Piano: Most Popular Articles
There are only 7 full piano notes to remember. Notes of the black keys are easy to find once you learn the notes of the white piano keys. Learn how to find the notes of the piano with helpful illustrations and tips.
View the musical symbols of piano sheet music, including music notes and accents; foot pedal marks; accidentals; dynamics commands; bar lines; time signatures, and tempo commands. Some musical commands are abbreviated in sheet music (like 'sfz' and 'fff') -- learn the essential musical symbols and terms written in piano music, with clear illustrations and simple explanations.
Test your knowledge of the piano keyboard with this colorful quiz. Identify notes of the white and black piano keys, and see how well you're learning piano so far! Choose from 4-12 questions in this beginner piano quiz, then test your skills with more musical tests and quizzes!
Many factors decide the value of your piano; one of the biggest factors being its overall condition. To find your piano's value on your own, you need to do some legwork. This guide will teach you how to determine the value of your piano, and spot some common signs of damage.
Test your ability to read notes on the treble staff with this beginner quiz. Get help memorizing the treble staff notes, and learn how to read accidentals. Identify the notes on the staff in this illustrated musical quiz!
When it comes to learning and playing piano, there are some clear differences between acoustic and electric instruments that you’ll want to consider. For practical reasons, you should also figure out which will be easier for you to own and maintain. Learn the differences in learning on an acoustic piano versus learning on an electric keyboard, and choose which is best for you and your playing style.
You need a good understanding of how key signatures are built, so you can read, play, and create music more instinctually. Test your knowledge of key signatures, musical scales, and accidentals with this key signature quiz. Choose from 5-20 questions, and correctly identify each key signature in this illustrated musical quiz!
Many people still don't know that they can whiten piano keys themselves. The most effective (and ivory-safe) methods for whitening piano keys involve everyday household items; learn how to whiten piano keys, and brighten up your instrument.
Music notes represent the melody of a song, and come in various shapes and sizes. The pitch of a sound depends on its note's position on the staff; while its duration depends on its color and flag. Learn the various note-lengths in both American and British English, and how to read them in rhythm. The U.S.
It's best to start out with triads (3-note chords) to get a feel for chord positions and fingering. Learn how to form each inversion with illustrated keyboards, and exercise sight-reading with treble and bass staff notation.
These sad, beautiful piano songs will sympathize with the brokenhearted. Pain has inspired great music, and listening to it reminds us that even legends are not immune to heartache.
Major and minor scales are built similarly, but have a few distinct characteristics. Learn how major and minor scales are formed, and play common major and minor piano scales.
The most obvious difference between ‘regular’ grands and baby grands is size. Actually, these are just two of the many standard grand piano sizes, and the exact measurements can vary by manufacturer or location. Voices of the best baby grands are almost indistinguishable from those of proper grands; but this becomes less so as the size of the piano decreases.
Not sure which fingers to play with? Read about piano fingering, and find out which fingers touch which notes on the keyboard. Learn how to read
If you're buying a used piano, you must know what to ask the seller before you purchase it. Learn 8 questions to ask before buying a used piano, so you can bring home the best instrument for you or your child. Before you visit a used piano, you can learn about its background. Ask the seller about the brand, model, year of manufacture, and if possible, the piano’s serial number; learn how to find the age and value of a used piano.
To clean or disinfect your piano keys, you must follow some rules to avoid causing serious damage -- learn how to clean piano keys, and keep your keyboard healthy and bright.
Learn how to read and play piano music. This lesson teaches you how to play the C major and G major piano scales; introduces you to simple piano chords and melodies, and guides you with helpful illustrations. Learn how to read piano music once and for all.
Memorize piano bass staff notes with visual help and mnemonic devices. Page 2.
Only two piano pedals are universally standard; the third pedal has become misunderstood and forgotten. Learn about the three piano pedals; their histories, and how they're marked in piano music.
Free, printable piano practice lessons available in several file formats and sizes. Each lesson targets a specific technique, and ends with a practice song to perfect your new skills and exercise your sight-reading abilities. Start from the beginning, or pick up where you feel comfortable!
To play piano, the left hand has to match the right hand in strength and dexterity. Knowing the correct piano fingering for the left hand improves playing speed, and eases the formation of piano chords. Learn about left hand piano fingering, and enhance your playing.
Take a visual tour of written piano music. Learn different musical symbols; note accents and articulation; how to write dynamics and volume changes, and understand how key signatures work in piano music.
Free, printable piano lessons for the beginner and beyond: Learn how to sight-read piano music and practice the various techniques used to successfully master piano-playing. View files directly on your screen, or download them in printable JPG, PNG, and PDF file formats.
Diminished chords are characterized by their ambiguous and bizarre sound, and understanding the diminished chords will help you add new, exciting elements to your piano music. Learn about diminished chord intervals, abbreviations, and moods; and read about the unstable, or
C maj chord: C E G. Learn easy piano chords that sound great! Major chords are built with a root note, a major third, and a perfect fifth, and have a relatively happy and upbeat sound. Learn to play easy piano triads with illustrated keyboard fingering and treble staff notation.
Pitch class simply refers to an octave from one C to the next; and each octave and C-note has its own universally understood name. The lowest notes on the piano (A0 and B0) belong to the
Test yourself on time signatures, measures, note-lengths, and how they all work together. This intermediate quiz challenges you on the mathematical side of music, and tests your rhythmic sight-reading abilities. Choose from 5 to 25 questions.
Buying a musical keyboard is not easy these days; digital pianos come with seemingly endless options, sizes, and controls. Get a breakdown of your options, and get tips on what to look for when buying an electric keyboard.
The Italian musical term rallentando literally means
Grand pianos have their cons, just as upright pianos have their pros. It’s common to assume (thanks to price) that it’s the other way around. Compare upright and grand pianos; learn the sizes, timbres, and costs of vertical and horizontal pianos, and find out which best suits your playing needs.
Learn which fingers touch which keys when playing the piano. This illustrated walk-through lets you practice fingered scales, while explaining basic finger techniques used for both white and black keys.
The Italian musical term sforzando looks quite strange to most people, but its definition is simple. Learn the meaning and pronunciation of sforzando (abbreviated as
The piano keyboard is arranged in a pattern that will help you find notes easily. Learn how to navigate the piano keys with helpful illustrations and tips. Both the C and F notes begin groups of accidentals, so you need to memorize which is which. There are few easy tricks to help...
Learn the essentials of reading keyboard music from the very beginning, or pick up where you need some extra help. How to read piano sheet music & notation for beginners.
The musical command 8va - an abbreviation of the Italian 'ottava' (octave) - is an indication to play an octave higher than written. Learn more about 8va, 8vb & other octave commands.
Complete table of the fifteen key signatures and their relative minors. Learn how many accidentals are in each key; which key signatures have enharmonic equivalents, and which keys only exist in theory. This breakdown of the circle of fifths will help you better understand the diatonic scale, and improve your knowledge of the sharp and flat key signatures.
Middle C, also called. Piano.
You must clean a piano properly to avoid costly (and annoying) damage. Learn how to clean your piano, and avoid some common piano cleaning mistakes.
A double-sharp is a musical symbol that makes a note's pitch higher by two half steps -- but what is the point of a double-sharp? Learn how double-accidentals are used in music; why they're necessary, and the symbols used to mark double-sharps on the staff.
Test yourself on music note lengths and values. Identify whole notes, half notes, quarter notes, eighth notes & more! Choose from 5 - 15 questions, or take quiz in U.K. English.
Test your ability to read notes on the bass staff with this beginner quiz. Get help memorizing the bass staff notes, and learn how to read accidentals and chords. Practice identifying notes of the grand staff with this two-part illustrated quiz!
Cut time modifies the time signature in a song, and can be written in sheet music in a couple ways. Learn the meaning, synonyms, and symbols of cut time (or
Are you wondering where the middle C is on your smaller keyboard? These illustrations will help you find it on each of the four standard keyboard sizes.
A measure is the space in which musical notes are written. Learn the meaning of a musical measure, and see how they're used in piano music. Measures are sections of a staff, separated by barlines; get the definition for measure, and browse musical terms A - Z.
The musical term Ritardando. Piano.
Get a review of Yamaha P85 musical keyboard. Learn about features, sound libraries, and read the pros and cons of this 88-key digital piano. Rating: 4 stars.
The key of E major / C-sharp minor has four sharps: Illustrated map of the sharp key signatures with relative minors. View key signatures on the treble and bass staves; memorize the order of the accidentals, and learn the chords of each musical key.
Jazz music wouldn't be what it is today if it weren't for these 10 piano masters. Learn what they did to change jazz forever.
Learn the Best Piano Conditions for Acoustics and Health: What is the best room for a piano? Certain environments are detrimental to piano health, and the best room conditions for an acoustic piano are not always ideal for an electric piano. Room furnishings should also enhance the piano's voice; learn easy ways to adjust piano room acoustics and climate, and create the best room for your piano.
Hands-on review of Yamaha's P95 digital piano. Learn its pros & cons, features, voices & effects, price, speaker-quality, and more. 88-keys - Rating: 4 stars.
Review of Casio's 76-key portable keyboard model WK-200. Rating: 4 stars
The Italian musical term. Piano.
F# min chord: F# A C#. Minor chords are formed with a root, a minor third. Learn easy piano triads with illustrated keyboard fingering, chord inversions, and treble staff notation. Page 6.
Pianos usually come in one of two wood finishes: Lacquer or polymer. Different pianos must be polished differently to avoid damage and undesirable results. Learn how to properly polish a piano, handle common problems with lacquer or polyester piano finishes.
The root note is the fundamental note of a chord. It's important to note that the root does not always take the bass position -- meaning it won't always be the bottom note of the chord written on the staff (see
A min chord: A C E. Minor chords are formed with a root, a minor third, and a perfect fifth, and have a blasé, melancholy sound.
Learn the definition of the Italian musical term smorzando (smorz) and its relation to the piano musical world.
These romantic piano songs are for creating the perfect ambiance for love. Whether you prefer soft and romantic, or mysterious and sultry, add these to your play list and watch your lover melt.
Hands-on review of Yamaha's PSR-E423 portable keyboard. Learn its pros & cons, features, voices & effects, price, speaker-quality, and more. 76 keys - Rating: 3.5 stars.
Cmaj7 chord: C - E - G - Bb. Learn major seventh and dominant 7 chords with illustrated keyboard fingering and treble staff notation. A C7sus4 has a suspended fourth interval instead of a major third.
Learn the meaning, BPM, pronunciation, and multilingual synonyms of the Italian tempo command 'allegretto.'
Hands-on review of the Korg SP170 digital piano. Learn its pros & cons, features, voices & effects, price, speaker-quality, and more. 88-keys - Rating: 5 stars.
: Timbre is the unique quality of an instrumentâs sound; its âvoice.â Timbre describes the difference
D.S. al coda is part of a complex system of musical repeats. The Italian musical phrase
Black piano keys are sharps or flats, and the black piano keys' notes can be identified by its surrounding white keys. Learn more about sharps and flats of the piano with helpful illustrations, and clear explanations of the black piano keys.
The definition of a double barline, including how the barline is used in musical composition and its variations.
A sharp (♯, but also # in type) is a musical symbol that modifies the pitch of a note by the smallest Western interval: a half step. Learn more about sharps, flats, and other accidentals; and see how it's used in piano music.
A third is an interval equal to three scale degrees that is most often major or minor*: Major Third (M3) Equal to four half steps.
The Italian musical term. Piano.
Musical texture is a way to describe the complexity of a musical composition. Texture can be described in a few common ways; learn about musical texture, and see how it applies to piano music.
A triplet – a type of “tuplet” – is a group of three notes played inside another note-length.
A double-flat is a musical symbol that makes a note's pitch lower by two half steps -- but what is the point of a double-flat? Learn how double-accidentals are used in music; why they're necessary, and the symbols used to mark double-flats on the staff.
A musical beat is an essential element of rhythm and tempo. Learn about beats; how they're organized by a time signature, and how they're indicated in piano music.
An octave is a large musical interval that separates two of the same notes. There are 12 semitones in the chromatic scale, while the diatonic scale has 7 unique notes (but spans 8). Learn more about octaves, note-frequencies, and learn multilingual synonyms and abbreviations for the musical term octave.
B° chord: B D F. Learn easy diminished piano chords, with illustrated fingering, staff notation, and inversions. Dissonance refers to a lack of harmony within a chord, and can be heard in both dim and aug chords.
The Italian musical phrase D.C. al coda is part of a system of complex musical repeats. Da capo al coda literally means from the head to the coda.
A# maj chord: A# Cx E#. Major chords are built with a root, a M3, and a P5. Learn to play easy piano triads with illustrated keyboard fingering and treble staff notation. Page 6.
Bb min chord: Bb Db F. Minor chords are formed with a root, a minor third. Learn easy piano triads with illustrated keyboard fingering, chord inversions, and treble staff notation.
The Italian musical phrase D.C. al fine (or
Learn With Audio: A musical triplet is a note-grouping of three, which fits inside the length of another note. For example, an eighth-note triplet spans one quarter-note.
Hands-on review of Yamaha's YPG-235 'Portable Grand' keyboard. Learn its features, voices & effects, price, speaker-quality, and more. 76-keys - Rating: 3.5 stars.
Anacrusis means roughly the same thing in both music and poetry. Learn the meaning of the musical term
A time signature is a large fraction written at the beginning of a musical staff after its clef and key signature. It explains the meter of a song; the top number shows how many beats are in a measure, and the bottom number specifies the length of the main beat. Learn more about time signatures; which are most commonly seen, and the difference between simple, compound, and complex musical meter.
An upbeat is a passive yet important aspect of rhythm. The upbeat is not always heard, but it is always implied. Learn the meaning of upbeat, and see how it affects piano music.
Hands-on review of the Roland E-09 'workstation arranger' keyboard. Learn its pros & cons, features, sound libraries & voices, price, speaker-quality, and more. 61-keys - Rating: 5 stars.
Hands-on review of Yamaha's NP-30 digital piano/portable keyboard. Learn its pros & cons, features, voices & effects, price, speaker-quality, and more. 76 keys - Rating: 2.5 stars.
Hands-on review of Casio's WK-225 digital piano. Learn its pros & cons, features, sound libraries & voices, price, speaker-quality, and more. 88-keys - Rating: 3.5 stars.
Learn about dust and mold prevention; ideal temperature and humidity levels for a piano, and learn about simple, everyday piano care.
: The musical symbol 8vb (an abbreviation of ottava bassa , or âlow octave â) is an indication to play
Free, illustrated musical quizzes on notation, music theory, sheet music symbols, keyboard & staff notes, and more! Beginner, intermediate, and advanced difficulty levels -- no registration necessary. Key Signature Quiz; Tempo Command Quiz; Dynamics Symbols Quiz; Identify the Piano Notes; Treble Staff / Bass Staff Note Quiz; Test Yourself on Note-Lengths in U.S. or U.K. English; Advanced Time Signature & Rhythm Quiz.
Harmony is what occurs when two or more notes are played at the same time. Learn more about harmony, melody, and musical texture, and see how they're applied in piano music.
A explanation of G-Cleg, a large musical symbol at the beginning of the piano's top staff.
A musical key is a scale upon which a musical composition is based. Learn more about musical keys; key signatures, and relative major and minor keys, and browse musical terms A - Z.
A tie is a very common musical symbol. Learn the meaning of a musical
Two tunings per year has become the acceptable standard, but depending on your climate there’s a chance that won’t be enough.
Hands-on review of the Korg SP250 digital piano. Learn its pros & cons, features, voices & effects, price, speaker-quality, and more. 88-keys - Rating: 5 stars.
What is an accidental in music? Accidentals modify musical notes, and they come in three forms. See illustrated examples of accidentals in sheet music, and learn how they affect piano music.
: The Italian musical term subito , which means âquickly; suddenly,â is used alongside other musical
A fermata is a very common symbol in piano music, and one of the first you will learn. A fermata, or bird's eye, affects articulation. Learn the meaning of the Italian musical term.
Side-by-side feature and price comparisons of musical keyboards, digital pianos, MIDI controllers, and workstation arrangers. Compare keyboard feel & touch-response; polyphony & built-in voices; recording & effects; prices & bundle packages; timbre, reverb, chorus & modulation effects; available colors, and much more. See all musical keyboard reviews by brand.
The musical term. Piano.
Hands-on review of Yamaha's Piaggero NP-V80 digital piano. Learn its pros & cons, features, voices & effects, price, speaker-quality, and more. 76-keys - Rating: 4 stars.
The key of F major / D minor has one flat: Illustrated map of all the flat key signatures with relative minors. View key signatures on the treble and bass staves; memorize the order of their accidentals, and learn the chords found in each key.
Hands-on review of Casio's CDP-100 digital piano. Learn its pros & cons, features, sound libraries & voices, price, speaker-quality, and more. 88-keys - Rating: 3.5 stars.
English and Latin lyrics to the Christmas carol 'Adeste Fideles', or 'O Come All Ye Faithful', along with a link to guitar chords for the carol.
Common time, or. Piano.
When shopping for an acoustic piano, you have a lot to consider. Learn 10 crucial tips to use when shopping for a new or used acoustic piano, and learn what you need to know before buying a piano.
Hands-on review of the Casio Privia PX-130 digital piano. Learn its pros & cons, features, voices & effects, price, speaker-quality, and more. 88-keys - Rating: 4.5 stars.
Technically, any scale or key can go by two names; but the enharmonic key signatures are used in everyday music theory. These completely identical scales (enharmonic equivalents) are seen in both the sharp and flat key signatures. Learn which keys are enharmonic equivalents, and why they're even necessary in music theory. Let's look at their scales' notes: You'll notice each keynote points to the same note on the piano keyboard. These notes are enharmonically equivalent.
The Italian musical command. Piano.
Akai's MPK88 has been surrounded by much anticipation in the world of keyboards, and little info can be found considering it's fairly recent release. Get a complete, professional review of Akai's MPK88 Professional MIDI Controller - learn its pros & cons - and find out how its features compare to those of other keyboard controllers around today.
The perfect fifth (also P5) is an essential building block of major and minor piano chords. Other fifth intervals include the diminished and augmented fifths; learn more about the perfect fifth; how it's used in scales and chords, and why it's so pleasing to the musical ear!
Rhythm is a musical term that is almost interchangable with tempo, but can be comprised of more than just a beat. Learn more about musical rhythm, and the types of beats that help create rhythm.
The staff is what holds music notes, as well as most musical symbols. Learn more about the piano's grand staff; memorize notes of the treble and bass staves, and learn how notation is written on and off the piano staff.
'Scientific Pitch Notation,' or SPN, is one of several octave-naming systems, and is used primarily in the U.S. SPN provides a quick way to reference a specific pitch using a combination of note-letters and numbers; for example middle C is written C4. View a complete piano keyboard labeled with scientific pitch notation and key frequencies, and learn the different formats in which SPN may be written. The Acoustical Society of America was responsible for the creation of SPN in 1939.
Learning to play bass chords on piano is a great way to enhance your piano music and strengthen your playing skills as a beginner. Playing the piano chords in the key of C lets you to learn major, minor, and diminished chords without having to play any black piano keys. Get tips on chord fingering, bass staff notation, and listen to audio samples of the chord inversions.
Learn the meaning, BPM, pronunciation, and multilingual synonyms of the Italian tempo command 'andante.'
The Italian musical term. Piano.
Learn the meaning, pronunciation & multilingual synonyms of the Italian musical command dolce.
The Italian musical term. Piano.
Middle C is a very important note in piano music; the piano keyboard is based around middle C, and it's also the border between treble notes and bass notes. Learn all about middle C, and browse musical terms A - Z.
Piano polishings should always be kept to a bare minimum, and lacquer pianos have special polishing needs. Learn how to polish a lacquer piano, and tackle a few annoying issues unique to lacquer finishes.
The Italian musical phrase. Piano.
The musical term. Piano.
Melody is the outcome of a succession of notes. Learn more about melody, harmony, musical texture, and how it's applied in piano music. Get the definition of melody, and browse musical terms A - Z.
A dotted note (not to be confused with staccato) is a note with a small dot to the right of its note-head, which increases its length by 50 percent.
Beats per minute (BPM) are marked in piano music with numbers as metronome marks; or with tempo terms, often in Italian.
The Italian musical term. Piano.
Find original piano arrangements of your favorite Christmas and holiday songs, with free, printable sheet music in several file formats. All songs include lyrics and optional vocal scores, many with Christmas lyrics in multiple languages. Vote on the next holiday song you'd like to see, and learn it on piano just in time for Christmas and Hanukkah!
Learn about different types of chords found in piano music.
Musical articulation is one of the first things you will learn about as a new musician. See how articulation is marked in sheet music, and learn how it affects piano music.
Mano destra, seen in piano music as M.D., literally means
: The French musical command cÃ©dez (meaning âyield; slowâ) is an indication to gradually decrease the
: A natural is: A symbol (â®) placed before a note that cancels out a previous accidental ; used in two
: A repeat bar is a musical symbol resembling a final barline with two dots in the middle spaces of the
Hands-on review of the Casio LK-165 portable lighted keyboard. Learn its pros & cons, features, voices & effects, price, speaker-quality, and more. Rating: 3 stars.
The Italian musical term crescendo (abbreviated cresc.) is an indication to gradually increase the volume of a song until otherwise noted.
The treble clef is one of two clefs on the piano's grand staff. Learn the meaning of treble clef (or G clef), and see how it's written in piano music.
One of the most common questions I get asked is whether a musician can successfully learn to play piano on an electric keyboard. Well, in short, yes. But there
The Italian musical term. Piano.
Learn the history behind the c-shaped semicircle used to represent the 4/4 time signature.
Correct piano posture involves sitting correctly on the piano bench, which you may have to tweak to suit your height and shape. Learn how to find the right piano seating; adjust non-adjustable piano benches; and how you can easily settle into a good posture at the piano keys! Adjustable piano benches are a great option for growing children, or anyone sharing a piano. Sit at the right height for your shape and size to achieve good arm and wrist positions.
Andantino is sometimes defined as slightly slower than andante, in which case its BPM is between 64-72. Pronunciation: ahn'-dahn-TEE-noh
Three internal warning signs of a low-quality used piano will tip you to avoid getting ripped off: Damage to the Soundboard, Pinblock health, worn hammers.
Learn more about key signatures, accidentals, and relative keys, and browse images of all key signatures.
Learn 6 of the worst places to put a piano. To keep your instrument healthy, you must avoid placing your piano in detrimental room conditions. Room size and furnishings also affect the sound of your piano; read more to learn about the best and worst places to put a piano.
The Italian musical term. Piano.
The first rule of piano posture is to feel relaxed and in control of your movements; never rigid. The second rule is to avoid having to adjust any part of your body mid-song. Learn proper wrist, arm, hand, and finger positons for playing piano; how to avoid wrist strain and injury; and get tips on how you can use certain piano postures to enhance your control of the music's dynamics.
A major key and its relative minor key consist on the same exact notes. Learn about relative keys, relative majors, and relative minor scales; browse musical terms A - Z, or learn more about key signatures and notation.