Archive for August, 2009


Learn All 12 Major Chords In 5 Minutes Or Less!

Sunday, August 30th, 2009
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You can learn all 12 major chords quickly by grouping them in 3’s: 3 major chords are all white keys, 3 major chords have a black key for a 3rd: 3 major chords are like Oreo cookies; 3 major chords are left over — Gb, B, and Bb.

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Major Chords: How To Form Them From Scales

Saturday, August 29th, 2009
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Major chords are formed by combining the root, 3rd, and 5th of a major scale. In the key of C, that would be C, E, and G. In the key of B the major chord would be B, D#, and F#. So it is imperative that musicians know how to from major scales because major chords are formed from each individual scale.

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Scales: Major Scales, Minor Scales

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009
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There are many different kinds of scales, the most-used being major scales followed by minor scales. Many contemporary musicians use the modal scales too, such as Dorian, Lydian, Mixolydian, Aeolian, etc.

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Scales: Why Do I Need To Know Them?

Tuesday, August 25th, 2009
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Most piano students think of scales as boring drills they had to play over and over, but there is much more to them than just finger exercises. Scales are the “playing field” for songs based on a particular key. For example,
the F major scale is: F, G, A, Bb, C, D, E, F, while the D major scale is D, E, F#, G, A, B, C#, D.

Each scale contains primary chords for each key. For example, the primary chords (the most used chords) in the key of Eb are Eb, Ab, and Bb — the I, IV, and V chords of the Bb scale.

Every song is based on some key, and therefore some scale, which is why you need to know scales to figure out the most used notes and the most used chords in that particular key.

For more information, please go to:
playpiano.com/101-tips/Scales-Major-Relative-Minor-Special.htm

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Music Keyboards: Starter Models

Wednesday, August 19th, 2009
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Music keyboards are electronic marvels of technology. They have the brains of sophisticated computers and the bodies of good old fashioned pianos. Music keyboards range in price and complexity from miniscule to monstrous. Beginners often get overwhelmed by techno speak and musical jargon.

“Music keyboard” is something of an umbrella term. Most people think of electronic/digital pianos. It may also refer to a simple, low-end sampler or a sophisticated synthesizer.

Pianists should first decide what they hopes to accomplish with the purchase of a music keyboard. This will help narrow down the choices considerably. Advanced pianists who plan to perform, for example, have specific needs. They would differ considerably from those of a beginner who just needs something to practice on at home.

Basic music keyboards typically come with a few piano, organ and string sounds. Most have other special effects like reverb and features like built-in metronomes. Additionally, many modern keyboards, even modestly-priced ones, come with MIDI capability. Some may even have USB.

Sometimes it helps to think of buying a music keyboard like buying a new car. You may come in looking for a standard model. Once there you’ll likely be tempted to look at models with fancier features. Some intermediate keyboards offer features like the ability to record, hundreds of sounds, digital synthesizer effects, sequencers or flash memory. This is where the line between musical instrument and computer starts to become blurry.

Basic, entry level keyboards can range from $150 to $500. More sophisticated models can range into the thousands. It’s important to really evaluate your needs, since this is a significant investment.

Go back to the new car analogy. Make a list with two columns. The first column should be a list of features that you can’t live without. The second column should contain those features that would be nice to have, but only if the price is right.

The first column is your starting point. Don’t bother looking at models that don’t meet all of your absolute needs. Start with something that has all those features on that first column. Check out all of the major brands in the same class and compare prices.

Compare brand names too. Some brands historically perform better and produce higher quality sound than others. Those will likely be the more expensive brands. It may be worth paying a little extra for cleaner sound and a product that will last longer.

Next, check out models in the next class up. See which ones have some of those additional features that appeal to you. Lesser quality brands may have many of those “extra” features that you like in a price range that you can still afford. More expensive brand names may be out of your price range once you throw in extra options. Are you willing to sacrifice cleaner sound or a longer lasting product to get some of those extra features?

It’s ideal to shop for your starter music keyboard at a music store rather than a department store. Music stores have salespeople that are more knowledgeable about their products. They’ll be able to provide you with more personal and informed service. It’s usually worth doing this even if you have to pay a little bit more for your product.

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