Questions tagged [piano]
For questions about music written for piano, playing the piano, maintenance of a piano, or other general questions about pianos.
Rest above a note in a piano piece
I am playing a piece and wondering, what the heck is the rest doing there above the note? The piece is in 3/4 so I see no purpose of the 1/4 rest. I've been googling around but did not find any ...
Why does this note have a stem pointing up and another pointing down?
What does the first note below mean? Does it need to be pressed down while playing the second notes? If not, why are there two stems, one pointing up, and one pointing down?
The same note on two staves
On rare occasions, I encounter the same note on two staves with overlapping durations. Attached is an example from an arragement of "The Long and Winding Road" by The Beatles (The note in ...
What exactly does a 3 mean over a quarter note and an 8th note?
There is an eighth note followed by a quarter note, and above them is a little overarching bracket with a little 3 in it. I know this has something to do with the timing, but I have no idea what. ...
What does the L-shaped symbol attached to C5 and G4 on the top staff mean?
I am trying to learn "Kiss The Rain" by Yiruma, and I am learning from a score published on musescore. Source: https://musescore.com/user/27057308/scores/4838600 I was confused by the L-...
What does a straight line connecting notes on different clefs mean?
What is the meaning of the straight lines between notes in opposite staves, as shown in the picture? I keep seeing it, but Google and Wikipedia are not helping me.
How can I significantly improve my hand independence on piano?
I started taking piano lessons about 7 years ago, and stopped about 2 years ago when my teacher (the one and only piano teacher I've had) quit. In all honesty, my piano has been severely neglected ...
What is the best way to play a chord larger than your hand?
I've seen and attempted to play multiple songs on the piano that include chords that are tenths or sometimes even elevenths or twelfths (rarely), and these chords have four or five notes. If I were to ...
Same note to be played with both hands? [duplicate]
Why some notes in the piano are written the same for the left and right hand ? What is the purpose of this ? And how do we play them ? Do we just choose one hand to play them or do we play them ...
What to look for when buying a digital piano for a beginner?
My wife has recently started learning to play the piano and needs something at home on which to practise. I'm inclined towards a digital piano as it is more practical (Mainly space but also no tuning ...
Unknown notation - thick horizontal bars between notes
I haven't the faintest idea of what these bars could mean. They're thick and mostly horizontal with a slight tilt. Some sort of run perhaps? How do you effect the dynamics/notes these bars are ...
How do you remember your music and how do I improve in this regard?
Okay, let me start with my own story. I jumped straight into playing classical pieces on the piano without much in the way of formal musical education. By now I know how chords are built (but it takes ...
Why is there a key signature if I never play those notes?
I'm just getting back to playing on keyboard. I'm trying to play "Ode to Joy" from the piano sheet but I have a basic question. At the beginning of some staffs, on the right of the treble clef I can ...
How to play a song without making mistakes?
I have played keyboard quite a while and now I'm starting to practice some classical music like Fur Elise. When I see a live performance of any musical instrument, there seem to be no errors at all. ...
Using keyboard/MIDI controller to learn piano
I'm an adult just starting to learn music from scratch. The piano I have been using is sometimes not available for me to use, so I would like to buy a keyboard/MIDI controller so I can practice ...
What fingerings are used for the minor and major blues scales?
It's my understanding that for the diatonic scales, there's a consensus of which fingerings are optimal for most people. They are not a hard rule, some pianists use other fingerings, but they are ...
Left and right hand playing same note on piano?
Occasionally I run across sheet music that has the left and right hand playing the same note at the same time. Is this on purpose? If so... Why? And how do I play it? For example, see the first ...
Learn piano one hand at a time or simultaneously?
I've started to teach myself how to play the piano, and one of the difficulties I've found is trying to get both hands to do things at once. I either forget one hand entirely, or have one hand trying ...
Fast Chord Identification
How would someone go about identifying chords quickly and efficiently? While sight reading, I would often come up to some strange chord and try to decipher it. It normally takes me (what feels like) ...
Learning Piano without a teacher
How can I effectively learn how to play the piano if it is simply impossible for me to get a teacher? I took it upon myself to learn the piano. However, I am not sure where to start, especially with ...
What does a small x-like symbol before a note mean?
I've been playing piano by ear for a long time and now I am trying to learn the first movement of the Moonlight Sonata. I am a little confused about the meaning of a little cross placed right before a ...
Why does the scale have seven (or five) notes? Why not six?
I'm a programmer by trade, and I have always felt that music was arbitrarily difficult. Please forgive my inexperience with musical notation. I had a little thought experiment with my wife today, and ...
How to start playing by ear/improvising?
Up till now I've been playing music from the sheet, and eventually I've grown frustrated how after 3 years of playing I can't even play Jingle Bells if I'm asked to without figuring it out from a ...
How to identify the root note of a chord
I struggle with chords on the staff because I'm not sure which note is the root note. Is it the top note with the rest of the notes falling below it? E.g., if the top note is C, and bundled below it ...
How does one maintain voice integrity when longer and shorter notes of the same pitch occur in two voices
Here is an excerpt from Bach's BWV 796, measures 8–9. (Unfortunately, ABCjs renders the ties in exactly the wrong direction!) X:1 T:Sinfonia No. 10 in G Major, BWV 796 M:3/4 C:J.S. Bach %%staves [(1 ...
Piano music with two treble clefs, and notes between staves
I do not understand why there are two treble cleff staves and why there are music notes in the middle of the two staves. Which hand should I play those notes with and why are there two treble cleff ...
How to identify all sharp notes in sheet
I am trying to learn the piano and I am a bit confused when it comes how sharp notes are represented in the sheet. I am working my way through Prelude I in C Major (BWV 846), and in the sixth bar/...
Why are pianos traditionally tuned "out of tune" at the extremes?
My understanding is that the vast majority of western music uses equal temperament, i.e. all semitones have a frequency ratio of the 12th root of 2. However I can hear in my piano that the notes at ...
What does this note - B# - mean?
I'm confused as to how I should play the second note below, B#. Does it mean it's C? It is possible? In which case, why is it written like this, and not just C? Sonata quasi una Fantasia, First ...
What modern innovations have been/are being made for the piano?
The piano underwent major changes between its invention ca. 1700 through the late 1800s: the double escapement, the iron frame, cross-stringing, among others. But the piano reached a mature state by ...
overlapping note on same staff
In this piano sheet excerpted from Erik Satie's "Gymnopédie No.1": (in 3/4), the right-hand's F# is supposed to be hold for several measures (a 3/4 note), meanwhile being pressed in the 2/4 chord. ...
How can a classical pianist learn jazz piano?
I'm a classically trained pianist. Took lessons all through my childhood. I've continued to play and read classical literature all my life. But I never learned anything about jazz piano. I also know a ...
How to know what notes will go together while improvising?
This is 3 questions in one, so it might take a slightly involved answer, or some good links. Edit--- tl;dr: How can you learn which keys to hit to make the notes you hear in your head? I know what I ...
How can I improve my piano sight reading?
I am 25 years old, and I started learning piano about 6 months ago. I really want to play the piano well, but it takes me so long to be able to play any piece of music. In the meantime, I'm using a ...
Why do standard modern pianos have 88 keys?
I know that the piano contains 7 octaves plus a 4th. I also know that it accommodates the full circle of fifths (from C and back to C). But since a fifth contains 7 semitones, it only "needs" 7X12 = ...
Is a digital or acoustic piano a better option for a beginner (sound and feel)?
I just started learning piano, and I want to buy a piano for recreational purposes and practicing. I am torn between digital and acoustic. I love the feel and sound of an acoustic, but I cannot afford ...
What does this split stem notation mean?
Here's sheet music for chopin's 2nd ballade. On page 6, in the 2nd measure in the 4th line of music, there's a D# and a D natural, with two lines coming out of them and connecting to the double bar (...
Small notes on the staff
What are these and how do I play them on the piano?
Recognizing intervals without interval songs?
I would love to know all my intervals by ear but where ever I search for help it says to learn interval songs e.g. Jaws theme for minor 2nd. I find this to be pretty ineffective honestly. I don't hear ...
(Piano) How should I play this harmonic unison
I stumbled with harmonic unisons for the first time trying to play this arrangement I found this question where some techniques to deal with harmonic unison are discussed, and it helped me with the ...
Quickly flip a page of sheet music while playing
This seems like such a silly question, but! When playing the piano, I sometimes struggle to turn the pages of my music without noticeably sacrificing the sound of the piece or making the book / ...
Is there a standard width for piano keys?
Is there a standard width for piano keys? If not, how much variation is there? Do other keyboard instruments have significantly different widths of keys?
Why is a grand piano better than an upright piano?
A Grand piano is considered better than an upright piano. Aesthetically I could understand why, but why does the orientation of the strings matter so much sound-wise?
Will a 61-key keyboard severely restrict my piano repertoire?
I'm planning on trading my 88-key digital piano for a 61-key portable music workstation as I'm more inclined into rock keyboards as of late than classical music. However, I do enjoy playing classical ...
Piano with two treble clefs and 8va on grand staff
How do you play the notes in the red square? On the upper staff, the lower chord is G but the note in the lower section is also G. Do you just ignore it?
On the piano, how should you play staccato with the pedal?
In some pieces, there is a pedal designation along with staccato. How should this be played?
Does piano soundproofing require floating walls? Getting conflicting answers from professionals
I have just placed a new hybrid piano in a small 9x13 room in my apartment. I want to use the room for playing and for singing. Costly steps have already been taken, and, much to our dismay, we ...
What to choose? Violin or piano?
First of all. I am 26 years old. I have no musical background or whatsoever. I don't know how to play any instrument. I can't even read musical notes. But I want to learn an instrument. About my time. ...
What exactly do pianists/musicians memorize? [duplicate]
when memorizing music, what is it that they're memorizing? is it the music like all the note/chord names (like E E F G G F E D C C D E E D C)? the piano keys? muscle memory?
How is this piano finger stretch remotely possible for anyone?
How is it remotely possible to reach A5 (under lyric "share") whilst at the same time playing F4 and A4 (under lyric "one")? I can just about (unreliably) stretch ten notes but there surely isn't the ...