Online Piano Learning advice needed


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I have a basic knowledge of music and play guitar. I can hobble my way around a piano but I want to really learn to play piano

Just bought a Yamaha digital piano.

Can you recommend the best online course or teaching system?

Tom
 

happyrat1

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First of all, if you plan to learn piano, GET A TEACHER. There's no substitute for hands on guidance and many teachers prefer working with adults rather than children. Your local craigslist will probably list quite a few available in your area.

Secondly, as a supplemental resource, this thread lists most of the better resources available on the web.

https://www.keyboardforums.com/threads/good-tutorial-links.24556/

Bear in mind that a proper instructor will break you of any bad habits you may not otherwise even realize you have.

Gary ;)
 
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Fred Coulter

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I second the advice to get a real teacher. Most piano teachers would love to have a couple adult students. Someone they can talk to.

Mine discusses the relative merits of Wakeman vs. Emerson.
 
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Could a person make a video of their keyboard playing in a way as to show people what they might be doing wrong with their hands in order to get advice?
 

Fred Coulter

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Could a person make a video of their keyboard playing in a way as to show people what they might be doing wrong with their hands in order to get advice?
That opens you up to all sorts of contradictory advice. But I suppose you could try.

I've also seen some teachers using Skype, which might be a way to save money.

But I'm sticking with my original advice. Get a teacher. If you can't afford weekly lessons, talk to them about bi-weekly. Etc. Lessons around here are in the $25 per lesson, and the lesson is supposedly about half an hour, paid once a month. (In actuality, they run long.) At the beginning of the month we look at the calendar to see when we can and can't fit in the lesson. (She's going to Israel, and the following week I'm taking a two day class...) If there's a local university with a music school, they may have lessons taught by students and other teachers. It might be a formal program like this: http://www.stetson.edu/music/community-school/, or more informal. Call the piano faculty and ask if their students might be interested. Most instrument majors have to take some sort of pedagogy class, so they're not totally clueless. Heck, even faculty members might want to make a few bucks on the side. (Although they tend to feel their skills may be worth a little more than their students'.) You might even put up a sign in the music school building.
 
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Could a person make a video of their keyboard playing in a way as to show people what they might be doing wrong with their hands in order to get advice?
I third the advice. A teacher will be able to recognize mistakes you yourself might not even realize are mistakes
 
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I third the advice. A teacher will be able to recognize mistakes you yourself might not even realize are mistakes
A live teacher would be best. But if you had none to choose from mabye there are other ways on the internet. I am not sure. You also get what you pay for. And a person can ingrain mistakes that take much time to correct. And good day to you. :)
 
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I have a basic knowledge of music and play guitar. I can hobble my way around a piano but I want to really learn to play piano

Just bought a Yamaha digital piano.

Can you recommend the best online course or teaching system?

Tom
I can add to what others have suggested. I started with the Alfred Adult All-In-One Course Level 1 (lesson, theory, technic), a hard copy book, not on-line. My goal was to get a teacher if I made it through the book. When I finished the book, I started looking for a teacher and bought the Level 2 book in the meantime. After a false start with a first teacher, I found a second teacher that I connected with and we started with where I was in the Level 2 book.

I started getting bored, and was looking at the second movement of Mozart's sonata in C for piano (K545), and realized, hey, I can probably play this. The next time my teacher came for a lesson, I played the beginning of the movement for him, and never went back to the lesson book again.

I do recommend the Alfred books for adults, but I echo the other recommendations to get a teacher.

Also, watching other great pianists can be just as instructive. I went to a George Winston performance and had a good view of his hands on the keyboard. All of a sudden, advice that my teacher had been giving me for the longest time all of a sudden made sense. So now I count George Winston as one of my teachers, and Jon Kimura-Parker, and Victor Borge, and Christopher O'Riley (God, that guy's an animal on the keyboard. Last Sunday he played one set straight through for about and hour and 20 minutes with ornamentation I cannot even imagine playing myself, taking little more than a few seconds between pieces. He "talks" the music he's is playing too, you can't hear him, but like reading lips I could tell he was actually whispering what he was playing).
 

Fred Coulter

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I can add to what others have suggested. I started with the Alfred Adult All-In-One Course Level 1 (lesson, theory, technic), a hard copy book, not on-line. My goal was to get a teacher if I made it through the book. When I finished the book, I started looking for a teacher and bought the Level 2 book in the meantime. After a false start with a first teacher, I found a second teacher that I connected with and we started with where I was in the Level 2 book.

I started getting bored, and was looking at the second movement of Mozart's sonata in C for piano (K545), and realized, hey, I can probably play this. The next time my teacher came for a lesson, I played the beginning of the movement for him, and never went back to the lesson book again.

I do recommend the Alfred books for adults, but I echo the other recommendations to get a teacher.

Also, watching other great pianists can be just as instructive. I went to a George Winston performance and had a good view of his hands on the keyboard. All of a sudden, advice that my teacher had been giving me for the longest time all of a sudden made sense. So now I count George Winston as one of my teachers, and Jon Kimura-Parker, and Victor Borge, and Christopher O'Riley (God, that guy's an animal on the keyboard. Last Sunday he played one set straight through for about and hour and 20 minutes with ornamentation I cannot even imagine playing myself, taking little more than a few seconds between pieces. He "talks" the music he's is playing too, you can't hear him, but like reading lips I could tell he was actually whispering what he was playing).
First, George Winston is a Stetson alumni. (I have to plug the school I went to and that my wife teaches at, right?)

Second, learn to play the piano books are generally boring, musically. Once you've gotten a good handle on the basics of playing, it's better to move on to real pieces by real composers. The book I'm working on follows the Royal Conservatory of Music's assessments levels. There's an entire series of those books, ranging from preparatory to advanced piano music. The specific pieces in the books are identified in the RCM's Piano Syllabus, along with a bunch of other pieces at approximately the same level. (No, you don't have to buy the books. Most of the pieces in the syllabus are in the public domain. Google is your friend.) (Sight reading books are even worse, but that's a cross you've got to bear. And the worst are scales. I wish I could come up with a way to avoid those.)

Third, Bill Bruford (Yes, King Crimson, etc.) also sings along with his playing. Bumpety bumpety bump.
 
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.... just be mindful that piano has perhaps the highest skillset of all instruments - almost uniquely, it can encompass all elements of a music score, bass, treble, melody etc - there is much to learn and it will not come quickly. At the least, I think anyone starting upon this path needs to get the foundations right so that bad habits do not develop and compromise future technique .... the best way to do this, one on one tutoring ...
 

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Fred Coulter

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.... just be mindful that piano has perhaps the highest skillset of all instruments - almost uniquely, it can encompass all elements of a music score, bass, treble, melody etc - there is much to learn and it will not come quickly. At the least, I think anyone starting upon this path needs to get the foundations right so that bad habits do not develop and compromise future technique .... the best way to do this, one on one tutoring ...
Obviously, when you say "piano", you mean keyboards in general. Of the keyboards, I'd say that organ is harder because of the pedals. On the other hand, you don't have to worry about velocity sensitivity. Harp and classical guitar may also be traditional instruments at the same level of difficulty. And if you're looking at modern instruments, the Stick is also around the same level.
 

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