Advice On How To Learn To Play An Instrument

Posts 1 - 8 of 8
  1. 3057425
    frybriYT : Mon 22nd Apr 2019 : 6 months ago

    I want to learn to play the piano but sadly I can't afford to buy one since I'm still in high school and don't have a job. Is there another way I could learn to play the piano meanwhile? Also, if it wasn't already implied I was looking for free options lol.

  2. 186161
    Spivkurl : Mon 22nd Apr 2019 : 6 months ago

    Many people are desperate to get rid of upright pianos and vintage solid state organs, both of which would be fine learning instruments.

    Both may require just the cost of getting help with moving them, as they are heavy and bulky. My upright was just the cost of movers. It was in a hotel lobby since the 1980's, where I used to play it around 1991. Now it's in my living room, where I learned how to tune it and play it.

    My last organ was a lowery for 10$ at a pawn shop. It was purchased during an ice storm, so I was able to slide it the 4-5 blocks home on the ice. Dismantled to get it up the stairs, and then put it back together.

    Organs will have more range of tones, since they are electronic. They also usually do not require manual tuning, and do not need string replacement like a piano.

    'Toy' keyboards are a good option as well. I learned on a Casio PT-10 and a Yamaha PSS-180. Any Casio or Yamaha should be reliable enough to learn on, and are based on the same keyboard layout as a piano. Some have smaller keys, so may be easier to start out on.

    Either way, to get em free or cheap, check out craigslist, thrift shops, pawn shops, and yard sales. I've even found a couple 61 key casio's in the dumpster on moving day.

    You are in Milwaukee, so if you get real desperate, you could swing by Rochester MN and I could hook you up with a keyboard.

  3. 186161
    Spivkurl : Mon 22nd Apr 2019 : 6 months ago

    I had to rewrite the above post, since it disappeared when I clicked 'post a comment.' I think I just take too long on my posts.

    But, because of this, I forgot the most important thing... I applaud you for wanting to learn an instrument!!

    If more people started early on with an instrument, or even several instruments, then recent music would likely be far more enjoyable.

    I also neglected one other option you have for a hands on keyboard experience... a MIDI controller.

    I'm assuming that you have some sort of computer since you use LMMS. There are many smaller keyboard MIDI controllers which can be had pretty cheap.

    These have the disadvantage of having no built in sounds. This is not a problem if you download some free VSTi pianos or other instruments, since you will be able to play them like a piano. They will not be as realistic in performance, but will be good for learning.

    The advantage, of course, is that you will be able to use the controller to work with MIDI in your DAW of choice. Acoustic pianos and vintage organs would not be able able to do this directly.

    Some 'toy' keyboards do have MIDI in/out capabilities along with their built in sounds. While sometimes the MIDI functions are limited, this would allow you to control your DAW and VST instruments. It would also allow your DAW notes to trigger the sounds within the keyboard.

    Either way, care must be given to the sort of MIDI connection that is used. If you do not have a MIDI interface (uses 5 pin DIN cables), then a USB MIDI controller would be the way to go. It would handle both in and out of MIDI without buying an interface.

    MIDI controllers and MIDI equipped casio/yamaha items are less likely to be free though.

  4. 1041668
    wikkid : Mon 22nd Apr 2019 : 6 months ago

    I'd like to add to the excellent suggestions given by Spivkurl.
    Please don't be shy about visiting your school music teacher, since you state you are still in high school.

    Perhaps you can be paired with a student who already plays piano, and they can teach you the major and minor scales and also come cords. You music teacher will probably have additional resources to assist you, and perhaps knows of community agencies who have free lessons available (depends on the city and grants given for this purpose).

    The midi mini keyboard setup may be the best place to start so that you can practice at home, since you already have a computer. There are piano lesson video tutorials on YouTube that can also help.

    Also know that if first you don't succeed on the piano, don't despair. You can always begin again at a later date. You're never to old to learn an instrument.
    And may I also congratulate you on wanting to learn to play.

    I wish you all the best.

  5. 2643700
    BaoBou : Mon 22nd Apr 2019 : 6 months ago

    One more advice maybe: learning to play any instrument is hard (piano is a good starter instrument btw). Give yourself time, don't beat yourself up if you feel you're not making progress.

    But being able to play is also an amazing gift that will give you pleasure for years, so keep trying, keep practicing, and keep making music.

  6. 186161
    Spivkurl : Mon 22nd Apr 2019 : 6 months ago

    Learning how to play an instrument isn't so hard. If you interact with it and it makes sound, you have already begun.

    By this, I mean you press a key on the piano and it makes a sound... you can even pluck the strings directly. Or, if you're talking electric guitar... turn the amplifier up and turn it on... likely it will be making noise already.

    I'm trying to say... don't limit yourself to contempTorary teachings. Make sound, and make music with the sound. Every time, you will learn something new to apply in the future. You may even find that some of your favorite musicians had no training whatsoever. It does not make them less of an artist.

  7. 3057425
    frybriYT : Tue 23rd Apr 2019 : 6 months ago

    Wow, thanks everyone for sharing your advice. I will definitely look into all the suggestions you gave.

  8. 111346
    Planetjazzbass : Tue 23rd Apr 2019 : 6 months ago

    I can't really add anything to the excellent advice you've already received apart from congratulating you on a very sensible decision, you won't regret it!

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