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Which is the most versatile instrument ?

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(@purple)
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Joined: 19 years ago
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I skimmed through so if I repeat ideas, I apologize. Piano, in my opinion, is the most versatile. A guitar can play 6 notes at a time, not enough for 13th chords. A piano, you can play as many notes as the keyboard or piano has. Plus, my guitar has almost four octaves. A standard bass guitar is an octave lower, I believe. That is a five octave range between the two. My keyboard has that and a piano has a little over 7 octaves. Piano and guitar can both do any type of music and both have draw backs.

As for what is easier, I think initially learning on a piano is MUCH easier. Easy lay out to understand music and you can play simple melodies and chords almost instantly. A C chord on a guitar vs a C chord on piano - no contest. However, to be an adequate piano player and guitar player probably is the same difficulty. IMO at the upper most tiers of learning piano is harder. Your two hands on a guitar are always working in unison with each other (ideally anyway). A piano requires you to to use each hand equally well while they both play separate rhythms, and occasionally hitting a foot pedal. Just my thoughts...

It's not easy being green.... good thing I'm purple.


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(@crkt246)
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Joined: 15 years ago
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try carying a paino to a gig


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(@saryu)
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Joined: 16 years ago
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Yes and it is easier. It's laid out much more logically.
As is a guitar in an open tuning. :D

The thing with a piano is that in theory, anyone can look at it and begin playing stuff straight away. The notes are laid out in linear fashion so it is very easy to stick your hand on I-III-V and play a chord. With a guitar you have six strings and each one starts from a different position. It takes a lot more effort to work out how to play a chord because for at least three strings, each with a different start point, you have to find a I, III, or a V and then put it all together. Further to this you have to learn two different skills at once: plucking/strumming as well as fretting. With a piano you don't have to learn either skill: simply pressing a key is kind of intuitive. Also, it's hard to make your fingers bleed by playing a piano :-P. I think I once heard someone say once that the piano is the easiest instrument to learn to play but the hardest to master.


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(@ricochet)
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Joined: 19 years ago
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I wasn't saying that a guitar in open tuning is as easy to figure out as a keyboard. But it is much easier, and much more logically laid out, than "standard" tuning. Very easy to look at and see where the degrees of the scale are, and knowing that there's a major (or minor) chord on each fret, it's easy to modify that chord by a simple change like fretting the string tuned to the third one fret in front of the barre for a sus chord for example. It's always seemed to me to make more sense to teach beginners in open tunings and move to standard as an advanced technique.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


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(@saryu)
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Joined: 16 years ago
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I wasn't saying that a guitar in open tuning is as easy to figure out as a keyboard. But it is much easier, and much more logically laid out, than "standard" tuning. Very easy to look at and see where the degrees of the scale are, and knowing that there's a major (or minor) chord on each fret, it's easy to modify that chord by a simple change like fretting the string tuned to the third one fret in front of the barre for a sus chord for example. It's always seemed to me to make more sense to teach beginners in open tunings and move to standard as an advanced technique.

I can see what you mean about open tuning being a good thing to teach on, from a theoretical perspective. I played around with open G a while back and came to the conclusion that standard tuning was easier - I can't remember the specifics now but it seemed that a lot of chords (excepting G major of course, lol) were much easier to play on standard tuning. I've said this before somewhere, but if you want to teach guitar with a focus on theory as well then the ukulele is probably the best instrument to start with. You are using the same fretting, strumming and plucking skills as with a guitar, but with only four strings it is so much easier to link the theory to the practice.


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(@ricochet)
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Standard tuning is only easier if you've already spent a lot of time learning it. It is more versatile, though.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


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(@sgincyqx)
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Joined: 15 years ago
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Yes and it is easier. It's laid out much more logically.
As is a guitar in an open tuning. :D

Yes but the majority of people learn guitar in standard tuning, so the cumbersome, odd layouts plague them until they tune it open.

Ewan McGregor: I said, "Eve, I want you to look after my wedding ring while I'm away," and she started to cry and I said, "Eve. Eve, I can't wear my ring or I won't get laid on the trip!"


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(@ricochet)
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Yep. And a lot of them give up before they ever get anything musical out of the guitar as a result.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


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(@sgincyqx)
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Yep. And a lot of them give up before they ever get anything musical out of the guitar as a result.

The people who aren't willing to work to learn the layout of a guitar fretboard should go back to Guitar Hero IMO.

Ewan McGregor: I said, "Eve, I want you to look after my wedding ring while I'm away," and she started to cry and I said, "Eve. Eve, I can't wear my ring or I won't get laid on the trip!"


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(@ricochet)
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That sounds just like the people who used to say that anybody who wouldn't/couldn't learn the DOS command line interface should stay away from a computer. Anyway, there are a lot more ways to lay out a guitar fretboard than standard tuning.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


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 Nuno
(@nuno)
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It's laid out much more logically.
What do you mean with "logically"?


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(@causnorign)
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Joined: 17 years ago
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While its not on the list, and most people don't consider it an instrument my vote goes for the human voice. Its appropriate for all kinds of music (except instrumentals) but it does have acapella all to itself. The tonal range is excellent, you can take it with you everywhere.


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(@sgincyqx)
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Joined: 15 years ago
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It's laid out much more logically.
What do you mean with "logically"?

Once you figure out a guitar I suppose it makes sense, but with the piano you don't need to memorize string names and the lack of sharps to certain notes still throws me off

Ewan McGregor: I said, "Eve, I want you to look after my wedding ring while I'm away," and she started to cry and I said, "Eve. Eve, I can't wear my ring or I won't get laid on the trip!"


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(@boxboy)
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Joined: 16 years ago
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but with the piano you don't need to memorize string names and the lack of sharps to certain notes still throws me off
Any western instrument has the same flats and sharps. Based on how they are tuned they might be somewhere you didn't expect.

Don


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(@saryu)
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Joined: 16 years ago
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but with the piano you don't need to memorize string names and the lack of sharps to certain notes still throws me off
Any western instrument has the same flats and sharps. Based on how they are tuned they might be somewhere you didn't expect.

A diatonic harmonica in the key of C has no flats or sharps (unless you bend notes, which I guess counts as somewhere you didn't expect!)l


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