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Keyboard For Dummies

ISBN: 978-1-118-70549-0
360 pages
November 2013
Keyboard For Dummies (1118705491) cover image


The easy way to get keyed up on the keyboard

Where Piano For Dummies helps budding musicians to master the black-and-white musical keyboard, Keyboard For Dummies helps them understand the possibilities that unfold when those black-and-whites are connected to state-of-the-art music technology.

Keyboard For Dummies explains the ins-and-outs of modern keyboards and helps you get the most out of their capabilities. Key content coverage includes: an overview of the types of keyboards available today and how they differ from acoustic pianos; expert advice on choosing the right keyboard for your wants/needs and how to shop and compare the various models; a close look at the types of sounds an electronic keyboard offers and how to achieve them; step-by-step instruction on how to use keyboards anywhere using external speakers, amps, home stereos, computers, and tablets; guidance on how to use keyboard software and applications to get the most out of keyboard technology; and much more.

  • A multimedia component for this title will be hosted at Dummies.com and includes companion audio tracks that demonstrate techniques and sounds found in the book
  • Step-by-step instructions make learning keyboard easy and fun
  • Introduces you to the musical possibilities of the keyboard

If you're new to the keyboard or looking to take your skills to the next level, Keyboard For Dummies is a thorough guide to the ins and outs of this popular instrument.

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Table of Contents

Introduction  1

Part I: Getting Started with Keyboards  5

Chapter 1: Living in a Keyboard World 7

Chapter 2: So Many Keyboards, So Little Time 15

Chapter 3: Choosing the Right Keyboard for You 41

Chapter 4: Setting Up and Caring For Your Keyboard 61

Part II: Dipping Your Toes Fingers into Music Basics 81

Chapter 5: Musical Notation: Decoding the Musical Language 83

Chapter 6: Developing Your Fingering and Basic Technique 105

Chapter 7: Going Chord Crazy 121

Part III: Using Common Keyboard Features 133

Chapter 8: Selecting and Playing Sounds 135

Chapter 9: Using Effects to Enhance Your Sound 153

Chapter 10: Jamming with the Drummer: Playing Along to Rhythm Patterns 167

Chapter 11: Join The Band! Adding Accompaniment 181

Chapter 12: Exploring Arpeggiation 203

Part IV: Moving into More-Advanced Keyboard Features  213

Chapter 13: Laying Down Tracks: Recording Your Playing 215

Chapter 14: Editing Sounds 237

Chapter 15: Teacher Included: Using Onboard Learning Systems 257

Chapter 16: Sitting In with the Stars: Playing Along with Recordings 275

Chapter 17: The Computer Connection: Using Software to Enhance Your Music Making 287

Part V: The Part of Tens  305

Chapter 18: Ten Tips for Keyboard Shopping 307

Chapter 19: Ten Ways to Enhance Your Playing Experience 313

Appendix: Discovering What’s on the Audio Tracks 319

Index  325

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Author Information

Jerry Kovarsky is a regular columnist for Keyboard magazine and longtime product management guru with Casio, Korg, and other companies who have been instrumental in bringing keyboard technology into people's homes and onto stages and studios around the world.

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Press Release

February 20, 2014
Keyboard For Dummies Demystifies the World of Electronic Keyboards

The term “keyboard”, when used to describe a musical instrument actually represents a broad range of products. Apart from the familiar black and white keys these instruments can be very different from one another, and can be quite confusing to the person only familiar with the acoustic piano. Enter Keyboard For Dummies (Wiley; November 2013; ISBN: 978-1-118-70549-0), written by music industry veteran Jerry Kovarsky. The book explains in easy to understand language the various types of keyboards, and guides the reader through the selection, setup and use, and interesting possibilities of each type of keyboard. 

In Keyboard For Dummies, the reader will learn about the following areas regarding electronic keyboards:

  • The main categories of classic electronic keyboards through the years, and the technologies behind how they make their sound
  • The “must have” sounds for each genre of music
  • How to match up your needs to the right type of keyboard
  • Practical advice on shopping for, setting up and using the instrument
  • Simple sound and effects editing tips
  • Using the features found on portable and accompaniment/arranger keyboards
  • The basics of reading music, chords and fingering
  • An overview of both MIDI and audio recording
  • Possibilities of connecting to a computer or iPad

Included throughout Keyboard For Dummies are tips for developing your musical skills, recommended artists and recordings, and real-world advice that can’t be found in the owner’s manual. Accompanying the book are over 100 online audio examples where the author demonstrates every significant concept covered, bringing the text descriptions and musical examples to life. 

“There are plenty of good books on how to play the piano/keyboard, but I have never seen a title that adequately covers the wide world of electronic keyboards,” states Kovarsky. “My career in the music product industry has placed me at the forefront of the keyboard revolution so writing this book was inevitable. And a lot of fun! I hope the readers enjoy it and it helps them on their musical journey.”

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