Learn to Play Piano – Lesson 8 – Sharp & Flat Signs. Half & Whole Steps. C, F & G Major Keys.

Social:

Let’s learn to play piano. This is our eighth free piano lesson. In this lesson we take a look at the following:

  • The sharp sign
  • The flat sign
  • Half steps
  • Whole steps
  • The key of C Major
  • Primary chords in C Major
  • The C Major Scale
  • The Key of F Major
  • Primary Chords in F Major
  • The F Major Scale
  • The key of G Major
  • Primary Chords in G Major
  • The G Major Scale

My Best Recommendation: Click here for the BEST piano/keyboard course I’ve seen on the Internet.

Watch this lesson:

Let’s learn some music terms and what to do when you come across them.

The sharp sign ♯

The sharp sign (♯) before a note means play the next piano key to the right, whether black or white. Sharp means higher pitch and the sharp symbol raises a note by a half tone (semitone). When a sharp appears before a note, it applies to that note for the rest of the measure.

Practice drawing some sharp signs. First draw the two vertical lines. Then add the heavy slanting lines.

The flat sign ♭

The flat sign (♭) before a note means play the next piano key to the left, whether white or black. Flat means lower in pitch and the flat symbol lowers a note by a half step. It means lower in pitch by a semitone. When a flat appears before a note, it applies to that note for the rest of the measure.

Practice drawing some flat signs. First draw one vertical line. Then add the heaver curved line.

Learn to play piano online on piano-keyboard-guide.com. Let’s talk about half steps and whole steps.

Half steps

A half step is the distance from any key to the very next key above or below (black or white).

What note is a half step lower than G? Answer: G♭. What note is a half step higher than F? Answer: F♯. F♯ is the same as G♭.

What note is a half step lower than D? Answer: D♭. What note is a half step higher than C? Answer: C♯. C ♯ is the same as D♭.

Whole steps

A whole step is equal to two half steps. Skip a key (black or white).

D is one whole step higher than C. And C is one whole step lower than D.

If you’re tired of the boring, traditional way of learning to play piano, learn to play piano here. Click here for my number one piano lesson recommendation. I have written a review about it here.

Learn to Play Piano Online – Keys of C, F and G

The Key of C Major

C major (often just C or key of C) is a musical major scale based on C, with pitches C, D, E, F, G, A, and B. Its key signature has no flats/sharps. C major is one of the most commonly used key signatures in music. C major is often thought of as the simplest key, owing to its lack of either sharps or flats. As you learn to play piano you will find that your very first pieces will be very simple ones in this key, and the first scales and arpeggios that you will learn are usually C-major ones.

C major scale fingering

To play a C major scale with the right hand, the fingering is in this ascending order: 1 2 3 – 1 2 3 4 5. In descending order they are 5 4 3 2 1 – 3 2 1. With the left hand the fingers in ascending order are: 5 4 3 2 1 – 3 2 1. And in descending order they are 1 2 3 – 1 2 3 4 5.

An important trick when playing a C major scale is to pass the thumb under the 3rd finger. As soon as the thumb has played the first note (while the 2nd finger is playing the second note) pass the thumb under to the base of the fourth finger, so it will be ready to play its next note in advance.

C Major Scale:C major scale on the treble clef.

The three most important chords in any key are those built on the 1st, 4th and 5th notes of the scale. Hence the primary chords in the key of C major are C major, F major and G major.

The Key of F Major

F major (or the key of F) is a musical major scale based on F, consisting of the pitches F, G, A, B flat, C, D, and E. Its key signature has one flat (B flat). To play the F major scale with the right hand, the 5th finger is not used.

F major scale fingering

The fingering for the right hand falls into the following groups. 1 2 3 4 – 1 2 3 4 ascending, and 4 3 2 1 – 4 3 2 1 descending. When playing an F major scale with the right hand, in the ascending direction, as soon as finger 1 (the thumb) is played, pass it under finger 4 until it is needed. When descending cross finger 4 over finger 1.

For the left hand the fingering is 5 4 3 2 1 – 3 2 1 ascending, and 1 2 3 – 1 2 3 4 5 descending. When playing an F major scale with the left hand, in the ascending direction, cross finger 3 over finger 1. When descending pass finger 1 under finger 3.

F Major Scale:F major scale on the treble clef.

The primary chords in the key of F major are F major, B flat major and C major.

So you want to learn to play piano? Practice makes perfect. Keep practicing your scales.

The Key of G Major

G major (or the key of G) is a major scale based on G, with the pitches G, A, B, C, D, E, and F sharp. Since F is sharp in the G scale, every F will be sharp in the key of G major. Instead of placing a sharp before every F in the entire piece, the sharp is indicated at the beginning in the key signature.

G major scale fingering

Learn to play piano the right way. Proper fingering is important. When playing a G major scale on piano with the right hand, the fingering in ascending order is 1 2 3 – 1 2 3 4 5. When ascending, as soon as the first note of the scale is played, while the second finger plays the second note, pass finger 1 under 3, so it can be ready to play the next note.

In descending order the fingers are 5 4 3 2 1 – 3 2 1. While descending, cross finger 3 over 1 as soon as finger 1 is played.

With the left hand the fingering in ascending order is 5 4 3 2 1 – 3 2 1 and in descending order it’s  1 2 3 – 1 2 3 4 5.

G Major ScaleG major scale on the treble clef.

Practice the G major scale with the hands separate. After you’ve learned it well, you can move on to playing both hands at the same time.

The primary chords in the key of G major are G major, C major and D major.

Practice playing these scales several times daily. Begin slowly and gradually increase speed.

Learn more about key signatures here.

Learn to Play Piano Online: 

  1. Lesson One
  2. Lesson Two
  3. Lesson Three
  4. Lesson Four
  5. Lesson Five
  6. Lesson Six
  7. Lesson Seven
  8. Lesson Eight
  9. Lesson Nine
  10. Lesson Ten
  11. Lesson Eleven
  12. Lesson Twelve

Return from Learn to Play Piano Online to home page.

Comments

comments