In this blog post, you will learn to play the piano step by step. You’ll need a basic understanding of how to read music and a piano. If you don’t have a piano, we recommend checking out our list of online lessons so that you can start learning at home or piano lessons near me is the best way to find out classes near your city or town area.
Some Basic terms related to Piano
In order to understand where the notes are on the piano, it is helpful to learn about the keys. The keyboard has 12 black keys and white keys. The black keys are grouped in twos- for example, C D E F G A B. If you start with your left hand on C and play each white key ascending (C D E F G A B), you will have played every note in one octave.
The pattern of white and black keys repeats itself up and down the keyboard- so if you go up another octave from C (C D E F G A B C), playing each key as before, you will have played all the same notes but an octave higher. There are two “octaves” in a piano keyboard- and the same pattern of white and black keys repeats itself in each octave.
A note can be represented by different symbols on sheet music, depending on what type it is. Here are some common notes you will see when reading sheet music:
Sharp (#) – A sharp raises a pitch one half step (semitone). For example, B to C or F to Gb. Flats (♭) lower pitches one half step . So from E to Db or Ab to G natural would both be considered flats because they lowered the pitch by one semitone/half step . This means that any time two sharps or two flats appear adjacent to each other on an instrument, the pitch will be lowered by two semitones/half steps.
The octave is simply another name for eight notes. So C to C, or Db to Db would both be considered one octave apart because they are eight notes away from each other.
A chord is made up of three or more notes played together. Chords can be major or minor, depending on the type of chord it is. For example, a C major chord consists of the notes C-E-G. A G minor chord includes the notes G-Bb-D). There are many different chords in music and this is just scratching the surface! You’ll learn more about chords as you continue to study music.
A scale is a set of notes that are organized in an ascending or descending order based on tone/pitch/frequency. For example, the C major scale consists of the following pitches (C-D-E-F-G-A B). Scales can be chromatic or diatonic. Chromatic scales have every possible note between two given notes while Diatonic scales only contain seven different notes within one octave. All this means is that if you start with your first finger on any key on the keyboard, and play all black keys up until you reach another black key again, it will make a chromatic scale. If instead, you started with white keys, it would create a diatonic major scale.
An interval is a distance between two pitches on the keyboard. For example, if you play C and D together, that would be an interval of one whole step because there are 12 notes in an octave, and C to D is two half steps away. There are also intervals called “thirds” and “sixths” which are wider than whole steps. A third is a distance from C to E or G to Bb for instance. And a sixth is the distance from C to F or A to E. You’ll learn more about intervals as you progress in your piano studies!
Step by step guide on how to learn Piano
Now that you have a basic understanding of some terms related to the piano, you’re ready to start learning how to play!
1. Learn how to read music
First of all, you must learn how to read sheet music. This will be the foundation for your piano playing journey- so it’s important that you are able to just sit down at any instrument and look at what is on the page in front of you.
Once you can recognize each note on a keyboard, then just start reading through some simple songs! There are also books available with easy pieces if this is overwhelming right away. Be patient with yourself as well – learning anything new takes time! It won’t happen overnight but don’t give up either. You’ll get there soon enough if you keep practicing every day (see point 5 below).
2. Know about your Instrument.
There are many different types of pianos. The two most common ones you’re probably familiar with are the upright and grand piano . Both have 88 keys (seven octaves) but they look very different from each other! You can see an example of a grand piano below:
The difference in size makes it easier to understand how to play on one or the other, so knowing what type your instructor is using will help you get started faster.
3. Practice your scales and chords.
You will also need to know which notes are on each of your white keys. These note names (C, D, E, F, and G) repeat all the way up until you reach C again – that is one octave! You can find more information online about where these different piano notes lie on a keyboard, but for now, just make sure you’re able to play them cleanly with no mistakes before moving forward.
Once you have started learning how sheet music works and being familiar with the instrument itself it’s time to start practicing. Start by playing scales using both hands- there are two ways this can be done: either ascending or descending . If at first it feels awkward don’t worry too much because as long as your hands and fingers are moving in the right direction, you will get better at it over time.
Once your hands can play smoothly together up and down without any mistakes, try adding in some chords. These contain three notes so they require more coordination but once mastered are great because of how versatile they are! Chords work well when accompanying singing or another instrument- piano players often use them to add background texture or emotion during a song. Playing both scales and chords is an important part of music theory as well which you’ll learn about further ahead!
4. Music note and timing
Now that you know the basics, it’s time to start learning about timing. This means both understanding notes in relation to one another and how long they should be played for.
A whole note is held for four beats, a half note is two beats, and so on. You’ll see these symbols written above or below the notes on sheet music- this will give you an idea of how long each one should be held for. If there isn’t a symbol above or below the note then it should be played as short as possible (usually just one beat). Experiment with different rhythms by clapping along while listening to some recordings of songs.
Once you can play some basic rhythms, try counting out loud while playing your scales and chords. This will help you to internalize the timing and make sure everything is sounding clean and precise.
Eventually, you won’t have to count at all and will be able to feel the beat in your head or tap along with your foot!
Keep practicing every day so that eventually everything will start to flow together naturally. There’s no rush though- Rome wasn’t built in a day!
5. Practice, Practice, and Practice Harder
The best way to improve is through practice and repetition. You will need to be patient with yourself and make sure you’re practicing every day if you want to see results. Don’t get discouraged if things are difficult at first- remember that learning a new skill always takes time!
If possible, try to find a music teacher who can help guide you in the right direction. They can give feedback on your playing, show you techniques to make things easier, and introduce you to other pieces of music that might interest you.
Above all else, have fun with it! Playing the piano should be enjoyable so don’t put too much pressure on yourself. It’s a lifelong journey.
Learning piano is a challenging but rewarding endeavor. While it’s not an easy task, with the right direction and practice anyone can learn to play this beautiful instrument. We hope you’ve found our blog post helpful! If you’re considering taking up piano as your hobby or profession, be sure to check out some of the resources we’ve provided for more information on how to get started.