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A question about approach to working out fingerings. #2799619
01/08/19 05:48 AM
01/08/19 05:48 AM
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PianoWVBob Offline OP
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I was watching a tutorial on a simple 3 chord tune and noticed that the person used what id call “anchor fingers” when moving from chord to chord, even fingering the same chord differently based on which chord came next. Example: when fingering a C major 2nd inversion to an F major first inversion chord the “2” finger is the common tone / anchor finger between them.

Also rather than using the same fingers and moving them up two keys to go from F major to G major, he uses the same logic, the F major root form chord is fingered 1-2-3 and the G major root chord is fingered 1-2-4 so that the 3 and 5 fingers can play the E and C while the G stays where it is as a common tone when going back to the C chord.

I guess I’m asking is this proper? Using unique fingerings for every chord transition / sequence rather than just moving the same fingering up or down a couple of places to make different chords?

I hope that makes sense.

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Re: A question about approach to working out fingerings. [Re: PianoWVBob] #2799685
01/08/19 09:02 AM
01/08/19 09:02 AM
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Yes, it is common to use specific fingering patterns depending on the chord itself, chord position and chord progression. The pattern also depends on the "topography" (i.e .layout of black and white keys) that needs to be played. So, to smoothly connect two block chords you can use said "anchor fingers". The "anchor fingers" are also required to play suspensions or to voice chords in multiple parts.

Re: A question about approach to working out fingerings. [Re: PianoWVBob] #2799687
01/08/19 09:12 AM
01/08/19 09:12 AM
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Iaroslav Vasiliev Offline
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This kind of fingering is good and correct. But if I was learning to play now I wouldn't use 'anchor finger' much because it implies 'sticking' to the keys and this is not good at early stages of learning.

Re: A question about approach to working out fingerings. [Re: PianoWVBob] #2799689
01/08/19 09:14 AM
01/08/19 09:14 AM
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PianoWVBob Offline OP
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Thanks for chiming in everyone...I appreciate it.

This was a specific song, my "lessons" are focused on chords that don't anchor just yet. I'm barely getting into inversions to smooth the changes.

Re: A question about approach to working out fingerings. [Re: PianoWVBob] #2799692
01/08/19 09:19 AM
01/08/19 09:19 AM
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Each situation is different and each person's preferences are different.

There are, however, bad fingerings that competent pianists would not use although those fingerings might be chosen by a less competent/experienced pianist. IOW what a pianist chooses as their preference is not necessarily a good fingering.

I don't think this idea of anchor fingers is particularly useful or good although some may find it helpful. Fingering often depends on what was played before or after the notes in question or the desired effect. For example, if the the C major to F major chords mentioned in the OP were to be played legato then 5-3-1 to 4-2-1 would make sense.

Re: A question about approach to working out fingerings. [Re: PianoWVBob] #2799733
01/08/19 11:55 AM
01/08/19 11:55 AM
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JohnSprung Offline
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Originally Posted by PianoWVBob
... the F major root form chord is fingered 1-2-3 and the G major root chord is fingered 1-2-4 ....


This has me confused. Is it possible that you're talking about playing this with the right hand? 3 on F to 4 on G would be sort of backwards for the left hand.

Fingering based on what comes before and after is a good idea, especially on things that will ultimately have to go fast. Consider bars 11 - 14 of "Katyusha" (Matvei Blanter, 1938). It bounces back and forth between Am played 421 and Em played 542 (or at least that's the way I finger it). (Left hand of course).


-- J.S.

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Re: A question about approach to working out fingerings. [Re: JohnSprung] #2799734
01/08/19 11:59 AM
01/08/19 11:59 AM
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PianoWVBob Offline OP
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Originally Posted by JohnSprung
Originally Posted by PianoWVBob
... the F major root form chord is fingered 1-2-3 and the G major root chord is fingered 1-2-4 ....


This has me confused. Is it possible that you're talking about playing this with the right hand? 3 on F to 4 on G would be sort of backwards for the left hand.

Fingering based on what comes before and after is a good idea, especially on things that will ultimately have to go fast. Consider bars 11 - 14 of "Katyusha" (Matvei Blanter, 1938). It bounces back and forth between Am played 421 and Em played 542 (or at least that's the way I finger it). (Left hand of course).



Yes...this is for the right hand. Chords on the right..bass note with the left. It's singing accompaniment.

Re: A question about approach to working out fingerings. [Re: PianoWVBob] #2799742
01/08/19 12:25 PM
01/08/19 12:25 PM
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JohnSprung Offline
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That would work, but still somewhat strange. Maybe if you really needed to maintain finger legato on the melody line.... ?


-- J.S.

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Re: A question about approach to working out fingerings. [Re: JohnSprung] #2799746
01/08/19 12:30 PM
01/08/19 12:30 PM
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PianoWVBob Offline OP
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Originally Posted by JohnSprung

That would work, but still somewhat strange. Maybe if you really needed to maintain finger legato on the melody line.... ?


I think mainly he's doing to to teach a technique that would be valuable later on...not necessarily right now.

Re: A question about approach to working out fingerings. [Re: PianoWVBob] #2799769
01/08/19 01:35 PM
01/08/19 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by PianoWVBob
Originally Posted by JohnSprung

That would work, but still somewhat strange. Maybe if you really needed to maintain finger legato on the melody line.... ?
I think mainly he's doing to to teach a technique that would be valuable later on...not necessarily right now.
In many decades of piano playing I have never consciously done what that person suggests. That does not mean it might not be useful sometimes but I don't think it's a major fingering idea. For example, 1-2-4 followed by 1-3-5 or 1-2-4 followed by 1-2-4 could be better depending on the circumstances(what follows the two chords) or hand size.

Last edited by pianoloverus; 01/08/19 01:40 PM.
Re: A question about approach to working out fingerings. [Re: PianoWVBob] #2800725
01/10/19 11:14 PM
01/10/19 11:14 PM
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Charles Cohen Online content
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That fingering (GCE/124 <—> ACF/125) follows a "least possible movement" model. the center of the hand barely moves (it can be kept steady, if you try). Fingers 4 and 5 stay over their keys. Only the thumb moves a full key sideways.

Whether it's worth the trouble — that depends on the musical surround. If the chord becomes an arpeggio, and the tempo is fierce, I think it makes a lot of sense.

Try repeating each chord twice, in swing rhythm . . .


. Charles
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Re: A question about approach to working out fingerings. [Re: PianoWVBob] #2800980
01/11/19 05:55 PM
01/11/19 05:55 PM
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125 on a triad feels really tight and scrunched together to me.... It all depends on your hands.


-- J.S.

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Knabe Grand # 10927
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