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Quick Fixes for Left Hand Octaves

 

Not happy with your left hand octaves? Let’s fix that!

The octave is a defining interval in Western music, marking the outer limits of the progression of half steps and while steps that form the scale.

It is also a critical interval for a harpist’s left hand to master. It’s not that the right hand doesn’t play octaves, of course; it’s simply that left hand octaves often create a harmonic and rhythmic foundation for a right hand melody. Put more bluntly, your left hand octaves can make or break your music.

There are two primary considerations for playing any octave: even sound between the fingers and rhythmic precision. (This pertains to either hand, naturally.) Let’s consider what each of these may mean in context.

EVEN-SOUNDING OCTAVES

An octave sounds like an octave when we can hear each of the two notes. While there may be musical considerations in a specific piece to make one note more prominent than the other, in general both notes should...

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