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Perfect Piano-Playing Hand Posture

Hand posture and comfort are vitally important while playing the piano or keyboard. Poor hand posture can cause your performance to suffer for two reasons: [more…]

Trembling Tremolos on the Piano

Although piano tremolos and trills sound much the same, there are differences between how they are notated and how they sound. A trill occurs when you flutter your fingers very quickly between two notes [more…]

Frédéric Chopin: Polish Piano Virtuoso

Frédéric Chopin (1810-1849) was a thin, frail virtuoso pianist from Poland (see Figure 1). Chopin ("sho-PANH") single-handedly revolutionized the world of piano music. He changed everybody's idea of what [more…]

Finding the Right Spot for Your Piano

Whether you bought a piano or an electric keyboard, the first thing to do when you get your new baby home is to find a spot for it to live. This spot doesn't have to be a permanent resting place — pianos [more…]

How the Piano Changed Music

The concept of using dynamic markings (which indicate the relative loudness of different sections in the music) in sheet music came about around the same time as the piano — for good reason. Before the [more…]

How Musical Notes Are Constructed

You couldn't read or write music without notes. If you think of music as a language, the notes are like letters of the alphabet. If you know how to recognize the notes, you can learn the language. [more…]

How to Read Music Note Values

Reading music notes means understanding the value of each note (that is, how long each note lasts) and how notes fit together in sheet music. To know how to read music notes, you'll need to learn the different [more…]

How to Read the Rests in Music

Knowing when not to play notes during a song is as important as knowing the notes you do play. Understanding how to read rests will help you keep up with the beat and pacing of the music. Sometimes the [more…]

How to Tune a Guitar from the Piano

One of the most common ways to tune a guitar to a standard pitch is to use a piano. You need to know how to tune a guitar using a piano or some other fixed source if you want to play with other instruments [more…]

Grand Pianos and Upright Pianos

Pianos are the most popular acoustic keyboards hands down (pun intended), with a 300-year track record, an incomparable tone, and a sound-producing mechanism that has been refined to respond to every subtle [more…]

Electric Pianos

For considerably less money than you shell out for an acoustic keyboard, also known as a piano, you can own a digital keyboard capable of sounding like just about any other instrument on the planet [more…]

How to Buy a Piano

Buying a piano can be as much fun as buying a car — generally without the pushy salesperson. You get to test drive different instruments to find the one that suits you best. [more…]

How to Identify the Keys on a Piano

The first thing you notice on your piano keyboard is the not-so-colorful use of 88 black and white keys. The black ones are raised and are set farther back than the white ones. Each key on the keyboard [more…]

Good Piano Posture

Depending on the type of keyboard you’re playing, you can either sit or stand while you play the piano. As a general rule, most pianists sit at the piano, but many rock keyboardists stand behind their [more…]

Fingering on a Piano

In piano lingo, fingering refers to using the best finger to play each note of a song, and correct fingering is always a very important part of piano playing. Even easy piano pieces have fingerings marked [more…]

Pros and Cons of Buying a Digital Keyboard

If you’ve decided that a full-on piano is not for you right now — or ever — you may be in the market for a digital keyboard instead. You can rent some digital keyboards, but not all. Some of the fancier [more…]

Types of Digital Keyboard

So, you’ve made the decision to buy a digital keyboard rather than a piano. Now you must decide what type of digital keyboard you want. Any digital keyboard is a versatile instrument, giving you access [more…]

The MIDI Places You Can Go with Your Digital Keyboard

An acoustic piano does one thing — produces piano notes as you press the keys. But, with a MIDI system attached to a digital or hybrid keyboard, you can connect to and communicate with other keyboards, [more…]

Parts of a Piano

Every acoustic piano, whether a glossy concert grand or a well-worn upright, part of an orchestra or a jazz combo, shares certain characteristics with every other piano: [more…]

Mnemonics for Piano Notes

Reading piano music is a learned skill, and to help you remember the names of the lines and spaces for each staff and the notes they represent, try a mnemonic [more…]

Crossing Your Fingers as You Play Piano

Piano music is often very fluid, requiring you to shift hand positions. The best way to do this is to use a little maneuver called finger crossing. Finger crossing is one of those techniques that can be [more…]

Piano Pedals: Getting Your Feet in on the Action

When you play the piano, your hands are busy on the keys, and your feet are called upon to work the pedals to control other aspects of the music. The various pedals allow you to achieve different effects [more…]

How to Buy a Digital Keyboard

If you decide to buy a digital keyboard instead of a piano, make a list of which features you need and which you don’t. For example, if you don’t tour with a band, you have no need for a feature allowing [more…]

The Treble and Bass Clefs in Piano Music

When using printed music to play piano, the treble and bass clefs identify the notes. A clef’s sole purpose in life is to tell you the names of the lines and spaces on the staff so that you can play piano [more…]

Playing Accidentals on the Piano

You know that the black keys on a piano are sharps and flats; for example, a B-flat is the black key to the left of (or lower than) a B, and an F-sharp is the black key to the right of [more…]

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