One vital part of musicianship training is exploring new music: learning about unfamiliar instruments and genres and expanding your musical multiverse.
Sometimes you want to develop your aural skills but you just don’t have the energy to actively do ear training. How about just listening to some music instead?
In a similar vein to our previous post about The Current’s Coffee Break, today I’d like to recommend a fabulous free music podcast, “5 Song Set”, which highlights a different musical idea in each episode using a carefully-chosen set of 5 songs. Ideal for diving into new and unusual musical themes!
Here are some recommended episodes for exploring new instruments and learning about genres:
Explore new instruments
You probably know the sound of your own instrument very well and have a good grip on common instruments like piano and guitar. But what about some more unusual sounds…?
- Episode 6: Banjos!
- Episode 15: Theremin
- Episode 17-19: Old-School, Modern Saxophone, The Last of the Saxophone
Explore new genres
How many genres of music do you know?
How many genres do you really not know?
How many do you think there are… that you haven’t even heard of yet?
Try a few of these:
- Episode 8: Funk!
- Episode 10: Chiptunes
- Episode 11: Dixieland
- Episode 21: The Russian Invasion Begins
- Episode 25: Ragtime!
- Episode 28: Ska Ska Ska!
- Episode 29: A Little Gypsy Flavor
About 5 Song Set
The 5 Song Set podcast is created and presented by Felicia, a music lover who scours the web to find the best tracks to illustrate each episode’s theme. She has published almost 80 episodes since January 2011 and shows no signs of slowing down! She always shares great background information and explanation for each track she chooses to feature. You can learn more and listen to the podcast at 5songset.net or on iTunes.
So next time you think you’re too tired to do ear training, tune in to one of these podcast episodes – and improve your ears while listening to great new music!