WEEK 4 READINGS – ISABELLA LOONG
- You were introduced to the DAW (or sequencer), the step sequencer, and a range of notation software. Do you feel you would like to explore any of these technologies further?
During my musical, technical and academic training and research in Sonic Arts, I have studied music production, sound engineering and composition in recording studios with these music technologies. In particular, I have isolated computer DAW software, equipment or electronic machines as individual tools for music-making. Therefore, I am very comfortable with operating and teaching DAW software including Pro Tools, Ableton Live, GarageBand. From my Classical music background, theory and training, I am also proficient with using and teaching notation and graphic software including Avid Sibelius, MuseScore and Noteflight as enriching and accessible resources for listening, analysis, composing and performing activities.
Moreover, I have utilised a wide range of digital and analogue equipment in recording studios such as synthesisers, sequencers, samplers, microphones, controllers and recording consoles. I will continue to develop my training to incorporate innovative audiovisual production techniques and technologies in my creative practice and educational approach.
- Have you been persuaded that the DJ-producer does have an awful lot of sophisticated musical skills?
Yes, being a music producer and sound engineer, as well as a Classical musician, with training in audio techniques, theory and technologies, I appreciate the sophisticated musical and technical skills required for the DJ-producer. I am currently a beginner DJ learning the basic techniques involved in live remix sets which correlate to my experiences and understanding of audio production and theory.
DJ Madeon’s live mix significantly demonstrates the advanced skills to remix several tracks efficiently. These skills involve listening, analysing and manipulating the concepts of pitch for key, harmony and modes, duration for tempo, metre and rhythm, structure for loops, sections, transitions and motivic patterns, texture for layering parts, arrangements and orchestration, tone colour for timbre and sound sources, and dynamics and expressive techniques for sonic effects, techniques, phrasing, volume and mixing levels.
- Do you agree with David Price that learning has gone “OPEN”?
Yes, I agree partially with Price’s perspective that learning has shifted to “open” pedagogy as technology has evolved, with informal teaching for students to actively and individually learn via online courses, resources, video tutorials and social media, supported by guidance from teachers. However, I believe that educators still remain as valuable tools and mentors for students’ learning in music education with in-person social and physical expertise, connections, interpersonal communication, modelling, assistance and support that online learning cannot fully provide via technology.
- What were the best examples of OPEN learning that you found either in the course content, in your own searching, or the work of your peers?
Effective examples of Open Learning from the course content include the video tutorials for audio production equipment and software by Adam Maggs at Live School teaching Ableton Live, and the free DAW called Soundtrap, supported by Musical Futures. Both of these creative tools are enriched by the use of computers in teaching music technology.
Amongst the vast array of Open Learning tools online, my own research found the instructional video resources by Women’s Audio Mission (WAM) on YouTube. WAM offers multiple videos, classes and online training courses accessible on YouTube and via their website with particular inclusion and visibility for female students.
I also recommend student’s independent use of the Fender Play website and application for guided tutorials, to effectively learn and master instruments including the Acoustic, Electric and Bass Guitar, as well as the Ukulele across various genres, song examples and style paths.
- What does Project Based Learning (or the other BLs) have to offer Music Education? And what does Music Education have to offer Project Based Learning, and all learning, in the 21st Century?
Personally, I believe that student-centred learning in the pedagogies of Project Based Learning, all enquiry based learning, problem based learning and challenge based learning, offer both active, independent and collaborative methods of study with intrinsic meaning and comprehension in music education. These approaches support students’ autonomy, differentiation and engagement with enhanced learning of technical, creative, collaborative and critical problem-solving skills via adaptable scaffolding of tasks, projects and levels. Music education offers creative, cross-curricular Project Based Learning investigations and productions by combining and producing art, theory, beauty, emotions and expression across all subjects. Teaching the multitude of complex theoretical and practical musical skills, instruments and possibilities in the 21st century further provides relevant and professional examples, mediums, communities, influences and tools in conjunction with the artistic and evolving nature of the music industry and contemporary technology. Thus, I agree that music and its teaching significantly model today’s educational practices.