Music is an important part of the human experience. Be it through song and dance, listening to music in a cafe or at home, going to a concert with your friends, or jamming with your band. People connect through music. Sound and rhythm are learned from early childhood, in fact babies start to hear and feel sound in the womb. Music helps us to develop and learn language as toddlers. It is part of our daily life, through movies, radio, and other places. You can sit on a terraza and buskers may pass you, playing on their instruments or singing. Music is such an integral part of being human.
As a parent you probably want to encourage a love of music, or as an individual maybe it is a hobby you would like to take up. Music can be an interesting career, with many aspects. From music production to teaching and performing. As a music school we understand the benefits of studying music and creating an environment where we can enjoy learning.
But studying music can also be daunting for a beginner, and without expert advice, it can be expensive and at worst, not a positive experience! With so many health benefits, from improving your cognitive abilities to actually being a physical workout and a stress reliever, studying music or learning an instrument should not be scary.
One vital aspect is your instrument! At Shine we offer fantastic rental instruments from our instrument rental department.
Imagine that your child wishes to start playing a musical instrument, or it’s been your dream to take a guitar class, but you just don’t know where to start. Perhaps you are spending a semester in Spain and don’t want to stop playing music, but shipping or flying with your instrument is not an option. Whatever situation you find yourself in, playing an instrument can be an expensive and often confusing endeavour as any professional musician will tell you.
This makes so much sense!
Test & Try
Hiring a musical instrument instead of buying one is an option that just adds up for multitude reasons. Not only can you try and test out a variety of instruments, but you also don’t have to make a huge investment in an instrument without some musical knowledge and know-how.
Grow with your Instrument
This is especially relevant when looking into instruments for children. More often than not, the instrument has to grow with your child. This can mean buying numerous instruments as your child requires a bigger size. A disaster if your kids decide they don’t want to play anymore, and also extra work if you have to keep buying and selling instruments.
Unfortunately as you will quickly discover, cheap instruments are difficult to play, tricky to tune, often sound bad, and in the end a cheap instrument regularly results in the player getting frustrated and not wanting to play. What a lost opportunity for musical discovery!
All your questions answered!
Long-term instrument rental is an affordable and flexible way to play an instrument. Hiring a digital piano or cello to play at home makes practice easy and practical. If you happen to move, you don’t have to lug a heavy or expensive instrument with you! You find that your musical experience will improve when you don’t have to worry about your instrument. If you are interested in finding out more, get in touch with us or head directly over to our website, where you can hire your instrument online through a few easy steps!
We have a wide array of instruments from quality brands, from beginner instruments to advanced instruments.
It’s that time of year. Long summer days are winding down. Everyone is planning last minute getaways and get togethers. As people return to the city after a summer spent in the mountains or on the coast, we return to our routines. Preparations are made to made to return to work and school.
Temperatures are lowering and the leaves are starting to change colour, signalling the beginning of Autumn. We all know that the change in weather brings with it colds and flu and right now that is a bit of a stressful scenario!
This particular September may cause anxiety for some with questions raised about how schools and offices will handle the return amidst the pandemic. At Shine Music School we are fortunate to offer our students classes both from our studios in Barcelona and online lessons.
Teaching students online offers a learning experience that is anxiety free, not only can you stay safe at home, but online lessons can be convenient, economical and intensive, students can accomplish more in a shorter space of time and have the flexibility to learn on the go from anywhere in the world.
How is Catalunya tackling Covid-19?
The Spanish Government has announced measures to minimise the transmission of Covid-19 as everyone returns to work and school. These regulations are applicable throughout Spain with the rules implemented by each autonomous region’s education authorities. Here in Catalunya, the minister of Education, Josep Bargalló has made opening schools a priority. Despite the inherent difficulties caused by the novel corona virus, the government understands the importance that schools play not only in education but also as essential services.
So how does it work?
Face masks will of course be obligatory for all over the age of 6. And smaller children will also be encouraged to wear them. A physical distance of 1.5 m should be observed with everyone outside of your household. Regular hand washing and sanitising of hands and surfaces should be observed. Temperatures will be taken in certain institutions to monitor fever rates. Where possible, outdoor activities will be encouraged.
Schools where group learning takes place will follow “Bubble” guidelines, where interactions with other groups are minimised. Covid 19 will be monitored through the use of apps and a co- ordinated effort between CAPs. Both staff and students will be responsible for maintaining these regulations and their health. If a student or teacher finds themselves unwell they will stay at home and if they show Corona symptoms, they will be subject to a PCR test.
If any tests come back positive all persons in the group or bubble will need to quarantine for 14 days at home. If more than one case is reported at a school, it will close temporarily.
Purchase a pack of masks, and small refillable hand sanitiser gel that you can keep with you at all times. Practice healthy and safe social distancing, and remember that you are protecting not only yourself but also your loved ones and colleagues.
At Estudio Shine
Our music lessons are one-on-one and each lesson takes place in separate classrooms. Each room has hand sanitizer gel and students and teachers are expected to wear masks where applicable. We expect all our staff and students to be responsible when entering the school and respectful of each other. During this time we are encouraging online learning in order to protect our teachers and students. We are also implementing measures to reduce foot traffic in our Barcelona studios.
Our teachers are fully equipped to deliver superb one-on-one online music lessons as well as group lessons. We will also start offering online master classes and courses. Shine also offers rental instruments to students who wish to study at home and can help to facilitate buying instruments as well.
Our online school concert was exceptionally successful and we will continue to maximise our online learning experience for the time being.
If you are feeling at all anxious about your music lessons at either of our studios, we encourage you to start learning online with us. Not only is music a proven method to reduce stress, but studying music exercises your brain, helping us to become adaptable, stable and smarter humans.
Don’t let worry or the Corona virus disrupt your life, but make the right changes to improve your situation so we can enjoy music together! Contact the school with any questions you may have!
As summer vacation is fast approaching, and international and national restrictions lift, holidays are looming, and even perhaps a little bit of travel if you can! Perhaps you have already planned your first trip! You can start dreaming again of sand between your toes on a beach in Ibiza, or the Canary Islands. Perhaps even a secret cove in Mallorca. Close your eyes and think of the mountain hike you can go on in the Pyranees. The birds singing in the trees, the sound of a softly trickling stream. Suddenly you realize something is missing. What could possibly make this moment even more magical? Yes! Music! What if you had an ukulele or guitalele right next to you?
Traveling with an instrument is difficult!
Most guitar players that travel are worried about their precious guitar getting damaged on the plane. Imagine turbulence as you descend over the Pyrenees bumps and scratches your favourite guitar! And you didn’t insure it! Even worse, you are forced to stow it in the luggage bay, or pay for an extra seat to accommodate your instrument. Then the baggage handlers loose your luggage, including your guitar! A nightmare for musicians! This is why finding other options than traveling with your guitar can be a smart idea.
Here are some benefits of choosing an ukelele or guitalele as your travel instrument of choice:
1# Size and weight: The ukulele and guitalele are small enough for taking inside the airplane and are easy to transport, making them the perfect instruments for travel. Extremely lightweight and easy to transport, they fit perfectly in the overhead luggage compartment in an airplane. Small and easy to carry, but offering a similar sound to the original guitar.
2# To socialize: Because of their small size and weight, both instruments become a great way to make friends and meet people. The great thing about them is you can take them everywhere! You can easily play the ukulele or guitalele on Barceloneta beach, perform on Barcelona streets or jam in the most popular pubs and bars around town. The joyful sound of both instruments easily attracts peoples attention and you will often find yourself surrounded by smiley faces. People love singing along to today’s favourites played on a cheerful little instrument.
3# Price: You can get any of these two instruments at a very reasonable price and not worry if they get damaged. While traveling it’s easy for your instrument to get damaged by the sun, bumps or too much use. So better not take your expensive guitar on the road! You can easily rent or buy an ukelele or guitalele and not worry so much if something happens to your little buddy.
So why not give it a try?
Our teacher Sebastian Pan regularly plays his electric guitalele, you can get a lesson with him if you like!
If you in Barcelona and want to try an ukelele or guitalele, please contact shinemusicrental.com for more details.
Pianos are renowned the world over, despite being just over 300 years old. A relatively short rise to fame compared to that of the guitar, whose beginnings can be traced back to around 3000 years ago. And yet they have been a prominent part of society almost since they were created. Today the piano is still often found in middle and upper class homes, and taught at schools across the world. In china alone, a survey counted over 40 million children learning to play the piano in 2015.
Considered a vital instrument for musical learning, the piano is here to stay. This is hardly surprising, as pianos have been found to enhance our performance in numerous ways, and brain imaging has shown that playing the piano actually physically changes our brain, forming more connections between both the left and right hemispheres. Pianists are a step ahead of the game in problem solving, language, spontaneity, decision making and social behavior. It’s no mental leap then, that parents and teachers alike would encourage learning the piano.
Pianos have opened the doors to music for many people, they are relatively straightforward to understand and play. They provide an important basis of musical knowledge and have become a stepping stone, often allowing musicians to move onto other instruments.
For many years pianos brought music into homes and the lives of people. Forming such an important role in our social history, the instrument has easily found its way into popular culture. Movies, books and musicians highlight it as a magical and versatile instrument.
Read more about the history of Pianos on our Instrument Rental Website. If you live in Barcelona, we rent pianos to students, or anyone who wishes to play at home. Living in a city with limited space means that having a piano at home is a bit of a luxury, but the rental program takes care of a number of issues. There is no longer a huge initial investment. A delivery service bring the piano to your door and removes it when you no longer need it or want to use it. Phew!
Having a piano in the house has benefitted many of our students during the lock down. Keeping fingers nimble and it’s also as an intelligent way to pass the time. Playing the piano is a workout for your brain!
Before the pandemic our pianos made appearances in various concerts across the city from small private functions to large orchestras in the Palau de la Música. They have been played as brides walk down the aisles up and down the coast of Barcelona. A piano certainly adds a special touch to any event. As we slowly start to move forward again, and places begin to open, we hope that our pianos bring joy to many more people, and music begins to appear in the public quarters of Spain.
Did you know that most of the pianos we use at the school are digital pianos? By all appearances they seem to be acoustic pianos. But what is the difference really?
Digital pianos are electronic keyboards which have been developed to mimic acoustic pianos. Technological advances mean digital pianos now sound and feel (almost) like classical acoustic pianos, but with the convenience of being portable and not requiring fine tuning.
Digital Pianos can also easily be amplified for concerts or connected to headphones for playing at home. Digital pianos are usually cheaper than regular acoustic pianos, but their advantages often outweigh the fact that they may not feel or look exactly like an acoustic piano, and they are rapidly becoming the instrument of choice for the modern day classical pianist.
These pianos accomplish all that through a variety of methods, from weighted keys to built in sound quality. And no, a digital piano is not a keyboard. There are unique differences! If you are intrigued you can read an in-depth explanation here.
The guitar may have taken over in popularity, but the piano is a key stake holder in the world of popular music, with the likes of Alicia Keys, Elton John, John Legend and Lady Gaga all performing pop music on the instrument.
The piano is widely used as an important classical instrument, forming part of symphony orchestras across the world. And the classical pieces are still hugely popular with pianists such as Louis Lortie known as one of the best interpreters of Beethoven, Chopin and Ravel.
The piano has been used in all kinds of music, from jazz and classical to rock and pop. It’s a versatile instrument, and if you are interested in lessons in the piano, our teachers are talented professionals who can help you accomplish your musical dreams!
If you are a musician, and you have the space at home, it may be a fun project to design and create a home studio. Somewhere dedicated just to your music. A place that inspires you to practice and play. If you don’t have the space at home, perhaps some of these ideas can be applied to other parts of your home decoration! We all could use a little bit of music in our lives!
All Important Acoustics
Different textures covering the walls and ceiling of your home studio help to absorb and break up the sound waves, giving you a better auditory experience! Experiment with the acoustics! Go all out with these grass walls from Design Milk.
You could even get yourself your own custom Vocal booth, or try your hand at building one yourself!
Or you can try different kinds of padding to achieve better sound and protect both your family and neighbours when you “rock out!” It doesn’t have to be ugly, check out this stylishly upholstered door.
And have a look at this useful setup, explaining where to place your acoustic boards to improve the sound in your studio. You can find acoustic foam boards at your local hardware stores like Leroy Merlin or even have them delivered on Amazon.
These drum machines and keyboards have been cleverly placed on an IKEA Stolmen Shelf. A good and inexpensive solution to storing and using your equipment.
Experiment with this DIY hack of bending and altering the shape of vintage vinyl records. The possibilities are endless! From Shelves to lamps. Just using boiling water or by placing the vinyl in the oven, bend the vinyl as desired!
Storage shelves for musical odds and ends, or even a book or magazine rack!
Or keep it classical with these framed music note sheets. Print out your favourite musical piece or song and decorate your home.
Or if you feel up to it, create a piece of furniture out of old instruments or like this light fixture, out of old drum sticks. Perhaps keep an eye out at vintage and second hand stores for old musical items you could repurpose. And now you know what to do if you accidentally break a stick as you are thrashing away your most complicated metal track!