The piano is a fantastic instrument. It is versatile, sounds great and provides the player with a great outlet for his or her creativity and emotions.
However, learning to play this instrument can seem a bit daunting. Especially for those who have never learnt to play a musical instrument before. It seems like a big task, and it is hard to know where to start. It is only natural that people are out there searching for the easiest way to learn the piano. Nobody, likes to think they have to spend months learning the basics before they can play a meaningful tune.
Fortunately, we are here to help. We will show you how to determine which is the best and easiest way for you, or your child to learn.
If you really want to learn to play the piano, but are a bit unsure of how to go about it, just read on. Within 10 minutes, you will know what your options are and exactly what to do next.
How to learn to play the piano at home
There are three main ways to get the instruction, and support you need:
Private piano lessons
When it comes to private lessons, you can do one of the following:
Find a piano tutor near you and go to their studio, or home, for lessons
Find a piano teacher near you that will come to your home
Go online and book lessons via Skype
Online piano tutorials
There are several different ways to learn how to play the piano on the web. At the core of most of these courses is a combination of video and audio lessons. Some providers supplement these with eBooks and apps.
This course material is delivered in a range of ways, including:
Membership courses that send you one lesson per week or month
Videos that can be accessed online or downloaded, with all lessons being accessible straight away
Courses written by private piano tutors
Offline piano courses
If you do not have access to a fast internet connection, do not worry because you can still learn the piano offline. Your options are to order one of the following types of courses:
Learn to play books
As you can see, there is plenty of choice. Great, but the question now is which one is right for you? How do you narrow down your options, just read on to find out.
Choose the learning medium that works best for you
The best approach is to choose the form of learning that appeals to you the most. If you do better with one-on-one tuition, go online and look for piano lessons near you, or take lessons via Skype with a personal tutor.
The traditional way of learning a musical instrument still works well for those who have enough cash, and whose lifestyle means that they can reliably get to lessons.
But, this approach does not suit everyone. Some people find having a private tutor makes them too nervous, or is too expensive.
Others can only fit in lessons and practice in late at night when most piano tutors are not available. For those people learning from DVDs, or online courses is a far better approach.
The medium you use to learn is up to you. Just look for a way that is accessible to you, affordable, and fits in with your lifestyle.
Choosing the method
Over the decades, several ways of learning to play the piano has been developed. Amongst the most famous, and successful, are the Suzuki method, The Faber and Faber Method, Bastien Piano Basics, Flowkey, The Musiah Method and The Music Tree Technique. The list is almost endless.
It is great to have a choice, but when you have too many options, it gets confusing. So, what do you do, how do you find your way through the maze and choose the right method for you or your child?
Take the easy route
Well our advice is to keep things simple and choose the easiest and fastest learning method.
Most people are impatient learners. They are short on time, so want results as fast as possible.
If they do not feel that they are making progress, they will simply give up and do something else. This is true of both adults and children.
For this reason, we always recommend that you take the simple approach, at least to begin with. Once you have made progress, and know that you enjoy playing the piano, you can use that momentum to double back and learn in a different way.
Learn by ear first
For most people learning to play the piano by ear is the best starting point. Using this method means that you do not have to learn how to read sheet music before you can sit down and get your fingers on the ivory.
With this method, you learn how to match what you hear with the key combinations on the piano. You start by learning how to play four or five major piano chords, then you learn how to recognise them when you hear them, and how to replicate the order and pace they are played at in your favourite songs. In other words, you start to learn chord progression.
It is a far more effective way to learn the piano than you many people realise. This is especially the case if you want to learn to play pop or rock tunes.
This is because the vast majority of the most popular pop songs only actually use four piano chords. Learn those four chords and replicate the chord progression, and you will find yourself able to play hundreds of tunes by ear after just a few weeks of lessons.
Our recommendation for learning piano by ear
There are quite a few “learn by ear” piano courses out there, but this is the best one we have found to date.
It is on Udemy, which is an excellent place to find all kinds of courses. If you do not fancy our recommendation, take a look around and find one you do fancy. You need to look at the reviews. The best ones have 4+ stars and thousands of reviews that have been contributed over the years.
Normally, on Ddemy, we would recommend that you look for courses that are updated regularly. When it comes to learning the piano by ear the truth is that the technique has not changed much over the years. Ears and the piano have not evolved much for hundreds of years. So, you really do not need to find the very latest course.
When buying learn piano course on Udemy, look for the best reviews and someone who answers any comments or questions promptly. The guy who wrote this learn the piano by ear course ticks both of those boxes.
Taking things to the next level
However, we do not recommend that you leave things at that. If you want to learn jazz piano or classical piano, you are going to need to change things up a bit.
If you do not do so, you will never play this type of piano music well. Just as a singer needs to learn how to control their breath to be able to sing well, piano players need to do something similar.
Learning proper posture and hand placement is not essential when you are just starting to learn to play the keyboard or piano. But, if you want to be able to take your playing to the next level, and move from just playing occasionally, you need to lay a stronger foundation for yourself.
For that reason, we recommend that you go on to learn how to read music, and take at least a few one on one lessons with a piano tutor. Doing so is the best way to eradicate any bad habits you developed in the early stages, and take things to the next level.
Carry on learning
One of the biggest joys of learning to play the piano is the fact that you can carry on learning and improving how you play, throughout your life. The joy of the piano is that you are never too young or too old to learn to play the piano.
We know toddlers who can play chopsticks, and have met people who only started learning to play in their 80s who play really well. The good thing about this skill is that you never lose it. Many people with dementia find that they can still play the piano.
There is also a growing body of evidence that learning to play an instrument or speaking a second language can lower your risk of developing dementia. Another great reason, to learn to play an instrument.