Learn how to play the Yamaha Keyboard

Learning to play the keyboard: The 1 × 1 for the first steps

The keyboard is an electronic piano and a great entry-level instrument. With the keyboard you can play classical piano pieces as well as make extraordinary sound experiments. Even if you would like to play in a band once, the keyboard is very suitable. We explain to you about the keyboard and give practical tips for learning the instrument.

Things to know about the keyboard

Learn to play the keyboard

The keyboard is a All-round instrument, because you can not only play the piano on it, but also accompany yourself with a rhythm section. To do this, you use an automatically running arrangement that you control with your left hand. The arrangement can consist of drum or bass rhythms, but also guitar, string and brass sounds. At the same time, you play melodies or solo parts with the keyboard sounds with your right hand. The keyboard is particularly popular with solo entertainers, as introductions and closing parts for certain songs can be called up at the push of a button. As a keyboard player, you have to learn both playing skills and how to use the automatic accompaniment.

Keyboard is a collective term for electric keyboard instruments. The sound production of these instruments is based on electronic circuits. Keyboard players can be found in jazz, pop and rock music. The key arrangement on a keyboard is identical to that on a piano. That means every pianist can also play the keyboard. In addition to the keyboard, the keyboard family also includes the electric piano, the clavinet, the synthesizer and the digital piano.

History of the keyboard

The creation of the keyboard begins with the electrical one Hammond organ, which became an integral part of the jazz and pop scene in the 50s and 60s. Over the years, the model was further developed until the first so-called portable keyboards came onto the market in 1980. The keyboards offered just as much sound spectrum as their predecessor models, but they were a lot cheaper. This also made them accessible to a wide audience. Initially, however, mainly in the Japanese and English-speaking countries. Keyboards only became modern in this country in the 1990s.

Structure of the keyboard

The keyboard has various controls

At first glance, a keyboard is very reminiscent of a piano. The keyboard looks the same, there are black and white keys. The main difference in structure is that compact design of the keyboard. This does it light and easy to transport. The number of buttons varies from model to model. There are keyboards with 49, 61, 74 or 88 keys. The width of the keys usually corresponds to the standardized piano keyboard, but here too the models differ. You can also find keyboards with narrower keys.

Another difference to the piano is that a keyboard is different Controls, how Button, Knobs or Slider Has. You use this to operate the numerous functions of the keyboard. Since the keyboard is an electric instrument, it requires a power supply. On the back of the instrument you will find Sockets for power connection, audio connections and connections for pedals. Most models also have a front Displaythat shows settings or saved information, such as the tempo of the pieces.

To play the keyboard you need Speaker. They are often built into the instrument. If that's the case, you don't need any additional amplification from external speakers. Depending on the model, you can also Floppy, CD or memory card drives to be available. This allows you to load new, additional sounds for the automatic accompaniment into the internal memory as you wish.

Learn to play the keyboard or the piano?

Pianos are preferred in classical music

To clarify this question, you should think about which kind of music you want to do. If you want to play classical pieces, then you should choose the piano. A piano offers significantly more leeway than a keyboard, especially in terms of dynamics, i.e. the differences between loud and quiet. The volume on the keyboard can be regulated, but not while playing. The dynamic changes within a piece are particularly important in classical music. The built-in amplifiers and speakers in the keyboard cannot sound like a piano or even a grand piano.

Also in relation to that Feel are there any differences. Keyboards usually only use a spring as key resistance, pianos use a hammer mechanism. Pianos usually have 88 keys, while the number of keys on keyboards varies depending on the model. That makes them handier, lighter and easier to transport. The cheaper alternative to the piano is that Digital piano. It mimics the sound of pianos but works digitally. The feel of playing is similar to that of pianos.

A keyboard does not come close to the sound of a piano or digital piano, but offers quite a few soundsthat go far beyond that. For example, you can choose organ or string sounds and play with rhythmic sounds. The keyboard is also programmable. So you can plan in advance how exactly you want to play a song. If you plan to play in a band or if a variety of sounds is important to you, you should choose the keyboard. Another plus point: Entry-level keyboards are much cheaper than pianos.

Buying a keyboard: What to look for when buying your first instrument

There are many different keyboard models. They differ not only in handling, but also in equipment, usability and size. The keyboard you buy should meet the following criteria:

1. The instrument should at least 61 normal size keys to have. Even if you have little fingers, you can quickly get used to the size of the keys.

2. One Velocity should be available. This means that the tones will sound louder or softer depending on the force of your stroke. The touch dynamics can often be switched off. If you have problems with it at the beginning, turn it off first. At some point, however, you have to get used to it, then your game will be even more precise.

3. Practical is one Registration memory. This allows you to compose and save sounds of your choice for a specific song. If you want, you can also add an accompaniment arrangement. Later you can call everything up at the push of a button.

4. One Auto AccompanimentYou use fingered chords to accompany yourself when playing with your left hand with rhythmic sounds. In fingered chord mode, you grasp the accompanying chords with at least three keys. Although this is complicated at first, it has clear advantages over the one-finger automatic, in which you grasp the chord with one finger. The one-finger automatic completely neglects playing with the left hand. If you learn from the beginning in fingered chord mode, you can later transfer the technique to any keyboard instrument, even if it does not have an automatic accompaniment, such as the piano.

Optionally, you can also pay attention to how many sounds the keyboard has and whether there is a tempo display that visualizes the tempo.

Learning to play the keyboard: the basics

Learning the keyboard: the basics

Before you start practicing, you should clarify whether you really want to learn the keyboard. Learning any instrument requires motivation and good time management. It is not a good idea to start playing the keyboard when someone else has talked you into it. If that is the case, then better let it be. You will only have fun learning and playing if you have curiosity and motivation. You can find tips for effective learning here.

Keyboard bench: Position one Keyboard bench in front of the keyboard, roughly in the middle of the keyboard. It is important that you don't sit on a chair with a backrest. Then you run the risk of leaning back. That would not be a suitable posture for playing. If you don't want to buy a keyboard bench straight away, you can also use a simple stool.

Attitude: You move your seat so close to the keyboard that your knees slightly under the instrument disappear. It is best if you only use the front half of the stool. Put your feet flat on the floor.

Hands: You relax your hands and place them on the keyboard. YourElbows roughly level with the keyboard are located.

Keyboard: The keyboard consists of 49, 61, 74 or 88 keys, depending on the keyboard. No matter how many keys your keyboard has, you can always orientate yourself on a group of twelve keys. Seven white keys and five black keys form an octave. The white keys are c, d, e, f, g, a and h, the black keys in between are, depending on the perspective, c sharp, dis, f sharp, g sharp and a sharp or des, es, gb, a flat and b. That depends on whether you see them as increases in the base notes or decreases in the base notes.



When learning the keyboard, it is an advantage if you can read notes. Once you've internalized the basics, you can get grades and use them to practice pieces. There are free keyboard sheet music on the Internet, even for beginners. Just like playing the game, you will certainly find reading music difficult to begin with. But over time you have internalized that and don't think about it any further while playing. You can find tips on learning to grades here.

Of course, you can also play pieces on the keyboard that were written for the piano. In fact, that's most of the pieces. Since the pitch range is very large on both the keyboard and the piano and you can play several notes at the same time without any problems, the notes are notated in two lines. The top line shows the higher notes, which in most cases are played with the right hand. You stand in Treble clef, which is also called the G clef and is often the melody.

The lower line lists the lower notes that are normally played with the left hand. You stand in Bass clef, which is also called the F key and accompany the melody. The left hand often plays Chords, so several notes at the same time. It's not that easy at first. It is also possible to play the upper line with the left hand and the lower line with the right hand. It's not that easy, though. If the composer wants this technique, he writes it on the sheet music.

The top and bottom staves are marked with a accolade connected. The word accolade comes from French and means bracket. The brackets are intended to make it clear that the notes on both lines are played simultaneously and not one after the other. As a keyboardist, it is therefore an advantage to know both the treble clef and the bass clef. Numbers that are notated above or below the notes identify the fingers with which the note should be played. The following applies:

1 - thumb
2 - index finger
3 - middle finger
4 - ring finger
5 - little finger

To practice

Regular practice is important

If you want to be successful quickly, it is advisable to practice a little every day. Are optimal between fifteen and thirty minutes a day. This is how you train your skills and remember exactly what you learned the day before. Regular practice is also important to automate processes. While you are still thinking about where to best place your fingers at the beginning, you have internalized the processes at some point and it almost goes by itself. Of course, it takes some time to remember where which notes are on the keyboard. Once you've done that, you can try playing chords and different keys. It is important that you do a lot while practicing patience has.

Learn keyboard at music schools or in private lessons

Music schools offer keyboard lessons. A teacher can cater to your individual needs and answer specific questions. He also sees right away if you're doing something wrong. So there is no risk of you getting into the wrong posture, for example. This is immediately noticeable in class and you get specific feedback. Another advantage of teaching in a music school is that there are often bands there that you can play in. That is also motivating.

Another option is private lessons. If you ask around at conservatoires you might find a student who teaches you. Most of the time, this is a cheaper option than taking classes with professional musicians, as students are still in training.

Learn the keyboard yourself

Of course you can also try it on your own first. This will save you time and money and will first try out whether it is fun to play. On the Internet or in textbooks you can find sheet music for simple pieces that you can practice well as a beginner. Tip: Listen to the piece before you start practicing. This gives you an idea of ​​how it should sound.

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