#1
Ok, so I've recently (three days ago) started messing around on our piano and have taught myself to play a few songs (Karma Police, Nightswimming) quite well. With chords etc I'm ok, I know the notes but obviously I would like to improve techniques, and so if any of you piano players could give me hints on learning, on improving and just any problems which I might face, especially with the transition from guitar, it would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.
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#2
Right, heres a little scale playing lesson for you.

You must by now know your major and minor scales, if not I shall not go into them, there are a ton of lessons on them, just search. To play the scales for two octaves for each white note on the piano (A, B, C, D, E, F and G) you need to use a uniform fingering which is thus:

3->4->3

Ok, let me explain. Ill start with the right hand and in the key of C. You start with your thumb on the key note which in this case is C, and you play three notes. Then, you bring your thumb under your fingers to play the next note which will be F. From there you play four notes, and then bring your thumb under again to play C. Note-your thumb will always play the key note, so make sure that is happening. From there play another three, and bring the thumnb under to play the last five.

Its quite complicated to explain without showing you, so try this out on your own and it should be obvious if you are doing it right. You will also know if you do it wrong because once you get into scales with more black notes you need to configure to this fingering.

So now the left hand, which is very similar, but a bit opposite. Its still 3 4 3, but you start by playing five notes starting on your pinky. Once you play them, you bring your 3rd finger(middle) over your thumb to play the A. Then, three notes and bring your fourth (ring) finger over to play the D. Play the four and then bring your third over again to play the last three.
See? It still configure to 3 4 3.

On the way down for both hands, you basically do what the other hand does going up. So with the right going down, you play five and bring the third over the thumb; and with the left going down you play 3 and bring your thumb under your third.

Work out the scales for C, G, D, A and E. This is because B and F have slightly different fingerings, as if you still worked the 3 4 3, you would end up trying to bring your thumb under to play a black note, which is very hard and should not be done. So for playing the F on the right and the B on the left we use this structure:

4->3->4

I specified using this on the right for F and left for B becaue when you play F with the left and B for the right the normal 3 4 3 fingering applys.

So basically do what you did earlier, bring your thumb under and so forth. I do hope this is comprehendable, of course ask questions and I shall explain it a bit more.
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#3
Tip for learning piano; you will improve quicker if you learn a mixture of classical and jazz pieces even if you dont like the styles. The classical ones will help improve your technique and the jazz ones will improve improvisation, chord vocabulary and mode knowledge.

Also dont just rely on your ears or your eyes. When you come to learn some full pieces make sure you listen out for intervals etc, and practise your sight-reading. Im grade 4 now and ive always relyed on my ears so my sight reading is atrociatious.

If you havent got a good ear for scales you should buy your self a book too, including modes etc so you can get down to some jazzy stuff.

Good luck in your playing.
#4
I have a couple of excercises that I'm doing in my piano. you put you right thumb on middle C and your left pinky on the next lower c and do the first five notes of hte major scale and back down slowly, then you do it faster. Next you move up to C# and do the same thing and you keep going until you get to C again. Thats is the one that helps the most. And hte thumb over and under thing when you play a scale.

I almost forgot do not look at the keys, after a week or so. When you play from music or you're doing something while playing then you can't always look at the keys so you have to learn to play by feeling, like a blind person.
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