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Thread: Troubleshooting help while playing the keys

  1. #1

    Default Troubleshooting help while playing the keys

    This could become a big problem for me when playing live or as simple as recording in the studio. Maybe you guys can help.

    • Sometimes my fingers slip, hitting black or white keys that they are supposed to not hit.
    • At parts, my brain goes blank and starts acting idiotically.
    • My hands at times just wont cooperate with each other.


    What can I do to troubleshoot these problems so my recordings and playing sounds professional and I dont have to worry about any incidents in the future?

  2. #2

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    Finger exercises like the type you do to learn scales. Practice doing *A major or D major instead of staying on C. Something that helped me even after I already established my chops and played out was taking a Music Fundamentals course at the local community college. About half of the content was the same as bits and pieces I picked up in childhood and the other half was a taste of Theory without having to become a jazz nerd :P

    It was a good course all around because it did expose me to the hows and whys of music and made it even easier to shift to different instruments rather than getting in a rut on guitar

  3. #3

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    Maybe it would help to practice playing slower than usual so your brain has extra time to think about what it's doing. After a while, you'll memorise the track and the finger-positions and will start to play the right notes without thinking, at which time you can increase the tempo.

    I don't know anything about playing an instrument, so sorry if that's a stupid suggestion. But I was thinking of other tasks that you learn, and people always start slowly to begin with -- speaking a new language, driving, even tying shoelaces...
    Last edited by tiny; 28-Mar-2013 at 22:23. Reason: Deleted double post

  4. #4

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    It just takes a bit more practice, one way I taught myself was to play along with songs of various difficulties. If I played with the recording and I missed a note, I would restart the recording and try again. I did this until I could play the song from start to finish without missing a note. That is how I taught myself to learn songs for cover bands, and it also helps with the muscle memory of your fingers as well as teaches you to remember longer passages in music.

    As for your fingers hitting the wrong keys, that is probably due to an issue with your technique and will likely work itself out with time and practice. If you'd like to try and improve your technique, just look up some tutorials and try playing more scales to help with your fingering patterns.

  5. #5

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    I learned several songs on the keyboard using rock band 3. It has "learn an instrument mode" and teaches chords, scales and a few different fingering techniques. Its not the best teaching tool, but I learned "walk of life" by Dire Straits in only a few days. The other downside is the rb keyboard is only 25 keys so you have to keep shifting octaves on some songs. It also doesnt really teach you much about two handed playing. I dont use my rb keytar for lead though, mostly just special effects and the occasional solo. I have it connected via midi cable to a Yamaha TX81Z synth module.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by DeftLeppard View Post
    I learned several songs on the keyboard using rock band 3. It has "learn an instrument mode" and teaches chords, scales and a few different fingering techniques. Its not the best teaching tool, but I learned "walk of life" by Dire Straits in only a few days. The other downside is the rb keyboard is only 25 keys so you have to keep shifting octaves on some songs. It also doesnt really teach you much about two handed playing. I dont use my rb keytar for lead though, mostly just special effects and the occasional solo. I have it connected via midi cable to a Yamaha TX81Z synth module.
    I already know the sacles and a good number of the chords, I need to get coordination down at a good level.

  7. #7

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    Hire a piano teacher; consider it as a personal trainer for dexterity.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by MOPaddED View Post
    Hire a piano teacher; consider it as a personal trainer for dexterity.
    Great advice, but I already have my parents paying out for vocal instructions.

    I dont think the reason I'm hitting other keys is because of bad technique rather maybe because of the speed I'm playing at. So yeah maybe I should go slower, most of the time its my own stuff I've composed that I'm playing that I come into issues with. but I also am learning covers from Rammstein, Serj Tankian and others along those lines. Ronbeast, I have a Roland Juno Gi with a undo/redo feature, and it does get frustrating when you're screwing up at as little as the 4th second.

  9. #9

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    You could bite the bullet and buy the Czerny book of exercises. They were written to prepare pianists to play Chopin and Liszt. I used to practice them for hours and it did help. There's also a Schermers book containing Sonatinas which are good for finger dexterity. I played those when I was in high school along with my lessons. Even Hannon exercises are a good start. Be sure to keep your fingers curved and your wrists parallel with the keyboard.

  10. #10

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    And now for something completely different...

    ...close your eyes, or make the room pitch-black (or both)...now relax, and play...anything (anything-scales, riffs, trills, twinkle-twinkle, random-peck, doesn't matter)-at a slow pace...and in this case, don't stop and restart over a (seeming) misstep...just keep going...don't fret (it's not a guitar after all tehe)...

    Like typing without looking at the keyboard...where you see the results on the screen...right or wrong, that is your feedback...now the intention is to put away the eyes, and bring out the ears...ears and fingers (some soul with heart wouldn't hurt)...your brain will do the rest. Ears and fingers only...in-case I wasn't clear on that...

    Just 'fiddle' around, visually deprived...your brain will learn and coordinate your fingers with amazing accuracy...unless of course, you begin to think about it...that always fouls it up for me. (don't force it!)

    Anticipating, or obsessing on error...is a self-fulfilling prophecy...as you think'eth, so it shall be...stop thinking, just do...I liken it with 'stage-fright' meets perfectionism... I believe that you need to be wiling and able to reconcile with this...

    ...chances are, you need to do nothing more than get out of your own way...feel the music, it's not a job...it's an expression! Enjoy! You're getting 'gigs' paid or not...to express the music, not mechanically churn it out...it should vary, if you are doing it right...but it'll always be outstanding...it'll always be real-time, tailored for the moment...it'll always be true...

    **Now if you're doing piano-concerto, particularly in some high•fa•lu•tin well-to-do...you're completely on your own, all bets are off...and you're probably asking in the wrong place!

    Cheers, and best of luck! May the music be with you!
    -Marka

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