2 Exit Competencies: In this course the students will discover a variety of simple and easy-to- follow piano techniques designed for adult learners without any previous music background or experience. Students will be introduced to an innovative “Sinclair Piano-Forte Method” of learning the piano basics. In only ten, 2-hr. lessons, the participants will be able to play professionally arranged piano pieces, as well as some of their own favorites. Explore a wonderful world of adult piano by simply following step-by- step techniques presented by the professor.
4 THE MUSICAL ALPHABET: NAMING THE WHITE KEYS Whoever named the keys of a piano (I'll call him Adam ) was a genius! I'm sure Adam had a full size piano (88 keys). Starting at the far left side of the instrument, Adam might have said something like, "I'll call the first white key A, the next white key B, then C, D, E, F, G..." As the next white key following G was about to be named, Adam noticed something VERY IMPORTANT. The sound of what would have been called H, sounded identical to the previous A, except that H had a higher pitch. Instead of continuing to add more alphabetical letters, Adam decided to repeat the alphabetical sequence with A, then B, C, D, E, F, G...then again ABCDEFG, and again, etc. Thanks to the musical insight of our genius Adam, EACH WHITE KEY GETS ITS NAME STRAIGHT OUT OF THE ALPHABET, AND FOLLOWS ALPHABETICAL ORDER! The musical alphabet is seven (7) letters long (ABCDEFG) and repeats itself as many times as is necessary to cover the entire length of ANY keyboard instrument. Unfortunately, because keyboard instruments come in a variety of sizes, the first white key on the far left is NOT always "A." Fortunately, the alphabetical name of each white key can ALWAYS be identified by how it appears in relation to the black keys. Say the following aloud as many times as it takes to remember it: The WHITE key "C" is ALWAYS to the LEFT of the TWO black keys.
5 If you can identify just ONE of the white keys, you can locate all the others. As long as you pay attention to the pattern of the black keys, each white key looks unique. POINTS TO REMEMBER: The musical alphabet uses only the first seven letters of the English alphabet (ABCDEFG). The keyboard is laid out in ALPHABETICAL ORDER from left to right. The WHITE key "C" is ALWAYS to the LEFT of the TWO black keys. If you can identify just ONE of the white keys, you can locate all the others.
6 CHORDS Most common piano chord combinations: Am, A, Bm, B, Cm, C, Dm, D, Em, E, Fm, F, Gm, G A Chord is three or more tones played together at one time. Chords tell what tones are used to play both melody (the tune) and harmony. Chords are the blood & guts backbone of almost all music that has a recognizable tune or melody. This is true of symphonies, choral groups of all kinds, rock bands, country, jazz, pop, gospel, hymns, etc. SPELLING CHORDS USING THE ALPHABET (ABCDEFG) In the same way one counts odd numbers by skipping over even numbers, chords are spelled alphabetically by skipping over even letters. ODD LETTERS = CHORD TONES 1 - (skip 2) - 3 - (skip 4) - 5 C - (skip D) - E - (skip F) - G
7 A A – C b – E Am A – C – E B B – D # – F # Bm B – D – F # C C – E – G Cm C – D # – G D D – F # – A Dm D – F – A E E – G # – B Em E – G – B F F – A – C Fm F – G # – C G G – B – D Gm G – A # – D