Just a note of clarification re: Shawn Cheek and "playing by ear."
I've looked at some of his videos, and I agree it's a pretty decent way to learn a particular song... but OP should understand that the white board has nothing to do with teaching you to play by ear. The "playing by ear" part is done by Shawn before the video. He listens to recorded music, picks out the notes (he has perfect pitch apparently), and writes them down on the white board to teach you in the video. The white board is simply a different notation system, writing down the names of the notes instead of using standard notation.
Advantages IMO: easy way to learn a particular song; more accessible for those without good reading skills on a grand staff; and also... good arrangements (this is of no small importance; because Shawn picks out the parts by ear, he usually gives you exactly what the artist is playing on the recording, or at least very close, and that's sometimes hard to find in sheet music).
Disadvantages: it is indeed "monkey-see, monkey-do." You're going to learn a song, but not much else in the way of pianistic skills; if you learn to read standard notation instead of relying on his white board notation, the whole world of music is open to you instead of the few songs he decides to transcribe.
Final note: the video described by OP seems to be different, where Shawn actually explains to you the process he uses to pick out the notes and transcribe them... but that has nothing to do with the white board notation and the bulk of his videos. I haven't seen this particular video, but I also doubt it's really teaching you how to "play be ear," but more probably teaching you how to transcribe from a recording (which is of course related, but not the same thing).
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