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Advice For The Beginning Keyboardist

Jul 5, 2008
The keyboard is a wonderful instrument to behold, but learning to play it is another story completely. The piano, a close cousin to the keyboard, has long been revered as a culturally defining instrument. In essence, so too has the keyboard become a modernly successful version of the piano that much enjoyment comes out of playing.

The first thing to remember in playing a keyboard is to have fun- after all, you're learning because you want to- not because you have to. It is recommended to try and find songs that you may like and try to find music sheets detailing how to play them. Such music can commonly be found over the Internet, in music stores, and from fellow keyboard players who share same tastes.

Learning how to get the perfect listening ear for musical notes is one of the highest sought skills in keyboard playing. This is because anyone who can learn how to play by ear will essentially be able to hear a song and play it just from listening to it! This also serves great purpose for when the keyboardist with the perfect ear wants to record their own music into tablature. Thus, it's a good idea to try and learn by ear as well as through reading notes.

Metronomes are highly recommended for musicians that haven't yet grasped the concepts of timing and rhythm. While many would love to skip this step by claiming they know how to keep time, most beginners in fact, do not. It's almost always required to obtain a metronome and some sheet music for practice. Practice makes perfect, and until one's own internal metronome is developed, be prepared to do lots of it!

Next, it's good to try and use both hands where applicable. Even when one hand can be used to play multiple notes close together, it's good to use two hands to simplify the action and to help learn placement at a quicker pace. This way, less attention will be put onto trying to find keys with a certain hand, and more attention can be put on reading sheet music that most keyboardists require for learning.

As a last word of advice, it is important to have more fun than anything. Often times when a keyboardist makes multiple mistakes, he or she can do so without the listeners actually being able to tell a difference. This fact helps keyboardists relax, since they know that striking every key precisely isn't vital to having a great show for an audience- since most of the time they won't even be able to tell the difference!

Final Thoughts

Keyboards are wonderful instruments that have brought the intricacies of the piano to modern-day industry. Learning the keyboard can be just as tough as learning the piano, but through technological instruction, the process is much more simple in design. Obtain a metronome, some sheet music, and some professional advice if funds permits. Above all, have fun!
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