one of the greatest things I have ever done. Piano has taken over my life. I have a keyboard at work ( I own a Gym!) and one at home. I seem to be able to think of nothing else but playing those darned keyboards! :-)

When I joined I could remember nothing of my piano lessons gone by. I have basically started from ground zero and every note I play is down to Mike and this wonderful site (also a lot of help from all the guys and gals on the message know who you are)!

I have struggled with every basic concept of Piano Magic (the message boards will testify to all my questions)! A big thank you to Mike for all his patience with me.This is quite a moment for me as I must have sent Mike a thousand recordings (slight exaggeration...a lot anyway!) and to make it here...well, its just great!I am so thrilled to get here...I know it is not perfect yet and I know I can only get better as time goes by.

Heck, I can even do the "Oli G on the 1625 boom chuck pattern" now ...just can't combine it with melody too well just yet...but I know I will!....Anyway it has been a long cold winter over here in England by the sea...but, Pianomagic has made it pass very quickly indeed.

Please enjoy this first effort ...and there is more to come.

click link below to hear my first recording


Credits: Performed and Arranged by LEE HOLT



dadtobe said...

Hey Lee....nice blog :)



RR said...


I am already registered with blogger because I started my own blog in my website about 2 years ago. It takes a lot of discipline to keep up with blog writing.

I want to give you some cheers as you begin to tell us about your mystical piano journey.

Keep writing, because there are many readers reading & keeping up with your journal.... so don't stop & keep writing because you have truly been such a GREAT INSPIRATION to me, more than you realize.


Seaside_Lee said...

Thanks text (its all your fault BTW LOL)