Having Trouble Playing The Piano? It May Be This

Having Trouble Playing The Piano? It May Be This

What does it take to play the piano? It’s easy to assume that putting your fingers to the keys is all it takes. But there’s a lot more to it than that. 

If you’ve been having trouble creating the perfect sound, it may be your posture. In order for your fingers to connect perfectly with the keys, it’s important to ensure your hand and wrist position is correct. This makes you play better, and it prevents potential injury too. 

Check your: 

Having Trouble Playing The Piano? It May Be ThisBench

Too often, the bench is an afterthought. We’ve even seen people pulling up a chair and expecting to play at their best. Yet your bench is an integral part of how you play, and not everyone can play at their best with the same bench.

A good option is an adjustable bench, especially if more than one in your family will play. Your bench helps stabilize you. It gives you power to connect with the keys. And if you’re sitting at the piano correctly, it puts your arms in perfect position to give you the power you need to play at your best. 

How You’re Sitting On The Bench

The bench isn’t meant for you to sit back on and relax. This position can strain your muscles and throw off your head and neck. It can allow you to slouch, which can harm your arms, wrists, and hands. 

Instead, move forward until you notice you have correct piano posture. You’ll sit directly on your sit bones while having full movement of your arms, hands, and fingers. You’ll feel less stress over time. 

Practice

Practice doesn’t make perfect. Perfect practice is what you need. That doesn’t mean you should set the clock and hammer out notes just to say you’ve played for thirty minutes. Increasing to sixty minutes won’t double your efforts. If anything, it’ll just make you tired. 

Instead, focus on forming good habits. Adjust your body so you don’t become stiff or sore. Play for enjoyment, not merely for the sake of playing. You’ll never enjoy it if you ignore why you’re playing. 

Correct posture is one of the best ways to enjoy playing piano for life. If you need a little help, start with ensuring you have the right tools – the right piano and bench for your playing needs. 


Since 1960, Coltharp Piano World has represented the finest pianos in Memphis, Tennessee, the Midsouth and the world. In addition to quality sales and service we offer moving services, restoration services and master piano tuning. We offer the best new, used and vintage pianos anywhere. And our prices simply cannot be beat. Come and see our newly remodeled showroom and our beautiful new concert hall. We specialize in piano restoration for the southern United States. We welcome your call.

We are located at: 4447 Summer Ave, Memphis, Tennessee 38122 Call us at 901.682.1172

How Many Keys Do You Need To Learn Piano?

How Many Keys Do You Need To Learn Piano?

I’ve always wanted to learn the piano. Now that I have a little more free time during my week, I’m committed to taking lessons and making this a reality. What piano should I choose? Is a 61 key keyboard enough? Or should I purchase a piano with 88 keys? What’s the difference? And why should I care?

We get questions like this one from newbie piano players all the time. And with good reason. 

Selecting a new piano for the first time can be a little confusing. After all, there are many different kinds of pianos out there. You’ll find digital and acoustic. Keyboards and traditional. Uprights and grands. What should you choose?

When you purchase a modern piano, it will have 52 white keys and 36 black keys for a total of 88 keys. This allows you to play seven full octaves plus a minor third. How Many Keys Do You Need To Learn Piano?

However, when you move to digital keyboards, that’s when you find more variance in the number of keys offered. 

One manufacturer of a 61 key keyboard promises you’ll never “lose” out on not having the right keys because it allows you to transpose all of the keys up or down an octave. And while that may work in some cases, it won’t always work. For classical music, 61 keys aren’t enough. 

There’s also a more pressing problem with smaller, less expensive keyboard options. They often aren’t structured like a traditional piano, making it difficult to carry your newfound skills from one piano to the next. 

Traditional acoustic pianos have keys that are weighted. And not every digital keyboard mimics these dynamics. The difference is in the feel, the touch. 

If your goal is to simply learn some theory and be able to create a few sounds, the choice may not matter. 

If you want to learn to play the piano, get a piano to learn on. If you don’t, you’ll most likely feel frustrated as you won’t be able to develop the proper techniques. You’ll learn this very quickly when you sit down at a traditional piano and have trouble playing. 

Have additional questions about the right piano for you? We can help. 


Since 1960, Coltharp Piano World has represented the finest pianos in Memphis, Tennessee, the Midsouth and the world. In addition to quality sales and service we offer moving services, restoration services and master piano tuning. We offer the best new, used and vintage pianos anywhere. And our prices simply cannot be beat. Come and see our newly remodeled showroom and our beautiful new concert hall. We specialize in piano restoration for the southern United States. We welcome your call.

We are located at: 4447 Summer Ave, Memphis, Tennessee 38122 Call us at 901.682.1172

10 Professional Piano Associations and Publications For You To Join

10 Professional Piano Associations and Publications For You To Join

Ready to further your career as a music professional? Want to make piano a big part of your life? Consider joining a few of these professional piano associations to stay at the top of the industry. 

The College Music Society – promotes teaching and learning, creativity and expression. If you want to include music at the highest education level, this is the organization for you. 

The Royal Conservatory – to develop human potential on creativity and the arts for the greatest personal growth. 

Clavier Companion – a publication devoted to the art of piano pedagogy. 10 Professional Piano Associations and Publications For You To Join

Gramophone – a publication dedicated to the world’s best classical music. 

American Music Teacher – a magazine devoted to helping music teachers hone their craft. 

National Association for Music Education – created to help advance music education. 

International Association for the Study of Popular Music – used to promote the inquiry, scholarship, and analysis of today’s popular music. 

Music Teachers National Association – a group dedicated to helping professional music teachers refine their teaching process. 

Pianist – a “how to” publication for all levels of piano music. 

American Council of Piano Performers – promoting the art of piano performance. 

Have any associations or publications we’ve missed? We’d love to hear from you. 


Since 1960, Coltharp Piano World has represented the finest pianos in Memphis, Tennessee, the Midsouth and the world. In addition to quality sales and service we offer moving services, restoration services and master piano tuning. We offer the best new, used and vintage pianos anywhere. And our prices simply cannot be beat. Come and see our newly remodeled showroom and our beautiful new concert hall. We specialize in piano restoration for the southern United States. We welcome your call.

We are located at: 4447 Summer Ave, Memphis, Tennessee 38122 Call us at 901.682.1172

Can I Learn The Piano At My Age?

Can I Learn The Piano At My Age?

Are you heading into retirement and ready to pick up a new hobby? Has music always been an important part of your life? 

Maybe now is the time to give piano lessons a try. No matter what your age, playing the piano is one hobby that anyone can take up and perfect. 

Playing the piano can provide many things in your life. It can help improve memory, reduce stress, and calm anxiety. No matter what your age, sit down at a piano and it can feel like an old friend. Can I Learn The Piano At My Age?

Still, what can you expect if you start playing the piano when you’re older? Will your age stand between you and perfecting your talent?

The great thing about age is you become more settled in your ways. In your twenties and thirties, you may be looking for ways to develop hidden talent. By your forties and fifties, you have more self-motivation to bring your dreams to the forefront. By your sixties and seventies, you have the time to devote to what you want to do. 

The key is in looking for instruction that fits your lifestyle. While a cutesy game meant for grade schoolers may look like fun, it probably won’t motivate you for the long term. Find an instructor that has experience in helping people your age learn to play. 

Commit to practice every day. 

And remember to enjoy yourself along the way. Give yourself motivation and work towards a goal. If you’ve always wanted to play a certain song, let your instructor know. They’re just as excited as you are to help you along your journey. 

What tips have you found help you in making you a better piano player?


Since 1960, Coltharp Piano World has represented the finest pianos in Memphis, Tennessee, the Midsouth and the world. In addition to quality sales and service we offer moving services, restoration services and master piano tuning. We offer the best new, used and vintage pianos anywhere. And our prices simply cannot be beat. Come and see our newly remodeled showroom and our beautiful new concert hall. We specialize in piano restoration for the southern United States. We welcome your call.

We are located at: 4447 Summer Ave, Memphis, Tennessee 38122 Call us at 901.682.1172

Why You Should Learn To Play The Piano

Why You Should Learn To Play The Piano

Most people learn the piano for entertainment. They have a desire to create beautiful music, and playing the piano is the perfect way to accomplish that goal. 

But playing the piano offers a whole lot more. When you come home after a hectic day at work, sitting down at the piano is a great way to reduce stress. Just touching the keys can soothe your soul and make the knots in your neck go away. 

It can also exercise your brain. There’s a lot of action going on when you challenge yourself to read a new piece of music. Your brain must communicate with your fingers where the notes are, and how to put them all together to create the sounds that you hear. Why You Should Learn To Play The Piano

What was once thought to be strictly entertainment, now has been proved to be therapeutic too. 

It’s well documented that playing the piano helps older adults stay active and alert. It can protect against certain illnesses, such as dementia and Alzheimer’s. 

It’s also beneficial for children to learn, as it stimulates the part of the brain that controls fine motor skills, reasoning, memory, and speech. Want to help a child do better on their test scores as they age? Introduce them to the piano early on in life. It works. There’s even documentation that shows music majors make some of the best medical school students. It gives kids a special awareness for both self-discipline and determination for how things connect in this world. 

What’s more, kids that continue to play the piano are shown to have more self-esteem, show a greater sense of pride in accomplishment, and are more likely to participate in other physical activities. The hand-eye coordination vastly improves when learning the piano, thanks to the need to develop skill and technique to connect both hands and visual processing when moving from a sheet of music to the keyboard, and back again. 

Because the piano has an 88 key playing board, it is the broadest musical instrument you can play. It plays the melody and the accompaniment and allows composers to create for every other type of instrument available. 

Are you ready to bring the piano into your life? 


Since 1960, Coltharp Piano World has represented the finest pianos in Memphis, Tennessee, the Midsouth and the world. In addition to quality sales and service we offer moving services, restoration services and master piano tuning. We offer the best new, used and vintage pianos anywhere. And our prices simply cannot be beat. Come and see our newly remodeled showroom and our beautiful new concert hall. We specialize in piano restoration for the southern United States. We welcome your call.

We are located at: 4447 Summer Ave, Memphis, Tennessee 38122 Call us at 901.682.1172

Become A Pro At Knowing Your Piano Keys

Become A Pro At Knowing Your Piano Keys

Looking at a piano, the keyboard can be a bit intimidating. If you sit at an acoustic piano, the black and white keys seem to go on forever. How do you know which one to tap? Which key do you push when you look at a sheet of music? 

How are you ever going to figure all of this out? 

Actually, it’s not as frightening as it may seem. 

A standard keyboard has 88 keys. Yet it’s not exactly 88 separate notes; instead, it’s a series of repeating groups of 12 notes that are repeated over and over again. Become A Pro At Knowing Your Piano Keys

Take a look at a keyboard and notice how the keys are displayed. You’ll see the black keys are grouped together in two’s and three’s. This separates the white keys into the appropriate pattern. Every twelve note pattern (there’s seven of them on an 88 key keyboard) repeats over and over again as you move up the keyboard. Every 12 note pattern consists of a group of two and three black key patterns, and the 7 white keys that surround them. Rinse and repeat. 

That should make your keyboard a little less intimidating. 

Now let’s find your starting point. When you hear people talking about playing, you’ll invariably hear them mention Middle C. 

The C note is always to the left of the two black key pattern on your keyboard. You can take a moment and find all 8 of them on an 88 note keyboard. Don’t forget the highest C, which is always the last white key to the right. 

Middle C is the C note residing almost in the center of your keyboard. No matter how many keys a keyboard has, this is always the pattern. Middle C is your starting point. When you start lessons, you’ll often hear teachers call it “first position” or “number one”. 

All of your music will be based from Middle C on. 

Feeling a bit more comfortable with the keyboard? Realizing it’s just a series of patterns can help you with your approach. 


Since 1960, Coltharp Piano World has represented the finest pianos in Memphis, Tennessee, the Midsouth and the world. In addition to quality sales and service we offer moving services, restoration services and master piano tuning. We offer the best new, used and vintage pianos anywhere. And our prices simply cannot be beat. Come and see our newly remodeled showroom and our beautiful new concert hall. We specialize in piano restoration for the southern United States. We welcome your call.

We are located at: 4447 Summer Ave, Memphis, Tennessee 38122 Call us at 901.682.1172

The Best After School Routine Includes Piano

The Best After School Routine Includes Piano

The school bells are ringing once again. And if you’re like every busy household, you’re struggling to fit it all in. 

Teachers seem to be dishing out even more homework every year. And of course, every grade of advancement brings new challenges and opportunities. 

Then there are after school activities. Sometimes it feels like you’re running from place to place, always running a little behind. How will you fit it all in and have a life too?The Best After School Routine Includes Piano

We want our kids to be active. We want to give them every advantage possible, so we sign them up for every fun thing we can find. 

But think back to your own after school routine. Were you flying from activity to activity every single day?

Transition from school back home and to other activities is important. No one can be expected to be active every waking hour. Kids are no exception. If your child is:

Extroverted – she’s exhilarated after a day in the classroom. She needs to tell you all about it. She wants to stay active.

Introverted – she’s exhausted and needs a chance to recover. Only a quiet space will do. 

With this in mind, the sooner you start your after school routine, the more focus your kids will be. But only you can decide what that routine will look like. 

Will they start in on homework immediately? Will practicing the piano be a part of it? 

Or will some things be better pushed a few hours, to make time for other activities? 

If you have several children or an active family, a digital may make your life easier. Instead of trying to find a quiet place for homework while one child practices, simply plug in the headphones and let them go. 

This means one child isn’t separated from the activities of being a part of a family. They’re still in the presence of siblings doing homework, or you and your spouse making dinner. 

Digital pianos are often the solution to trying to find the time and space to fit it all in. 

How do you fit piano practice into your after school routine?


Since 1960, Coltharp Piano World has represented the finest pianos in Memphis, Tennessee, the Midsouth and the world. In addition to quality sales and service we offer moving services, restoration services and master piano tuning. We offer the best new, used and vintage pianos anywhere. And our prices simply cannot be beat. Come and see our newly remodeled showroom and our beautiful new concert hall. We specialize in piano restoration for the southern United States. We welcome your call.

We are located at: 4447 Summer Ave, Memphis, Tennessee 38122 Call us at 901.682.1172

Music: We’re Losing An Important Part Of Our Culture

Music: We’re Losing An Important Part Of Our Culture

Having a child today comes with a lot of responsibility. What will you teach her? What activities will you guide her into? What will fill her time?

Parenting used to be a hands-off approach. With lots of kids around, kids simply did what kids do. They played together and went to school. Parents provided a firm hand as necessary. 

But with fewer children per family, many have become integral parts of their children’s lives. They drive here and there. They sign up for lessons. They set up playdates and events. They keep busy morning, noon, and night. Music: We’re Losing An Important Part Of Our Culture

That means there are more choice than ever for a child’s attention. And peer pressure may also have a guiding hand. Join the soccer team? Yes. Practice the piano? No. 

It’s easier to provide group instruction. It’s also more lucrative. Why teach one child when you can teach multiple at the same time? 

And besides, teams give kids important skills about communication and being together with others in your peer group. That’s the best way to go, right?

Well…

There are two sides to the coin. Of course, kids can learn a lot when joining a team. There’s nothing wrong with physical activity. Whether it’s soccer, or swimming, or gymnastics, it offers many different characterizations for a growing child. 

However, it’s important to remember your child needs work from the inside out too. 

That’s where many parents are overlooking one of the most successful ways of helping to develop a young brain – learning an instrument. 

A piano specifically is one of the best instruments to learn on, offering the player the chance to play both the melody and the accompaniment. 

And it’s more than learning how to play an instrument or making music. It’s also about improving your brain. 

Studies show musically inclined individuals are better students, do better on tests, and perform better at learning multiple languages. You’ll find some of the most successful students in med school majored in music. 

And those characteristics last a lifetime. Playing the piano improves cognitive abilities. It’s been shown to lessen the effects of memory-related diseases.  

When you need to destress and decompress, nothing can satisfy like sitting down at the piano.

So why aren’t we pressing more for piano lessons for young kids? Maybe it’s time to make it a priority. 


Since 1960, Coltharp Piano World has represented the finest pianos in Memphis, Tennessee, the Midsouth and the world. In addition to quality sales and service we offer moving services, restoration services and master piano tuning. We offer the best new, used and vintage pianos anywhere. And our prices simply cannot be beat. Come and see our newly remodeled showroom and our beautiful new concert hall. We specialize in piano restoration for the southern United States. We welcome your call.

We are located at: 4447 Summer Ave, Memphis, Tennessee 38122 Call us at 901.682.1172

Should You Use An iPad For Your Piano Music?

Should You Use An iPad For Your Piano Music?

If you took lessons as a child, you probably remember getting new books of music every few weeks. Your teacher would present you with new music, and you’d carry it back and forth as you learned to play. The music would stack up on the side of your piano or in your piano bench as you worked your way through different music. 

Things have changed since then. In many cases, people no longer carry along a file folder of music, but instead tuck away all of their music on an iPad. It’s easier to carry your entire library conveniently in one place. Should You Use An iPad For Your Piano Music?

Today’s iPad comes in four sizes: 12.9, 10.5, 9.7, and 7.9 inch retina displays. Each size comes with its own benefits and upgrades. While the smaller version is less expensive and is easier to tuck away into your bag, it’s also the most difficult to see, especially if you place your music several feet away. The larger size makes reading music more convenient. It also comes with a higher price tag. 

It also extends beyond the screen. There are many apps and attachments that can help you get even more out of your digital experience. 

Start with a Bluetooth foot pedal. With the PedPro, you can quickly and silently turn the pages all with a tap of your foot. And it comes ready to work right out of the box – no setup. 

You can place your iPad on a traditional music stand. However, there are many digital stands available that give you more flexibility when moving your music around. iPad’s are heavy; putting them on a traditional stand can be risky. iPad mounted stands keep your iPad secure and make it easy to move and turn your music, depending on your needs. 

Another tool to consider is the Apple Pencil. As you progress with your music, you’re more likely to write notes on the scores. Apple Pencil is easy to carry around and gives you the ability to mark up your music whenever you desire. 

Finally, there’s the music. iPads make it easy to carry your entire library in one convenient place. If you have traditional music, snap a photo or upload a screenshot and keep it safe in one place. Plus you’ll never need a music light to see your music; it comes already in place. 

A quick search will give you ample suggestions for places to find piano music. Consider using a variety of apps to help organize your sheet music, help your practice routine, and help you become a better player. Try:

forScore – the music reader for iPad. It gives you the power to organize all of your music into one convenient app. 

Notion – allows you to compose, edit, and play scores anywhere your iPad can go. 

Tenuto – a music theory app that requires no internet access – great for playing on the go. 

Genius Scan – lets you scan any document, any time. Perfect for digitizing all of your music into readable documents. 

GoodNotes – this allows you to take down notes, store them, and have them fully searchable forever. Try creating your own music using the music template. 

How do you use iPad to help you play piano better?


Since 1960, Coltharp Piano World has represented the finest pianos in Memphis, Tennessee, the Midsouth and the world. In addition to quality sales and service we offer moving services, restoration services and master piano tuning. We offer the best new, used and vintage pianos anywhere. And our prices simply cannot be beat. Come and see our newly remodeled showroom and our beautiful new concert hall. We specialize in piano restoration for the southern United States. We welcome your call.

We are located at: 4447 Summer Ave, Memphis, Tennessee 38122 Call us at 901.682.1172

A Simple Guide To The A-B-C-D-E-F-G Piano Notes

A Simple Guide To The A-B-C-D-E-F-G Piano Notes

Seven different piano notes create all of the music we know and love. 

A-B-C-D-E-F-G

Of course, it’s a little more complicated than that. But a piano is built around this simple pattern. It repeats again and again, up and down the keyboard. 

It’s a repeating pattern of 12 notes, or pitches. It is made up of 7 white keys and 5 black keys that give you your sharps and flats. A Simple Guide To The A-B-C-D-E-F-G Piano Notes

A sharp raises each note you play by a half step. A flat lowers each note you play by a half step. This represents the smallest change in the keyboard; the smallest change you can have between musical notes. 

So the black key between A and B, for example, represents both A sharp and B flat. 

Simple.

One of the first lessons every piano student has is to commit this pattern to memory. 

You can start at the bottom and run your hands across the keyboard playing the pattern over and over again. 

Almost every modern piano has seven octaves. The keyboard has 52 white keys and 36 black keys to represent these seven octaves. That’s a total of 88 keys. And while some pianos may have less or more, the 88 keys is considered standard in the music industry. A piano with 88 keys will give you a lifetime of enjoyment. 

If you want a simple challenge to help you learn the piano notes, start at the bottom and find all As. Then Bs. And so on. 

When you’re comfortable with that, select a note at random and define it. Your goal is to learn every note and its placement on the keyboard, so they will easily come as you read music. 

This simple activity will improve your piano practice immediately. 


Since 1960, Coltharp Piano World has represented the finest pianos in Memphis, Tennessee, the Midsouth and the world. In addition to quality sales and service we offer moving services, restoration services and master piano tuning. We offer the best new, used and vintage pianos anywhere. And our prices simply cannot be beat. Come and see our newly remodeled showroom and our beautiful new concert hall. We specialize in piano restoration for the southern United States. We welcome your call.

We are located at: 4447 Summer Ave, Memphis, Tennessee 38122 Call us at 901.682.1172