A keyboard instrument which uses felt-tipped hammers to strike at strings.

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11
votes
6answers
603 views

How do I write music down from a recording?

I am a beginning piano student. I bought some sheet music to play Make Someone Happy, written by Jule Styne, and made famous by Jimmy Durante. The problem is that the sheet music starts with the ...
2
votes
4answers
536 views

What are some ways I can secure my piano stand so it isn't moving as much?

I just got the L85 stand for Yamaha P95 (with 3-pedal LP5), assembled the whole thing, and when I started playing, I noticed that it is moving quite a bit when I play something faster, or just hit the ...
0
votes
0answers
25 views

Do these arcs mean to hold the note, or something else? [duplicate]

There's three arcs in the right hand here. The third doesn't start and end on the same note, but the other two do. What do they indicate I'm supposed to do differently than if they weren't there?
1
vote
0answers
46 views

Why does a typical 88 key piano keyboard start on 'A' and end on 'C'? [duplicate]

A typical 88 key piano keyboard starts on 'A' and ends on 'C'. Why?
28
votes
11answers
8k views

Why are the white and black keys on the piano placed the way they are?

I am pretty convinced it is not just for historical reasons. I have found a mathematically-sound explanation of the twelve-tone musical scale, thanks to this question. Does anyone know a similar, ...
2
votes
6answers
188 views

Tools to improve sight-reading of rhythms

So, there are a number of tools and strategies to learn to sight-read pitch. I mean, you just make flashcards and in a while you should be able to read comfortably all notes on all staves, right? ...
92
votes
19answers
57k views

What is good software for learning how to sight-read?

I'd like to learn how to sight-read on my own, but practicing the same song over and over again just causes me to memorize it, and filling out worksheets is boring. Is there any good software for ...
1
vote
2answers
36 views

Piano: Finger substitution vs spreading hand for different intervals

For the measures shown in the picture, I am able to reach the notes if I spread my hand but I'm not sure if this is good practice. I tried also to use finger substitution but I can make it work only ...
1
vote
2answers
102 views

Higher registers and lower registers of piano more difficult to play

I've noticed over the years that when pracitcing my scales (or just playing in very high registers) that it is noticeably more difficult to play at the very high or very low registers of the piano. I ...
5
votes
4answers
737 views

How do pianos and keyboards differ?

Can you play all piano music on a keyboard? What other considerations are there?
3
votes
1answer
41 views

How to learn to exchange hands' roles on keyboard

I'm used to using my left hand to play rhythmic parts and my right hand to play melodic lines (like, I assume, many other players). What kind of approaches would you recommend to learn to swap these ...
1
vote
3answers
125 views

So I *need* the music but I don't actually read it - how bad is it?

I have recently started playing again after a 10-year-ish break. When I first learn a piece I consciusly read it note by note. Well, almost note by note, if I see an ascending scale starting from ...
18
votes
7answers
8k views

Can people really sight-read advanced pieces?

I find it hard to read a staff and play it on the keyboard fluently. The most common scene for me is that I read one note on the paper and then lower my head and find out the location of that note ...
5
votes
2answers
499 views

Looking for a piano sight reading app that listens to your instrument

I've been looking around for a sight reading app. I found this rather excellent iPad app and it has helped a lot. I'd really like an app that allows me to practice using my instrument instead of an ...
7
votes
8answers
228 views

How to teach the staff to a teenager?

A friend of mine who is 18 has played guitar for practically his whole life, except he's only played by ear and tablature. He's been playing piano for a year and a half now, but he's never learned to ...
14
votes
6answers
4k views

How to record a piano with high quality?

I want to record myself playing the piano. I am a complete beginner when it comes to this, so I just want to ask the basic questions, so I can and make an informed decision, once I buy the equipment ...
2
votes
4answers
170 views

Locked Hands Passing Chords

For the "locked hands" block chord style, I've noticed that diminished chords can be used as passing chords to get from one chord to another or one melody note to the next if staying on the same ...
3
votes
2answers
153 views

Arranging a piece for full Orchestra

I have recently finished writing an intermediate level piece for piano duet, and think it would sound pretty good when played by a full orchestra. Only problem is I don't know any one who can arrange ...
4
votes
1answer
130 views

Is it normal to struggle through “The Jazz Piano Book” by Mark Levine?

I'm a hobbyist pianist who has been playing primarily rock and blues music for about 2 years, and classical before that for a few years. I have a beginner grasp of music theory (I know my major, 3 ...
12
votes
3answers
272 views

Did baroque composers expect you to “bring out” the voices in their pieces, the way today's critics seem to enjoy in players?

So, I recently had a, sadly, way too short conversation with a pianist on the train. According to the guy, in the 17th and 18th century polyphonic keyboard works were not played in such a way that ...
6
votes
1answer
70 views

Small hand substitutions… any rules?

I'm a self-taught hobby pianist with small hands, which means that often I need to substitute notes to be able to play something comfortably (or at all). E.g. in Traumerei, there is a 10-note reach ...
7
votes
4answers
4k views

Do I play all the F's as sharp or just the one with the sharp in the space?

I am trying to teach myself how to play piano and while I know what a key signature is, I don't have a firm grasp on it. I have sheet music in the key of G major. There aren't any F's on that line, ...
2
votes
4answers
249 views

Virtual Piano black keys offset

This is quite off-topic to some extent but I think it's still the right place to ask. I am working on a new app and I want to implement an octave of piano keys in there. Unfortunately, in order to ...
0
votes
2answers
46 views

Double Sharp Confusion [duplicate]

I'm playing a piece at the moment and it is in the key of A Major. A few bars in we encounter an F double sharp (F## or Fx). Would that bring the note up to G like normal, or because the Key Signature ...
4
votes
2answers
107 views

How to evaluate the quality of sound of a piano?

While looking for a new piano I was wondering how to evaluate the quality of tone and sound of a piano as an instrument? What makes the difference between a good and an even better instrument? What ...
6
votes
2answers
415 views

Chopin op. 28 no. 4 - bar 16 symbols

There are two symbols I do not recognise below the stretto in this excerpt: What are these symbols? And also, form what I read the stretto here should be interpreted as an accelerando, am I ...
0
votes
2answers
72 views

So, what does this tenuto mark mean in Bernstein's piano music?

This is a bar from the fifth of Bernstein's Five Anniversaries, "For Susanna Kyle". It's a nice and easy tune that sounds vaguely like what Satie would have composed in his youth were he not wasted ...
1
vote
1answer
70 views

Improvising on the piano as a solo instrument: what octave range to cover?

When I'm playing piano, just mucking about over a chord sequence, I tend to have my left and right hand close together e.g my thumbs are only a tone or so apart. I think in a band that would be good ...
5
votes
1answer
531 views

What does this notation mean for the piano?

I saw this in Chopin's Op.25 No.12 etude and was bemused. On the next line, the asterisk reappears on its own. What is this called and what does it mean?
9
votes
10answers
1k views

How can I learn to read bass clef score more naturally?

I hadn't read music for about 20 years, after doing a little classical guitar as a young child, and recently started learning piano. I was pleasantly surprised to find that reading music on the treble ...
3
votes
3answers
85 views

How to practise, ear piano playing after years of sightreading only?

I am stuck in sheet music. I know theory, have average sight reading skill, know chords and their inversions, scales, accidentals... But if someone took the notes away I couldn't play even familiar ...
3
votes
2answers
71 views

In Bach's Prelude in A Minor, what chord is B D G# and what's its function?

A Piano Beginner: I am playing A Bach Prelude in A Minor: Bar 1 A C E, Bar 2 A D F, Bar 3 B D G# Bar 4 C E A. The G# chord has been described as a VII dim (G# dim) and a ii dim 7 (B dim7) giving ...
13
votes
3answers
1k views

How can I improve my piano accompaniments?

When I play piano or keyboards, I've noticed that I keep slipping into playing the same chords (and variations thereof, such as very simple bass lines) with my left hand while I use my right hand to ...
7
votes
2answers
213 views

Where do I release the soft pedal in Ravel's Jeux d'Eau?

I've been working on Ravel's Jeux d'Eau, and the intended use of the soft pedal in the piece is not always clear to me. There are several spots where he indicates to use the soft pedal, but there ...
0
votes
1answer
49 views

Damper pedal for Requiem for a Dream

This has been bothering me for some time. I have been playing the piano for 3 years so far, and despite all my efforts I am unable to find an answer. It's a bit of a difficult question to phrase, so ...
8
votes
4answers
225 views

Is it orthodox to use the pedal when playing Bach on the piano?

It is my understanding that Bach's keyboard works were written for the harpsichord, and thus no (damper) pedal is used while playing Bach on the harpsichord. On the piano however, I have heard ...
1
vote
1answer
49 views

How are fingerings on ornamented notes to be interpreted?

Do fingerings refer to the "main" note or the first note of the ornament realization? Suppose I have a trilled B over which the editor has put a 3. Does it mean that I play it 3-2, the C with the 3 ...
6
votes
5answers
133 views

How do you practice trills on piano?

The title says it all: my trills on piano are really terrible, unless they are 1-2 or 2-3. Anything involving the 5th finger is especially awful. I have the same feeling of frustration of when I ...
2
votes
1answer
71 views

How to (re)gain relaxation and muscular control? Any excercises, methods?

So, I started playing piano again after a long (~10 year?) break. I get very fatigued, very fast playing simple stuff. Not pain, just fatigue, as if I were doing a lot of pushups. The fact that my ...
14
votes
8answers
688 views

Why would a teacher ban the metronome altogether?

So when I was a kid I had this piano teacher who was completely against even owning a metronome. He was adamant that using a metronome to practice was a bad habit and insisted that pupils always ...
5
votes
1answer
496 views

Is there a canonical piano grading system?

The Thompson's books are divided by grade (first grade, second grade, etc.) Aside from that I have encountered a pianist who says that he is considered to be an X grade pianist. what is this grading ...
1
vote
3answers
100 views

Should I fix my piano or buy a digital one?

I've been doing a lot of research, but first here's my background. I live in a Beach City, near Sao Paulo, Brazil. My grandfather has bought me a piano years ago, at an auction for R$ 900 (in today's ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

What does it mean to clap back the rhythm? (Grade 6 Piano Aural)

I have a grade 6 ABRSM piano exam in about 1 hour. What does clap back the rhythm mean? Is it a memorizing one or clapping the strong beat?
9
votes
6answers
292 views

What are the practical advantages of keyboards with non-weighted keys vs. weighted hammer action?

This is not a question about what type toy keyboard a beginning piano student should learn on if a real piano is not an option. I am talking about professional quality keyboards in the above (to well ...
4
votes
6answers
3k views

Right hand wrist & forearm soreness

I’m new to piano and experiencing soreness in the wrist and forearm of my right hand when I play. I can’t tell whether this is “building new muscles” pain or “doing something wrong” pain. I’m ...
1
vote
0answers
46 views

Piano blues - What is being played on this guys left hand [closed]

I am working on trying to improvise some blues and found this video here ...
2
votes
2answers
112 views

Is it normal for most people to play root or inverted chords?

I play mostly inverted chords. I find it much easier, as it allows me to stay centered around middle C. I can feel my way around, and don't have to look at the keys. Is this normal? Do most people ...
2
votes
3answers
148 views

Why are the Goldberg Variations considered a demanding work?

In print, the Goldbergs (Goldberg Variations) have a quasi-legendary status, a hallmark of technical difficulty. I was perusing the score and it doesn't look terribly intricate for what's possibly a ...
13
votes
8answers
17k views

Is there any midi software that can display in real-time the notes I play next to the “real” score?

I'm pretty new to the Piano, and pretty bad at sight-reading (but getting better:)) Still, sight-reading a new score takes me an awfull lot of time, especially when I don't "hear" the thing I'm ...
4
votes
3answers
80 views

How to record MIDI automatically?

I have a Yamaha Disklavier, an acoustic piano with MIDI output. My son improvises on it when he is in the mood, which is quite frequently. It's good stuff and I'd like to capture the MIDI output of ...