My beginner experiences so far...

Questions on learning to play the piano, and piano music.

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sooper8
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My beginner experiences so far...

Post by sooper8 » 25 Apr 2018, 16:39

Hi all,
I've posted a couple of posts on here already but wanted to share my experiences on the piano so far...

Context - I've loved music since I was a kid and I'm an ok guitarist who's been playing for many years. I understand some music theory but I'm a 'by ear' player who never really learned scales on guitar but have figured enough stuff out to have played in a couple of bands and not sound dreadful.

So, in January 2018 approx, I got a hankering to buy a piano for our small house , so that I , my grown up kids and grandkids could perhaps play when they called round.
I got a nice old upright Challen Bureau piano for next to nothing and then had to get it moved into the house.Job completed, I didn't really touch it for a couple of weeks out of a strange kind of fear that I wouldn't be any good or even wouldn't like it.

Fast forward a couple of months and I am having the best time ever!! My favourite time to play is a Saturday morning (not sure why?).

I have taken the path of least resistance and just got straight down to trying to play songs (I am sort of on nodding terms with a few major scales). I have 'learned' the major and minor chords, and an inversion or two of the main chords.
I am working out the 6th's and 7th's too.

I started by plonking my 3 fat fingers of the right hand into a chord then 'bashing' a single bass note with my left finger or thumb.
This was the limit of my playing for a while but I now have 'progressed' to a chord in the left and a chord/melody playing with the right, and then sometimes octave bass notes and a 5th in the bass if it sounds good with my left.

I only want to amuse myself and have fun, so the hard work of learning scales and any more theory is a way off yet. I figure out that when you are in your 50's, time is tight and to spend 5 years learning too much might put me off or dampen my fun, or i might just 'run out of time' if you get my meaning - so I am just going wherever this journey takes me.

The songs that I have found to be really good to play for my beginner level are as follows...

The River by Bruce Springsteen in Em (I love throwing my Rh little finger out for the melody line around the line 'memories come back to haunt me'

Rainy Night in Soho by The Pogues - Not many chords in this but great fun picking out the melody

Tight Connection to my Heart - Bob Dylan , I saw the musical 'Girl from the North Country ' in Feb and there is a simplified version of this song in that, that I am having so much fun with

Like a Rolling Stone - Bob Dylan I'd say this is a must for beginner players to gain confidence...it's pretty easy to hit the chords and bass in that bouncy style.

Then the ones that I have 'failed' at , or at least realise I need more skills, practise and knowledge to play

Watching the Wheels by John Lennon - lots of LH stuff that is beyond me yet
Jealous guy by John Lennon - waaaayyyyy too hard
Dancing Queen by Abba I just wanted to play those big 3 chiming chords that inspired Elvis Costello/ Steve Nieve in Olivers Army, but alas, it's too much.

So, that's my journey so far. Thanks for all the help and wisdom you share on this site.It's been a big help.

chrisw
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Re: My beginner experiences so far...

Post by chrisw » 25 Apr 2018, 17:36

You sound to be doing great. Main thing is you are having fun.

Gill the Piano
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Re: My beginner experiences so far...

Post by Gill the Piano » 26 Apr 2018, 20:42

Absolutely'; just have fun for now and explore which way you want to go. Then if needs be, find a teacher who works in your particular area of interest. :piano;
I play for my own amazement... :piano;

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