4 Best Piano Books

4 Best Piano Books_RxCalculations

Best Piano Books

Picking the right piano book can be tricky, especially when there are so many options out there. Beginners and seasoned pianists alike benefit from well-structured learning materials.

This blog post guides you through selecting books that match your skill level and goals, making practice enjoyable and effective. Discover your perfect piano companion here!

Choosing the Best Piano Books: Factors to Consider

Consider your level of experience, learning style, and musical goals when choosing the best piano books for your studies. These factors will determine which method book or repertoire collection will best suit your needs as a student.

Level of Experience

Selecting the right piano books hinges on your current skill level. If you're a complete newcomer, basic adult piano courses and beginner lesson books will help you master foundational techniques.

These step-by-step lessons lay out essential musical theory while slowly introducing simple songs to build confidence and dexterity. For students who've moved past the basics, intermediate-level method books dive deeper into scales, chords, and more complex pieces.

Advanced pianists can look for challenging material that polishes their technique and expressive playing with compositions from classical to jazz genres. Books such as "The Art of Piano Playing" by Heinrich Neuhaus or "Beethoven Goes Jazz for Piano" push seasoned players to refine their craft further.

As musicians progress, they need material that matches their evolving abilities—a vital factor in keeping learning fresh and motivating.

Learning Style

Everyone learns differently, and finding a piano book that matches your unique learning style is crucial to making progress. If you're a visual learner, look for books with clear diagrams and lots of illustrations to help you understand the placement of your fingers on the keys.

Auditory learners might benefit from accompanying CDs or online resources where they can hear the music they are trying to learn. Kinesthetic learners will want books with hands-on exercises and opportunities to practice various techniques before tackling full pieces.

If you prefer structured lessons, consider series like Faber's Adult Piano Adventures or Alfred's Basic Piano Library, which guide you through each concept in a step-by-step manner.

For those who enjoy exploring at their own pace, a book like 'The Ultimate Guide to Mastering the Piano' could be more appealing because it allows for flexibility in learning paths.

No matter your preference—strict methodology or creative exploration—choose a piano method book that speaks directly to how you absorb information best so that sitting down at the keyboard always feels rewarding.

Musical Goals

Choosing the right piano books should align with your musical goals, whether that's mastering classical pieces or playing beautiful piano solos. Consider if you want to dive into jazz piano, explore contemporary songs, or focus on building a strong base in music theory and sight reading.

Each goal directs you toward different materials. For instance, "The Virtuoso Pianist" by Hanon will strengthen your piano technique for more advanced compositions while "Lang Lang Piano Book" could inspire you with its mix of classic and modern pieces.

Setting clear objectives is crucial as it can guide your practice and help track progress. If becoming adept at reading sheet music quickly is one goal, look for books rich with exercises like "Step by Step Piano Course".

Seeking to learn how to play complex classical music? Books featuring works of Beethoven or Chopin will be invaluable resources that match these aspirations. No matter your ambition—perhaps even teaching yourself piano—the best piano books cater to every step on this journey towards achieving your dream soundtracks.

Essential Piano Books for Beginners

Quick Recommendation

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Comparison Table

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ProductPricePublication DatePrint LengthDimensionsItem WeightISBN-13ISBN-10PaperbackLanguagePublisher
Alfred's Basic Adult Piano Course$10.79September 1, 1983112 pages11.87 x 9.04 x 0.28 inches2.31 pounds978-08828461630882846163YesEnglishAlfred Music
John Thompson's Easiest Piano Course$7.99November 1, 200540 pages8.5 x 0.11 x 11 inches2.31 pounds978-08771801280877180121YesEnglishWillis Music
Hanon: The Virtuoso Pianist$8.99November 1, 1986116 pages9 x 0.31 x 12 inches2.31 pounds978-07935254470793525446YesEnglishG. Schirmer, Inc.
The Art of Piano Playing by Heinrich Neuhaus$21.88December 31, 2016256 pages5.4 x 0.7 x 8.4 inches12.7 ounces978-18710824561871082455YesEnglishKahn & Averill

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1. Alfred's Basic Adult Piano Course

Alfred's Basic Adult Piano Course_RxCalculations

Easy-to-follow piano lessons are perfect for adults new to playing.


  • Published in 1983, with a print length of 112 pages
  • Dimensions: 11.87 x 9.04 x 0.28 inches and item weight: 2.31 pounds
  • Available in the English language as an illustrated edition paperback
  • ISBN-13: 978-0882846163 and ISBN-10: 9780882846163
  • Published by Alfred Music on September 1, 1983

Unlock the magic of piano playing with Alfred's Basic Adult Piano Course: Lesson Book, Level One. This acclaimed instructional book has earned its spot at the top for its intuitive approach tailored for adult beginners. Imagine sitting by the piano and, note by note, creating music that stirs the soul—all through lessons that blend classical techniques with modern learning styles.

The authors have poured their vast teaching experience into every page ensuring that you not only learn how to play but understand music theory as well. You'll breeze through exercises designed to build dexterity and knowledge simultaneously. Think about how satisfying it will be when you can read sheet music or impress friends with tunes from memory!

Alfred's Basic Adult Piano Course is esteemed because of its patient pace and clear instructions, which resonate well with older students picking up an instrument perhaps for the first time since childhood or ever. Learners appreciate how each chapter lays a solid foundation before advancing—reinforcing skills without overwhelming them. Real progress happens here; satisfaction grows every time a learner masters a new piece—a testament to why this course stands out in our lineup.


  • Learn piano at your own pace with clear and easy-to-follow instructions.
  • Build a strong foundation in music theory and technique through comprehensive lessons.
  • Enjoy playing popular songs as you progress through the course, keeping you engaged and motivated.
  • Benefit from a well-rounded approach that combines traditional and contemporary teaching methods.


  • Level One may be too basic for experienced pianists
  • Some users find the pace of the course to be slow
  • Limited emphasis on music theory

Perfect for adults with little to no prior piano experience who are eager to learn and enjoy playing beautiful music. Dive into the world of piano today and start your musical journey with Alfred's Basic Adult Piano Course: Lesson Book, Level One!


PublisherAlfred Music; Illustrated edition (September 1, 1983)
Paperback112 pages
Item Weight2.31 pounds
Dimensions11.87 x 9.04 x 0.28 inches
Best Sellers RankSee Top 100 in Books
Print length112 pages
Publication dateSeptember 1, 1983

2. John Thompson's Easiest Piano Course

John Thompson's Easiest Piano Course_RxCalculations

Ideal for beginners desiring an enjoyable and easy piano learning experience.


  • Published on November 1, 2005
  • Part of a set of three books for beginners
  • Easy-to-follow instructions for piano lessons
  • Illustrated edition for visual aid
  • Paperback format with English language content
  • Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.11 x 11 inches

Unlock the world of music with John Thompson's Easiest Piano Course Part 1, an exceptional guide that offers a smooth introduction to piano for students. This well-structured course book eases learners into the basics with clear illustrations and simple exercises that make understanding the fundamentals a breeze. Designed by experts in music education, it focuses on building confidence right from the start.

John Thompson's method has stood out in our rankings due to its user-friendly approach which makes practicing feel like less of a chore and more of an exciting journey. Each lesson builds upon previous knowledge in a way that ensures steady progress without overwhelming the student. Its thoughtful layout includes engaging songs that reinforce learning objectives, helping students not only master technical skills but also develop musicality as they play.

We've selected this as number two on our list because it strikes just the right balance between educational content and enjoyable practice sessions. Whether it’s reading notes or mastering scales, John Thompson's Easiest Piano Course Part 1 lays down a solid foundation for any budding musician looking to flourish at their own pace—without forsaking quality instruction for simplicity.


  • Engaging and easy-to-follow lessons for beginners
  • Gradually progresses through different techniques and concepts
  • Includes popular songs to practice along with the exercises
  • Helps build a strong foundation in piano playing


  • Limited range of music genres
  • Focuses mainly on traditional notation
  • May not be challenging enough for advanced pianists

John Thompson's Easiest Piano Course Part 1 is perfect for beginners who are eager to learn piano straightforwardly and enjoyably. Start your musical journey today with this accessible and effective course.


PublisherWillis Music; Illustrated edition (November 1, 2005)
Paperback40 pages
Item Weight2.31 pounds
Dimensions8.5 x 0.11 x 11 inches
Best Sellers RankSee Top 100 in Books
Book 1 of 3John Thompson's Easiest Piano Course
Print length40 pages
Publication dateNovember 1, 2005

3. Hanon: The Virtuoso Pianist

Hanon The Virtuoso Pianist_RxCalculations

Enhancing Finger Dexterity and Strength in Aspiring Pianists.


  • A 116-page book filled with exercises and studies for piano players
  • Originally published in 1873, a timeless resource for pianists of all levels
  • Designed to improve dexterity, strength, and agility in playing the piano
  • Standard notation is used throughout the book
  • Suitable for beginners to advanced level pianists
  • Includes detailed practice instructions

Honing your piano skills just got easier with Hanon: The Virtuoso Pianist in Sixty Exercises, part of Schirmer's Library of Musical Classics. Expertly curated for both budding maestros and seasoned pianists, these exercises stretch fingers, challenge coordination, and improve overall technique. Each practice piece is designed to progressively build the dexterity needed for complex compositions, allowing students to develop at their own pace.

What sets Hanon: The Virtuoso Pianist apart is its time-tested approach that targets every aspect of piano playing. From strengthening the weakest fingers to perfecting quick successions of notes, students gain a solid foundation that supports advanced learning. As our No. 3 pick, this book strikes a balance between rigorous training and achievable milestones – it’s a comprehensive toolkit that equips learners with essential skills without overwhelming them.

The everlasting popularity of Hanon: The Virtuoso Pianist in educational settings underscores its effectiveness. Teachers often recount how incorporating these sixty exercises into daily practice transforms students' abilities rapidly—testimonials you can trust when investing time into mastering the piano. Embrace this classic method from Vol. 925 Complete as an indispensable resource on your musical journey.


  • Improve finger dexterity and strength for more precise piano playing
  • Develop speed, agility, and coordination in both hands
  • Enhance overall technique and control while playing complex passages
  • Perfect hand independence for greater fluency during performances


  • May feel repetitive for some users
  • Limited musical variety within the exercises
  • Some exercises may be challenging for beginners


PublisherG. Schirmer, Inc. (November 1, 1986)
Paperback116 pages
Item Weight2.31 pounds
Dimensions9 x 0.31 x 12 inches
Best Sellers RankSee Top 100 in Books
Print length116 pages
Publication dateNovember 1, 1986

4. The Art of Piano Playing by Heinrich Neuhaus

The Art of Piano Playing by Heinrich Neuhaus_RxCalculations

Master the Art of Piano Playing with Expert Guidance


  • Published on December 31, 2016
  • Contains 256 pages of valuable content
  • Compact dimensions: 5.4 x 0.7 x 8.4 inches
  • Lightweight at just 12.7 ounces
  • Available in the English language
  • Published by Kahn & Averill

"The Art of Piano Playing" by Heinrich Neuhaus is a treasure trove for student pianists aspiring to refine their craft. It's penned by a maestro who has shaped the fingers and minds of some of the greatest talents in classical music. This book isn't just about hitting the right notes; it dives deep into the philosophy and soulful essence behind each keystroke, offering insights that resonate with beginners and advanced players alike.

Neuhaus shares stories from his own experiences, drawing students into the nuanced world of piano mastery. His guidance on technique complements lessons on emotional expression, pushing readers to explore beyond what's written on sheet music. The book provides practical advice intertwined with inspirational wisdom, helping students interpret pieces with both precision and passion.

Woven throughout are tips that only an experienced concert pianist could offer—like how to breathe life into melodies and make every performance uniquely memorable. As you turn each page, Neuhaus’ teachings help elevate your understanding of music dynamics and phrasing, turning mechanical practice into a dynamic journey towards musical excellence.


  • Achieve greater control and expression in your piano playing
  • Learn techniques to improve your musical interpretation and performance
  • Gain insights into the art of music making from a renowned piano teacher
  • Enhance your understanding of the connection between technique, emotion, and musicality


  • Requires a significant time commitment
  • May not be suitable for absolute beginners
  • Some sections may be challenging for less experienced pianists

This comprehensive guide to piano playing is ideal for aspiring pianists who are eager to hone their skills and master the art of playing the piano with finesse. Elevate your musical journey by delving into The Art of Piano Playing today!


PublisherKahn & Averill (December 31, 2016)
Paperback256 pages
Item Weight12.7 ounces
Dimensions5.4 x 0.7 x 8.4 inches
Best Sellers RankSee Top 100 in Books
Print length256 pages
Publication dateDecember 31, 2016

Advanced Piano Books for Intermediate and Advanced Players

If you're ready to take your piano skills beyond the basics, advanced books can be crucial stepping stones. For intermediate players eyeing mastery, "The Ultimate Guide to Mastering the Piano" is a rich resource that dives deep into technique and musical expression.

You'll find intricate pieces that challenge your hands and mind, pushing you towards greater accuracy and artistry. As you progress, exploring genres becomes essential; "Beethoven Goes Jazz for Piano" offers an exciting twist on classical melodies, helping you explore rhythm and improvisation in fresh ways.

Dive further into complex compositions with Lang Lang's "Piano Book," which gathers iconic works designed to refine your interpretative skills. Tackling these pieces requires a solid grasp of music theory and sheet reading abilities but rewards players with profound musical growth.

Seasoned pianists might also revel in the complexity found within collections such as "The Lion King" arrangements or eccentric rhythms from Afro-inspired songs – both demand precision while delivering enjoyable learning experiences.

Each book opens up worlds of challenging repertoire that prepare ambitious students for performances or advanced examinations alike.

Conclusion: Continuing Your Piano Journey with the Best Books.

Embark on your musical journey with the perfect piano books tailored to your skill level and learning style. Whether you're a beginner or aiming to enhance your expertise, Alfred's Basic Adult Piano Course and John Thompson's Easiest Piano Course are ideal choices offering comprehensive lessons and visual guidance.

Elevate your piano skills with these top-notch resources as you immerse yourself in the joy of music.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What are the best piano books for beginners?

A: The best piano books for beginners usually include titles like Faber's Adult Piano Adventures or Alfred's Basic Adult All-in-One Course.

Q: How can I learn to play the piano?

A: You can learn to play the piano by using method books like Faber's Adult Piano Adventures or Alfred's Adult Piano series which provide structured lessons for beginners.

Q: Are there any piano books specifically for kids?

A: Yes, there are piano books designed for kids that offer engaging lessons and activities to make learning the piano fun and accessible for young learners.

Q: Do these piano books cover basic music theory?

A: Yes, many piano books for beginners include basic music theory concepts to help students understand the fundamentals of music while learning to play the piano.

Q: Which piano book is recommended for adult beginners?

A: For adult beginners, popular choices include Faber's Adult Piano Adventures and Alfred's Basic Adult All-in-One Course, which offer comprehensive lessons tailored for adult learners.

Q: Can I teach myself piano with these books?

A: Yes, you can use method books like Faber's Adult Piano Adventures or Alfred's Adult Piano series to teach yourself how to play the piano at your own pace.

Q: What type of piano pieces can I expect to learn from these books?

A: These piano books cover a range of piano pieces, including classical piano repertoire, popular songs, jazz pieces, and exercises to help you develop various piano skills.

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