Ideas about language proficiency applied to music learning

Just an email which I sent to Steve.

"At first, some background. I’m a Portuguese native speaker, born and living in Brazil. Now I’m dedicated to learn the English language, and I hope I become a polyglot in the future through your methods.

But I’m also a harmonica player. While studying music, I perceived that I’m aware of some difficulties that are also encountered in language
learning. For sample: professional harmonica players practice six hours a day, which is not effortless because you have to remain concentrated all the time. ( if you don’t believe it, check at with soundsamples)
They repeat musical patterns until they learnt it, and after that they must repeat’em again to maintain the present level of proficiency.

I must confess that it’s a very exaustive rotine, and it goes worse when you don’t know how to pratice or didn’t get the appropriate material
and/or equipment. And, once you’ve got all the stuff, you see technical progress rather then musical progress. In terms of linguistics,
it would be like to know all the grammar, words and phonetics of the language, but without the necessary knowledge to formulate a simple sentence.

So I wonder if your methods about language learning could be applied to music."

I don’t know if it’s the right section for this thread, if it’s not please move the topic to the right section.

Hi Ruan,

I think there are similarities. You cannot learn to play music if you do not enjoy it. To some extent you have to do exercizes which train the hands on the piano, or your mouth and lungs in the harmonica. In the same way you have to review your words and phrases. However, the main activity has to be enjoyable in music and language learning.

Hi Ruan,

I am studying Spanish. I am also studying piano music. I use a similar method for both. I have uploaded the music I am learning from Itunes. I listen to it over and over. When I go to the piano I have the tune in my head before I try to interpret the music which is written on paper. The notes and phrases of music come together like words forming sentences. Isn’t speaking like playing music? We learn the notes and words, we learn the parts of speech but it isn’t music until we put it all together and play it.