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Joined: Jan 2022
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What I'm doing is looking at youtube videos like this one.



I've been looking at that person's videos and replicated his play.

I did this unfinished piece yesterday.



I did it by looking at his video, pause it and memorise the keys including the black keys, I must admit I felt like I made a small progress and I'm proud of it.

Now my question is, is this good practice?

I've been told that this practice is not encouraged as some learn nothing but copy, so should I not stick with this in the medium or long term?

I beleive that I still need to learn on how to put my hand on the piano instead of just using 1 finger at a time.

And yes I know that I've posted many topics already, I already posted the video link in my last created topic but it seems to have gotten ignored.

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Can you read music? If not, then you need to learn to read music. Get a method book like the Alfred's adult or the Faber series and start at the beginning. Imitating videos is not going to get you very far, unless you just want to imitate videos.

Sam


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Ok I admit that I personally don't like sticking with Synthesia videos, I don't like the idea of imitating videos, I'l see about books.

I have Yamaha 50 classical masterpieces book that came with the piano, would it be a good start?

But no I don't know how to read music yet sadly, I couldn't find a teacher that comes home or visit after work hours or in the weekend so I have to wait for school of music in October as they allow sessions after 5pm (1 hour session)

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Originally Posted by Sam S
Can you read music? If not, then you need to learn to read music. Get a method book like the Alfred's adult or the Faber series and start at the beginning. Imitating videos is not going to get you very far, unless you just want to imitate videos.

Sam

+1. Wise advice.


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Originally Posted by LavaWave
....I have Yamaha 50 classical masterpieces book that came with the piano, would it be a good start?....

That book would *not* be a good place to start. It has no real beginner pieces and won't teach you how to read notes. As mentioned above, get a method book like the Alfred's Adult All-in-One or Faber. It will start from scratch and then build upon that. You can go at your own speed.


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When I started out a few years ago I printed out a chart that showed the notes on the staff in relation to the keyboard, something like this one:

[Linked Image]

And a chart showing note duration, like this one:
[Linked Image]

I'm pretty sure those aren't the exact charts that I used, but they're all much the same.

I printed them both out and put them on my piano beside some simple sheet music and set about figuring out what means what. After about three weeks or so I didn't need the charts any more, but they were a lifesaver at the beginning.


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I guess you have a point, meanwhile I'l try searching online for "how to read music" and see what I get.

Your and Sam S advice is great so I'l take that advice and practice on it, I might buy one or both next week as I don't like imitating videos nor hitting a Brickwall or worst of all give up too soon.

Right now I'm feeling meh about piano since I'm feeling like I hit a brick wall so I will buy such a book and hope it helps a beginner like me.

Thank you for your advice.

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Definitely learn to read music. It's painful at the beginning but after a few months it becames easier

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Can you learn music from youtube videos (not Synthesia) or are there websites that help adult beginners?

I've read that Alfred's Adult All-in-One is designed with a piano instructor for a beginner pianist in mind.

I may try learning this and work on it slowly

https://musescore.com/user/38235231/scores/511351

But yeah first as all of you suggested I need to read sheet music and I actually want to do that without an instructor sadly since I didn't have luck here, so I'd love to figure that out and not wait until October to make something decent, thank you.

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OK I found this site here which is a video game music sheet reposity.

https://www.ninsheetmusic.org/

So now, is it possible to learn piano music sheets without an instructor? would those suggested books help me somehow for learning independently? must I buy the books or are there methods online whether youtube or some websites that teach adult pianists how to read music?

Thank you.

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Congrats on your new piano! Alfred's or Faber could be a good start until you get a teacher, as others have mentioned. They do a pretty good job of introducing the basics and having you work through that. Reading music is a lot easier than memorizing smile Have fun!


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Thank you bSharp(C)yclist I kinda agree.

Well as for those who don't know yet, I'm not getting a teacher, not one that comes home, I am going to the school of music that is an hour away from my home (Malta is a small country afterall, so things are not that far away here, I could get there by walking) that will accept new students in October.

So how to approach this, should I get Alfreds or Faber and could I learn them independently? would the app simply piano or flowkey help a beginner? or those apps are as bad as using Synthesia?

Would youtube videos or online tutorials for learning to read music help? or should I just stick with finding such books to begin with?

Last edited by LavaWave; 04/09/22 03:09 PM.
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Is it possible to learn to read music without an instructor?

Sure, I did that very thing.

Must you buy the books?

That's an individual decision for you to make. I explained how I did it above, and those two charts are probably enough to get you started. (Really.)


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I see, thank you FrankCox, I'l probably buy them seeing as they would help me get started which I really need to.

Meanwhile I'l start studying your chart a bit and ask my niece as she is really supportive as she learned piano once before so she would of definitely help me.

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Both are good books for adult starters. It is the way they present the material is what sets them apart. At your stage just start and really enjoy the roller coaster ride of learning an instrument.


All these years playing and I still consider myself a novice.
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Yeah, that's what I'm gonna do eventually smile thank you EPW and everyone else to help getting me started, for now I'm interested in learning music sheets, my niece will help me a lot to get me started as she has been playing piano since 8 or 9 iirc so she would give me a head start.

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Originally Posted by LavaWave
Now my question is, is this good practice?

IMO, it is not. It will not take you very far and it may be time consuming.

I did not read all the answers above but from a cursory reading I see most if not all suggested learning to read music. IMO it is good advice and the time you spend trying to imitate a playing will be spent learning to read and you should progress faster.

BUT... I want to offer a complementary way. But first let me ask you a thing: instead of imitating, i.e., looking at which keys are played, are you able to hear the melody of a song and play it by ear? I don't mean playing all the notes you see on those synthesia videos but the main melody line? If affirmative, then you might start playing the melodies, maybe adding chords on the right hand and the root note of the chord on the left, afterwards embellishing the left hand with arpeggios while playing the melody on the right interpersed with chords, afterwards using more sophisticated chord substitutions etc. Note that this path also has their challenges (e.g. learning about the harmonic field, about the functions of the chords on a musical scale, ii/V/I etc.)

I said "complementary" as learning to play using score sheets a.k.a. reading music does not exclude playing by ear as described above, they could go side by side.

Last edited by EVC2017; 04/09/22 05:13 PM.

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I get the feeling from your posts that you are in a hurry. This is not going to happen overnight. It will take years, so settle in for the long haul. The good news is it that it will be fun and you will be making music as you go. The people that wrote the Alfreds and Faber books are professional teachers with lots of experience - they know what they are doing. Many people have been successful following those method books. Your random youtube video or online course will probably not be as good.

Start at page 1, don't skip any lessons or you will have gaps in your skills, and develop a practice habit. It will pay off in the long run.

Sam


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True. Lava ..... the first step is to play basic scales to give the fingers a bit of exercise .... which also gets us used to playing something with both hands at the same time. They usually do right hand scales. Then left hand scales. Then after enough tinkering practice, they will combine both hands. Parallel motion ... and contrary motion. Usually c major scale is the one to focus on at beginner level. You eventually get to see the usefulness in knowing which fingers to use in order to play smoothly .... and ... eventually ... relatively quickly if needed.

Also .... figuring out later if you have perfect/absolute pitch ability is something that could be done. Or working on relative pitch skills is something that can be super helpful. This can come a little later after getting a bit used to playing some basic tunes on the piano.

I haven't used synthesia etc before. But I do reckon that it can help get somebody started in terms of getting used to hand independence and memory work. And will give results in terms of an actual tune coming out for those people still learning to read music. It's one way to start for sure. There are various approaches for getting into music obviously. Youtubr teachers or local teachers can show what fingers and hands could be used to handle certain bits ..... which synthesia might not come with.

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Also - definitely ------ begin to learn/associate the basic notes on the entry level score sheets - such as the ones seen in the pic that Frank posted. One goal is to eventually be able to mentally and pretty much spontaneously (near instantly) associated a note on a staff with a key on the keyboard, sort of like virtually immediate recognition. It won't be necessary to reach that level in a hurry. That can be developed with time. The main thing is to just be able to read - at any pace - so that we can follow lessons in music theory and techniques, which often involve notes and symbols. And also for playing some tunes written by other people (in more or less the way that they wrote it - without necessarily needing to work it for ourselves by listening ------ although, I must say, working things out by ourselves can be very enjoyable and nice too ---- not only working it out, but maybe even making some adjustments to play something in the way that we want).

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