Devoting Time To My Passion - Are You?

Last Update: June 02, 2021

There is a specific lesson we all learn here at Wealthy Affiliate as well as through other successful individuals. If we wish to achieve a goal, we can achieve it if we devote a significant amount of focus in pursuit of that goal.

It will take time.

It will take learning and using new skills.

It will take consistent action.

It has been proven over and over again, if we do that, we can achieve our goal.

Do you think if you followed these guidelines you can reach your own goal, be it personal or business?

May I share some personal ideas and goals with you?

Music

I have a confession. Although my mind has been focused on building my affiliate marketing business, my heart was elsewhere.

My passion is music. Playing the piano. Classical music predominantly. If you wish you can check out a couple of pieces I recently uploded to my YouTube Channel. I have listed it in my WA Profile page:

https://my.wealthyaffiliate.com/edwinbernard

From childhood, I had taken piano lessons and learned to play some amazing piano music really well. In my final year in high school I played the 3rd Movement of the Grieg Piano Concerto with the school orchestra. The audience loved it and I was a celebrity at school for a whole week ha-ha!

However, I recognized that earning a living from music was not going to work for me. This field was, and is, highly competitive and my chances of succeeding in it was slim.

This story is about how playing the piano receded from my life. And how I am reversing that trend late in life.

Engineering

Besides music, I also developed an interest in electronics. Exciting developments were happening in this field in the 1960s. When my parents noticed this interest, they encouraged me to pursue a career in engineering.

They did not advise me to pursue a career in music, even though they knew that was my main passion.

Home computers didn't exist then. And the Internet was something only the Government used. Affiliate marketing as we know it today, didn't exist.

I graduated in Electrical Engineering and Electronics.

My Career

I began my career in the narrow field of display engineering featuring LEDs.

Remember, this was the early 1970s and LED's then were very limited in capability and extremely expensive.

The projects I worked on were for the military. Tiny LED arrays were installed into reconnaissance cameras to imprint digital data onto the edge of the film. High imprint speed was essential. LED's can turn on and off really fast and were perfect for this task. I designed and developed these miniature displays.

Later in my career I developed displays for commercial and military aircraft using color LCD's, similar to the ones in the above picture.

Thirty years ago I was at the ascent of my career. Sadly I neglected my music and stopped playing the piano. I gradually forgot all those pieces I had learned.

At the time of the Great Recession we needed the money and decided to sell my piano. I was not playing it and it was taking up space.

That was a shortsighted decision.

Retirement and Affiliate Marketing

Now I am retired. My pensions are insufficient to support the goals I have. Affiliate Marketing seemed a good way to create an online business with very little investment. I needed to learn all about Affiliate Marketing.

That is why I joined Wealthy Affiliate.

Why did I select the Making Money Online (MMO) niche? Actually, when I joined Wealthy Affiliate my first thought was to pursue the music niche. In retrospect, I with I had done that.

When I got the invitation from Kyle to join the Super Affiliate Challenge shortly after becoming a member of Wealthy Affiliate, I accepted. Once I made that decision, it made sense to build my website to feature MMO programs, and promote the affiliate program offered here. Music went by the wayside. Again!

I have succeeded in attracting referrals and am now earning a small income. And I do want to build on that. But I have another goal.

My Real Passion

I want to play all those piano pieces I enjoyed performing all those years ago once again. Since I am older and my fingers are not as agile, I know this will be a challenge as I will have to learn these skills all over again. And that will take time and effort.

If you are a pianist, I think you will relate to this. When you learn a piece, your fingers develop motor memory. That is how pianists can play from memory. Unless you practice a whole lot, many pianists, including I, need to have the sheet music in front, like a security blanket. I don't read every note, but keep looking at the music for cues to where I should be.

However, I had a problem. I didn't have a piano. Hence, my shortsighted comment earlier.

There was no way I could afford a good quality acoustic piano. Especially the 1917 Steinway Grand I had sold all those years ago.

Digital Piano

One way around this I thought was to get a really good digital piano. Technology has come a long way and I found out the good ones are manufactured to have the keyboard simulate the mechanics of the acoustic piano really well. And the samples used resulted in satisfying piano sounds.

There are also other advantages. One can use headphones to practice so as to not disturb others. Plus, besides the piano these babies can produce hundreds of other instrumental and synthetic sounds. One can have a lot of fun on the keyboard!

After much research I purchased the CASIO CGP-700 model shown above. It has a superb 88 key piano action keyboard, and an excellent extended sound system integrated into the stand. I also added a three pedal accessory that attached to the bottom.

Off I went practicing the piano. But there was an unintended consequence. When I use the headphones, the realistic piano action keyboard makes a loud clacking sound. Guess what. My wife hates that sound.

Night Practice Time

The only work around was to practice when she was not around, or at night when she was asleep in the bedroom. .

A couple of months ago I started practicing about two to three hours a night.

Bach, Beethoven, Mozart, Chopin and Debussy, here I come.

Guess what, my motor memory is returning. The lessons I spoke about in the first paragraph are directly applicable in relearning all those pieces I used to play.

It takes repetition starting at slow speeds and gradually increasing the tempo to what the pieces require.

Video

A wild thought came to me. Why not video my playing after I learn these pieces? And post them on my YouTube Channel?

I've started to do that. So far I have posted the 1st and 2nd Movements of the Beethoven Moonlight Sonata. I am working on the more difficult 3rd Movement. The actual title is Piano Sonata No. 14, Opus 27, No.2.

The description Moonlight was adopted after Beethoven had died. You can watch me playing these two movements in two separate videos on my YouTube Channel listed on my Profile Page. Here is the link again. Let me know what you think, especially of the piano sound.

https://my.wealthyaffiliate.com/edwinbernard

I will go into some detail how I recorded the video and audio in a future post.

Practicing

But now, my goal is to relearn pieces like Chipin's Fantasy in c# Minor, Beethoven piano sonatas like the Moonlight. Not just the first, well-known movement but also the 2nd and very difficult 3rd movements. Bach Preludes and Fugues, pieces by Mozart and many more.

It is going to take some time, but my goal is to play all these pieces as good as I can today. I don't think I will be able to play them as well as I did 30 years ago when I was in my 40s.

Time management is going to be very critical in how I schedule sufficient time to work on my business in additional to my music.

Thoughts On The Music Niche

I have been thinking of ways to combine my music with affiliate marketing. As of now, I don't have a music affiliate marketing site. So, If you have any recommendations, please share them with me.

Perhaps my first post could be a review of the Casio digital piano I have. It has turned out to be a very popular model and there are many reviews on this. However, I will approach this with a twist compared to these other reviews.

I am definitely going to have some fun with this process.

Following ones passion is always a good approach in pursuing a business. I will continue to build out my affiliate marketing website. But now I will add a second one focusing on music. This opens up a lot of new possibilities.

Why Does This Make Sense

Not everyone wants to spend money learning how to make money. But a lot of people love to spend money on interests that enhance their lives.

Working on both these avenues will add some diversity to my life. Perhaps additional income too. I like that.

I would appreciate any thoughts you may have on the subjects I shared in this post.

Cheers!

Edwin

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Dhind1 Premium
It is always good to follow your passion. I am happy for you that you have found time for this.

I have one of your YT videos playing in the background as I am writing this post.

I am not a musician, but you seem to be doing very well.

Alex
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EdwinBernard Premium
Hello Alex,

I am thrilled that you listened to me playing the piano. Right now I am making the time to practice and create videos. Thanks for your encouragement.

Cheers.

Edwin
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richardgb Premium
Hi Edwin
I applaud your comments about focus.
Focus was the key to my progress in music.

When I was 6 years old (long story short) I found an old, wrecked violin. I wanted to play it. My parents threw it away!

Over the years I daydreamed a lot about playing what I thought was American fiddle style (from radio and tv) in the Royal Albert Hall (I had seen the outside of the hall on a trip to London and had no idea what it was like inside).

At 8 years old, I had a chance to learn the recorder. A teacher tested those of us who wanted to learn, by getting us to sing. I sang out of tune (very nervous) and he told me: “you’ll never be able to learn an instrument” (his exact words).

At 12 years old at grammar school we were all offered musical instrument lessons. I jumped at the chance to learn to play the violin. I had classical lessons for 2 years. At the end of the first year I entered a county competition. I entered 2 levels, one for those who had been learning for 1 year and the other for 2 years, and won them both.

A few months later I started earning pocket money as a musician (hardly professional at the time but much more fun than doing a paper round).

My playing certainly didn’t sound good at the beginning. My teacher said to practice 15 minutes a day. I did much more than that, and several hours a day at weekends which tested my mother’s patience and I was banished to the garden shed for practice, then the neighbours complained! I remember getting in trouble in the winter because I cut the fingers off a pair of gloves!

During my third year of playing I was in the right place at the right time to perform in the Royal Albert Hall for the first time, playing folk music. I then played at the RAH every year, sometimes twice, for the next 8 years.

I think the delayed gratification of wanting to learn the violin, followed by the teacher’s comment at 8 years old led to a real burning desire. Hence the level of focus.
:-)
Richard
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EdwinBernard Premium
Hello Richard,

Yours is quite an amazing and inspiring story. Like the boy who never gave up against all odds. My hats of to you for gigging at the RAH of all venues.

I used to attend the PROMS at the time when Sir Malcolm Sargent was the main conductor. It was real fun attending the opening and closing nights. It appears that the PROMS has grown significantly since then.

The founder of the Comex cultural expeditions to India had dreams of his University entertainers performing at the RAH. He realized his dream and gave us the chance to shine there. That was only a one time thing. I was a member of a band that played Beatles music. So the guitar was my instrument then. By the way, Jon Snow, the ITV journalist was a member of our group and in this band too. We both attended Liverpool University at that time. Those were exciting times.

My mother was a violinist and encouraged her four children to learn a musical instrument. Only my youngest sister, violin and piano, and I, piano, persisted, She teaches the piano in Basingstoke and at one time conducted the Banbury Symphony Orchestra.

I am so happy that you play the violin. Keep enjoying playing music for as long as you can.

Cheers.

Edwin
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richardgb Premium
Thank you for the encouraging response, Edwin.

Unfortunately, I suffer from muscular dystrophy now...
which makes certain arm and leg muscles weak and means that keeping my balance and holding the violin up properly is difficult.

However... I am able to play the mandolin so I can still play many of the tunes I used to play on the violin by using the strap, rather than to support the instrument, to support my right arm.
:-)
Richard
Reply
EdwinBernard Premium
Sorry to hear about your MD. Glad that you can at least play the mandolin for your enjoyment. All the best to you.

Edwin
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1Rudy1 Premium
I play the drums....and I practice although not as often as I could, but practicing enough to see the results.

I lived in an apartment and had a drum kit. That didn't work very well, and I didn't practice as often.

I sold the kit and bought an electronic kit, which works very well.

Yes, while I hear the drum sounds through my headphones, the contact sounds from the drumsticks hitting the cymbals and drums do make a ticking noise, I live alone....

Edwin, good for you to pick up your piano playing again. Casio has always had a good keyboard, that was my first keyboard years ago.

The most important thing about getting a keyboard is that they have full sized keys. That will help in the transference from electronic to acoustic piano.

Rudy
Reply
EdwinBernard Premium
Hi Rudy,,

Glad to find out you also had a similar concern with your drums and found a solution similar to my piano.

You are right regarding the CASIO keyboard. My one has 88 keys that were designed to have the same surface feel as an acoustic piano. The action is a triple action one that provides the means for good sound control.

Thanks for commenting.

Edwin
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1Rudy1 Premium
Thanks, Edwin. Enjoy playing for as long as you can....!

Rudy
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HildeRegine Premium Plus
Hi Edwin! I just love classical music and piano. I used to play piano many years ago, but I was not any mozart exactly... Lol
Regarding your passion and business I think that is a great idea. There are endless possibilities you can do. I would say Go for it!
Reply
EdwinBernard Premium
Hello Hilde,

I appreciate your comment and especially your encouragement to pursue this music niche.

You inspire me with your imagination and hard work that you devote to your online business. I wish you all the success in the world.

Cheers.

Edwin
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BarbaraN Premium
Edwin,
Your blog hit me in the face, because I did much the same thing with my music. A the age of 5,I had already decided I was going to be a musician. I had asked my mother to teach me to play the piano, and I was hooked. We lived in Florida and churches had evening services which were mostly singing and prayers. I was playing hymns in evening services in my early teen years.

I started taking voice lessons when I was 16. I took the route of sacred repertoire --all those wonderful oratorios. Sang for some years in choirs---Majored in Voice in college.

Then I got married and had a child and all the responsibilities of marriage and motherhood. The music got pushed back a little, but I never left it completely and never got rid of my piano. for a number of years, I had my own music studio. I taught Piano, voice and Accordion. Yes, I picked up another instrument.

I was always active in local musical and theater groups.

Then, my church asked me if I would consider learning how to play the organ, They did not have a sub when ever the regular organist had to be gone , or for vacations etc. and the church would foot the bill and arrange for my practice.

Too good to be true. That didn't happen. My husband decided to take a job in St.Louis. As soon as we were settled in St.Louis I found an organ teacher. After lessons and a lot of substitute playing in the churches I found a permanent place to play. I was organist for my church for 23 years before retiring.

I'm 12 years older than you are, and about five years ago, I decided I should attend to my later years and decided to move into a senor living apartment. I am completely independent but no more taking care of house and yard, etc.

I never was without a piano.I moved one everywhere we went.
When I moved to where I am now I bought a digital piano. Mine is a Kwai Concert Series and I love it. I have never used the headphones. No need to. I now play the piano here for programs and accompanying groups.

I play about 4 programs a year- which keeps me busy re-learning all the pieces I learned years ago. We also have a choir and I am still singing.

I have not figured out how to apply Wealthy affiliate with my music. I shall be interested to see what you come up with.

Thanks for the trip down memory lane.
Barb
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EdwinBernard Premium
Hello Barb,

I loved reading your response. You are a lady after my own heart in your talent and dedication to music. Are you really 12 years older than me? I hope you figured out that I am 75.

These days I have got the listening bug for the organ. Only recently I discovered that organs are made to recreate the sound of so many famous organs right in your own home through the latest software and hardware technology.

At Christmastime until the Walt Disney Concert Hall, which is the home to the LA Phil, puts on a Handel Messiah singalong. All the audience members are provided with a copy of the score. Different parts of the hall are assigned specific parts to sing along in the choruses. They have well known singers for the solos. I attended this event once and loved it.

Kawai is an excellent brand. I have one of their synths that I purchased in 1996. And it still compares well with the synths of today. It is only a 61 note keyboard and the piano sounds are not its strongest points.

Did you see me play the 1st and 2nd movements of Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata? I am working on the last movement and will upload that soon. In plan to upload more after I get other pieces back into shape.

It sounds to me that you have enhanced the lives of others with your music. That must have been very rewarding to you. I truly appreciate you sharing this part of your life in your response to my blog post.

Continue making music for the residents of your retirement home community. I am sure they appreciate all you do.

Thanks for your interest in my efforts to use music in affiliate marketing. I will keep you informed as I get started and make progress in this new area.

Cheers Barbara.

Edwin
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