How to Learn to Play Piano, fast and efficient!

How to Learn to Play Piano

That is a question I get asked very often: how to learn to play the piano. Where do I start? How long will it take? Am I too old to start? How much time do I need daily? Where do I get a piano? How much will that cost me?…

Those are just some questions that spring to mind. I will try to answer those questions as good as I can from my own point of view. My answers reflect my opinion and they are in no way meant to be taken as the yellow brick road to Oz. But they are based on a lot of years of experience, so there’s that.

But hey, I first want to reassure you that you can indeed learn to play the piano and it will not take long before you know enough to actually enjoy making sweet music to soothe your senses!

Pleasure from music can be derived at every level of skill, the trick is to find the right material to keep your learning experience fun and effective. I know for a fact I can help you with that!

So let’s dive in and find out How to Learn to Play Piano.

About Those Questions

Am I Too Old to Start?

Let me first give an answer to the question: ‘Am I too old to start’. Just so I can save the oldies some time and they can stop reading… I am joking!!! Please don’t leave!

Making music is about having fun, doing something from which you can derive pleasure. As I stated before, you can have fun at every level of skill. This is completely unrelated to your age!

Am I too old to start? - How to learn to play piano
Old hands playing piano

I would argue that if a 90-year-old man or woman feels like learning to play piano, they would do so out of the urge to do something new or something they wanted to do but never got around to. The fun would already begin just from the fact that they are finally starting in the first place.

Oh I’m sure you catch my drift, I don’t think anyone is ever too late to start learning a musical instrument. There is no better way to deal with day to day emotions and playing music is an escape pod into space!

How Long Will it Take?

How long will it take - how to learn to play piano

A loaded question to be fair. The short and truthful answer would be: a lifetime. But don’t take that as a discouragement!

What I mean is that even seasoned professionals study and practice regularly and learn new things and techniques. Everything depends on how far you want to take things. Where do you set your goal? And then once you reached that goal, will you want to take it even further, set new goals?

If the question was: ‘how long will it take before I can play some songs and have some fun?’ then the answer is a lot less daunting. If the study material is right, you should have fun right from the start! The songs will be simple but they will be fun to play. After all, that is what it is all about!

How Much Time Would I Need Daily?

Well, if you have a lot of time you can spend a lot of time, but I guess most people need to divide their time among a lot of activities. Work, spouse, children, school, …

I always tell my students that it is better to practice for 15 minutes every day then it is to practice for 3 hours once a week.

The reason for this, is that a very big part about controlling a musical instrument relies on muscle memory. By going through the motions of exercise every day, your muscles will become accustomed to the movement. They will take control very quickly when you play.

If you only play once a week for 3 hours, you will not have the muscle memory, it will be your brain telling your fingers what to do. And your brain will be telling them the same thing every week which results in slow learning.

If you add it up, 7 times 15 minutes is 1 hour and 45 minutes during which you will learn at least twice as much as the three hours you spend once a week. That is an academic number of course, not a real science! But I know from experience that it is very true! I would even go as far as to claim that your gain will be times three!

Where do I get a piano and How Much Will it Cost?

How much will it cost- how to learn to play piano

That question, I will answer by pointing you to my blog post on Best Digital Piano for Beginners. There I show you 5 of the best digital pianos that already retail from just over $200.

I also provide you with a guide on what to look out for should you go look for a piano at your local store.

Now On How to Learn to Play the Piano

There are a lot of free resources on YouTube with stuff for beginner piano players and a lot of those are really good! We live in the age of information and we can leverage this to our benefit! I will assist in finding some really good YouTube clips that will help you the most.

Another huge benefit of today’s day and age is the enormous supply of apps that you can hook up to your digital piano using technologies like MIDI and Bluetooth that will give you exercises to do and keep track of your progress. I will be reviewing a score of them in my future posts.

In my next post I will be teaching you your first lessons. I will post some material that you can use to get into the fun part as fast as possible! Those will include:

  • some basic theory that you will need to start out
  • exercises to get the dust off your fingers
  • exercises to learn about the keyboard
  • a simple song to have some fun

To Conclude

Digital piano at window - how to learn to play piano

Keep an eye out for my future posts, I am very excited to take this website and hopefully a lot of new musicians through the roof! Let’s turn your living room into a piano lounge!

14 thoughts on “How to Learn to Play Piano, fast and efficient!”

  1. Hey you are so humorous that I will keep track of your articles all the time. I have always wanted to learn the piano but sometimes I ask myself that why am i learning am old for christ’s sake and I already have alot going on in my mind. Your article makes me feel like am very young and i can still do it..Thank you.

    • Hi Brenda,

      I so appreciate your comment! I am glad my jokes hit the spot 🙂

      Yes time is so often the reason for not doing something you would really like to do but you can’t find justification for? Because time is too important to waste on frivolities right?

      But if you can muster 15 minutes per day, you would be surprised how much you can accomplish!

      Follow that dream and learn to caress the ebony and ivory keys!

      Hope to chat with you again soon!

      Kind regards,
      Tom

  2. Hi Tom

    Some great tips here and you’re definitely never too old to try or learn something new! Learning needs to have a fun element to it -otherwise it’s just monotonous.

    Personally, I’ve always had an interest in learning to play the piano – it’s one of my favourite instruments that can stir up feelings of happiness and sadness…so I’ll be following your future posts.

    Can you recommend something for both an adult and child that can learn at the same time? I’m wanting too get my 5 year old involved!

    Thanks

    Teresa

    • Hi Teresa,

      Awesome of you to leave a comment!

      Yes that is a great idea for a future blog! How to learn piano along with my kids. I have a few ideas, but I will need time to think about it and work them out.

      One thing comes to mine and it is the expression: the best way to learn is to teach.
      So in that light I would say that you could first learn each exercise and then teach them to your little one.

      Aah but let me think on it for a bit first, this will most certainly become a future blog!

      Thank you!

      Cheers,
      Tom

  3. Since I was young, I have wanted to learn music. I was specifically facinated about the piano and told myself that I really needed to learn how to play it but one thing led to another and I just couldn’t. Today, you have given me a ray of hope on a long time want. I guess I’m really not too old and I need to get me a good piano for beginners. Thank you for revamping that small want I had.

    • Hi Henderson,

      Thanks for you comment!

      Judging from your Gravatar you are not too old by far LOL!

      So glad I could inspire you to pick up an old and forgotten ‘want’! Follow through and let me know how you fare.

      And ask any questions you need to move forward, I will answer you with pleasure!

      Cheers,
      Tom

  4. I am so glad I found your site.  It is amazing.  I am what you call a “Jack of All Trades” which means I have my fingers in everything but cannot seem to accomplish anything.  I love music and I am a vocalist. My dream was to be an R&B Singer.  I almost made it but other things got in my way.  Anyway, now I’ve turned to voice acting, recording audiobooks, etc.  I am creating a cartoon series and the piano play a very important part.  I’m old (smile) but I can still play the piano and I am determined to learn.  For now, I practice on my iPad but after reading your article, it has given me hope.  I know now that I can learn to play the piano and learn fast.  I saw your article on the digital piano and this what I need.  Your site is wonderful and I look forward to visiting you again.  

    • Hello Peggy,

      Thanks a lot for your comment!

      Great stuff that you want to push through and learn to play! I am a vocalist myself and I it is so good to be able to accompany myself with the piano. It helped my pitch training because you can use the resonance of the piano to activate vibrations in your vocal chords and notes that are usually difficult to hit, suddenly become much easier…

      That is advanced stuff though and will require some training to do, but it is something achievable within a year if that is your focal point.

      Also food for another blog post 🙂

      Thank you!

      Cheers,
      Tom

  5. Hello Tom,

    First I want to thank you for all the advice you have given me. In my case I learned to play guitar from a very young age. I did it with a tutor and every year I took exams in a conservatory. 

    I would have liked to play the piano too, I love to hear its sound. Very successful with what you say there is no age to start just love for music. 

    Thank you! Claudio

    • Hello Claudio,

      Thank you for commenting!

      Having a good tutor sure beats any other way of learning an instrument! There is something about personal contact for motivation.

      Ideally even is having a tutor and leveraging the information available on the internet. You can even use the tutor to review the material and he can tell you if it is worth doing or not.

      If you ever do take that step and learn piano, Claudio, do let me know if you have any questions or if you get stuck. I will be very happy to help out.

      Cheers,
      Tom

  6. Excellent article on how to learn to play piano,this is one of the skills I need to learn and am very happy reading your write-up now,kindly tell us the application one could use to get this piano training very fast,I will also check on the website given to still know more things about this,and the duration to get it,is good,it is better to practice for 15 minutes every day then it is to practice for 3 hours once a week.Its wonderful,thank you for sharing this helpful post.

    • Hi Abayomi,

      Mighty fine of you to comment!

      I will dedicate an entire blog post on best apps to use for learning and practicing the piano. Keep a lookout for it in the near future 🙂

      If you ever have any more questions please do let me know, I will be happy to help!

      Cheers,
      Tom

  7. I used to play piano when I was younger but because I do not have a good instructor and a good support system from my family, it fell through. I can still play Beethoven dear alice though lol. I do not think that anyone is ever too old to start anything that is piano included. However, practice is the key to success 🙂 I will check out YouTube for the lessons. I want to make piano as my hobby again. It is very relaxing when i play piano. Cannot wait to read your next post. 

    • Hi Nuttanee,

      Thank you for your comment!

      A good support system would help indeed. Someone to keep us on track, I have the same problem with going to the gym… If I don’t have a gym buddy I end up finding loads of excuses… But anyway that is a different subject altogether.

      I am working on my next post already so it should be out very soon!

      Thanks for your support 😉

      Cheers,
      Tom

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