Keyboard Music Theory
Learning To Read The Notes

If you want to play the keyboard/piano, then keyboard music theory is absolute essential to your success. Think about this: The pianist can play more notes at one time than any other instrumentalist. In fact, on most instruments, you can play only ONE note at a time! So you are going to need to know how to read all of those notes and how to put them together.

Let's get started.

Here is some basic information about how piano music is written.

Music notes are written on a STAFF. A staff consists of 5 lines and 4 spaces.

Learn Keyboard Music Theory!

Music notes are identified by their placement on these lines and spaces. In this keyboard music theory lesson we are going to learn notes that are written on a staff called the Treble Clef. This means (for now) that you play these notes with your right hand.

Fingering numbers: The fingers of your right hand are numbered 1-5, starting with your thumb.


This is how the notes look on the keyboard: Here are the first eight notes that you will learn to play on your keyboard. The name of the note is written above each note. You will use the same fingering that you used to play the C Major Scale


Click on the right arrow of the player to hear it. I put a "practice loop" in it. each time is a little faster. try to play along.



As you practice these notes, say the name of the note OUT LOUD so that you get not only the location but the name of the note firmly in your memory.

When you are ready, here is an exercise for you. Try to play along. Put your thumb on the "F" in the fourth measure and put your 5th finger on the "G" in tenth measure.



Easy, right? Before the next keyboard-music-theory exercise, we need to talk about note values and counting. You may have learned some of this in grade school music classes.

See the 2 numbers at the beginning? That is called the time signature The top number tells you how many counts in each measure. (measures are the little box-like divisions of the staff. So the top number 4 says that all of the notes in each measure have to add up to 4 counts. Here is a table of notes and their values:


This will become clearer as you hear the next exercise. This one is also a speed training loop. Practice in this manner: 1) Play and say the note names 2) Play and count out loud. When going up, your thumb goes on the first of the new half notes. On the way down, your 5th finger goes on the first of the new half notes.



How did you do? This has been a LOT of keyboard-music-theory! Why don't you take a break and I will see you at the next lesson.

If you like, you may proceed to Left Hand Notes

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