Teach Yourself To Play Piano Or Guitar

Some new technology can help. You can teach yourself to play one of these instruments with some electronic coaching.

Interest in playing the guitar is up these days, in part because of the popularity of video games like "Guitar Hero." So last December, the Milwaukee-based company Hal Leonard Corporation, a leader in the music print industry, launched GuitarInstructor.com, the online destination for learning guitar. GuitarInstructor.com can be the next step for "Guitar Hero" gamers who are itching to try playing the real deal but still want to enjoy the comfort of a virtual environment with lessons right at their fingertips. The site acts almost like an iTunes for guitar players, allowing users to pick and choose music lessons and all kinds of music to download.

You can download video lessons and songs. The guitar lessons are approximately eight minutes long and taught by various instructors. The content covered is equivalent to that of a half-hour private lesson. "Core" Video Lessons cover fundamental concepts and techniques; "Master Class" Video Lessons cover specialized subjects.

Video Songs let you hear and see how to play songs. Just watch, listen, and learn! Each song starts with a lesson from a professional guitar teacher. Then, the teacher performs the complete song along with professionally recorded backing tracks.

You purchase what you want, when you want. Video Lessons and Video Songs are only $1.99 each. For more information visit www.GuitarInstructor.com.

Yamaha has something new for anyone who wants to learn to play or brush up on their skills. Yamaha's Disklavier Mark IV piano can "sing" and play itself. Yamaha calls it a "player piano with 21st-century twists." The SmartKey feature makes learning to play fun and easy for beginners. Its PianoSmart® technology s can synchronize the piano's playback with other instrument and vocal tracks from a standard audio CD for a fully orchestrated performance. The Mark IV also has a video synchronization capability that lets users videotape their own performances and play them back later. For more information, visit www.yamaha.com/disklavier or call (714) 522-9011.

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