Music Basics – Introduction to the White Keys

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Music Basics Series – Part 3

By Jan Durrant

There are only seven (7) letter names used on the piano:

A B C D E F G

It is interesting to note here that no matter what instrument you play, whether it is piano, tuba or violin, ONLY the seven letter names above are used in the entire realm of music!

There are two very easy ways to visualize and remember the names of the white keys on your piano and keyboard. Remember, the note names on an electronic keyboard are the same as on the acoustic piano.

Since it is not possible to include a graphic in this format, simply remember that the ‘CDE’ note groups in always located directly underneath the two black note group.

The letter name ‘D’ in the white key always located directly in between the two black key note groups. ANY TWO BLACK NOTE GROUP on the piano has the letter name ‘D’ as the white key located in between them.

Go to your keyboard NOW and start to play all of the C-D-E groups from the lowest (bottom left) to the highest (top right) on your keyboard. Say C – D – E as you play each key.
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Now we will learn about the F – G – A – B note groups. Simply locate any three black note group on your piano or keyboard and realize that the F-G-A-B white keys are located directly beneath them.

Directly outside of the three black note groups are ‘F’ on the left hand side of the three black note group and ‘B’ on the right hand side of the three black note group. Just fill in the outer ‘F’ and ‘B’ with G and A and you are done!

Go to your piano or keyboard NOW and find all of the F-G-A-G white keys underneath each three black note group. As above,play slowly and evenly saying the letter names as you play the F-G-A-B groups from the bottom of the piano or keyboard (low left hand end) to the top of your piano or keyboard (top right hand end).

Congratulations! You now know ALL of the white key names on the piano!

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Article source: GoArticles.com About the author: Jan Durrant holds a Master’s Degree in Music from the University of Texas at San Antonio in Texas. She has over 25 years experience in both public and private school music teaching.

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