Techniques for playing the thumb piano

Techniques for playing the thumb piano

For Solo Music, playing the thumb piano is more than just an instrumental skill!

It's also fun to discover more about the sound of the thumb piano and to explore different ways of playing it. If you're bored with the same old scale on your thumb piano, then maybe you can try a different tuning.

Different tunings may change everything you know about your current thumb piano. You can even use a tuning of your own creation, but first you should remember the original C major scale so that you can easily adjust it in the future.

There are thousands of different techniques for each thumb piano, and there are many interesting special sounds that you can find different ways to have fun.

We offer several techniques for playing your own music using a wider variety of techniques!

A glissando is a musical expression in which two notes in a musical progression are not directly interval-hopped, but rather have a continuous change of pitch to connect the two notes.

The arrangement of the keys on the thumb piano makes playing glissandos unique, because when more than three keys are plucked in the same direction, the glissando scale is chordal, creating a glissando effect that is very different from that of other instruments.

On a thumb piano, it is easier to slide from the inside out (bottom up) and more difficult to slide from the outside in (top down). The thumbnail is often a critical factor in the slide, as it often gets stuck during the slide. It takes a lot of practice to maintain the stability of the slide, and the key is to play the slide gently, without overexerting yourself and getting your finger stuck.

Vibrato (resonance box)
Frontal vibraphone is a very special technique that creates a different sound from vibraphone by not completely covering and opening the frontal sound hole of the thumb piano with one finger.

Because the front holes are much larger than the two back holes, the sound created by this technique is also different from the vibes created by the back holes.

However, not every note on the thumb piano can be made to sound like a doll in this way, and only five to six specific notes resonate well with this technique.

If you use this technique with the two back soundholes, you can make a more prominent effect.

Vibrato (back sound hole)
The back of the thumb piano has two soundholes, which are repeatedly opened with the index (or middle) finger when playing.

When the sound holes are covered and opened with the index finger (or middle finger), a tremolo-like effect is produced.

By playing a tremolo with your back fingers while plucking the keys with your thumb, you can add color and richness to your playing.
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