You know that one exercise that’s my go-to, my ride-or-die in every practice session? Well, I’m about to spill the beans on it in today’s new PIANOLY video! I use this ultimate exercise every single time I practice the piano.
Here’s what’s in store in today’s video:
– Decoding the Circle of Fifths: This little gem is like a treasure map, guiding us through the relationships between musical keys and chord progressions. It’s a game-changer!
– The Ultimate Piano Exercise: I’m unveiling an exercise that’s not your typical piano drill. It’s a total workout for our skills, theory, technique, and more!
– Jamming with Chords: Say hello to a wider chord repertoire that’ll have us playing our favorite tunes with more flair and depth than ever before.
This exercise has been my secret sauce, seriously amping up my piano skills—I use it religiously, and today, I’m sharing it with all of you!
Hey guys, and welcome back to Pianoly. Today, I’ve got the ultimate exercise that’s going to jazz up your playing, your skills, your theory. It’s basically going to improve everything. It’s like the hidden gem in my practice routine. I use this exercise, too, to improve my ability to play my favorite songs, and I’m excited to show it to you today. And if you’d like more videos on how to go from zero to playing your favorite songs on the piano in months, not years, I highly recommend hitting the bell and hitting the subscribe button because I post new videos every week. And by the way, I do recommend watching my free training. It’s in the link in the description below. And in that free training, I’m going to show you the exact steps that I take my students through that helps them go from zero to playing their favorite songs in months, not years.
The link is in the description below. Now, before I show you this magical, wonderful exercise, I need to explain to you what the circle of fifths is just very briefly. This is not going to be a deep dive on the circle of fifths. It’s just going to be a very quick overview. So basically, here’s what the circle of fifths looks like. It’s basically like a musical map that shows the relationships between different keys in music. Imagine a circle with all the 12 musical notes arranged around it, so you can start at any note. So let’s say, C, and moving clockwise each step to the next note represents going up by a perfect fifth. What the heck is a perfect fifth? This is what a perfect fifth is. For example, going from C to G is five notes. One, two, three, four, five. That is a perfect fifth. That’s a very brief summary of what a perfect fifth is. Like I said, this is a brief summary of the circle of fifths. So from C, you go to G, a fifth up from C, and then D to A and so on.
The circle of fifths helps musicians understand how keys are related to each other. Keys next to each other on the circle share a lot of similar notes. It’s like a musical roadmap that helps you understand the relationships with different keys. So basically, if we look at the circle, we can see all of the different keys in music, and they’re rotating around at the circle of fifths because it goes around in fifths, like I said. Again, because the circle of fifths has every key in music, it’s really helpful. Okay, so now let’s get to the magical exercise.
So here’s what I do with the circle of fifths. So let’s say I want to practice all of the major chords in the whole world. What I’m going to do is this. I’m going to play through all of the major chords by going through the circle of fifths in order. So for example, I would practice all of my major chords by going C, then to G, then to D, then to A, then to E, then to B, then to F sharp, then to C sharp, then to A flat, then to E flat, then to B flat, then to F, and then back to C. So if I go through the circle of fifths, that helps me go in a nice certain order, and it helps me cover practicing all of the major chords.
Now, this is going to help you get better at it and get you faster at playing chords. So watch this, I’m going to turn on the metronome, and I’m going to put the metronome at 60, and you can kind of speed up the exercise. So at first, if you’re a beginner and you’re really new at this, you could go in four counts like this. One, two, three, four. One, two, three, four, and so on. And I’m just playing an octave in my left hand, by the way, with the chord in my right hand. I would do that for the whole exercise. Then you could speed it up and do two counts like this. One, two. One, two. One, two, and keep going through the circle of fifths. And then, the final goal is to do it at one count like this, and back to C. Okay?
So this is a really great way to practice all of your different chords. So you could go through all of your major chords around the circle of fifths with the metronome, keep making it faster and faster and faster. Then, you could do the same thing with literally any type of chord. So you could do it with minor chords and go around. C minor, G minor, D minor, A minor, E minor and so forth. And then, you could add other types of chords, like you could do diminished chords going around and go around the whole circle of fifths. It’s not going to be the prettiest thing you’ve ever heard.
Okay, so my last tip for this is to keep a really nice handy chart on hand. And you can use that chart to write down major, minor, diminished, and so on, all the different types of chords, and use the chart to keep track of where you are in your speed. So for example, you could say major chords, and then you could put 60, and then you could put whole notes or minor chords, 60 whole notes, stuff like that on your chart. And then that way you keep track and you keep writing down where you are. You’ll notice your progress, you’ll notice that you’re speeding up, and it kind of gives you a visual and, again, helps you keep track of where you are. And my last tip for this is that daily dedication is key here. Spend a little time each day on this exercise, and if you do that, you’re going to watch your skills grow and your knowledge, of course, just expand.
And before we go, let me know in the comments, what is your favorite way to warm up on the piano? Let me know. And if you are someone who’s surfing around on YouTube trying to learn the piano and you have no idea where to begin, I highly recommend watching my free training. In this training, I show you the exact steps that I take my students through that helps them go from zero to playing their favorite songs on the piano in months, not years. The link is in the description below. And before you head out, be sure to hit the subscribe button and the bell because I post new videos every week, and I will see you next time.