Here it is, short and sweet: talent exists, having it helps, but don’t worry about it. My opinion, based on my work with hundreds of students in many thousands of lessons, is that any natural aptitude for music is mainly genetic, so there’s nothing you can do to influence your natural gift. It’s whatever you were born with.

But you do have plenty of control over how you develop your gift, and that’s what matters. Talent is meaningless by itself; it’s only the potential for something good to happen. Without effort and persistence, nothing comes of it. You can create your own musical reality with love and hard work.