Music Teacher's Helper Blog

“The Perfect Wrong Note”

The Perfect Wrong Note by William Westney is one of the best books I have ever read! It is a must for any musician – performer, teacher, or student.

The book is all about learning to trust yourself, and how to get the most out of the time you spend at your instrument. As the title suggests, it delves into ‘mistakes’ and why they occur, what they can teach us, and why we shouldn’t worry so much about avoiding them throughout the learning process. This book turns some conventional teaching approaches on their heads and explains some damaging effects of old-school mentalities of perfection and self-criticism.

Written in a brilliantly conversational style, The Perfect Wrong Note is extremely hard to put down. Insights are backed up by examples that are both musical, as well as anecdotal, and are presented in a way that any musician can relate to.

Any of us teachers that have adult students would know about the hang-ups a lot of them have regarding getting things ‘right’ and feeling inadequate if this doesn’t happen straight away. I currently have half a dozen of my students reading this book at the moment, and I am hoping that it reveals to them a little more the method in my madness, as well as being an added authority to guide them in their musical journeys. Westney has a way of making practice sound fun and enticing – as it should be – and a little extra inspiration never hurt anyone either!

I’m so excited by this book – it has reinforced my teaching method, altered my outlook on some of my own playing, and has also been an enjoyable and entertaining read. I found myself interrupting my partner on many occassions to read aloud sections – it has wisdom in it that you don’t want to keep to yourself!

A must for any musician’s library.

About the Author

Brandon Pearce
Brandon Pearce is the founder and CEO of Music Teacher's Helper, a web-based software program to help music teachers manage the business aspects of teaching music lessons.

A piano teacher and computer programmer himself, he created Music Teacher's Helper as a side project to manage his own students, and in 2004, made it available for music teachers worldwide.

Since then, it has grown to supp... [Read more]

3 Comments

  1. Ronnie Currey

    Leah, the book sounds interesting. I checked on Amazon and you can purchase the book used for $10 or new for $23. The book has all positive reviews and a five star rating. I will order the book now. Thanks!

  2. Joe

    Sounds like a very interesting and insightful book. I might get it myself!

  3. Klaus Georg

    Thank you so much, Leah, for posting this. Reading this book has changed my musical life. After practicing for a few weeks using these methods I am comfortably singing arias I never sang before and my teaching has improved dramatically.
    Here is my own review of the book: http://www.klausgeorg.com/2009/05/the-perfect-wrong-note.html

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