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christos_liaskos
11-09-2011, 03:06 PM
All I'll say is I'm a guitar man myself and I'm going to take a lot of convincing :D. The things that some people can do with one are just mindboggling, and when you take it to the extremes so people do I don't see how playing other instruments to an equally high level can be any harder

Andres
11-09-2011, 03:22 PM
While easier to first learn, the piano will be harder to play than a guitar in an equally highest level.

Total independence of both hands vs. a partial independence (the hand plucking the strings is linked with the hand on the frets, as in you need both to go together to sound)

You can play ten notes at the same time on a piano, while you can't do that on a guitar

Dynamics control on the piano is quite more complex than on the guitar. Fortissimi are louder than a fortissimo on a guitar, as pianissimo on a piano is just as quiet as a pianissimo on a guitar, meaning the dynamic range is heaps bigger.

Expression: the need of use the pedals on the piano.

Range: Academic piano suites and converti require a greater range of notes than a guitar,

If someone asks me, the hardest instruments to play are the harp and the largest brasses (playing a tuba equals a living nightmare)

rdis10093
11-09-2011, 03:25 PM
the piccolo hands down

GoSurfBoy
11-09-2011, 03:34 PM
http://i643.photobucket.com/albums/uu156/surf69er/4166264645_c690a231a6_z.jpg

ollinger
11-09-2011, 03:34 PM
Piano, guitar, piccolo, they all will produce a TONE without appreciable effort, so one only need worry about producing the melody. But strings, violin, viola, cello, etc. require considerable skill just to produce a decent tone, much less a melody.

thelastfurlong
11-09-2011, 03:46 PM
Piano, guitar, piccolo, they all will produce a TONE without appreciable effort, so one only need worry about producing the melody. But strings, violin, viola, cello, etc. require considerable skill just to produce a decent tone, much less a melody.

Sorry I have to butt in here...as a player of the piano, guitar & saxophone I have to say that there IS "appreciable effort" required to produce a tone from the piano and the guitar.

I really don't think we can compare instruments in general though. There are just too many variables and at the end of the day it comes down to the sounds produced. All are difficult in their own way

ollinger
11-09-2011, 03:49 PM
Huh? We have a piano, and I found that if I press a key i get a perfectly acceptable tone. Try bowing a violin if you don't know what you're doing and you get horrible scratchy noise. Not to denigrate any instrument but there are some that pretty much anyone, including my cat walking on the keyboard, can produce a decent tone on.

jonnythan
11-09-2011, 03:51 PM
I was waiting for someone to mention violin/viola/cello.

RoddickAce
11-09-2011, 03:57 PM
IMO, the piano and violin are two of the hardest to master.

I can't speak much for piano because I don't play but I think it is hard to play many moving parts, play octaves fast, play notes from far distances with the same hand, and some pieces are ridiculously fast lol.

For violin, a lot of people say it is hard because there are no frets, but personally I don't think this is the hard part of playing in tune except when you constantly shift up from really high to low to middle to high, etc., or are playing on 3 + strings and you need to adjust your fingers. The hardest and most underrated part by lay people imo is that you have to master bow control and the many different bowing techniques (ie: spiccato or jumping the bow), because this affects whether you have enough bow to play, how musical and smooth you are, and many other different styles.

Videos
Piano
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8alxBofd_eQ&t=0m3s
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqSulR9Fymg

Violin
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TbZanmPRORo
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RF0ChBe9HHI&t=0m5s

Whats amazing is that pros can make hard pieces look easy.

Student: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ehZX6_F3uBI
Pro: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5KAgI7Qvxjs

ollinger
11-09-2011, 03:59 PM
(note: family includes a sister-in-law who majored in piano at Eastman School of Music, cousin who studied musicology at Columbia and whose instrument is piano, they always tell me the strings are the toughest because it's just so difficult to simply get a beautiful tone)

LeeD
11-09-2011, 04:04 PM
I say auto racing ... :):)
You gotta push every instrument to the max, as does everyone else you're racing against, and one mistake results in a blow engine, an expensive CRASH, with more consequences like dying and getting maimed.
Some say a fighter pilot, but that's not just for the sake of competition, normally.

r2473
11-09-2011, 04:19 PM
The Human Voice

You think you've heard some awful screeching coming from a violin......

dave333
11-09-2011, 04:42 PM
Hmm hard to say, a lot of it is apples and oranges.

As a violin player, I find the independent hands for piano to be very difficult. I find actually making a sound with wind/brass instruments hard, I suck at singing, etc.

But I definitely feel like violin is hard to sound proficient at. At least with piano, you can "impress" with something beautiful like Fur Elise. It's a fairly simple piece but doesn't like it. There are also plenty of pop songs and arrangements you can show off with. It's very hard to sound good with a violin; it requires a lot of bow control as someone noted above. Even after 10 years of practice, the hardest part is still making sure I'm generating the best sound I can. Fingerings and stuff are fairly rudimentary after you play a lot, but bow control (because it's so subtle and there are a lot of techniques) is really hard.

That said, French Horn is also notoriously difficult to sound good with.

LeeD
11-09-2011, 04:46 PM
Well, EVERY musical instrument is hard to play WELL, at the highest levels.
A top sax player is just as talented as piano player, drummer, or violinist.
Most anyone can make the noise, but it's the competition that makes for good or bad musicians.

Fearsome Forehand
11-09-2011, 05:17 PM
The tuba. :)

N23
11-09-2011, 05:19 PM
Piano for the reasons mentioned above. Additionally, drummers or percussion always seem to be difficult you include a bass set in your drum kit.

LeeD
11-09-2011, 05:20 PM
A flute for TheBigShow (6'10" and 470 lbs.).
A standup bass for a midget.
A guitar for a onearmed person.
A violin for the deaf.
Drums for a parapelegic.

Bhagi Katbamna
11-09-2011, 05:28 PM
A flute for TheBigShow (6'10" and 470 lbs.).
A standup bass for a midget.
A guitar for a onearmed person.
A violin for the deaf.
Drums for a parapelegic.

http://media.modbee.com/smedia/2011/02/16/19/LIVE_p0217_17b3melendez.standalone.prod_affiliate. 11.jpg

Beethoven became deaf later in his life and still played the piano very well.

Avles
11-09-2011, 05:28 PM
Piano, guitar, piccolo, they all will produce a TONE without appreciable effort, so one only need worry about producing the melody. But strings, violin, viola, cello, etc. require considerable skill just to produce a decent tone, much less a melody.

Have to disagree about the ease of the piccolo-- I have had trouble coaxing any tone from a flute, and I assume a piccolo would be similar. I think I might have an easier time getting a decent tone from a cello (maybe not the violin though--I tried one once and it sounded pretty scratchy).

Violin and cello, etc. have the added difficulty that you don't have frets to guide your fingers, so it's harder to play in tune.

Double reeds like the oboe are apparently extremely demanding as well.

spacediver
11-09-2011, 05:45 PM
While easier to first learn, the piano will be harder to play than a guitar in an equally highest level.

Total independence of both hands vs. a partial independence (the hand plucking the strings is linked with the hand on the frets, as in you need both to go together to sound)

You can play ten notes at the same time on a piano, while you can't do that on a guitar

Dynamics control on the piano is quite more complex than on the guitar. Fortissimi are louder than a fortissimo on a guitar, as pianissimo on a piano is just as quiet as a pianissimo on a guitar, meaning the dynamic range is heaps bigger.

Expression: the need of use the pedals on the piano.

Range: Academic piano suites and converti require a greater range of notes than a guitar,

If someone asks me, the hardest instruments to play are the harp and the largest brasses (playing a tuba equals a living nightmare)

great post!

One thing I've found interesting is that instruments like guitar and trumpet don't have a one to one mapping of fingering to pitch. You can create the a different note by plucking the same string (by modulating the fret); similarly for trumpet and air pressure.

Whereas piano, and to a large degree, flute have a more exclusive mapping, which makes them less complex in certain ways.

AtomicForehand
11-09-2011, 05:46 PM
The harp is one of the most complicated and difficult instruments to play, due to the chromatic problems.

The organ has the most complex music going on, including melodies for the feet. Organists are always amazing musicians.

MarinaHighTennis
11-09-2011, 05:55 PM
http://media.modbee.com/smedia/2011/02/16/19/LIVE_p0217_17b3melendez.standalone.prod_affiliate. 11.jpg

Beethoven became deaf later in his life and still played the piano very well.

Tony Melendez can play the guitar really well as well as write music! :shock:

Walenty
11-09-2011, 06:34 PM
1. French Horn
2. Bassoon
3. Oboe

Believe me on this one.

CLL
11-09-2011, 06:41 PM
I'm starting to learn the piano, and I'm not quite sure how people are able to multi-task with their fingers...

The violin on the other hand, easiest instrument to play.
It probably helps that I started the violin at a very small age.

jswinf
11-09-2011, 07:40 PM
I think the trumpet deserves consideration as being physically difficult to play well, but is not that difficult from a mechanical or theoretical standpoint.

Long ago I gave a trumpet lesson to a kid, in a music store setting, and he sat there for 30 minutes and could only blow air through the thing, never made a sound, despite everything I could suggest (which wasn't a lot, I was 15 and really had no business giving lessons.) But, when I was 8 and my cousin showed me her trumpet, I could play a scale on it within half an hour or so. (Guess she was a better teacher.)

Turns out I learned zero music theory playing the trumpet, just how to play the notes on the sheet, and got so I didn't enjoy it. Everybody wants to play screaming high notes, and that hurts. Plus, it's kind of hard to practice quietly.

I started fooling with a guitar around age 15 and enjoy it much more, even though I'm not very good at it.

jonnythan
11-10-2011, 04:12 AM
[Totally the wrong thread.]

Andres
11-10-2011, 04:44 AM
1. French Horn
2. Bassoon
3. Oboe

Believe me on this one.
I agree. Large wind instruments are like living hell!

thug the bunny
11-10-2011, 05:46 AM
Anyone ever try playing a pedal steel guitar? Impossible.

chrischris
11-10-2011, 05:58 AM
Second fiddle is tough for me to play , what about you?

chollyred
11-10-2011, 06:21 AM
As a drummer, I have to say the drums due to playing multiple intruments simultaneously with all four limbs. The poly rhythms, ever changing dynamics, and timing necessary to keep an entire band in sync.

I know a bunch of drummers that have also learned to play guitar, keys, etc. but only very few other musicians can learn to play drums. (I play drums, guitar, and harmonica.)

Now, can a drummer play by himself? Only during a solo. Drummers cannot realistically create a melody. A guitar player or a string player can entertain an audience by themselves, whereas a drummer needs a group setting. That does not mean that drums are easier to learn.

AtomicForehand
11-10-2011, 07:59 AM
1. French Horn
2. Bassoon
3. Oboe

Believe me on this one.

Disagree. I play bassoon (as well as many other instruments) and it is not difficult. (Reading tenor clef, however...) I played my first orchestral concert on bassoon after having had one in my hands for the first time only a week earlier.

NLBwell
11-10-2011, 08:13 AM
What I am amazed at when I watch my son play piano and drums is the way he is doing completely different things in completely different rhythms with different fingers/hands/feet. I played the piano and trumpet growing up as a kid, but there are completely different levels of things the brain and body are doing at high levels of drums, piano, and I assume some other instruments. As far as instruments where you are playing one note at a time like the trumpet, there are levels of training, talent, and musical ability, but I could understand everything Doc Severinsen was doing, I just can't wrap my brain around a complex Liszt piece.

Sometimes four hands are better than two?:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Aajtw30-YG0


Of course some of the all-time greats have played Liszt :-)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bYM84n-2Sas&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d1rJvs46a5g&feature=related


This is a really cool way of looking at it - you can see all the different things going on at once (it starts to get crazy at around 5:00).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FWmTg3bHwuw

and a cool look at some Liszt sheet music:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yBwhh_5q8lI&feature=related

and finally straight up:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7H99FM6S8rU&feature=related

r2473
11-10-2011, 09:28 AM
How about the didgeridoo or bagpipes?

jhick
11-10-2011, 09:54 AM
The poly rhythms...

As an accomplished pianist who has played pieces with poly rhythms, they can be quite difficult to master. You need to keep track of two different beats in your head and then translate them to said instrument.

Gavin Harrison incorporates this to the nth degree on this song in his drumming.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ctHTYChevvs

Cue to the 5:15 mark of the song where he plays 4/4 on the hi hat, 7/8 on the bass and snare, and 3/8 on the ride cymbal, insane. Hard to comprehend how it would be to play 3 different rhythms at once, esp with one in an odd time signature.

Up&comer
11-10-2011, 10:03 AM
A trumpet when you have braces.

chrischris
11-10-2011, 12:12 PM
The public as a candidate experienced during the recent debate on TV.

Slayer_of_Kings
11-10-2011, 12:30 PM
I think those cathedral organs look pretty intimidating:

http://www.organfestival.com/organs/harrison-small.jpg

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/69/Pipe.organ.console.arp.jpg/800px-Pipe.organ.console.arp.jpg

http://www.cathedralconcerts.org/site/images/stories/concerts/callahan_organ_composit.jpg

chrischris
11-10-2011, 12:33 PM
So do some of the bigger places they are being used at.

Manus Domini
11-10-2011, 04:09 PM
What instrument was Rach 3 composed for?

/End of thread

MarinaHighTennis
11-10-2011, 04:13 PM
I've found the piano, guitar, and trumpet to be easy. But the violin is the worst. The sound it made when I first started gave everyone a headache I never picked up again.

Its a shame, I wanted to do this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=prNTH_J2ceA&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-P-x8S75268&feature=related

Uvijek Argen
11-10-2011, 04:28 PM
Maaaaaannn...you guys are tripping. Cowbell is the harder instrument. Try to do a whole concert and keep the tempo...ufff :)


http://s017.radikal.ru/i410/1111/25/0992e3477a78.gif (http://www.radikal.ru)

jamesblakefan#1
11-10-2011, 04:39 PM
Huh? We have a piano, and I found that if I press a key i get a perfectly acceptable tone. Try bowing a violin if you don't know what you're doing and you get horrible scratchy noise. Not to denigrate any instrument but there are some that pretty much anyone, including my cat walking on the keyboard, can produce a decent tone on.

Is this your cat?

http://www.google.com/url?source=imglanding&ct=img&q=http://crackupboom.net/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/kb_cat01.jpg&sa=X&ei=lXy8TpbqO8W3twf3urnXBg&ved=0CAsQ8wc&usg=AFQjCNGzn_8fbTG9eqyjUIZdkwFk_bCwjA

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J---aiyznGQ

jamesblakefan#1
11-10-2011, 04:43 PM
I think the trumpet deserves consideration as being physically difficult to play well, but is not that difficult from a mechanical or theoretical standpoint.

Long ago I gave a trumpet lesson to a kid, in a music store setting, and he sat there for 30 minutes and could only blow air through the thing, never made a sound, despite everything I could suggest (which wasn't a lot, I was 15 and really had no business giving lessons.) But, when I was 8 and my cousin showed me her trumpet, I could play a scale on it within half an hour or so. (Guess she was a better teacher.)

Turns out I learned zero music theory playing the trumpet, just how to play the notes on the sheet, and got so I didn't enjoy it. Everybody wants to play screaming high notes, and that hurts. Plus, it's kind of hard to practice quietly.

I started fooling with a guitar around age 15 and enjoy it much more, even though I'm not very good at it.

As a former trumpeter (played from elementary school into high school) I'm surprised it gets mention here. Once you get the basics down it can be pretty easy to play anything on a trumpet. I've found guitar, piano, heck even for me the drums are harder to play at a high level than the trumpet.

Timbo's hopeless slice
11-10-2011, 05:12 PM
Any harmonic instument is always going to be harder to play.

My vote goes to the Piano as so many things can be happening at once in a given piece of music.

Special mention to prog rock drums, though, particularly Neil Peart...

thug the bunny
11-10-2011, 05:29 PM
As an accomplished pianist who has played pieces with poly rhythms, they can be quite difficult to master. You need to keep track of two different beats in your head and then translate them to said instrument.

Gavin Harrison incorporates this to the nth degree on this song in his drumming.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ctHTYChevvs

Cue to the 5:15 mark of the song where he plays 4/4 on the hi hat, 7/8 on the bass and snare, and 3/8 on the ride cymbal, insane. Hard to comprehend how it would be to play 3 different rhythms at once, esp with one in an odd time signature.

Thanks for that link. That is impressive. I will have to get that CD. Although I think we are talking how hard is an instrument for the general populace. Your example is an example of virtuosity, which is impressive no matter what instrument being discussed.

What do you think of Steve Gadd's performance in 'Aja' with Steely Dan?

jswinf
11-10-2011, 07:20 PM
As a former trumpeter (played from elementary school into high school) I'm surprised it gets mention here. Once you get the basics down it can be pretty easy to play anything on a trumpet. I've found guitar, piano, heck even for me the drums are harder to play at a high level than the trumpet.

How about an E above high C?

tray999
11-11-2011, 02:24 AM
This is a good question, so I asked my neighbor who plays violin for the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC. She said without any pause, the Harp is the most difficult instrument to master. Since she is a professional and I am a hack guitar player…. I will take her word on this debate!

chollyred
11-11-2011, 03:47 AM
What do you think of Steve Gadd's performance in 'Aja' with Steely Dan?

Steve Gadd is an incredible drummer. One of my fave's along with Jeff Pocaro, Rod Morgenstern, and Neil Peart.

Don't know who that drummer is in "Procupine Tree", but he's very good.

I haven't been playing much lately. This makes me want to...

Up&comer
11-11-2011, 04:09 AM
How about an E above high C?


Not incredibly difficult. You just have to have the right "fundamentals" and enough air. As I said before, braces make it a living hell.

jhick
11-11-2011, 05:28 AM
Thanks for that link. That is impressive. I will have to get that CD. Although I think we are talking how hard is an instrument for the general populace. Your example is an example of virtuosity, which is impressive no matter what instrument being discussed.

What do you think of Steve Gadd's performance in 'Aja' with Steely Dan?

Gadd is another monster drummer. Also a fan of Steely Dan.

FYI...the song I linked to is off of Porcupine Tree's Nil Recurring. It was released as a second album to Fear of a Blank Planet. The album only has 4 songs but they are all good.

Diagoras
11-11-2011, 06:50 AM
Musician of over 20 years here...

Guitar is definitely not the hardest. After my first year or so I could play almost anything I wanted with enough practice. Electric guitars are the easiest, since so much of the tonal/dynamic work is done by the amp/pickups/pedals, and the use of hammer-ons/pull-offs takes away much of the potential work of the picking hand. Acoustic guitar is more challenging in this regard, and requires considerably more skill from the user to do a lot of the same things. Piano is harder still, as there can be a lot more going on at once from both hands and feet. As long as I live, I will never be anywhere near as good at piano as I am at guitar, which is lamentable, really, since I prefer piano these days.

The fretless and bowed string instruments (violin, cello) are very hard to play well, as are some of the woodwinds and big brass, as others have mentioned. That's why the really good players of these instruments typically have played since they were young children. Not so with guitarists or drummers... you can start late and still end up really good. For example, my brother didn't start guitar until he was a freshman in college, and today he is one of the best I've ever heard at not only guitar, but bass and drums as well. In contrast, his piano and vocal skills are quite mediocre in comparison.

Regarding the voice... not only is there a great deal of nuance and diligence required to be able to sing really well, but the vocalist has to create all of their own power, too. I can pick up one of my guitars after having not played in months without missing a beat, so to speak, but in order to keep my vocal skills sharp I have to continually keep the diaphragm muscle in practice. Plus, no amount of practice can give someone a tone like Otis Redding or Aretha. Exceptional vocal tone is an innate gift, in my opinion, and cannot be learned.

jswinf
11-11-2011, 08:22 AM
Not incredibly difficult. You just have to have the right "fundamentals" and enough air. As I said before, braces make it a living hell.

Well, you also have to have the right anatomy and aptitude, because many, probably most players, can't hit those notes to save their life and can't really "learn" to do it. I call that difficult in the physical sense.

On the other hand, I suspect that many good guitar players are naturally able to put their fingers in the right place easier than I can.

mental midget
11-11-2011, 12:47 PM
(note: family includes a sister-in-law who majored in piano at Eastman School of Music, cousin who studied musicology at Columbia and whose instrument is piano, they always tell me the strings are the toughest because it's just so difficult to simply get a beautiful tone)

correct. and in the case of the violin, it's easier to distinguish tonal variance in the upper registers, so when you screw up, people can tell.

Nathaniel_Near
11-11-2011, 01:28 PM
If I had to bet my savings on one instrument, I'd choose the violin.

Then piano/organ.

chrischris
11-11-2011, 02:22 PM
The objective wellinformed mind.

AtomicForehand
11-11-2011, 03:14 PM
This is a good question, so I asked my neighbor who plays violin for the National Symphony Orchestra at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC. She said without any pause, the Harp is the most difficult instrument to master. Since she is a professional and I am a hack guitar player…. I will take her word on this debate!

Quoted for truth.

I'm a professional harpist after having played many other instruments at the performance level and studied to be an opera singer at the university level.

The harp is the hardest instrument of all.

FedExpress 333
11-11-2011, 04:47 PM
I would definetely say Violin, because you have to work to produce the tone, bow, and rhythm, followed by piano for two hands at once.

fortun8son
11-11-2011, 10:18 PM
The most difficult instrument to play well is the recorder. Any kid can get a sound out of it but try playing a Mozart flute quartet or a Corelli Trio Sonata! The Irish Tin Whistle is a close second, followed by the Harmonica in third place! Easy to play poorly! Of course the oboe and bassoon are hard to get any musical sound out of at all.
Fretted instruments, keyboards and percussion are among the easiest if you have rhythm, finger strength, stamina, and a high pain threshold! :)

KenC
11-11-2011, 11:30 PM
I've been playing guitar for 40 of my 46 years. I think a lot of the stuff Michael Romeo, Holdsworth and all of the stuff the newer generation of shredders is doing isn't really that hard if the discipline to practice is adhered to. I teach every now and then and start off with the Petrucci Rock Discipline Method and then do all the scales, then chords, then all the various techniques and find that willing students can start doing convincing Malmsteen type stuff in as little as two years and a few years later can shred with the best of them. It just takes massive discipline and desire to get better, plus hours each day to practice.

I always thought the human voice was the hardest to really master. If you see a lot of today's pop singers perform live this becomes obvious. Even with vocal correction equipment they still sound horrible live. Being able to master the voice like an opera singer is quite the feat. Or even getting to Aquilera's level is extremely difficult. Good lead guitarists are a dime a dozen, but a good singer is worth their weight in gold.

Chyeaah
11-11-2011, 11:56 PM
Bassoon HANDS DOWN!!!... Try getting enough air for a bassoon concerto... its like holding your breath for 3 minutes... and when your nearly out of air and you feel dizzy you might stuff up the notes. And blowing through a double reed is hard enough.

slickerthansleek
11-12-2011, 04:13 AM
Personally, I play a range of instruments, most notably guitar, piano, cello, trumpet, drums and a few other things, but the hardest to play in my opinion would be the violin and the harp. Each instrument has specific techniques and tricks that may be hard to master, but all around the violin is the most difficult to play *well*.

ttbrowne
11-12-2011, 05:40 AM
Personally, I play a range of instruments, most notably guitar, piano, cello, trumpet, drums and a few other things, but the hardest to play in my opinion would be the violin and the harp. Each instrument has specific techniques and tricks that may be hard to master, but all around the violin is the most difficult to play *well*.

I vote violin. I know how to play guitar and drums. I was good enuf with guitar to play in a good rock band. I could not handle the lead duties on a regular basis though. Drums was a lot easier. I did a gig with some Country musicians and observed them play fiddle. That was easy, according to them....violin was difficult!

JohnnyCracker
11-12-2011, 01:45 PM
it depends on the individual

Cindysphinx
11-13-2011, 12:15 AM
I played woodwinds (badly) as a kid, and I took up Piano at about age 35.

Piano is a nightmare to learn. Independence of the hands is essential, and at times I felt like my brain was splitting apart. You have to read two lines of music -- something woodwinds didn't require. Then throw in not one but three pedals.

Even if you got the mechanics right, that's not good enough. You have to find a way to be expressive. How you hold your wrists and depress the keys affects the sound, and this is hard to control and do well.

Despite nine years of adult practice and effort, I never got better than intermediate. There were pieces I couldn't even comprehend how to play, and I knew I never would be able to. Some were pieces I was dying to learn.

So I quit and took up tennis.

Chyeaah
11-13-2011, 12:24 AM
I played woodwinds (badly) as a kid, and I took up Piano at about age 35.

Piano is a nightmare to learn. Independence of the hands is essential, and at times I felt like my brain was splitting apart. You have to read two lines of music -- something woodwinds didn't require. Then throw in not one but three pedals.

Even if you got the mechanics right, that's not good enough. You have to find a way to be expressive. How you hold your wrists and depress the keys affects the sound, and this is hard to control and do well.

Despite nine years of adult practice and effort, I never got better than intermediate. There were pieces I couldn't even comprehend how to play, and I knew I never would be able to. Some were pieces I was dying to learn.

So I quit and took up tennis.

Piano is easy... but thats because i started at 4. Correct bowing and different vibratos are a nightmare on violin, and getting that fluid sound like all the pros, unlike the scratchy sound.

proracketeer
11-13-2011, 01:54 AM
women.....

Sanavan
11-13-2011, 03:10 AM
women.....

LMAO... good one

NE1for10is?
11-13-2011, 04:42 AM
A reporter once asked Rubenstein who was better him or Horowitz. He paused and said, "In art there is no good or better. There is only different." The same is true with the difficulty of playing an instrument. There is no more or less difficult. There is only different.

jaggy
11-13-2011, 05:30 AM
Without browsing others replies closely Id say bagpipes and church organ must be the toughest.

SoCal10s
11-13-2011, 05:48 AM
I've asked this before to some professional orchestra people and they told me .Oboe..

Cindysphinx
11-13-2011, 06:43 AM
Piano is easy... but thats because i started at 4. Correct bowing and different vibratos are a nightmare on violin, and getting that fluid sound like all the pros, unlike the scratchy sound.

Oh, yes. The brain hardens as you age, and that makes learning piano as an adult wildly difficult. There were times when I felt like I was having nothing more than spasms.

I wonder whether learning a string instrument would have been a better choice for an adult. At least then I wouldn't have this grand piano in the living room whispering "Fail" at me every time I walk by it.

chrischris
11-14-2011, 05:50 AM
People.....

r2473
11-14-2011, 08:38 AM
I've asked this before to some professional orchestra people and they told me .Oboe..

I've heard the same thing.

But they are great at tuning the orchestra. No matter how noisy the hall is, you can always clearly hear the oboe.

jonnythan
11-14-2011, 08:50 AM
People.....

I dunno. By about the third time I had a pretty good handle on it.

Satch
11-14-2011, 09:07 AM
I think that there is no instrument that is harder/easier to play.. its all about someones talent (and by that i mean godgiven abillity to play some instrument like lungs capacity, long fingers, good coordination ect), for sure that practice is 90% of someones success but again..

For example when i started to play with my band 10 years ago, we all were on the beginning, still i could play some songs on guitar while my friends couldnt, and our drummer was really good at drums while i couldnt play the easiest rhythm..

Bottom line, dont argue about what is harder to play and what not, just get some instrument that you find cool, and practice practice practice.. IMO guitar is pretty good to strart from, lots of tabs videos, and really versatile instrument.

@jonnythan, cool avatar bro.. UTI :)

chrischris
11-16-2011, 06:05 AM
How hard is it to rip and shred like this guy Nils Lofgren is doing at 1.41 - 5.00?

Fuji
11-16-2011, 12:45 PM
I would vote guitar as the easiest instrument to pick up and learn. It's pretty basic, and with some super basic theory knowledge, you can play almost anything you want.

Next I would vote as electric and stand up bass. I play both, and it's a very demanding instrument to play in a group, whether it's a rock band or a large symphony. (I've played in both) A lot of instruments around you need you keep them on pace and key. Also, getting a beautiful tone out of bass is pretty difficult, without the use of any modulators. Stand up is stand up, and it's fretless. That was a beast to learn after playing fretted bass for so long.

Finally the toughest is flute. Honestly, getting a nice sound of the flute was one of the hardest things I've done. (I almost give it a tie to violin, as they are both extremely difficult.) I gave up on flute after 3-4 years because I just wasn't enjoying it.

Piano I would rate with the same difficulty as bass. I'm not an expert piano player by any means, although I did get to upper-intermediate. It's just more of getting your hands to work together properly.

Disclaimer, I teach bass for my job, so I am a bit biased. :)

-Fuji