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Piano Tabs: Learn To Play Fur Elise

Jun 8, 2008
In this piano lesson you will learn to read easy keyboard tablature. Piano tab notation is easy to read even if you do not know how to read sheet music. You will also learn to play an easy piano version of Fur Elise.

To know how to read and play piano sheet music is a great asset. It is worth developing this skill as you have a nearly unlimited amount of piano sheet music titles to play.

When you try to learn piano sheet music I suggest that you take time to learn just a few notes at a time. Learn the placement of the notes on the sheet music staff and also where to play them on your piano.

Meanwhile you can learn to read the easier piano tab notation.

Piano tabs or keyboard tablature is an easy way to learn melodies and other types of piano music. We will use a common way to describe how you are to play the keys on your piano.

Sheet music notation shows the notes to play but not how to play them on your instrument. Tablature on the other hand shows the keys to play on your piano.

To read the piano tabs you have to learn the note names of the white keys on your piano. First we will take a look at the note c at the middle of the piano keyboard. It is called middle c or sometimes c4.

The black keys on the keyboard are organized in groups consisting of two or three black keys. Middle c is immediately to the left of two black keys at the middle of the keyboard.

As we mentioned before middle c is sometimes called c4 as it is in the fourth octave of a piano or a grand. Octave means eight and you have played eight notes if you start with c and play the white keys until you come to the next c.

The following notes to the right of c is d e f g a b and then you have the next c. This c is subsequently called c5 as it is in the fifth octave of a piano. On a smaller type of keyboard with fewer keys you will still use c4 to show middle c.

The c note to the left of middle c is called c3. All notes to the left of two black keys are c notes in different octaves.

The easy piano tabs we will use to play Fur Elise has the following rules:

1. The white keys are indicated with lowercase letters. An example: c d e f g a b

2. The black keys are shown by uppercase letters. For example, A D-major chord is written d F a. The uppercase letter F shows that the note is the black key to the right of f.

3. The octave to play is showed with a number after the letter. The note c4 means, play middle c. The following notes will not have a number until it is time to change octave. Here is a C-major arpeggio: c4 e g c5

It is time to play the first notes of Fur Elise. It is written as an easy melody for your right hand:

e5 D e D e b4 d5 c a4 c e a b e G b c5

e4 e5 D e D e b4 d5 c a4 c e a b e c5 b4 a

I suggest that you memorize the melody one line at a time. Now we will come to a new part of the melody. If it had been a pop song it would be called the bridge:

b c5 d e g4 f5 e d f4 e5 d c e4 d5 c b4

We finish by playing the first part again:

e5 D e D e b4 d5 c a4 c e a b e G b c5

e4 e5 D e D e b4 d5 c a4 c e a b e c5 b4 a

This is a simplified version of the first part of Fur Elise with an easy form of the most common piano tabs on the Internet. You can learn more about piano tab notation on Wikipedia. Search for keyboard tablature. These piano tabs are an introduction to the little more advanced tablature system on the Internet.
About the Author
Peter Edvinsson invites you to download your piano tabs and free piano sheet music at http://www.capotastomusic.com
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