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Posted By: LavaWave Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 04:05 PM
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.
Posted By: Sam S Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 04:39 PM
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
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 05:01 PM
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)
Posted By: Animisha Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 05:05 PM
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.
Posted By: Stubbie Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 05:32 PM
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.
Posted By: FrankCox Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 05:34 PM
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.
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 05:40 PM
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.
Posted By: Ubu Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 05:40 PM
Definitely learn to read music. It's painful at the beginning but after a few months it becames easier
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 05:57 PM
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.
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 06:24 PM
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.
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!
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 07:08 PM
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?
Posted By: FrankCox Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 07:09 PM
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.)
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 07:11 PM
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.
Posted By: EPW Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 07:17 PM
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.
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 07:37 PM
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.
Posted By: EVC2017 Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 09:05 PM
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.
Posted By: Sam S Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 09:28 PM
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
Posted By: SouthPark Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 10:00 PM
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.
Posted By: SouthPark Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/09/22 11:58 PM
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).
Posted By: mivaldes Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 01:27 AM
What's your goal? Learn some favorite pieces to play? Sure, it will work. But you will be limited to what you can ultimately play.

No worthwhile thing in life is easy. The piano is a lifetime of learning and work (but if you love it--amazing work!)
Posted By: SouthPark Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 01:35 AM
The synthesia notes dropping down is quite nice. Reminds me of tetris hehe. Quite an effective method for getting some actual playing done on the piano for lots of beginners. Quite workable.
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 05:39 AM
Originally Posted by mivaldes
What's your goal? Learn some favorite pieces to play? Sure, it will work. But you will be limited to what you can ultimately play.

No worthwhile thing in life is easy. The piano is a lifetime of learning and work (but if you love it--amazing work!)

Well I downloaded their music sheets but yeah for a start I'l learn from them and yes I know nothing in life is easy.

First off I need to learn to read music sheets, starting by getting the basics down and within time go from there.

Which is why I'l be getting those books for adult beginners eventually since as anyone said they're helpful and I'm dropping Synthesia as I feel that it is bad practice.
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 07:52 AM
Alright, I found these

https://www.bookdepository.com/Alfr...id-view&qid=1649576891873&sr=1-1

https://www.bookdepository.com/Alfr...id-view&qid=1649576891873&sr=1-2

https://www.bookdepository.com/Adul...id-view&qid=1649576822108&sr=1-9

Which should I buy to start with?
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 08:05 AM
I would have edited it but the time expired

Anyway is this book any good for beginners?

https://medmusic.com.mt/piano-books...-level-2-greatest-hits-038081176383.html

https://medmusic.com.mt/music-books...ory-piano-book-level-3-038081111230.html

From here

https://medmusic.com.mt/brand/12-alfred-s

This is from my country, so I could just go and buy them.
Posted By: Josephine83 Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 08:17 AM
I think it's best to start with the level 1 book, not the level 3 book. But the Alfred books are good.

Just make sure you start with book no 1.
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 08:35 AM
Right, so this is good?

https://malta.desertcart.com/produc...ne-alfreds-basic-adult-piano-course-bk-1

and is this a higher level not intended for beginners?

https://malta.desertcart.com/produc...n-one-piano-course-lesson-theory-technic

What does anyone make of this Faber book?

https://malta.desertcart.com/produc...ano-course-book-1-book-with-media-online

As this website ships faster compared to the last one, I'm thinking of buying from it.

So do any of those books help me to self learn without a tutor? so I can get started.
Posted By: Josephine83 Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 08:50 AM
The second book is also a level one book I think.
But why are those books that expensive? They are much cheaper here. Aren't there shops in Malta with cheaper books?
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 08:57 AM
Sadly, Malta doesn't sell things cheaply, prices here can be quite high unfortunately.
Posted By: Josephine83 Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 08:58 AM
Maybe you can borrow some beginner books from your niece. Or you can ask on Facebook if there is someone in your area who wants to sell their beginner method books to you.
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 10:19 AM
I found them as pdf files here.

Alfred Basic Adult Piano Course (All-In-One, Level 1)

https://kupdf.net/download/alfred-b...one-level-1_59950c2ddc0d60e313300d1a_pdf

Fabers Adult Piano Adventures Book 1

https://kupdf.net/download/fabers-adult-piano-adventures-bk-1_5c15c6cce2b6f545135f42eb_pdf

Available to view online smile

Which means this will save me a lot of trouble since these books are not available to be found in my country, I don't think so at least as I haven't found any local library website which sells them and buying them overseas may not be worth it.
Posted By: mivaldes Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 03:03 PM
I wonder how bad the postage is from the US? I have so many extra books.....
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 03:35 PM
I've been looking for youtube videos on learning music sheets.

I came across this.



I'm starting to get some sense of it, Meanwhile I'l look for others but her videos are quite helpful for me, ofcourse I'l read Alfred's basic adult all in one as well.
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 04:25 PM
Ok what's the best way to learn music sheets without a tutor? I know I won't learn overnight and it will take years, that's understandable but what is the best way to start approaching these?

I found out about Every Good Boy Does Fine and FACE but now I need to know more about the different notes and what they mean, does that youtube video or videos help with this?

Any known online website with great reputation that covers these for adult beginners?

Do Alfreds basic adult all in one or Fabers adult piano adventures covers these and in a way for adult beginners with ambition to learn to read and play piano?

[Linked Image]
Posted By: ranjit Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 05:06 PM
Check out musictheory.net

That piece of sheet music is very difficult to read for a beginner.
Posted By: dogperson Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 05:10 PM
First, just because you watched a video doesn’t mean you have learned what you need to know. If you are given one single note, you need to be to identity the particular note on the piano. That takes time snd Practice.

Open up Faber snd start from page 1. Font just read it but do it until it is engrained.
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 05:37 PM
I see, I'l do that.

What I currently want to know right now are the notes, which keys must I press (as in which notes indicate black keys) and the such.

I'm studying FrankCox example sheet as I am posting this.
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 06:01 PM
Curiously Dogperson or anyone really, which book should I start and stick with? Alfred's books or Faber?

Ranjit that website is really helpful, thank you.
Posted By: CognitaP Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 08:40 PM
Either book is good to start with. Im not sure about Alfreds but the Faber Adult Piano Adventures Book 1 also comes with a series of videos introducing each topic and technique. I have found these videos to be very useful and helped me understand the topics in the book better. I have been self learning with Faber Adult and completed book one. The videos can be found on You tube if you search Faber Adult Piano Adventures

Good luck with the journey you will get a lot of pleasure Im sure and progress quicker by sticking to one method book or an online course if you find one you like rather than learning from random you tube videos as both method books are designed to build on the skill you learn so you will start to feel you are progressing.
Posted By: SouthPark Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/10/22 09:04 PM
Lava ------ both will be nicely refined. So either one is ok. Although, information can be beneficial and powerful. In lots of cases, it can even be handy to take a look at both books. Having an idea of the different takes or perspectives from various sources can be useful. But then again, there is such a thing as 'too many cooks'. For now, just go with one of them.
Originally Posted by SouthPark
But then again, there is such a thing as 'too many cooks'.

I have to agree with this. It's pretty easy to get overwhelmed by so many options today. Years ago, people didn't have such abundance and you took direction from a few and were OK with it. Now, who do you choose from, bevis and butthead from PW, youtube, etc? I think your best bet is to get a teacher, keep it simple, listen to them. Learn from those that have been there and done that. It will go much faster.
Posted By: WeakLeftHand Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/11/22 12:02 AM
I’m going to agree with many posters here.

Keep it simple.

Get the Alfred’s Adult All-in-one Book 1 or Faber’s Adult-All-in-one Book 1, but not both, as there really is no need for both. Start on page 1, go through slowly until the end. If you do that, you should have a good grounding in the fundamentals for piano.

After that, if you still cannot have a teacher, get the book 2 of the respective series.
Posted By: LavaWave Re: Here's my practicing method so far - 04/11/22 04:11 AM
Thank you everyone, yes I think I'l start reading faber adult all in one book 1

As I said before, I couldn't find one that one could visit or I could visit outside of work hours.

So I have to wait until October to enter the school of music as they told me that have sessions twice a week and after work hours like 5pm or 6pm for people who work full time, so that's the only feasible way to get a tutor for me but meanwhile I'l read faber and start practicing, Yeah.
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