Ch…Ch…Changes

Since my last update, I finally purchased a piano.

To put in perspective, why did I get a piano when I already have a guitar? Well, I’ve always been a big fan of piano. My grandmother is a pianist and always bragged how I had pianist fingers. I simply love it, and I listen to a lot of piano music daily and watch pianist streamers on Twitch/YouTube.

In fact, I originally purchased a piano about 6 years ago during deployment. It was a small portable keyboard, but it was really limited to what it could do (4-note polyphony) and only went up to two octaves. It honestly was more for synthesized/electronic music than it was for actual piano playing. I ended up trading it for my electric guitar for the next deployment (though in retrospect an acoustic would have been a better choice).

The idea was that I’d practice guitar, and when I get my own bigger place, then I’d get myself an 88-key digital piano. That never happened. I wasn’t playing guitar, so why would I buy a piano, again? Even if I could, I had no space in my house for one.

So going back into guitar, I’m finding myself asking two questions: Can I learn two instruments at once; can I find a spot for a digital piano?

Learning two instruments at once shouldn’t be an issue. It’s more about motivation and time. Both of which I have, it simply means I need to cut back on anime/gaming time. Space, however is another issue. I could squeeze it into my room, but it would be rather uncomfortable.

Anyways after a few weeks of thinking things over and rearranging the house, I cleared away some old stuff around the house to put my piano and acoustic guitar in a nice spot.

As far as learning, however, that’s a bigger issue.

With guitar, I’m satisfied with where I’m at in learning. Justin Guitar is a great free online resource that I’ve been utilizing. Guitar Tricks is another good pay resource, though I’m not a big fan of the progression so far. I’m at six chords right now and trying to utilize at least 15 minutes daily to work on transitions.

Unfortunately, there aren’t many similar resources online for Piano. For the iPad there are a lot of “games” that look like educational tools such as Simply Piano and Yousician, but they are quite costly and I doubt I could learn something as complex as piano through a simple format such as that. There’s also Flowkey, which is affiliated with Yamaha; the problem is that the training is a bunch of videos of some guy’s hands, I can’t print out sheet music, and it feels like I’m not progressing far as I’m just reciting Jingle Bells three times in a row with no consequence if I don’t play it perfectly.

On Mac, there is a program that I’m using called Playground Sessions which seems pretty legit. I’ve clocked in about 8 hours and learned more than any other resource so far…though I feel like I’m missing something? Maybe it’s because I’m more focused on looking at the finger positions than I am on the notes of the sheet music.

I could turn off finger numbering, which solves that problem. But I still feel like my progress is moving a bit too fast.

I’m considering taking formal lessons. Not sure who to talk to, where to go, or what level they will put me at. I’m just afraid of going from playing Game of Thrones with two hands back to Twinkle Twinkle on one hand.

So a lot of decisions to be made.

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