Piano in 21 days is an online piano course that aims to make it easy to learn Piano.
As an avid student of music, I’m always on the lookout for programs that promise to help beginners learn the instrument of their choice – in this case piano programs. Now that I understand the pros and cons that come along with these type of courses, I’m prepared to see if they’re actually worth it.
Here, we’ll take a look at one of these online programs. Piano in 21 Days is an online course that aims to make learning piano more user-friendly than traditional classes. We found it to be approachable, down to earth, and straightforward. All the instructions it lays out are clear, and it’s perfect for someone who feels intimidated by academic classes.
In this Piano in 21 Days review, we’ll look at some of its key features and tools. For example, we’ll get to know Jacques Hopkins. He’s the lead instructor of the course. Jacques began learning piano as a kid but found note reading and traditional classes to be stifling. So, he created a modern approach to piano classes.
By focusing on piano chords, popular songs, and improvisation, you can learn piano much more quickly and affordably. His pop song usage makes this course perfect for learning the instrument for fun, not for an orchestra. Do note that you’ll need a keyboard with at least 49 keys for this course. You should also purchase a sustain pedal to follow its exercises. This is only the tip of the iceberg, keep reading to learn everything you need to know about this program.
Piano in 21 Days Overview
Piano in 21 Days gives you a multi-pronged approach to learning piano. You can learn its lessons either through guided videos or a workbook. Both of these resources are clear, concise, and to the point. The best way to describe them is “bite-sized.”
If you use the videos, you’ll listen to Jacques guide you through piano movements as he plays. They come with extra exercises for you to practice, and benchmarks to guide you through each chapter. However, you don’t have to worry about getting a ‘grade’ on these exercises. Even though the program says it’s for 21 days, you can complete it at your own pace.
What makes Piano in 21 Days different from other programs is how inclusive it is. When you buy the course, you get access to an online Facebook community to interact with other players. From young to even 90 years old, people of any age are welcome to join and learn from each other.
If you want to learn sheet music or classics, this isn’t for you. But if your goal is to play hits by Adele or The Beatles, you’ll be excited for this course.
Piano in 21 Days doesn’t have an app. So, it can’t show you what chords you’re clicking while you play. But it does come with easy instructions to playback what you hear. If you want feedback, Jacques gives you his email and number to ask him for guidance.
Features of Piano in 21 Days
We found that Piano in 21 Days’ features make you feel like you’re joining a community. It almost feels like a friend is teaching you how to play the piano. But what sets those features apart from other programs?
We’ll take a look at seven essential features that make Piano in 21 Days useful.
As we mentioned before, Jacques Hopkins will be your instructor on this course. The videos aren’t live. However, he keeps a casual, positive environment in his teaching style.
There’s no complicated jargon or long rambles. Jacques is to the point, breaking down any step from basic chords to white keys to its fundamentals.
No matter which package you buy, you get access to the Student Center chat. Jacques is active in the discussion to answer any questions you have.
Alongside Jacques, other students can answer your posts and help you on your journey. Afterall, it can be good to get diverse opinions on your playing style.
If you want to get a feel for his style, you can look at his Youtube Channel. It doesn’t give away the entire Piano in 21 Days class. It does have useful cover videos for you to try, though.
Pop Music Lessons
A lot of people try to learn a song by practicing a single cover. That has its perks because you can focus on one piece without distractions. Still, Piano in 21 Days introduces smart tricks to learn more songs with fewer techniques.
For example, you learn that you can break pop songs down to their basic chords. One of the most popular chord progressions in music is in this order: C-Major, G-Major, A-Minor, and F-major.
With just those four chords, Jacques makes a point that you can practice 36 popular songs. Here are a few songs with this sequence, to name a few: I’m Yours by Jason Mraz, Don’t Stop Believing by Journey, and Forever Young by Alphaville.
It saves a lot of time and energy to learn piano through this method. This feature also helps train you to learn songs by ear. And learning by ear is almost more important than sheets for some pianists. When you recognize chords just by their sound, it can make piano playing feel more intuitive and flexible.
Workbook and Exercises
Are you a visual, audio, or writing learner? In either case, you’ll find an exercise that works for you in this program.
With Piano in 21 Days, you get a workbook that summarizes the same lessons as the videos. That’s useful if you want a refresher after a video lesson. They come with links inside for different versions of the same practice.
For example, you learn the names of white keys on Day 1. On the workbook, you can access audio where Jacques names different keys. You have to play them as you hear them. As you keep playing, he speeds up the pace to make it a challenge. Even if he’s not with you, it feels like a real instructor for a moment.
If you don’t want to do the audio version, you can download the program’s flashcards instead. Pick a card with a particular chord or name, and play it as you see it.
Jacques gives you little extra tips to help your piano playing posture. For example, he reminds you to play with your elbows at the level of or above the keys. He doesn’t go over hand posture in detail, though. Learning hand posture would be useful, so you don’t strain your hands in complex rhythms.
We mentioned that Jacques teaches you to play the piano with videos. We do want to add one detail, though. When he plays, you can see Guitar-Hero-style bars moving toward the piano. These bars show up before you need to play the next chord. And that pace makes it useful so you don’t fall behind a tough song.
That kind of animated guide is something you wouldn’t get in in-person classes. You would need to repeat positions after a teacher. But having the bars helps you visualize what keys you’re playing and for how long.
At the end of the video, he lets you know what you should do before moving on to the next lesson. Some of the first lessons cover black and white keys. But as you keep going, you’ll learn improvisation and chord inverses.
You can also expect to learn various chords: 2nd, 4th, suspended, 7th, and slash chords are all a part of this course.
What is improvisation, exactly? This class makes a point of dispelling popular myths quickly. Many beginners think that improvisation means hitting random chords that sound good. But in this class, you learn how to recognize the strategy behind good improv.
For example, a preview of the course shows you how to improvise the G chord. When you press G, you’re clicking G, B, and D notes at the same time. You can modify this by hitting each note one at a time, though. Just like that, you have a technique that you can do in the middle of a song. Voila, it’s a form of improv.
You can also play the same chord on different octaves of the piano. An octave is a set of white keys set at eight keys apart.
The course summarizes how you can play the same chord on different octaves. And that is an easy key for a beginner player to try testing different moods on the same tune.
This feature is handy because it gives you a toolbox to have fun. You learn how to change the tone of your favorite song easily. And that’s more exciting than copying an exact note sheet.
It won’t make you an instant master at the piano. Of course, you still need to practice to perfect your technique. But it’s a great start to creating music of your own.
Melody & Ear Training
When you get the Ultimate package, you can get a bonus feature. It’s a continuation of Piano in 21 Days called Melody & Ear Training in 21 Days.
Instead of Jacques, pro pianist Steve Lugrin will be teaching you this course. You can see a preview of his general work on his YouTube Page.
Steve takes a similar approach to Jacques in piano teaching. You’ll have a set of strategies and tricks and little focus on theory. Similarly, you watch him play the piano as he verbally guides you.
Melody training is useful so that you can play songs without a visual guide. So these lessons are helpful for you to identify different sounds you enjoy, and weave them into your own work.
Piano Buying Guide
This feature is more of a bonus to the others we listed. You can access the site’s piano buying guide before you even purchase the course. Still, it’s a testament to how helpful Piano in 21 Days is.
In the guide, Jacques covers four types of guitars: acoustic, digital, keyboard, and midi.
Acoustic pianos are gorgeous pieces of furniture. They usually come with a full set of 88 keys. However, they are bulky, and you need to tune them to play good melodies professionally.
Digital pianos look similar to acoustic ones. They come with the benefit that you can plug your headphones into them and play music ‘privately.’ However, they’re still heavy, and sometimes they don’t feel as good to the fingers as an acoustic keyboard. If you get a digital piano, purchase one with weighted keys.
A keyboard piano is generally portable. You can put it on your desk or another surface and play the same notes. The downside is that you need to purchase a separate pedal for it.
Finally, the Midi is an ultra-portable piano. Unlike a keyboard piano, it doesn’t have a built-in speaker. You need to hook it up to another port like a computer to translate it to sound. Midi keyboards are useful if you want to pair them with piano learning apps, however.
All of these pianos are useful for the course as long as they have 49 keys.
Piano in 21 Days: Features at a Glance
In a rush? Here is a summary of who Piano in 21 Days is for.
Get Piano in 21 Days if you are someone who:
- Wants to learn how to improvise songs for fun.
- Wants to play hits for an audience.
- Prefers something affordable, and with a steady pace.
- Doesn’t want to feel graded on their work.
- Enjoys a casual, motivated learning community.
Even the most user-friendly, simplified piano lessons won’t please everyone. If you identify with any of these, Piano in 21 Days isn’t for you:
- You enjoy deep music theory.
- You want someone to watch you play live.
- You’re interested in classical music.
- You want to learn how to read scores.
There’s nothing wrong with either of these approaches to playing the piano. Yet, knowing what you’re looking for will help you pick the best course for you.
Alternatives to Piano in 21 Days
There’s not a one-size-fits-all approach to learning the piano. It’s the little nuances in programs that can make one better for you or another.
For example, Piano in 21 Days is generally best for complete beginners. If you’re an experienced player who wants to learn specific songs, you might benefit from another program.
Additionally, some pianists want a portable program they can take with them. In those cases, you might like an app that works on the phone and tablet.
Here are four other popular piano learning programs to consider.
You can get FlowKey on your tablet or computer. Unlike Piano in 21 Days, FlowKey does show you sheet music. It’s best for novice to experienced players who want to learn specific songs. You see the notes under the music as you play it. And if you’re going to practice the same part of a song on loop, the app lets you loop it at your own pace.
Check out the Flowkey review first.
Piano teachers helped make Skoove, another tablet and computer application. Because of their background, in-person teachers use some of Skoove’s features to help guide their lessons. It has beginner-friendly courses that break down individual notes and fingerings. Beginners might like it more than Flowkey for its casual, general lessons.
Read my Skoove review.
Pianoforall has video lessons and eBooks for different genres. In the videos, you see the instructor play the piano alongside what notes they play overhead. The most exciting thing about Pianoforall might be its specific genre focuses. You can find eBooks for ballad, rock n roll, jazz blues, and more piano styles.
Pianote has live lessons weekly. You can connect to real piano teachers on them. Then, you can access a community forum for students to help each other improve. It’s a very customizable learning path: choose to learn by songs, scales, or other methods at your own pace. You can pay an annual fee to access live sessions, sight-reading materials, and a complete curriculum.
Read the Pianote review here.
If you’ve wanted to learn the piano but feel intimidated by academic classes, Piano in 21 Days will be great for you. You won’t get professional or scholarly level lessons out of it. But you’ll learn how to play a lot of songs for yourself or social events.
Piano in 21 Days comes in three different packages. You don’t have to buy it to try out it’s features, though. You can test its 5-day workbook to dip your toes into the program.
The workbook introduces you to the first five days of the paid course. You will learn the names of white keys, major chords, minor chords, left-hand playing, and the 36-song method. It includes hyperlinks to video examples, and a few practice exercises for you to try out.
Click here for a free 5-Day workbook to introduce you to the course. We hope this Piano in 21 Days review was useful, and let us know what program you decide.
Last Updated on March 6, 2021 by Liam F. Admin