Music is an integral part of culture across the world. It’s an interactive art form that is always expanding and evolving. No matter who you are or where you’re from, you probably have a favorite song or genre.
You might prefer smooth jazz, hard rock, classical compositions or even simple melodies. You may listen to music to relax, to work out or to celebrate. Some people feel more productive at work when music is playing, or they feel that chores are far more fun with music. However you listen, there’s no doubt that music is entwined with our world and daily routines.
As a lover of melody and harmonies, you might not be satisfied just singing along. Perhaps you want to be the one creating music to entertain or inspire the world. If this is a new (or long ignored) idea for you, it can be hard to determine where to begin.
Music Doesn’t Have to Be Intimidating
Wishing to play an instrument, sing on key or create something original is common. Pursuing that dream, especially as an adult, is much less common.
This isn’t to say it’s impossible or even unlikely, but few people think they can achieve something great as they grow older. Expanding your abilities and mind takes time, dedication and personal investment. Becoming a musician, even as a hobby, takes a lot more than casual interest, but it doesn’t need to be intimidating.
You may be one of the thousands of people who took lessons as a child and quit. Or, maybe you didn’t have an opportunity to learn when you were young. Neither of these situations should discourage you from pursuing learning a musical instrument later in life. While children learn faster and have an easier time creating new synapses in their brain to “hardwire” information, you do have some advantages that can help you master your chosen hobby. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that learning new things has an expiration date. Whether you’re 20, 40 or 60, you can master music if you have the motivation to do so.
The most important factor you need is that you want to learn. Go here. Many children practice music with lackluster dedication simply because they don’t want to play the violin or learn the flute. Parents often wish they had learned the valuable skill as a child and impose the decision on their children, thinking it will benefit them later in life. While this is a noble attempt to give their children what they never had, it often is met with contention and resistance.
As an adult, you want to better yourself through music, which will require internal motivation and a desire to learn. Choosing to embark on this journey is an empowering one for both self-discovery and self-esteem. The effort you put into learning will reward you with results.
There’s good news. Whether you’re taking piano for beginners or beginner guitar, you have a trick up your sleeve that children don’t:
You have the dedication and focus it takes to make it through the lessons.
Many adults have made it through countless 14-hour days, double-shifts, rush hours and tough certifications, and come out on the other end. You can use that same dedication and focus to learn basic beginning piano lessons. Children, on the other hand, have much shorter attention spans and less fundamental knowledge of the world to apply to these lessons.
The other great advantage to learning as an adult is that you have a prior understanding and appreciation for music. Since you’ve spent your entire life listening to the radio and forming opinions, you can focus on learning the songs you really enjoy. No more practicing abstract ideas or unfamiliar tunes that everyone else seems to know by heart. Learning how to play an instrument as an adult also means exploring your favorite songs and bands with new eyes, which can help grow your appreciation of the music.
As an adult, your brain has developed past understanding only simple concepts and absorbing information like a sponge. As an adult, you can reason through complicated concepts and comprehend difficult strategies, which a younger you may have abandoned. While mastering finger placement on a piano or breathing for a saxophone may come easier to a younger student, you will have the upper hand when it comes to complicated compositions and ideas.
Once you begin learning music, you will benefit from several things that children don’t even notice. For instance, music is a great stress reliever – this is true whether playing the guitar or singing along with the radio. Even in the early days of your education, you will feel the effects of stress relief. Studies have shown that taking even 15 minutes per day to unwind can greatly improve your mental and physical health. Those effects can be accelerated by playing music, even if you’re still taking beginner’s piano lessons or early guitar lessons.
The more you learn and exercise your brain, the quicker you will be on the uptake. So, while you may start out your beginner piano lessons at a disadvantage to that kid Billy down the street, you will soon be able to surpass his progress. Once you’ve established a practice routine, you will be surprised how quickly you can achieve your goals.
For a more in-depth discussion on the topic of learning music as an adult, check out this Huffington Post article. Dr. Jessica Grahn, a cognitive scientist, researches music for both the Psychology Department at Western University in Canada and the Brain and Mind Institute. She maintains that learning to play a musical instrument later in life has advantages, and learning beginner piano lessons as an adult isn’t as hard as you think.
Don’t Limit Yourself
Music is one of the great equalizers in the world. You can be poor or rich, young or old and create or perform beautiful music. The ability to make people feel through art is something that can be done by anyone, no matter their social standing. It is a beautiful feeling of unity. Many of the world’s most famous musicians came from humble beginnings. Some of those even did so later in life. According to Billboard’s 2016 list, Leonard Cohen and Debbie Harry are only two notable names to hit it big in music past the age of 30.
The only true obstacles to learning to play your favorite songs are the limitations you set on yourself. If you have a yearning to express yourself creatively and expand yourself mentally, you can do it.
The key to getting started in making beautiful music is choosing the right path. A common mistake made by beginners is selecting difficult instruments to start their journey with. Some instruments require extensive musical knowledge to master, while others are perfect for beginners. Step one is always to decide on the best instrument to pursue. There are many choices, from guitar to violin to bass and piano, trumpet or clarinet. Many of your options will be challenging or expensive.
Easiest Instrument to Learn and Master is the Piano
With that in mind, the very first step should be selecting your starting instrument. The easiest instrument to learn and master, by far, is the piano.
This doesn’t suggest you can find yourself performing at Carnegie Hall like college student James Matthews without some serious dedication at the very least. Rising to the level obtained by celebrated pianists is an effort in love for music. It takes years of practice and sacrifice, much like pursuing professional sports or building a fortune 500 company from the ground up. But the foundation of music is the same, no matter your goals.
Learning the basics of understanding and creating inspiring music is a task that may seem insurmountable at first, and you might wonder what step to take first on this journey. As a working professional, it’s important not to waste time and money on frivolous pursuits. So, while buying a saxophone and hiring a teacher might seem logical, it’s not likely to be successful. You need to learn the basics of music before jumping into the deep end. While it may sound surprising, learning basic piano lessons for beginners is a logical first step that will give you a better foundation later in your education.
Why is Piano a Good Choice for Beginners?
You may be thinking, “why is piano a good choice for beginners?” The answer is that it can provide a basis for learning notes and rhythms, how to read music, and help develop your ear to learn piano chords. Taking beginning piano lessons is a great way to introduce yourself to the world of music which can be parlayed into different instruments in the future.
You may think you don’t have room for a traditional piano or the money to invest in one. This is surprisingly much less of an obstacle than you might think. Any 88-key keyboard can function in a similar way to a full-sized piano at a fraction of the cost. Keyboards are also lightweight and portable. A good quality instrument can cost you as little as $200 brand new. Meanwhile, a good quality flute, guitar or violin has a much larger upfront cost.
In a 2016 article, Entrepreneur.com stated, “Sixty-one percent of the people in the U.S., U.K., Australia, and Germany would like to learn a musical instrument, but currently only a fraction actually do.”
The reason for this disparity is that in our fast-paced society, people have an unending list of things to do and learn, with limited resources to devote to completing those projects. Simplifying the process for learning the fundamentals of music is the best way to fit that goal into your life. That’s where beginner piano lessons come in, especially if you are looking for a foundation; not just to learn piano chords, but also to learn music.
All music has the same foundation that needs to be understood in order to play even the simplest songs. With piano, you can grasp these concepts without added complications. For example, starting with a wind instrument will require you to train your lungs and voice in tandem with learning the basics. It can become frustrating for anyone and often leads to a loss of motivation, quickly followed by giving up. If you learn the basics on a keyboard, you can then apply your basic understanding to any future musical endeavors, even singing.
Learning Rhythm and Melodies
No matter the type of music you enjoy or aspire to play, it’s important to harness the power of beat, rhythm, melody and harmony. Piano In 21 Days reviews melodies and rhythm in a way that many people find to be unique.
Every song follows a beat, even if it isn’t represented by an instrument. This beat is necessary to ensure the song follows the same pace each time. Beginner piano lessons will help you recognize the beat in music, allowing you to properly pace yourself.
Rhythm fills in the empty space occupied by the beat. It’s a combination of different notes and various lengths that help fill out the pacing of the song. Even by simply going through basic piano for beginners, you’ll be able to easily pick the rhythm out of a song.
When talking about melody, you have to remember this is related to rhythm. The notes have different pitches, which any beginner piano lessons will teach you to recognize, and the combination creates the melody. In many cases this combination can be expressed through voice or through an instrument such as the piano.
While the beat, rhythm and melody are leading the song, there are other instruments or notes to create harmony. The piano is one of the few instruments that can accommodate playing the entire piece at once. Most songs require you to employ more than one instrument to achieve a complete sound. That is another advantage of taking beginner piano lessons. With time, you can learn to play a whole song on your own, not just the guitar or violin notes. The sense of accomplishment you have from learning your favorite song won’t be incomplete.
The best part about taking beginning piano lessons is they allow you to learn about the foundations of music without distraction. A piano or other 88-key keyboard can be used to perform any song. Sheet music for a piano can be adapted to any other instrument, once you’ve learned the basics. You can also learn to play songs by ear if you prefer to work without music. Most other instruments are too complicated for a beginner to play by ear alone.
The piano is versatile in that it can be easily learned by beginners and it can be used to compose masterfully complicated music. The most beautiful sounds are often produced on pianos: emotional solos, dramatic composition and even soothing background music. It’s truly amazing how a piano can be used for children’s songs, elevator music and deeply moving ballads with equal measure.
Can you imagine the Beach Boys classics without piano? How about Queen, Elton John or David Bowie? The range of a piano lends to the emotion behind these great artists. If you want to impress your friends by playing that Adele song, wouldn’t a piano be the way to go?
What About Other Instruments?
You might have always dreamed of playing the clarinet or bass guitar and wonder, “Why not learn those from day one? Wouldn’t that be easier?”
The truth is you can learn to play music starting with any instrument. Other instruments will be innately more difficult to master than others. Piano is one of the most beginner-friendly instruments to learn and provides a solid foundation for other musical instruments.
Guitar, for instance, has a steeper learning curve than piano. The basics you learn with guitar are also harder to transfer to other instruments if you decide to branch off later. Learning piano first allows you to master the foundation at your own pace and apply that knowledge to any instrument you subsequently learn.
In 2014, Scientific American published an article about cognitive function that briefly talked about cognitive decline as we age. The piece notes that we all decline at different rates as we age, depending on different factors. A 2016 article from Harvard Health Publications suggested learning a new skill as you age can actually slow cognitive decline.
The Harvard article suggested that long-term learning goals are better for brain health than crosswords or other short-term solutions. This means that learning the basics of music can do more than give you a fun new hobby. You can use the mental stimulation of learning piano to expand your learning capacity. If you take on the tuba or the oboe after taking beginner piano lessons, that’s just another tool in your cognitive belt.
There are other impressive benefits to learning an instrument, especially later in life. It’s been shown that not only does learning a new instrument increase cognitive speed, it actually improves your memory capacity. Taking beginner piano lessons is a fun way to slow memory decline. Another benefit you can take advantage of is improved coordination. Learning piano chords will challenge you to time your fingers properly, coordinate your actions, and improve your reaction time. This is a benefit for many people, whether they’re playing sports, driving, or playing a different instrument.
Taking basic piano lessons for beginners can also be good for your career. Learning a musical instrument, at any age, has been linked with improvements in organization. This means your new hobby might help you improve workplace performance. With an increase in organization and time management skills, you may even see financial returns or an improvement in your household’s cleanliness. Additionally, learning music can help improve your mathematical abilities. If you’re someone who struggles with complex math problems, learning music can be a huge plus.
Aside from all the professional and health benefits, piano lessons for adult beginners can also foster self-expression. Self expression has been linked to stress relief, a better home life and work environment. The amazing thing about releasing unwanted tension is the snowball effect it can have on many other aspects of our lives. Reduced stress can help avoid heart and blood pressure issues, it can make weight loss easier, eliminating stress eating and other unhealthy habits and much more.
Online vs. In Person
You may be thinking “How will I have time to take lessons? Are they really necessary?”
The truth is: Most people do need lessons to master music on any instrument.
Luckily, there are alternatives to traditional courses. We all know that time is precious, and while you may have spare time in your day to devote to taking piano lessons for beginners, it won’t always be the same time of day or same day each week that you’ll have available.
An option that is growing in popularity is taking beginner piano lessons online. After all, the best way to learn piano is the way that works! If you have a busy schedule, rotating shifts or simply want to learn privately, you would probably prefer learning online. Online courses give you the option to focus on specific parts of a lesson and replay the video as needed.
While an in-person instructor can give you real-time feedback, there are definite downfalls to traditional lessons for the average working professional.
- Hiring a teacher is often expensive.
The average cost of an in-person lesson is between $15 and $40 for 30 minutes. Keeping in mind that most teachers will insist you learn musical theory, expect to invest a few hundred dollars in courses before you’ve even started to learn piano chords.
- Lack of flexibility.
Remember, piano teachers don’t often work at night and rarely work weekends. This means you need to give up a lunch break each week or rearrange your schedule to accommodate classes. As a busy working adult, you might want to keep the precious downtime you have during the day free. You also might have a hard time coordinating classes with your kids’ after-school activities or your corporate meetings.
- Lack of practice.
A whole week is a long time to go without working on your skills. You will likely have a slow learning curve due to being unprepared to practice at home and without instruction.
After considering in-person options available near you, you may be wondering how to learn beginner piano lessons online.
Until very recently, in-person lessons were the only option. But, what are the logistics involved with learning piano via the internet?
The best online piano lessons offer multiple ways to learn and can be repeated as necessary to fully understand the concepts taught. These courses address the concerns with traditional classes while providing you a valuable learning opportunity. Often times, you can even skip boring musical theory and go right to learning how to play fun songs. In as little as 21 days, you could be entertaining your friends and family by playing your favorite songs.
Signing up for an online piano course is a great way to take piano lessons for adult beginners. This model will allow you to study at your own pace, in the privacy of your own home. You won’t be subject to a set schedule or paying for courses you miss. Better yet, you will have the freedom to learn and practice literally any time, day or night.
There are a variety of resources available when you sign up for beginner piano lessons online. You can learn to sight read, play by ear, to follow along with an instructor, or watch or listen to music as it is played throughout your courses. Whichever method works for you can be repeated as often as you need and you can disregard anything that doesn’t resonate with your style of learning. While you’re taking beginner piano lessons online, you are in complete control of the pace and style of your learning.
Not only are beginner piano lessons online a cost-effective solution for the busy professional adult, they are easily the best way to learn piano. Repetition is key to absorbing new information, especially as we age. This means the ability to replay videos as you go and revisit old lessons will help the average adult learn basic piano lessons for beginners. You can even record yourself playing and listen to it later, to compare what you’ve played to what your instructor has played.
It’s Never Too Late for Beginner Piano Lessons
Music is a valuable part of life and culture around the world. It is never too late to expand your knowledge and understanding of this vibrant art form. The only true obstacle to learning is your openness to taking beginner piano lessons. Remember that everyone has to start somewhere, and it’s up to you to decide where.
If you’ve been put off by the cost or time necessary to devote yourself to learning a musical instrument, now is the time to overcome that mindset. Gone are the days where you could only learn piano by taking inconvenient courses or private lessons which cost a fortune.
While you’re taking beginner piano lessons as an adult, you can learn piano chords, songs, and the basics of music. The foundation of knowledge you acquire will serve you in understanding other instruments and music as a whole. Whether you want to pursue music as a hobby or change careers, learning piano online can be a great stepping stone to your goals.
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