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How to get started on the keyboard.

Friday, April 20, 2012

In starting on the piano I recommend starting on weighted keys. I say this as your fingers will be adjusted to the stiffness of the keys. When you then progress to a light weighted keyboard, you will fly across the keys. It is still up to you which one you get as it needs to be something you will feel comfortable practicing on. Some keyboards are weighted as well.

Keyboards can be 88 keys, 76, or 61. This is something you can decide on based on your needs and space available for the instrument. A lot of musicians have the 61 and/or a 76 key keyboard. It is easy to fit in the car as they travel from place to place. 88 keys is fine if you have the room, but most 88 key keyboards are rather heavy. I myself like a 76 key board as it give me the flexibility to play without the heaviness to carry.

Keyboard Familiarization:


The piano/keyboard uses the following alphabet letters: A B C D E F G

The piano/keyboard consists of white and black notes.

White Notes = natural or regular notes

Black Notes = Sharps and Flats depending on how you address the note.

  • Moving one note a half step to the right = Sharp (#)
  • Moving one note a half step to the left = Flat (b)

Notice the pattern in relationship between the black and white notes.

Notice that there are 2 black notes together and then 3 black notes together with white notes in between. This pattern repeats over the entire instrument.

You can move between notes via half step (E & F. Notice that there is nothing between those 2 notes.)

You can move between notes via a whole step (C & D. Notice C#/Db is between those two notes.


  • Major Scale - Whole - Whole - Half - Whole - Whole - Whole - Half
  • Minor Scale - Whole - Half - Whole - Whole - Half - Whole - Whole

Example - Starting on C ---------------- C D E F G A B C

Number Analysis --------------------------- 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

Assigning numbers helps when learning progressions.

(2-5-1 which is D major chord, G major chord, C major chord in the key of C)

In a Major Scale the Chords are as follows:

  • 1 = Major Chord
  • 2 = Minor Chord
  • 3 = Minor Chord
  • 4 = Major Chord
  • 5 = Major Chord
  • 6 = Minor Chord
  • 7 = Diminished Chord
  • 8 = Major Chord

In a Minor Scale the Chords are as follows:

  • 1 = Minor Chord
  • 2 = Diminished Chord
  • 3 = Major Chord
  • 4 = Minor Chord
  • 5 = Minor Chord
  • 6 = Major Chord
  • 7 = Major Chord
  • 8 = Minor Chord

No matter what note you start on, if you played the patterns above, you have played a major or minor scale.

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