Any Piano Players Out There?

Discussion in 'Community' started by CubaTBird, Mar 14, 2005.

  1. CubaTBird macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2004
    #1
    I would like to get into piano playing myself and would consider it great fun... I took piano lessons back when I was three or four.. but since then i can't play piano really well... i can perhaps hold a note or two for 10 sec's before it starts to get all muddy and really bad sounding lol.. so anyone recomend a good midi keyboard and some piano teaching software? i hab the mindset for this.. and am serious about it.. :eek: is this a good keyboard to start out with?


    http://store.apple.com/1-800-MY-APP...xwicK2uonJAR1GQtzM9V/1.0.11.1.0.6.25.7.11.1.3
     
  2. oldschool macrumors 65816

    oldschool

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2003
    #2

    can you read music? if not start with a teach yourself book...then just practice. and practice.
     
  3. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Location:
    CT
    #3
    Lots and lots of practice, as my piano teacher said to me, practice makes perfect. It helps to start young and learn to play as you learn in school. The older you get the harder it is to learn from scratch. Don't learn to site read or go from ear as you are not learning anything and really making it worse.
     
  4. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    Jan 4, 2002
    Location:
    CT
    #4
    If your going to use a keyboard it needs to be touch sensitive, the harder you hit the key the louder the note. Always get full size keys and the more octaves you can afford.
     
  5. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
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    Gone but not forgotten.
    #5
    I started when I was ten and didn't really stop but I play very infrequently these days.

    I would not suggest a small keyboard. You may be able to pick up a digital piano, like my Yamaha Clavinova, that will allow you sampled sound and a real keyboard action plus 88 keys and get it inexpensively since they've been out since the early 1990s. They never need tuning, so you don't have to worry about it needing that sort of maintenance.

    I would also suggest before actually buying music, buying scales and other exercises to test yourself. Spending two months practicing those will help you get a good grip on real music.
     
  6. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Location:
    CT
    #6
    What type of music do you want to play, pop standards or classical. If you want to do standard stuff you don't need much more than how to read notes. If you want to learn classical then you need to learn more about notation and lots of fun stuff.
     
  7. Stampyhead macrumors 68020

    Stampyhead

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2004
    Location:
    London, UK
    #7
    If you want a keyboard that will help you learn to play the piano, then you need a good (i.e. expensive) one with real piano action so that the feel is the same as playing an actual piano. I don't know a lot about MIDI keyboards, but M-Audio has one that is supposed to be pretty good (http://www.m-audio.com/products/en_us/KeystationPro88-main.html). If anyone else has any better ideas for a good hammer action keyboard I would like to hear them too, as I will be upgrading my old klunky keyboard soon.
     
  8. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    Jan 4, 2002
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    CT
    #8
    Yamaha and Rowland make some nice hammer action keyboards but they will cost you well over $1000.
     
  9. CubaTBird thread starter macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2004
    #9
    this is somethin i don't wanna to serious about :eek: 500 dollars eh? :eek: yea id like to play pop standards..
     
  10. bousozoku Moderator emeritus

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    #10
    That's why I was suggesting an older digital piano.
     
  11. janey macrumors 603

    janey

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2002
    Location:
    sunny los angeles
    #11
    i'm not sure if you're going to be able to find decent semi-weighted 88-key keyboards for under $500...A piano isn't exactly like a $5 plastic recorder or tin whistle or something. You're going to have to make an investment of some sort. If you don't mind of course, you can just get whatever keyboard Fry's or Best Buy might sell for like $100...

    M-Audio makes some cool and good stuff, and my piano teacher has a yamaha clavinova, which is pretty decent. The sound isn't too awesome compared to her grand pianos (that might just be me), but since they never need tuning, there are no strings to break, and they're totally awesome to play on in front of a big audience, not to mention you can practice the piano at 3am and not get yelled at...sorta makes me regret buying my lovely upright piano. Except I love my piano. But it needs to be tuned.
     
  12. toaster_oven macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2003
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    not sure
    #12
    i've been playing piano since I was 6... i prefer the real thing-

    you could pick up a used real piano for very little (sometimes people give them away for free- check on craigs list or something similar) but it costs $$$ to move it, and you'll have to tune it... but if you have the space and aren't planning on moving for a while, it'll be a really nice thing to have around. it may not sound the best- but it'll *feel* good to play.

    if you go electronic- get something with "piano action" like everyone else recommends... definitely get something with all 88 keys at least (and pedals). the benifit there is that you can move it around easily, but they tend to get really expensive...

    also- practice a lot... if you practice at least an hour a day, every day, you'll be able to play a couple tunes fairly well in about a year or so. most of the hard practicing is really boring, like scales, chords and fingering excercises... but if you can master this stuff- you can pick up almost anything... i don't know any good books for learning pop-style piano (i'm classically trained), but i'm sure if you go to a local piano store and talk to someone, they should be pretty helpful.

    I feel the best way is to learn from others - either a teacher, or by watching and listening to your favorite piano players... you'll learn much quicker this way than through piano software. actually- i'd recommend hanging out with a really good piano player once a month or so. you don't really need a teacher- but it's good to have some guidance from an individual (or several individuals) every once and a while... they help keep you going, give you pointers, show you some cool tricks, etc...

    anyway- hope this helps!

    -TO
     
  13. latergator116 macrumors 68000

    latergator116

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2003
    Location:
    Providence, RI
    #13
    That is what I miss about my keyboard! I usually get the urge to play the piano very late at night. Actually, I still have the keyobard, but after using a baby grand for a while I've realized how crappy keyboard is. I was thinking of buying a nice (cheap) keyboard that has touch-sensitive keys like a real piano.

    This is sorta off topic, but a few nights ago I was wandering downstairs late at night (around 2 am) when a faint sound of piano keys being pressed came from the other room. It sounded as if someone was randomly pressing keys and holding them down for a few seconds. I immediately froze and my heart started to beat quickly. I was scared as hell since I knew I was the only one awake, let alone downstairs. Well, I grabbed a knife from the kitchen and slowly crept into the other room... and.... it turned out to be my cat walking over the keys. :p I was about ready to stab it to death! Luckily, he is still alive and is sleeping next to me as I type this.
     
  14. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    toronto
    #14
    there's nothing like a real piano. even a nice, weighted keyboard doesn't feel right to me.

    you have the option of renting a piano. i've done this twice and it worked great. it cost about $30/mo. (this was > 10 years ago) and, even better, delivery, a tuning and pickup were included. the contracts were both open-ended. when i wanted it gone, i called the place (Karnes Music in chicago) and they came to get it.

    once i got my house, i bought a piano (yamaha upright).
     
  15. oldschool macrumors 65816

    oldschool

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2003
    #15
    wow thats a great price to rent a piano...even if it was more than ten years ago.

    a lot of stores will let you bring back your old piano and get the full amount u paid for it credited towards a more expensive piano.
     
  16. janey macrumors 603

    janey

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2002
    Location:
    sunny los angeles
    #16
    hanon, czerny, bach, *cringe*
    arpeggios, scales, chord progressions, ew.

    No matter what anyone tells you, don't ever practice more than you feel comfortable with. Don't listen to parents telling you you have to practice at least an hour at a time to get anything out of it, don't listen to teachers who are like all about rote memorization and doing insane things. It's really not going to help. You can't expect to be comparable to a Julliard-trained pianist on your first day.

    What really helps is analyzing the piece (key signatures, tempo markings, time signatures, et cetera), figuring out like the common chords that the composer uses (is that even the right term for it?), and then finding a way to learn a piece that fits you. What works for me is practicing the hands separately to the end of the piece, then going back and practicing with both hands together, two to six measures at a time...three generally works well. Something that makes sense with the piece too, don't just break it up into chunks arbitrarily, look at where one part ends and another begins.

    That's just my piano teacher talking :p She's completely obsessed with things that come in threes. Like voicing, articulation and terrace dynamics when it comes to Bach. She's also totally nuts about making circles with your hands when you play, it's easier to distribute weight and it makes you sound better...but she got that from her last piano teacher, Joanna Graudan, who seems to be a rather distinguished pianist. Whee. 9 degrees of pedagogic separation from Beethoven.

    On the other hand, if you're violent when it comes to playing the piano, don't get like an actual piano, get a keyboard. I've broken a few strings when I took out my anger on the piano, and while playing funky stuff.

    Oh, and if you ever start losing interest in practicing, but still have an interest in playing whatever piece you want to play, duets and duos are _awesome_. Be it with a friend on another instrument or someone over iChat, it's a great way to start getting into the whole "practicing isn't such a bad idea after all" mindset.

    Argh, i'm starting to rant again :p
     
  17. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    toronto
    #17
    i think my second deal was similar to that. it wasn't a straight rental, but a financed buy w/ a generous return policy. barring damage, the buy-back value was equal to the balance of the loan.

    the first rental, iirc, was a simple rental.

    it was a great solution for when i was still renting apartments.
     
  18. Davito macrumors member

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    Jun 16, 2004
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    Zurich, Switzerland
  19. Loge macrumors 68020

    Loge

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2004
    Location:
    England
    #19
    Definitely try and find a good teacher, I think you will learn so much quicker that way. A teacher can give you instant feedback on mistakes, and prevent errors from becoming habitual, as well as help with motivation.

    Another tip I recommend is to record yourself playing. It's surprising how different it sounds to how you hear when actually playing. You can then more easily figure out what is going well and what needs more work.

    Good luck! :)
     

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