Learn keyboard – tutorial

Learn keyboard for beginners

You want to learn keyboard and can not yet read music? Then it’s time! Because usually you learn a musical instrument at a very young age at the same time as reading and writing. And finally, reading and learning sheet music is done on a pedagogical level, which is comparable to 1×1 arithmetic in mathematics. If the mechanisms have solidified after a period of intensive practice, playing is almost automatic. So it is no wonder that even 4-5 year old children can master the most difficult songs on the piano after just 2 years of practice.

But also for those who started to play relatively later, I have thought of a small tutorial, which will make it easier to learn to play the keyboard. Basic basics are mainly presented here, u.a. the correct reading of notes. For the time being I have refrained from profound theoriesWhat a diminished fifth is, what the minor sixth looks like on the sheet of music, or what the structure of a tetrachord looks like – I’ll leave that out for now. For those who want to learn notes I have integrated the most important basics in the main part. In the first step, however, there are still some things to clarify such as z.B. Choosing the right instrument.

If the motivation is there?

The most important things must be clarified in advance. Is there curiosity and motivation to learn music without other people influencing it. Only if the question is answered with yes, playing the keyboard makes sense. Because if I have the slightest doubt, the fun will eventually fall by the wayside.

Learning the keyboard – this is how it works

To learn to play the keyboard, in addition to choosing the right instrument, you need to learn pieces of music, learn music theory with sheet music, and practice what you’ve learned continuously. The following criteria should be considered:

  • choice of the right instrument
  • Listen attentively to the music
  • Learning musical notes
  • Get to know clefs for both hands
  • Understanding time signatures
  • practicing fingering
  • Just download sheet music and practice
  • Getting feedback

Keyboard, digital piano or piano – which keyboard suits me best??

At the beginning there is the agony of choice. Is the piano the right instrument for me. Do I prefer the electronic version of an electric piano or do I enter the world of music with a keyboard?? Each instrument has its own focus and also addresses the target group in a targeted manner. Here I briefly show you the advantages of the instruments.

Piano – the perfect instrument for keyboard enthusiasts

The piano is the perfect keyboard instrument. Here the price differences vary enormously. For a used piano is also available under 1000 euros. In fact, the prices are on average in the mid four-digit range, wings in the price segment of new cars. The hammer mechanism, with its lever design that strikes hammers against the strings, creates a different playing feel than, say, electronic instruments. The choice for a piano should be well thought out and considered as a long-term investment.

Digital piano – the less expensive alternative to the piano

E-pianos resp. Digital pianos are usually a tad more expensive than home keyboards for beginners and are a copy of piano- both visually and sonically. Digital pianos have far fewer features and instrument sounds, but focus on mimicking the sound quality of piano sounds electronically. If you are looking for cheaper alternatives to pianos, you will find them here. Also, the feel that comes with models with half weighted keys is similar to that of pianos.

Keyboard for private use

The beginner keyboards here in the test lag behind the pianos and electric pianos on a sound level especially in the entry level segment. However, they have a wide range of sounds, styles and effects that cover the wide range of instruments. Also the here integrated learning systems like the Y.E.S Learning principle or them Step-by-step learning systems from Casio Illuminated keyboards help beginners get started.

Listening and observing

If the right instrument is ready and the necessary accessories are also available, you can familiarize yourself with the music and the theory. Even with well-known songs, which one has already heard many times, attentive learning is necessary Listening, observing and understanding the music the A and O. Even if you compose your own music, the senses of hearing and seeing are required to the same extent. First, for well-known songs , I recommend the demonstrate a piece, analyzing the way of playing on suitable video channels and listening to the piece again and again. Children who attend music classes gain access to music in a playful way by humming along, singing along, and in this way remembering the melody. Because first the feeling for music should be developed, then you can start learning the keyboard and take a closer look at the notes.

Learn keyboard – understand music theory

I would give a little music understanding to the beginners here, by first going into the most important basics and fundamentals in reading music go into. Because you will see that it looks a bit complex at the beginning. But the theory itself can be learned playfully with practical exercises while learning the keyboard! Also said in advance: not all music theories are listed here. I have left out special knowledge of chords, intervals, dynamic designations and rhythmic peculiarities. But with the basic fundamentals, learning the keyboard should be enough for now. I have taken the illustration from Crash course by Hans-Gunter Heumann who has really great crash course theories built into his textbooks and here everyone can learn on the basis of the theory shown the notes and use them purposefully.

How does the piano notation look like on the piano?

The piano notation on the piano consists of 5 lines and can be extended with a maximum of 2 auxiliary lines downwards and upwards for particularly high or low notes. low pitches are supported.

The treble clef is for the right hand, the bass clef for the left hand. The accolade summarizes both line systems. There are sheets where the chord is simply omitted.

Note line

1 staff
2 space
3 Auxiliary line
4 treble clefs
5 Bass clef
6 stroke
7 Accolade

What are the note values for the piano?

Note values piano

8 whole note
9 dotted half note
10 half note

11 quarter note
12 eighth note
13 sixteenth note
14 whole rest
15 Dotted half rest
16 half rest
17 quarter break
18 Eighth note rest

In music, 2 characteristics are decisive for notes: the Height of the sound and the tone length.

  • With a whole note (8) hold her key for 4 basic beats. At 1 hit the keys and count to 4. This is the whole note!
  • With a half notes (10) the note length lasts 2 basic beats. For the beginning I would recommend you to count the basic strokes: z.B. hold at 1,2, hold at 3,4 hold at the new key and so on!
  • For a quarter note (11) the length of a note lasts one basic beat! With the notes and rest values you can on the 4/4 bar orient. You count from 1 to 4 and hit the key at each number and then let go.
  • With a eighth note (12) the note lasts only half as long as the quarter note. Switch on the metronome function on the keyboard and play the eighth note twice after each keystroke until the next keystroke is heard.

In the graphic you can see the respective rests (14-19) as counterpart to the notes. As long as the notes continue at the tone duration, the rests. The sensitivity for the note value makes the playing on the keyboard only interesting. And this is not to be underestimated when learning the keyboard.In addition to the notes, one often sees the cross and transposition signs: the cross – transposition sign is represented by a cross in front of the note and the be – transposition sign represents a b. These signs are clues to play the corresponding black keys.

Which Rest values exist at the piano?

The Rests values are shown in the figure in the figure. The whole rest, is under the 4.Note line and is valid for the duration of a whole bar. The half note is on the 3. line. If there is a dot after the whole rest, it means that the rest value is extended by half of its value, z.B. whole rest + half rest =6/4!

If there were a dot after the half rest (represented by the bar on the 3. A line with a dot), the half rest is extended by a quarter rest. The same applies to the notes. A dot after the note extends it by half of its value. Many beginners learn keyboard first with notes, before basic fundamentals such as rhythm and rests provide the sensitivity.

What does the keyboard look like?

Keyboard keyboard and keyboard instrument

There are two clefs, with which the right and the left hand are used at the same time. The right hand focuses on the treble clef. In the illustration it would be the notes from c 1 and it is always the same letters in the order from c to h. The subdivision of the octaves is as follows:

  • Great octave: from C to B (bass clef)
  • Small octave : from c to b (bass clef)
  • Dotted octave : from c 1 to h 1
  • Two-note octave : from c 2 to h 2

These are the notes you should learn over time when learning the keyboard. On a piano there are 52 root notes, which is represented by the white keys. Together with the black keys the whole keyboard of 88 keys.

Let us briefly come to the Music alphabet. Unlike the alphabet in school, the alphabet on the piano starts with a c and forms an octave with the final h. The order is c,d,e,f,g,a,h. Of course, everyone has his own methods of learning the notes. But I would recommend you to memorize the alphabet on the keyboard and link them pictorially with the corresponding note in your memory! As a beginner, it would not be bad to stick the respective letters to the keys at the beginning. If you then learn simple songs, you see the note and know exactly: this is a c and the key at the pitched octave is on the left of the two adjacent black keys. In the course of time the learning mechanisms run automatically!

Which time signatures are there?

Piano songs are usually divided into measures and each measure contains one Certain number of basic beats. One 4/4 time contains in each bar accordingly 4 basic beats and the player counts with the quarter note to 4. At ¾ measure can be oriented to 3 basic beats or analogous to eighth notes to 6 basic beats (6/8 time). time signature and bar lines also determine the basic beats, which are stressed or unstressed.

Offset and accidentals

cross offset sign ( # ) raise the note by a semitone and Be-shifted Lowers it by a semitone. These transposition signs can then be used to determine whether the black keys are played or not. There are special names for these accidentals. When learning to play the keyboard, there is no way around practicing the transposition signs.

Cross offset sign

The cross-shift sign # raises the note by a semitone step. If you start from the c, you jump to the black key at the next semitone. The note with the addition -is is called c sharp. There is no black key between e and f. The white key, where the f is, becomes eis. For cross transposition signs, the designations are as follows: c sharp, d sharp, f sharp, g sharp, a sharp, his

Be offsets

The Be-shift sign lowers the note by a semitone step. The additional designation -es comes into play here and the be transposition sign. The following names are used for Be transposition signs: ces, des, es, fes, ges, as, b

Other terms for the performance

The relative degrees of pitch in a composition are determined by the dynamic range. There are some special designations for this.


Intervals are intervals of notes that are played together or one after the other are. A distinction is made between two terms: melodic interval and harmonic interval! A melodic interval is a series of notes played one after the other. In the harmonic interval, the notes are played simultaneously. There are also diatonic, chromatic and enharmonic intervals!

Interval designation Meaning
Prime note repetition
second Distance of 2 tones
Third distance of 3 tones
fourth Interval of 4 tones
Fifth Distance of 5 tones
sixth Spacing of 6 notes
seventh Distance of 7 tones
Octave distance of 8 tones

The names for the intervals, however, do not reflect the size of an interval. This is determined by the semitone step sequence of an octave. Within one octave, z.B. from c to c 1 there are 12 semitone steps. For a whole tone step resp. 2 semitones one key in between. On the piano this is very easy to understand, if you go from one root to the next root. When a semitone step is made, move immediately to the next key, z.B. from a white key to the black key (1 harmonic step). If one would go from a white key to the next white key, it would be a Whole tone step, because there is a black key between them. The fine tuning of an interval is determined by the transposition signs. Accordingly, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh have two different expressions.

Practicing fingering

For me, the fingering and posture when learning to play the keyboard or the piano is one of the most basic skills that is imperative to master as a player. With a computer keyboard one can still overlook it, if only 2,3 fingers per hand are needed for typing. But on the keys of an instrument all fingers are used.
On a beginner keyboard, fingerings are announced by number on the displays. On the right hand, the thumb would be number 1, index finger number 2, middle finger number 3, etc. . The same applies to the left hand (thumb 1, index finger 2 ). Posture is especially importantThe hands should be lie loosely on the keyboard and not exaggeratedly strained. Only the Fingertips touching the keys.

The rest of the fingers and the palms have nothing else to do on the key. forearm and back of the hand ideally form a straight line, parallel above the keys. The hand position should be done in such a way that fingers are slightly curved and the thumb is slightly bent inwards.

Do not make any contortions

No finger is crossed over the neighboring finger. It is also a no-go to play with a single finger (z.B. with the outer finger) to hit all the other keys. Here it is more advisable to put the hand into the other plane. It can also be very useful to practice one hand over several octaves. Learning notes and practicing fingering go hand in hand: Only when the notes have entered the fingers correctly, the perfect notes are played.

Important orientation is the Thumb underlay! If you play the scale times 10 notes with your hand, you don’t play all further notes with the outer finger and you don’t cross index finger with outer finger in an adventurous way, but you put the thumb under one finger (z.B. the middle finger) and then plays all further notes with the adjacent fingers. This is a Basic for learning notes! Take a look at the pianist playing the piano song in Violin Linh’s channel as an example.

A few simple piano songs

"Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" belongs to the easier piano songs to learn in a hurry and therefore I recommend to learn this song as a beginner once and play specifically the notes shown below, where only the treble clef is shown. Here’s a sheet I made here at http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/9/90/Twinkle_Twinkle_Sheet_Music.png found. You can find more collections of sheet music here: https://einsteiger-keyboard.en/collection-of-music-notes/. Have Fun!

Learn keyboard - tutorial

To make this a little clearer, I have mapped the keyboard of the pitched octave especially for this song:
The first "twinkle" is played at c1, then the second "twinkle" follows at g1. In the beginning it is helpful to memorize the individual keys for the octave. Take your time and look carefully where the keys to the notes are located. Have fun practicing!

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