- Max Kuehn
Learn The Fundamentals Of Piano
Any competent piano teacher will start your piano lessons by teaching you the fundamentals of the instrument. That’s where you should begin if you’re teaching yourself to play.
Become acquainted with the piano. Examine the middle keys, flat keys (left black keys), sharp keys (right black keys), bass, and high tones, and listen to them.
Find out where middle C is located. The key of middle C is the starting point for studying the piano. It’s the white key to the left of the grouping of two black keys in the centre of the keyboard.
Learn the fundamentals: The white keys are C- D -E- F- G -A- B, and the naturals are C- D -E- F- G -A- B. Black keys are known as accidentals because when pressed, they produce a flat or sharp note.
There are five accidentals in each octave (set of eight notes), which might be sharp or flat.
Learn the music language: You might want to brush up on your musical terminology. This Khan Academy Glossary of Musical Terms is free and covers the fundamentals of music.
Understand the Major Keys
If you’re learning the piano for the first time, whether you’re teaching yourself or taking lessons, you should start with the major keys. If it’s easier for you, you can teach yourself things using a numbered system.
1 represents middle C, 2 represents D, 3 represents E, 4 represents F, 5 represents G, 6 represents A, 7 represents B, and 8 represents higher C.
Some individuals like this method for learning easy songs they can play straight away, such as “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” which starts with 3-2-1-2-3-3-3.
One technique to learn the primary keys is to learn scales, which we’ll go over later. If you want to get started right away, check out this post on which scales to learn first. Some music tutors advise that you experiment with the major keys until you feel at ease in each one.
Each week, concentrate on one major key and learn the notes in that key. Soon enough, you’ll be able to tell which key a piece of music is composed in.
Learn the Most Frequently Used Chords
Even if you don’t know how to read music, you can learn some of the most basic chords.
In music, there are major and minor chords. The root, third, and fifth keys are used in major chords. The root key, flat third key, and fifth key are all used in minor chords.
Check out how to read chords piano. After learning the 12 major and minor chords, you can progress to more advanced chords like reduced, augmented, seventh, and sixth chords, among others.
However, because you are only starting out, you should focus on the fundamental major and minor chords.
When it comes to self-teaching piano, the Internet can be really useful. OnlinePianist.com is an excellent resource for learning to play chords. You can also hunt for printable chord sheets to play along with your favorite musical recordings on the internet.
Recognize Musical Patterns
As you learn to play the piano, you will notice that there are patterns in the music. Some songs, for example, include chords that repeat repeatedly.
It gets easier to learn how to play songs if you can recognize patterns in them. If you take note of the patterns in songs, you may easily learn their melodies and baselines.
Every song you try to learn will have its own distinct patterns. Patterns are referred to be music’s lexicon by some music professors. They are essential to comprehending it. There are rhythmic patterns, tone patterns, and even left-hand accompaniment patterns to be found.
When you’re listening to music, become a more active listener. Find a recording of the piece of music you’re learning and listen to it to see if you can see any patterns.
Then, while listening to the tune, try playing those patterns on the piano. Remember these patterns because they will reappear in subsequent pieces of music. These skills will be useful when you learn to read sheet music.
Fingering is more important than anything else while learning to play the piano. When learning to play the piano, you must understand where your fingers should go.
Learning scales is the greatest approach to begin learning accurate finger placement on the piano. Learn the major scales first, then the minor scales.
Using numbers on your fingers might once again assist you in learning proper finger placement. From thumb to pinky, your left hand can be numbered one through five, and your right hand can be numbered one through five.
The fingering 1-2-3-1-2-3-4-5 and back down 5-4-3-2-1-3-2-1 will be used in a scale on the right hand.
On the way up the scale, cross your thumb under your third finger to play the second 1, and on the way down the scale, cross your thumb over your third finger to play the second 3.
Teach yourself to finger on the right hand first, then the left, before combining the two and playing scales with both. When you start using songbooks and sheet music, this will make learning proper finger placement for songs much easier.
You can also do finger exercises to loosen up your fingers and ensure that they’re in good shape for playing the piano.
How To Teach Yourself Piano
Remember that learning any instrument necessitates a commitment to consistent practice. So, if you’re eager to study and dedicated to putting in a lot of practice time, let’s get started!
Purchase a piano or locate a keyboard
The obvious first step is to get yourself a piano. Set a budget, explore different varieties of pianos, and look for offers online and in your neighborhood.
Consider the following:
Many music stores provide keyboards for rent. If you want to rent a piano or keyboard before deciding if it’s perfect for you, here is an excellent place to start.
Reach out to any of your friends or family members who are active in the music industry. They might know someone looking to sell an old instrument that isn’t being used for a fraction of what it would cost new.
If you can’t find a piano, a keyboard is a good substitute. They’re inexpensive, never fall out of tune, and come with a variety of sounds and features to complement your music.
Not to mention that they’re far easier to transport and take up less space. For a beginner, a learning keyboard is an excellent tool. These specialist instruments light up in a specific sequence to aid in song learning.
They usually come with books and videos to assist you in learning musical notation. You can always start with a keyboard and go to a piano later.
Keyboards are typically less expensive than pianos. Keyboards, on the other hand, never go out of tune and take up far less room than a piano. Whereas, acoustic pianos can cost anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000 or more for high-end concert grand pianos.
Become acquainted with your instrument
Spend some time getting to know your piano or keyboard now that you have it.
To complete this mission, you must:
Pay attention to your new piano. Is it tuned correctly? For the first time, you might want to hire someone to tune it for you. You can skip this step if you used a keyboard.
Learn the names and functions of the keys. The keys should be in the piano book if your piano came with one or if you purchased one. If not, this 5-minute instructional will show you how to learn the keys quickly.
Make certain you know what good hand posture looks like. Listen to each one carefully and observe how they differ from the others. Continue practicing until you can distinguish between them. You want to start building excellent habits right away!
Properly position your arms and hands to strengthen them.
The first step in learning to play the piano is to make sure your arms and hands are in the correct position.
The “C Position” is the natural cupped-shape they take when hung by your side. You’ll also be able to read a variety of notes from the bass and treble clefs, as well as play some basic piano chords with your left hand.
When you put your arms and hands on top of the keys, you must maintain the same position. Keep your wrists and forearms straight while doing this.
Play five-finger patterns in a variety of keys all over the keyboard. Make extensive use of the black keys! First without notes to learn the layout of the keyboard, then with notes to navigate using “landmark notes.”
It’s critical to maintain good hand and finger placement to avoid repeated stress injuries. Also, while we appreciate your want to learn how to learn piano quickly, keep in mind your limitations and avoid over-practicing.
Be Aware of Your Notes
Learning to play the piano entails learning a new language: music. It’s similar to when you initially learnt the letters, except this time you’ll memorize. You’ll have these memorized in no time if you practice regularly.
The Do-Re-Mi melody is a nice place to start (yes, the one from The Sound of Music). Starting with pitch C, each of them symbolizes a piano note. It will assist you in determining the pitch of the notes as well as learning which keys to press on the piano.
- Do – Note C
- Re – Note D
- Mi – Note E
- Fa – Note F
- So – Note G
- La – Note A
- Ti – Note B
Look for a pair of black keys to find C. (accidentals). C is directly to their left. On the piano, there are multiple Cs that are always eight notes (octave) apart.
F is another key to remember by heart in the start. It’s the leftmost of the three black keys.
It’s simpler to remember the location of the remainder of the notes if you memorize your Cs and Fs first.
Become acquainted with Sharps and Flats
Sharps (#) or flats (#) are played on the black keys (b). They are available in pairs or trios.
When a piece has a # on it, it signifies you must play the next higher key. A b, on the other hand, indicates that the next lower key must be played.
Begin by looking at the piano’s middle. Do you see that group of three blacks and one pair of blacks? The middle C note can be found there.
All Cs appear to the left of two blacks, as previously stated. Three blacks to the left of F. The Middle C and Middle F are the ones you’ll find in the middle of your piano.
The black key directly above and beside the Middle C note generates either a C sharp (C#) or a D flat (D) (Db). The D# or Eb is played on the black key next to it. The black key to the left of Middle F plays F# or Gb.
Have you noticed the pattern yet? Always remember that black keys can only play sharps or flats, whereas white keys can play both sharps and flats.
Establish a Practice Objective
Begin by considering your eventual aim. You want to learn to play the piano, but what are your goals? How long do you want to spend on it?
What will you be concentrating on? Is that information from the internet or a book you purchased?
What scales or keys would you like to be able to play? When you first started thinking about learning how to teach yourself piano, what was your favorite tune that you imagined yourself playing?
In seven days, what will you be able to play on the piano? What about 14 or 30 years old? You’re just learning how to teach yourself piano, so you definitely don’t need any goals longer than a month. Prioritize the first 30 days!
How long do you plan on practicing each day?
Begin to Practice
The preceding three sections led up to the most crucial question: Do you truly want to learn how to teach yourself piano? Then, every day, practice!
Here are some suggestions for your practice sessions:
Maintain your focus. Try some finger speed exercises if you’re tired of the same few scales or chords.
Chords and scales should be practiced. Make sure to practice these every day because they will build the foundation of your piano playing. Begin by learning the major and minor chords.
Understand the major keys. This is crucial if you want to eventually play by ear and identify the sounds you make. Simple tunes like “Mary Had A Little Lamb” are ideal!
As you learn to play by ear, you’ll notice patterns. Every song is made up of musical patterns. As you work toward your ultimate goal of performing songs on the piano, you’ll want to start noticing and understanding these patterns.
When it comes to learning music, the internet might be your best friend. Many websites will let you download their sheet music for free!
Exercising Your Fingers
Now that you’ve mastered the fundamentals, it’s time to put them into practice with your fingers. You may educate your fingertips to know without fumbling in this manner.
Fingering is essential when learning to play the piano. When learning to play the piano, you must understand where your fingers should go.
The pentascale approach is a nice place to start. Any scale with five (Penta) notes is referred to as a pentascale. You can start your finger practice with the C Major pentascale because you already know where the Middle C is.
Place your thumb on the Middle C note, index on D, middle on E, ring on F, and pinky on G to begin. This pentascale is made up of those five notes.
Because it exercises all of your fingers, this is one of the simplest finger training strategies. You want to start slowly now, so use the complete note method (count four beats before pressing the next key). You can progress to half notes and finally quarter notes from here.
You can progress up the practice ladder to taking two notes at a time once you’re more comfortable. Because you’ll be pressing two keys at once, you’ll need two fingers. It’s a little more difficult, but it’ll help you practice for more difficult pieces.
Pay Attention to Timing
Every note includes a count indicating how long you should press it. Three of the most commonly used musical symbols can be seen on music sheets:
- Entire notes (with four beats)
- Notes in half (with two beats)
- Notes in quarters (with one beat)
- Whole notes are the white circles on a music sheet. These indicate that you must hold the note for four full beats (as in one-and-two-and-three).
Half notes, like quarter notes, are white circles with a stem attached. These notes are held for two beats (one-and-two).
The only difference between quarter and half notes is that quarter notes have shaded rings. They each represent a single beat.
Interact with others
It’s a good idea to find other individuals to practice with or around after some time.
Inquire whether a more experienced pianist wants to get together and practice, or if they have any learning tools.
Do short “performances” for people, even if it’s just your family, if you’ve made some progress. They’ll be able to tell you what sounds good and what needs to be improved.
Finally, consider getting piano instruction from a professional. An instructor will provide you with hands-on instruction, hold you accountable for your progress, and teach you how to adjust your pacing.
Plus, if you teach yourself the fundamentals, a piano teacher can help you get to playing some simple tunes you actually want to learn faster!
What do you think about how hard is it to learn piano? When you look at all the options available to people who want to learn to play the piano today, it’s clear that not only is it possible, but it’s also a lot easier than it used to be.
You probably won’t become a concert pianist on your own unless you’re very talented, but if you just want to play along with your favorite songs for fun, there are a lot of resources online to help you get started. So what are you waiting for?