In terms of music, you’ll come across a musical instrument called a keyboard
A keyboard is a digital instrument that is based on the grand piano,
It typically has an average of 61 notes, and has various more sophisticated functions and effects than the classical pianos.
However, the sounds of a keyboard is not as natural as an original piano, obviously.
The keyboard is a musical instrument that allows you to play musical songs.
The keyboard is built in the same format as a piano with the black and white keys.
Each key of the keyboard delivers a different sound, and each sound is one musical note.
The notes are scaling from the most bottom key that is located on the keyboard’s left end, and then it’s going all the way up to the top key that is located at the keyboard’s right end.
It is important that you know that a keyboard and an electronic piano are not the same. Although, visually they look similar to each other.
Electronic pianos has 88 notes on average and may be more expensive than normal portable keyboards.
Keyboards has an average of 61 to 76 keys, and can be found for much cheaper than pianos.
There are a few differences between the piano and the keyboard
One of them is that the piano is playing only one instrument at a time, while the keyboard can play multiple instruments at a time.
This can be done by combining a few sounds on the keyboard to play at ones, or, by using one of the styles (drums) that are pre-programmed on the keyboard.
The keyboard is mainly used by people who like to play as a one man band.
The keyboard won the musical instruments use-rate as the most popular instrument in the world.
Most musicians even not pianist or keyboardists started their career with a keyboard, because the keyboard is the easiest instrument to learn music on.
Learning to play on a keyboard
Learning keyboard is easy and fun! and can be done in multiple ways.
Some people will rather choose a human teacher to learn them how to play the keyboard
Certain people will choose a live person teacher to learn them how to play the keyboard, while others will rather choose an online course for that.
Some people will learn how to play keyboard very fast, while for others it will take some time until they can actually play.
So, if you think you want to play the keyboard, you should not stop just by thinking, you should actually start playing!
But, if you never played keyboard, it can be a bit difficult to play and you’ll have to learn a bit of it.
Here, I’ll guide you a little bit how to start playing keyboard, this is just to get the foot into the door.
But, I’d highly recommend taking a live teacher or an online course to get the maximum out of your dream to play keyboard.
There are four simple steps to learn keyboard
- Get a keyboard
- Start learning
- Keep practicing
- Non-stop playing
1. Get a keyboard
Of course, to play keyboard, you must have one. so, if you don’t have a keyboard yet you should definitely get one now.
The main benefits of a musical keyboard
A keyboard is an easy to carry instrument, that doesn’t require to much hustling from you to set it up, so you can anytime pack away your keyboard if you need its space.
The keyboard, is more aimed at a use of leisure and entertainment , to generate more modern melodies, close to styles such as pop-rock , moving away from the classic character normally associated with the conventional acoustic piano.
This is one of the factors that makes the keyboard more successful among people who are starting in the world of music.
Musical keyboards include a number of functions that greatly facilitate their use.
It includes, depending on the model, demo melodies, instruction manuals as a tutorial and produces melodies and, in some models, accompaniments without the need to have a high experience in musical terms.
In order to provide that ease in the learning process, many electronic keyboards include sounds of real elements, so the user gets familiarize with the melody of guitars, trumpets and more instruments.
However, especially interesting are those models that include a metronome as an orientation to mark measures , establishing a guide for beginners to teach rhythm, beat and timing.
Most people, when it comes to buy the keyboard they don’t know where to start, because, there are thousands of keyboard out there, and it might be overwhelming for them to choose the right keyboard.
I’d recommend the Alesis Melody 61 as the perfect keyboard for beginners.
Because of its cheap price, the Alesis Melody 61 is a perfect keyboard for beginners who don’t want to invest to much in the beginning of their career.
It comes with built-In Speakers, Headphones, Microphone, Piano Stand, Music Rest, and Stool.
Basically, you get everything you need at one purchase, so you don’t have to buy a stand or bench separately.
If you wanna go for it, you can purchase it on Amazon using the link below.
Alesis Melody 61
There’s a lot more keyboards out there, but I’m not going to go over all of them now.
I’ve actually written in a different post more recommendations of good keyboards, so if you wish to see more keyboards I’d recommend for beginners and professionals, you can read here my article of the top 15 piano keyboards.
Once you got your keyboard, you are ready to start learning!
2. Start learning
Keyboard is something we can learn by our selves. and here is how we can do it,
Put on a song from your phone or MP3 player, listen closely to all different notes around the song, then try to play it!
Ain’t easy? I know, it’s not going to work if you never played keyboard before.
So, what about finding only the first note that the song starts with?
Still not sure? listen again, I’m sure you’ll find it on your keyboard.
Start from the middle C and go up 12 keys, you should definitely find the first note of your song at once of those keys.
Once you found the first note, find the second of your song.
Then play both notes one right after the other.
Same you should do with the third note of the song, and play notes 1, 2, 3.
You’ll be surprised how fast you can teach your brain to listen to each note as an individual unique sound
Use only one finger when starting out, and only focus on finding the correct keys of the song.
Once you get more familiar with that, you can start focusing on using more fingers
It’s always a good idea to follow a guide that will take you through all the steps.
Here are the basic tips for starting from scratch:
- A lot of keyboards have letters on the instrument, just above the keys: A – B – C – D – E – F – G. These letters are the musical notes.
- Watch the metronome : click the metronome button on your instrument and speed up or slow down the beat. That metronome sets the pulse. Listen to the tempo and play musical notes at the same time. For example, play the C major scale with your pulse:
C (finger 1) – D (finger 2) – E (finger 3) – F (finger 1 again) – G (finger 2) – A (finger 3) – B (finger 4) – C (finger 5).
Play those notes along with the beat.
- Quicken your tempo a bit and touch the scale again.
The exercise is that you can play along with the sound of the tempo. It is a training that is difficult at first but you can practice to master it little by little!
- Know the musical notes on the staff and play on your keyboard while you read
- Practice daily, especially the songs that excite you the most and those that you like the most. It’s important to play the music you like because that’s when you are most motivated. Our mind, when it feels motivated, learns more than when it is hopeless or discouraged.
- Make Playing Piano a POSITIVE and PLEASANT activity for you.
- KINDLY ACCEPT your learning processes. Enjoy it and your new achievements every day!
There is a great book called KEYBOARD A Complete Guide for Absolute Beginners it was written by Amazon’s best-selling music author Ben Parker.
This book will clearly guide from the beginning till the to make sure you become a keyboard pro the fastest possible
How to play keyboard
By: Ben Parker
3. Keep Practicing
It’s very important to do piano and keyboard exercises.
That includes speed exercise and also finger exercise
Speed exercise will train your fingers to move fast within the keys of your keyboard. this is required to do when playing fast-tempo songs.
Speeding up your finger movements can be done in multiple ways
- Raise your right hand, rest your 5 fingers on 5 white keys of the keyboard one right next to the other, it should look like this.
- Then press down the first key with your thumb, make sure to keep your 4 other fingers in the same position, do not press them down.
- Release your thumb, and press down your index finger, keep all other fingers up in the same position.
- Release your index finger, and press down your middle finger
- Release middle finger, press down ring finger
- Release ring and press down your pinkie finger
- Repeat this multiple times.
Keep this drill in a very slow tempo.
When you feel the fingers became used to this action, you can start speeding up this exercise.
After a while you’ll notice that your fingers got unlocked and can move faster than before.
There is a great product called Finger Strengthener
This can help your fingers a lot in the training process.
It will make your fingers stronger, and easier to move.
It will also stretch your finger muscles, and will enable you to easily reach an octave on the keyboard when required.
Finger Strengthener and trainer for piano
Once you feel comfortable with your finger speed, you can move on to the Finger exercise
Finger exercise will train your fingers to move in some different directions than you are used to move until now.
When playing keyboard or piano, you have to follow a certain set of keys that will depend on the scale you are playing.
Some scales are easier, like the A minor and the C Major exists from white keys only
But, there are other scales that are more difficult to play on like the B flat Minor.
So, in order to teach your fingers to play on all these scales easy, it will require you to do some exercise.
There are millions of exercises out there. but, I recommend this book called The Complete Book of Scales written by Willard A. Palmer, Morton Manus and Amanda Vick Lethco
This book should cover all scales training and provide you with quality exercises for keyboard playing.
The Complete Book of Scales
Once you have done this book you are a complete keyboard player.
4. Non-stop playing
Now let’s not forget the purpose of the all steps you have done.
Our goal is to be a keyboard player, which means whenever we are in mood of playing, we can just sit down and play!
To keep your playings in a good condition you should constantly sit with your keyboard and play songs (of course the ones you like)
There are people who will eventually want to make a living of playing piano or keyboard, I mean, why not? if you have the talent of playing music, you should definitely cash it in.
Just go out to the world and start playing at parties and events.
The keyboard is a great instrument to express the musical feeling we all have in our hearts.
I hope you enjoyed reading this article, I’ll continue publishing more information about music, and we’ll eventually cover a lot.
I’m always dreaming of music, your post seems to be a great start for me.
I hope I’ll be able to follow all the steps.
I’m actually having an old keyboard, I’ll try to start working with it.
Sounds good, Steve!
Thank you for this wonderful read!
I had this friend, who used to play piano. An actual, big, grand piano, but I can’t recall the brand. We were about 10-12 years old when she played “fur Elisa” for me, as she just perfected it. I immediately fell in love with the sound. I wanted to be able to play like that, soooo much. We couldn’t afford it, though. Not the rental, not the place, not the lessons.
When I grew up, I felt it a bit awkward to start learning so late, knowing how many years my friend practised to achieve a smooth play and she never became a musician or something.
Still, now, decades later, I regret not having tried it. Even more so, as your article aroused a belief that it could still work for me.
The keyboard you recommend really is cheep, although it would need more than it’s price additionally to get it to UK. Still, it wood be nice to be able to play, even if just for myself.
Thanks for your wonderful comment, Kerryanne!
Music is never to late to give a try. especially, when it’s so easy to learn and musical keyboards are really not expensive as the old pianos.
For some people it fills empty space in their hearts when they start dealing with music.