"You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Talk about things that are not necessarily related to music or the guitar.
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Lawler
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by Lawler » Wed Feb 06, 2019 2:15 am

Adrian Allan wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 7:39 am
...College majors in music are encouraged to play the piano as well as their primary instrument, and sometimes it is compulsory...
It was compulsory for me in my conservatory years. Hated it at the time. Glad I did it now. Broadened my perspective. Perspective.. such a complex thing. I love the scene in the movie, Ratatouille, where Anton Ego talks about it. Search YT for "anton ego perspective". Cooking is certainly not the same as playing the guitar. But, speaking as someone who loves to cook, there are similarities.

I didn't know it at the time but my piano teacher was a fine performer and became quite well known. Our interactions in those lessons are stuck in my mind. The things I learned there have been valuable to me ever since.

So, yes. Study piano. But don't let it drive you crazy. :mrgreen:

Wuuthrad
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by Wuuthrad » Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:35 am

astro64 wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:57 pm
While we are on the topic of pianos...I would love to learn, and I'd be happy to use the topic of this thread to explain to my significant other that it is essential we acquire a medium-size grand piano. But it seems to me the biggest frustration for pianists must be that the instrument is out of tune most of the time. Is that a valid concern? I fear it would drive me nuts to practice on an out of tune piano for weeks or longer. How quickly is it out of tune after the tuner leaves the house? Then there is the issue of having to cut the nails...

You could also buy an 88 key midi controller and plug that into your computer. Apples come with built in Piano lessons, and you can start composing almost instantly!
"Pay no attention to what the critics say. A statue has never been erected in honor of a critic." -Jean Sibelius

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Adrian Allan
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by Adrian Allan » Wed Feb 06, 2019 6:46 am

astro64 wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:57 pm
While we are on the topic of pianos...I would love to learn, and I'd be happy to use the topic of this thread to explain to my significant other that it is essential we acquire a medium-size grand piano. But it seems to me the biggest frustration for pianists must be that the instrument is out of tune most of the time. Is that a valid concern? I fear it would drive me nuts to practice on an out of tune piano for weeks or longer. How quickly is it out of tune after the tuner leaves the house? Then there is the issue of having to cut the nails...
I have my piano tuned once a year.

It is a little out of tune to the piano tuner when he arrives, but I can't tell much of a difference.
D'Ammassa Spruce/Spruce Double Top

astro64
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by astro64 » Wed Feb 06, 2019 3:53 pm

Adrian Allan wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 6:46 am
astro64 wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:57 pm
While we are on the topic of pianos...I would love to learn, and I'd be happy to use the topic of this thread to explain to my significant other that it is essential we acquire a medium-size grand piano. But it seems to me the biggest frustration for pianists must be that the instrument is out of tune most of the time. Is that a valid concern? I fear it would drive me nuts to practice on an out of tune piano for weeks or longer. How quickly is it out of tune after the tuner leaves the house? Then there is the issue of having to cut the nails...
I have my piano tuned once a year.

It is a little out of tune to the piano tuner when he arrives, but I can't tell much of a difference.
Thanks. Do you keep the piano in a climate controlled room with constant humidity and temp? Here in the SW of the US it would be subject to fluctuations in temperature (60-80F) and humidity (30% to 75% over the year if I were not to actively manage it with some system.

astro64
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by astro64 » Wed Feb 06, 2019 3:55 pm

Wuuthrad wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:35 am
astro64 wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:57 pm
While we are on the topic of pianos...I would love to learn, and I'd be happy to use the topic of this thread to explain to my significant other that it is essential we acquire a medium-size grand piano. But it seems to me the biggest frustration for pianists must be that the instrument is out of tune most of the time. Is that a valid concern? I fear it would drive me nuts to practice on an out of tune piano for weeks or longer. How quickly is it out of tune after the tuner leaves the house? Then there is the issue of having to cut the nails...

You could also buy an 88 key midi controller and plug that into your computer. Apples come with built in Piano lessons, and you can start composing almost instantly!
True, an electronic keyboard would be an easy way to start, but somehow it seems difficult to get excited about some electronic setup, coming from playing an instrument made of wood.

dofrenzy
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by dofrenzy » Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:36 pm

Electronic keyboards are ridiculously piano-like. I almost added "these days", but I just gave away a +20 year old Yamaha Keyboard (88-keys) that was incredible. Keyboards "these days" must be phenomenal. If you've ever taken piano lessons in a classroom, the keyboards are always electronic.

My old Yamaha keyboard had built-in lessons, hundreds of voices, drum kits, metronome, a foot pedal for sustain, headphone jack, and more. The keys were pressure-sensitive (tap soft for pianissimo, hard for forte, and plenty in-between). I could record a melody from a duet on the keyboard and play along on guitar. Keyboard cost a few hundred $$$. You can take your keyboard just about anywhere, EASILY. (Mine ran on D batteries when not plugged in).

If you want a real piano: Thousands of $$$$. Moving expenses. Maintenance. Can't take it to your friends house for a jam. You only get one sound = "piano". Touch a key and EVERYBODY knows (no silent practice). You need space for it and you're practically married to it. Ugh.

For me, more of the excitement comes from making music, and the wonderful sounding possibilities of a decent electronic keyboard are myriad.

EDIT - Don't get me wrong, I would love to have a real piano! Just pushing back a bit on the idea that there may be less appeal because an instrument isn't made from wood. I think there is tons more appeal from an electronic keyboard. Would I want a guitar that is played by pushing buttons, like a video game? Not so much. A piano, however, is actually played by pushing buttons and modern electronic keyboards simulate that perfectly.

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Adrian Allan
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by Adrian Allan » Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:52 pm

astro64 wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 3:53 pm
Adrian Allan wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 6:46 am
astro64 wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:57 pm
While we are on the topic of pianos...I would love to learn, and I'd be happy to use the topic of this thread to explain to my significant other that it is essential we acquire a medium-size grand piano. But it seems to me the biggest frustration for pianists must be that the instrument is out of tune most of the time. Is that a valid concern? I fear it would drive me nuts to practice on an out of tune piano for weeks or longer. How quickly is it out of tune after the tuner leaves the house? Then there is the issue of having to cut the nails...
I have my piano tuned once a year.

It is a little out of tune to the piano tuner when he arrives, but I can't tell much of a difference.
Thanks. Do you keep the piano in a climate controlled room with constant humidity and temp? Here in the SW of the US it would be subject to fluctuations in temperature (60-80F) and humidity (30% to 75% over the year if I were not to actively manage it with some system.
I'm not too sure, sorry.

I live in the UK, where it is cool and temperate. We don't have big extremes in either temperature or humidity. It is always a little cool and a little damp. I don't need to do anything, and the piano needs only a yearly tuning. However, I don't use it every day, as it is only a secondary instrument for me.
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Adrian Allan
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by Adrian Allan » Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:55 pm

dofrenzy wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:36 pm
Electronic keyboards are ridiculously piano-like. I almost added "these days", but I just gave away a +20 year old Yamaha Keyboard (88-keys) that was incredible. Keyboards "these days" must be phenomenal. If you've ever taken piano lessons in a classroom, the keyboards are always electronic.

My old Yamaha keyboard had built-in lessons, hundreds of voices, drum kits, metronome, a foot pedal for sustain, headphone jack, and more. The keys were pressure-sensitive (tap soft for pianissimo, hard for forte, and plenty in-between). I could record a melody from a duet on the keyboard and play along on guitar. Keyboard cost a few hundred $$$. You can take your keyboard just about anywhere, EASILY. (Mine ran on D batteries when not plugged in).

If you want a real piano: Thousands of $$$$. Moving expenses. Maintenance. Can't take it to your friends house for a jam. You only get one sound = "piano". Touch a key and EVERYBODY knows (no silent practice). You need space for it and you're practically married to it. Ugh.

For me, more of the excitement comes from making music, and the wonderful sounding possibilities of a decent electronic keyboard are myriad.

EDIT - Don't get me wrong, I would love to have a real piano! Just pushing back a bit on the idea that there may be less appeal because an instrument isn't made from wood. I think there is tons more appeal from an electronic keyboard. Would I want a guitar that is played by pushing buttons, like a video game? Not so much. A piano, however, is actually played by pushing buttons and modern electronic keyboards simulate that perfectly.
I have never really been attracted to electronic keyboards.

It is partly due to aesthetics, as I like the appearance and feel of a piano.

However, the biggest issue for is overtones. No electric instrument can replicate the infinite variety of overtones, some reinforcing each other, some cancelling each other out, that are the appeal of any true acoustic instrument to my ears. It is this factor that gives a piano life and character.
D'Ammassa Spruce/Spruce Double Top

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Mark Clifton-Gaultier
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by Mark Clifton-Gaultier » Wed Feb 06, 2019 7:11 pm

dofrenzy wrote:If you want a real piano: Thousands of $$$$.
Not necessarily - at least in the UK. Uprights (even metal framed) are pretty much worthless in the second-hand market and can often be found for free or the cost of transportation. Wooden framed instruments have such a low value that one has to pay for their removal - a problem so common that there are websites devoted to the recycling of them as bookshelves, fish tanks etc.

Up-market is not much different - a very good quality baby grand went for £50.00 at a local auction recently. Delivery would have been double that but even then it's peanuts.

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Michael.N.
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by Michael.N. » Wed Feb 06, 2019 7:49 pm

astro64 wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 3:53 pm
Adrian Allan wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 6:46 am
astro64 wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 11:57 pm
While we are on the topic of pianos...I would love to learn, and I'd be happy to use the topic of this thread to explain to my significant other that it is essential we acquire a medium-size grand piano. But it seems to me the biggest frustration for pianists must be that the instrument is out of tune most of the time. Is that a valid concern? I fear it would drive me nuts to practice on an out of tune piano for weeks or longer. How quickly is it out of tune after the tuner leaves the house? Then there is the issue of having to cut the nails...
I have my piano tuned once a year.

It is a little out of tune to the piano tuner when he arrives, but I can't tell much of a difference.
Thanks. Do you keep the piano in a climate controlled room with constant humidity and temp? Here in the SW of the US it would be subject to fluctuations in temperature (60-80F) and humidity (30% to 75% over the year if I were not to actively manage it with some system.
That's nothing the UK doesn't experience. There's nothing extreme about either the temperature or the humidity that you have quoted.
I'm not really taken by the looks of pianos (maybe early squares). Certainly not concert grands. You can get cheap digitals that are perfectly fine for learning on, at least for the first couple of years. A lot of the digitals that I've heard seem to have a slightly veiled sound compared to acoustics. That shouldn't really bother a beginner.
I guess the point is to get playing, time waits for no man etc.
Historicalguitars.

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Contreras
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by Contreras » Wed Feb 06, 2019 7:58 pm

2lost2find wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 5:12 pm
Adrian Allan wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 4:18 pm

If he had said, "you cannot be a true all round musician" or a "music teacher", then there might have been more than a grain of truth.

I still call BS. Being able to play piano is proof of nothing except that you can play piano. You can teach all the music you want without ever going near a keyboard.

Regarding the accompaniment thing: I will gladly accompany anybody, anytime. Without preparation. On the guitar. If you think that lacks legitimacy, get somebody else.
+1

My grandfather was a superb violinist, and always said any fool could play the piano ... all the notes were laid out in front of you, all you had to do was hit them in the right order.
1929 Francisco Simplicio
1997 Manuel Contreras Doble tapa

dofrenzy
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by dofrenzy » Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:10 pm

Adrian Allan wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:55 pm

I have never really been attracted to electronic keyboards.

It is partly due to aesthetics, as I like the appearance and feel of a piano.

However, the biggest issue for is overtones. No electric instrument can replicate the infinite variety of overtones, some reinforcing each other, some cancelling each other out, that are the appeal of any true acoustic instrument to my ears. It is this factor that gives a piano life and character.
Excellent points Adrian. I should have been a bit more clear. For learning piano, learning music, and for having an affordable "piano" option around the house, electronic keyboards are a great option.

I guess my point is that for most people, an electronic keyboard more than suffices for piano, and the biggest issue for me is the life and character of the person playing the instrument!

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Adrian Allan
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by Adrian Allan » Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:17 pm

dofrenzy wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:10 pm
Adrian Allan wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:55 pm

I have never really been attracted to electronic keyboards.

It is partly due to aesthetics, as I like the appearance and feel of a piano.

However, the biggest issue for is overtones. No electric instrument can replicate the infinite variety of overtones, some reinforcing each other, some cancelling each other out, that are the appeal of any true acoustic instrument to my ears. It is this factor that gives a piano life and character.
Excellent points Adrian. I should have been a bit more clear. For learning piano, learning music, and for having an affordable "piano" option around the house, electronic keyboards are a great option.

I guess my point is that for most people, an electronic keyboard more than suffices for piano, and the biggest issue for me is the life and character of the person playing the instrument!
Yes, that is crucial as well.

In terms of price, I'm not sure about the US, but in the UK, they are pretty much being given away, as Mark says, even the half-decent ones, so over here at least affordability is not an issue. That is a very sad commentary on our values as a nation.
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Michael.N.
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by Michael.N. » Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:34 pm

I seem to remember figures of 15,000 UK acoustic piano sales in 1970, less than 4,000 now. It's plummeted in the US by a huge amount too. China has bucked the trend but then again you'd expect that.
Historicalguitars.

dofrenzy
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Re: "You can't be a proper musician unless you play the piano". Discuss

Post by dofrenzy » Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:38 pm

Michael.N. wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 7:49 pm
I guess the point is to get playing, time waits for no man etc.
I guess that's my point too. Nice job being succinct!

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