The piano is considered the King of all musical instruments. None of the others has ever had more impact on western music. In this post, we’ll try and explain why we fell in love with the sound of the piano and how we decided to create several pages on our website about different pianists, techniques, and even some models that are highly appreciated nowadays.
So, what makes the piano so special?
Capable of sounding effervescent and fleeting in one instant and quite powerful at another moment, there are few instruments that have even come close to the range of the piano. We mean that both in terms of the dynamics of the sound, but also in terms of its done. The piano is considered the musical instrument that’s the most similar to the human voice. It’s pretty difficult not to feel moved when listening to a work of art such as one of Chopin’s Nocturnes.
Even if you decide to go for a digital piano, the experience will be amazing.
We won’t say that other instruments don’t look elegant, but we think that we can agree on one thing — pianos are very elegant. They are classy and raise the status of any chamber you might be located in. Their black and shiny silhouette (and we’re referring to concert grand pianos, here) is quite iconic. Naturally, these days, there are pianos that come with an ornate case, but almost every grand piano is aesthetically pleasing.
The Health Benefits
Many studies suggest that playing the piano is good for the overall functionality of the body and for the functionality of the brain. Playing music in general actually stimulates more of your brain than any other activity you might ever be engaged in. Playing an instrument (and the piano, in particular) is possibly one of the best mental releases you can capitalize on, and it also helps with regulating your body functions.
It is often said that, if you learn to play the piano, you can then easily learn to play other musical instruments. Many musicians will agree with this statement. Learning the piano is the best way to learn music theory and study music. With the exception of percussive pitch instruments, like the marimba and vibraphone, the piano is the only instrument where you look right at the notes as you are playing. Even the guitar isn’t as ‘scholastic’. The notes are there for you to see in a very clear (and clean) black and white color scheme, which means that it’s so much easier for you to see what you are doing.
On the one hand, if you have a piano in your home and you’d like to entertain some of your friends one evening, there’s nothing stopping you from doing just that — if you know how to play. On the other, the truth is that playing the piano is an actual joy. It’s true that technology dominates society nowadays, but in all honesty, some keyboard pianos are at least capable of simulating the sounds that a grand piano can make. This is also a great gift idea if you’re looking for the best piano for kids.
We started looking into some of the most critically acclaimed pianos and keyboard pianos ever made and soon went on to research pianists, their education, and a lot of other interesting things. We also analyzed the brands that make weighted keyboards now and their history. This is a very fascinating topic that we will continue to address in many of our future posts.
Charlie’s favorite pianists
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Mozart is definitely one of those artists that is hard not to be a fan of since he was one of the most talented musicians that have ever lived. He was a prodigy not only on the piano but also on the violin.
He has one of the largest classical repertoires with more than 600 pieces, each one more beautiful than the other. One of his pieces that are particularly worth listening to is the Symphony No. 41.
While there are plenty of other famous pianists and composers, Debussy is worth a mention on this list since he is without a doubt one of the best classical pianists. He is considered by many as the musical revolution pioneer of the 20th century, and he is difficult to classify since his work is so non-conformist.
Debussy was not a rule-follower and he spent most of his life setting his own rules for the works he created and he had complete musical freedom. Rêverie is worth checking out if you want a taste of his music.
What sets Chopin apart from other pianists is his knowledge of the piano which many considered to be almost scientific. Because he had such a good knowledge of the instrument, he was able to create unique sounds that have earned him the title of one of the greatest pianists who have ever lived.
Chopin was also very talented at improvising and throughout his career, he had composed many wonderful and unique pieces of music. If you want to listen to one of his many pieces, we recommend starting with Les Quatre Ballades pour Piano.
From a very young age, Sergei Rachmaninoff amazed his teacher with his outstanding ability as a pianist and composer. He is known for his clean finger technique which was mostly due to his large hands that spanned 12 inches.
One of his most popular pieces is the Symphony No. 2 which has often been voted and includes on lists of the most popular pieces of classical music of all time. It is a beautiful piece that everyone who’s looking to excel at the piano will be bound to learn at some point.
Ludwig van Beethoven
Beethoven is famous for going deaf at the age of 27 while still managing to remain one of the greatest composers of all time. His work is absolutely amazing with the 5th Symphony and Fur Elise being arguably the most famous of them all. His style is characterized by a simplified theme that plays with the emotions of the listener.
Which instruments are similar to a piano?
The piano is a percussion instrument and that makes it similar to other melodic percussion instruments such as the vibraphone, xylophone, marimba, and glockenspiel. All melodic percussion instruments are arranged in the same format as the piano but are played with mallets instead of fingers.
There are also other instruments that are even closer to the piano and that any pianist should be able to play such as the pipe organ, clavichord, and harpsichord. Because these instruments are played with the hands, pianists will find it easier to play them.