When you start playing the piano, it can seem tedious and never-ending. Some might be excited about the new experience, while others might lose their will halfway through. If you are serious about becoming a piano player, you need to approach it with an open mind. You need to find a goal to focus on and find the fun in learning.
Everyone experienced something new, and learning how to read music notes is the same as when you started reading when you were younger. It all came together with practice and challenges, but eventually, you got it right. With learning to play the piano and reading the notes, you will have the same experience. All that you will need to succeed in practice and a few good challenges to get you through.
What are Octaves?
You must have heard someone say that their voice has either gone up or dropped a few octaves. What they are referring to when people say that is singing. The piano has similar references but in the form of the notes, which are the vocal chords of the piano. There are up to 88 keys on a standard piano divided into the black and white keys that we all know. There are 52 white keys known as the natural tones and 36 black keys known as the sharps and flats. When you learn to play the piano, you are introduced to the first 12 keys of the piano, which are the base notes for most of the songs you will learn. The sequence of these 12 notes together is known as an octave. There can be up to seven octaves on a traditional piano, but other pianos with fewer keys will have less. People often wonder how many keys are on a piano, and the answer is simple.
- 88 keys on a standard piano
- 77 or 66 keys on smaller pianos
Finding Middle C
Finding the centre of a standard 88 key piano will require you to sit in the middle of the keyboard. At the beginning of your lessons, your piano teacher might advise you to put a letter on the piano keys you will learn to practice on, which are the lower white keys. These letters will range from A-G and are known as the foundation keys. To find middle C, you will need to look at the grouping of the black keys above your foundation keys. They are usually in a group of two or three keys. You will find the C key on the lower left of each grouping of black keys.
This key is the compass for the songs you learn, always bringing you back to the foundation of your music. Most new players learn to play nursery rhymes in the beginning. The C key will then act as a base to always bring the notes back to the end of the lines. This repetitive action is how you will also learn to read the notes.
Learning on a keyboard
When it comes to learning the piano, it can be more fun when you have a piano of your own because you can play in the privacy of your home. There are places where you can rent a keyboard if you do not have the budget to buy a new piano. Over time this can be costly, so save up and use the piano at a local school or church instead.
A keyboard has a setting where you can make it sound similar to an acoustic piano and will be a lot cheaper for you to buy. The benefit of a keyboard is that you won’t have to retune it at any point and that it has several settings that you can learn to combine as you are playing. Keyboards also have a memory function where you can program songs to play and learn from, and unlike a piano, you can combine sounds and notes that are all preprogrammed.
Keyboards are easy to move around, and you can practice anywhere with them. They are great for beginners who want to learn a little faster and add fun into their practice sessions. It is vital to remember that piano lessons are a commitment no matter what you are learning to play on. Secondhand pianos are just as grand, and as long as you are committed to the cause, you can quickly learn to play on anything.
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