Nostalgia, SmartMusic, and the Recorder

Who hasn’t wanted to get in touch with their childhood roots and re-connect with the recorder?

Not you? Well, okay. Nevertheless it’s a portable and versatile instrument with a rich history in many cultures. What’s more, recorders are relatively inexpensive and a great introduction to the world of written music. Gaining some recorder proficiency can be a lot of fun, and SmartMusic can help.

If you open the early scale exercises (the whole note scales), you can change the instrument to alto or soprano recorder and use SmartMusic to slowly practice scales with accompaniment. Click on each note and you’ll see a simple Baroque-style fingering chart. Work slowly and in simple keys, moving to the faster exercises, arpeggios, and interval studies.

When you’ve developed some facility, you’re ready to tackle the Baroque titles in SmartMusic. These are pretty much all for Alto Recorder due to the range of the instrument, but once you’ve learned the fingerings, the instruments are transferrable. Look in the Solos section of Find Music, choose Flute, then open any title with the “On Screen” check mark. Switch the instrument to Alto Recorder and SmartMusic will automatically transpose it for you – although you’re welcome to change the key to find something that fits as best as possible (G major, F major, C, D minor, E minor, etc.).

The Baroque titles feature harpsichord and basso continuo in the playback, too, so there’s a more authentic “feel” to your practicing.

Are you or your students using SmartMusic with the recorder? Share your experiences with us by clicking on “Comments” below.

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