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I want to learn to play an instrument but don't know what watch

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    I've set myself a fairly long goal of learning to play an instrument to a decent level. I'm in London so I don't think sourcing a teacher would be of much difficulty.

    I used to play drums when I was younger, I stopped when I was at about grade four/five. Mostly because my commitment waned 'cause my lessons were always in chemistry which I preferred. I also couldn't practice at home because a drum kit is large/bulky/noisy and there was no room + I had a baby brother.

    I'm now at University and regret never learning to play anything. BUT, I have no idea what I'd like to learn. I can see the pluses and negatives of guitar, drums, violin and piano. I know these are a random mix of instruments but I've narrowed it down to these. I did learn some very basic piano in year 12 (chords other simple things) but didn't really enjoy it as the pieces were very boring. Again, I also never bought a keyboard to play at home so only had about four hours total practice.

    Essentially, what I'm trying to ask in a long winded and contorted way is, what made you start to learn your instrument? Do you have any recommendations on what I should learn? I always lean to piano but I'm not sure why. My taste in music is always fairly narrow so I don't think I'm completely aware of what each instrument can do/what sort of music I'd be playing with them.
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    Piano sounds quite nice to learn, something i've always wanted to pick up, but unfortunately breaking my arm four times has left me completely useless at playing instruments. xD

    I'm going to recommend bass guitar, it's a bit different and very relaxing to play/listen to.
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    I always loved music, and learned to play clarinet in school (age 11 when I started), but I didn't statr the Piano til I was 15 (which is now my favourite and the one I'm best at). I'm taking my performance diploma this summer.

    Choose an instrument you'd like, because that's what's important. Maybe think of some songs you'd like to play, and choose the instrument from there? Just look at it from different angles.

    Not all music on the Piano is boring (in fact, most isn't), you just have to choose the pieces/songs you'd LIKE to learn, instread of being dictated to

    Good luck x
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    Definitely go for piano!! I love playing the piano if you find the music boring, then learn pieces which you like, such as modern music, if you aren't into the classical side!! Also with the piano, you don't have to cart it round!!
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    There are loads of piano stuff you can learn. As well as learning classical pieces, I know lots of people who have started learning piano and get pleasure from playing their favourite songs. As a more advanced pianist, I get pleasure out of playing stuff like Butterflies and Hurricanes by Muse as well as Maple Leaf Rag by Joplin or Rachmaninoff's Prelude in G minor!
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    The skin flute.
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    Play which ever instrument features predominantly in the music you like to listen to.
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    Piano is one of the few instruments that you can play without any accompaniment and it will still sound good. Also, if you learn properly instead of just learning simple things, you'll be able to play songs with both hands fairly quickly, which is incredibly rewarding.

    I self taught piano, and I kind of regret that as I'm a good standard but have picked up some nasty habits meaning that I can't play exceptionally fast/flashy pieces.. and I don't have the time or patience to change my technique now!
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    Yeah, the piano is a really lovely instrument! It's really versatile and can play loads of different styles (classical, romantic, jazz, boogie, pop etc.) You can play it solo, or can accompany other people. There's so much repertoire for the piano so you never get bored! Plus if you get a teacher, he/she will (or should!) have their own piano so you would still get to play on a real piano if you buy a keyboard.

    The only problem with the piano is that buying one is very expensive! Even buying a keyboard can cost a fair bit. It can be a bad idea to buy a second-hand keyboard as there is a greater chance of the electrics going wrong and it's unlikely to be covered by a warranty. If you do buy a keyboard and keep it once you've really progressed far, then you'll need it to have (a) a full size keyboard, and (b) touch sensitive keys - neither of which come cheap!

    With regards to the other instruments you mentioned, the violin can be quite tricky. You'd need a teacher (to help you develop the correct technique) and although violins start quite cheap (~£50), they sound awful and upgrading can be pricey. Plus the repertoire is mostly limited to classical/romantic.

    As for the guitar, they also start quite cheap and are rather more versatile than the violin. I think most people start learning on classical guitars, but once you've done some classical it's relatively straightforward to switch to either accoustic or electric.
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    As others have said, piano is a lovely choice. The learning curve isn't too steep, though of course to get good you will have to practice, but it won't be long before the your practice will bear beautiful fruit! And you only need to look at the likes of Chopin's nocturnes to see that piano music can be some of the best. I wish I'd learn when I was younger - maybe some day.

    It also will really help you if you start to learn another instrument - the piano focuses on chords and cadences a lot, which will help you with listening to intonation and developing a good ear for music in general!

    I play violin, an instrument you should definitely consider and not be put off by its appearance of being hard to pick up. The learning curve must be pretty steep compared to all other instruments - there's a lot to learn and a lot of bad habits to avoid (unfortunately I didn't...). There's a lot of music of different varieties available for violin, from different styles and genres to simply the differences between unaccompanied concertos and orchestral pieces. It's satisfying playing a piece well (granted I'm not very good at the violin, but that's my fault for lacking confidence and for not addressing bad habits). Consider that you cannot self-teach violin. Well, self-teach to an adequate standard. The others perhaps to a limit, but not so the violin

    I would love to learn another instrument (*cough* CELLO) in university. Who knows, when I'll get there I'll see if I can find a teacher and be able to fit it in.

    My advice - don't pass up the opportunity! Pick at least one - who knows, if you look around hard enough, you might be able to get some taster lessons where you get to try a variety out and see teachers playing it well, as a demonstration.
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    everyone says piano as it's kinda the standard instrument, is great to learn and easier than some as the keys are laid out in front of you, and even simple pieces can sound impressive due to the two parts played at once. i have grade 4 piano but due to lack of time i couldn't take it further. also have grade 6 clarinet. clarinet is my instrument, the one for me! no matter how long between playing it, i can still play it to the same standard i left off, and sight reading is great, as is learning new pieces.

    clarinet is a great sounding instrument once you get into it, and can play a range of stuff, classical, jazz, duets, accompaniment to piano, orchestra etc etc

    if you're interested, if you have spotify (you know, or youtube :P), look up "victoria kitchen garden" (if on youtube, look at a couple incase one is someone crap playing it XD), it's beautiful

    saxophone is also a really really epic instrument, i'd love to play it! and some people say it's quite easy once you learn fingerings etc (yeah yeah teehee teehee giggidy giggidy), and the jazz element is epic, plus it can play some really soulful beautiful music once you get good at it

    also electric guitar = just yes. frankly.


    plus a portable instrument helps as you can practise more, and can often pick up a decent second hand one in a music shop for not too high a price, or even on ebay! (my friend did this haha)
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    Sorry to hijack the thread, OP but I was wondering what people thought about self-teaching piano. Is it a bad idea?

    OP: I'm in a similar position, except I used to play a violin. I didn't really enjoy it, if I'm honest. The styles of music you can play are quite limited and I found all the fiddly things such as having to constantly loosen/tighten the bow, put resin on it annoying and I found it quite uncomfortable to play it for any long period of time. I was very young though, so you'll probably have more patience with these little things.

    Personally, I'd choose piano or guitar - huge choice to what you can play, sounds nice by itself and with an accompaniment and generally versatile. Choose what you like best though because if you love it you'll always be willing to put up with difficulties you might encounter.
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    (Original post by Boom.Squish)
    OP: I'm in a similar position, except I used to play a violin. I didn't really enjoy it, if I'm honest. The styles of music you can play are quite limited and I found all the fiddly things such as having to constantly loosen/tighten the bow, put resin on it annoying and I found it quite uncomfortable to play it for any long period of time. I was very young though, so you'll probably have more patience with these little things.
    Constantly? Just tighten it when playing, loosen when not. And you put on enough rosin at the start and that's it, or if you're playing for a long time just apply gradually.
    They're such minor things!
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    (Original post by JAR12)
    Constantly? Just tighten it when playing, loosen when not. And you put on enough rosin at the start and that's it, or if you're playing for a long time just apply gradually.
    They're such minor things!
    I know but when coupled with the fact that I didn't even enjoy playing it, they became quite annoying! I played from the age of 8-11 though, so I doubt those things would annoy me now but they did then.
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    Nothing sexier than a half naked man playing the piano. :coma:
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    Will you be able to have regular access to a piano? If not, then you probably won't get that far. You could be better off learning guitar, as it's portable and versatile, and doesn't present a beginner with intonation problems.
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    (Original post by Boom.Squish)
    Sorry to hijack the thread, OP but I was wondering what people thought about self-teaching piano. Is it a bad idea?

    OP: I'm in a similar position, except I used to play a violin. I didn't really enjoy it, if I'm honest. The styles of music you can play are quite limited and I found all the fiddly things such as having to constantly loosen/tighten the bow, put resin on it annoying and I found it quite uncomfortable to play it for any long period of time. I was very young though, so you'll probably have more patience with these little things.

    Personally, I'd choose piano or guitar - huge choice to what you can play, sounds nice by itself and with an accompaniment and generally versatile. Choose what you like best though because if you love it you'll always be willing to put up with difficulties you might encounter.
    Self-teaching the piano can be good, but you should probably get someone to teach you just the odd lesson to make sure you're on the right tracks.
    More so that you don't get into bad habits (bad posture or technique can actually cause injury), and to give you tips on techniques than anything.
    Good luck
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    you realise whatever you play, for the first 6 months or so, is going to be boring.

    Piano over guitar, definitely
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    (Original post by Da Bachtopus)
    Will you be able to have regular access to a piano? If not, then you probably won't get that far. You could be better off learning guitar, as it's portable and versatile, and doesn't present a beginner with intonation problems.
    bull****; a keyboard is fine
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    I play the piano, clarinet and guitar and I would say play guitar. Piano is easily my favourite but it takes years to play anything half decent and even then you have to spend a lot of time working on pieces. With guitar you can choose whether to play songs, etc or go down the classical route. If you choose to play chords, etc you just need to know chords and it's easier to get good at - that's why so many people teach themselves guitar. Plus, it's portable, won't take up space in your room and good for relaxing.

    The ones you suggested:
    piano - hard to get good at, hard to keep in your room, need to learn to read music (if you want to play classical) and maybe it's because piano is my love but I don't think you should start it up unless you are willing to dedicate a lot of time as people always take it up and drop it after grade 1 because it is HARD. Treble clef and bass clef hard to read together :p:
    drums - hard to keep in your room, noisy for flatmates (unless you get one of those electrical ones)
    violin - sounds squeaky and really bad until you get good, need to learn to read music
    guitar - go for this one I'd say (unless you want to start drums again since you seemed to be good at them)
 
 
 
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