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#1021426 - 03/06/06 06:53 PM new to piano
zoso Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/23/06
Posts: 102
Loc: O'fallon Il
I started a week ago with piano, a p90 actually, and a book-Alfreds Play Piano Now, a basic book for adults. Some days the lessons seem so easy I fly through them, then the next I start off not remembering many notes at all. I'd hoped to learn all the notes before starting lessons.
So my question really is; is going through this program a good idea or would I be better off with a teacher this early on?
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#1021427 - 03/06/06 08:15 PM Re: new to piano
Naught Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/08/06
Posts: 272
Loc: Ohio
My first lesson, I could find Middle C and play the C Major scale right hand only. Whatever you do towards learning is good. We all start somewhere.

Welcome to the board =))

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#1021428 - 03/06/06 08:16 PM Re: new to piano
Dorrie Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/09/05
Posts: 438
zoso,

If you've never played an instrument before it is hard to learn piano alone, IMHO, since you won't have the feedback of knowing what you are supposed to sound like. I guess if you had some knowledge, and a recording set-up it cou ld be overcome.

The "beat" or rythmm is what tripps up a lot of beginners (me!). You can "fake" knowing the notes well by judicious use of a pencil on your score, but the beat is something you have to internalize

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#1021429 - 03/06/06 08:37 PM Re: new to piano
Baldwinfan.718 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/10/06
Posts: 48
Loc: Moorestown, NJ
I suggest trying to get a teacher. Then if you have a question you can always ask your teacher, whereas with a book your question might not be answerd or the text can be confusing.

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#1021430 - 03/06/06 08:42 PM Re: new to piano
Bob Muir Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/01/03
Posts: 2653
Loc: Lakewood, WA, USA
Zoso, if you want to play classical music, then I highly recommend acquiring a teacher as soon as possible. As Dorrie says, playing correctly requires counting and it also requires the proper use of the pedal, body/arm/hand position, and proper use of arm weight, all of which is very difficult to learn without the guidance of a teacher.

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#1021431 - 03/06/06 08:43 PM Re: new to piano
gilad Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/30/05
Posts: 271
Loc: south africa
what they said above.
and
lessons are your feedback and your food for thought, your exposure to new concepts with little confussion and opportunity for clarification.
remember that the real progress is made away from lessons when you're pratising.
but lessons as said above appraise how you are doing and correct your errors so you dont continue to learn faultily.
some people amaze me by becoming very good through learning alone, i myself would never have managed to make any in roads without my teacher.
a good or average teacher is essential.
a bad teacher is a waste of your time.
just my opinion and experience.

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#1021432 - 03/06/06 10:01 PM Re: new to piano
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8482
Loc: Ohio, USA
some people are good at learning on their own (such as me), but some don't. so depending on your learning style and ability, you need to decide whether to find a teacher or not at the beginning. you really don't need a teacher to teach you key positions on a keyboard nor do you need a teacher to teach you how to read music notes, all of which can be found from books. but if you have never played any music instrument before, you need someone to tell you whether your hand position or posture is good at piano (although you could learn some of those from books or video/dvd as well). also, a good teacher could give you some really good advices and point out what you're doing wrong to make your learning faster and more effective. still, even with a teacher, a lot of work has to be done on your own and you cannot depend on a teacher to tell you or help you with everything.

it's really a long road to learn to play piano, but as long as you love music and piano, you'd be fine, i guess.

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#1021433 - 03/06/06 10:11 PM Re: new to piano
Monica K. Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012


Registered: 08/10/05
Posts: 17698
Loc: Lexington, Kentucky
Hi zoso, welcome to the forum!

I highly recommend that you get a teacher at the start, at least for a couple of months, for all the reasons Bob and the others described. It may sound hard to believe, but sitting just a few inches too close or too far, or too high or too low, or holding your hands the wrong way, can cause you great grief down the road. A teacher is also the easiest way to learn how to use pedals (um, does your p90 have a pedal?).

You'll make a lot more progress faster early on with a teacher, and once you have the basics down, you can always switch to self-teaching.

Just mho.
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Mason & Hamlin A -- 91997
My YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/pianomonica

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#1021434 - 03/06/06 10:43 PM Re: new to piano
zoso Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/23/06
Posts: 102
Loc: O'fallon Il
Thank's for all the input. I'd had a couple years of classical guitar, then quit for 6 years. You'd be amazed at how much you lose. The treble clef is pretty simple so far with the keyboard but the bass clef takes more thought. Rhythm
I'm fine with, as well as most of the other notation. I thought I'd get a jump on the lessons and get the notes down cold first, but now I'm rethinking that. I dont know how to tell a good piano teacher from a bad one, so I'll talk to a few and hear them play. thanks again.
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#1021435 - 03/06/06 10:52 PM Re: new to piano
saw Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/28/04
Posts: 100
Loc: Florida
If you want to practice reading and recalling the notes on either clef, go to pedaplus.com and play the flash card games.
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Celebrate and enjoy the journey!

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#1021436 - 03/07/06 09:26 AM Re: new to piano
dk21208 Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/29/05
Posts: 339
Loc: FL
I think as adults we want to progress too quickly and end up impeding progress. A child can go to a lesson and be happy for the next week telling everyone she/he meets where middle C is. An adult learns where middle C is and then proceeds to try and cram the first fifteen lessons in their lesson book in the next 30 minutes. Try to act like the kid in this scenario. May I suggest until you find a teacher you take things slowly and focus on actually absorbing the knowledge provided in each lesson. You are currently learning fundamentals that are a necessary foundation for proper learning throughout your musical tutelage. It is easy to assume that you already have that stuff down after playing another instrument, but make sure you aren't cheating yourself. As far as learning the notes, follow Saw's advice and use some sort of flash card method. Learning notes is just a factor of memorization.

Edit: You should also check out the Piano Teacher's Forum. There are frequent discussions there regarding finding the right teacher.
_________________________
Dean

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#1021437 - 03/07/06 01:50 PM Re: new to piano
Gyro Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/24/05
Posts: 4533
First, you should not apologize for having
a P-90. A digital is a piano in every
sense of the word, and in fact has many advantages
over an acoustic piano: always in perfect tune,
no tuning or maintenance of any kind ever
needed, instant record and playback,
portability, etc.

If you had guitar lessons, then there
should be no reason why you couldn't instruct
yourself in the piano. A piano is fundamentally
much easier to play than a guitar, since
all that's needed to make it sound is
pressing keys, and the internal mechanism
or circuitry then produces the sound for you,
without you having to manipulate strings
and frets with your fingers. And there
is haunting similarity between the two
instruments. If you look inside an acoustic
piano, you'll see strings and hammers, which
correspond to the strings and fingers
on a guitar.

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#1021438 - 03/07/06 08:13 PM Re: new to piano
mdsdurango Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/04
Posts: 1755
Loc: Durango Colorado
Another advantage to having a teacher is that you have to pay for your lesson. That alone is incentive for practice. I agree with all above that you seek a teacher from the start. Teachers can correct improper fingering, posture, rhythm, AND give positive feedback for a weeks worth of hard work.
Play, Play, Play!
Mike
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WHAT???????
Yamaha S6, U5C, P120
http://michaelstith.com

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#1021439 - 03/07/06 09:54 PM Re: new to piano
LeadFingers Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/19/06
Posts: 178
Loc: Salem Oregon
Hi Zoso:

I too came from a guitar background.
Years ago I asked a friend of mine (a piano player)what notes were in a bizarre chord.
He asked me how bad I wanted to know, and would only show me if I committed to several hours a week. He taught me music theory. We started out with the circle of fifths and how that related to scales, moved on to triads & timing.
Only after that I was hooked, he showed me correct fingering on the scales, and finger exercises from the "Hannon" book. He told me if I tried to go to fast I would learn slow, If I was more concerned with timing I would learn fast.
He told me to keep my wrists relaxed or I would never get to year 2 without painful wrist problems.

I decided, having the basics down, I could learn on my own.I wish I hadn't.
My posture is bad which causes other problems, I have fingering issues which are much easier to ask about if someone is watching. I have no one to SHOW me the correct way.
Now years later I find myself looking for a teacher. (Who will have to correct posture & fingering issues before I can really start learning)
Correcting ingrained bad habits can be Sooooo difficult.
It's MUCH better to learn right way the first time!
Trust me on this, I wish I had chosen a different path.
Even if you can only afford to see a teacher once a month,it's worth it.

If playing a piano is the road your on, a teacher will get you there much faster, and save a lot of frustration.

Sorry to be long winded.
If I had stayed with a teacher I wouldn't be
LeadFingers
_________________________
"The Oxen are slow, but the Earth is patient" Chuen

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