Hi there! This is a preliminary review of the Piano Man Approach online piano course by Steve Lungrin. I have only been taking this course for a few weeks, and have a long way to go, but it is such a fantastic course that I wanted to share my thoughts thus far with you.
Who Is This Course For?
This course is for people who want to learn how to play modern music on the piano, with a very strong focus on performance – making a song sound as full as possible. This is done by using the left hand to maintain a consistent rhythm and feel throughout the song (much like drums and bass form the “backbone” of a band). This course does not use sheet music, and has no requirement for sight reading ability – you are taught to play by using chords, and you are taught how to improvise over those chords with various patterns, while maintaining a consistent feel with the left.
Who Is This Course NOT For?
If your goal is to learn how to sight read sheet music, and (or) play traditional classical music, then this course is not for you.
Piano Man Approach – How I Got Started
I first encountered Steve Lungrin in the Piano in 21 Days Course, which is what got me started playing piano. That course (if you choose the “ultimate package”) has other courses included to supplement the main course. One of those courses is taught by Steve Lungrin; it focuses on playing the melody with your right hand and maintaining a consistent, steady “feel” with your left hand. While playing the melody in the right hand isn’t something I tend to do, I was intrigued by Steve’s emphasis on maintaining a consistent feel in the left hand throughout songs.
This really hit home when I started learning a song (Empty Garden by Elton John), and I was playing all the right chords, and it sounded OK, but something just wasn’t right. Then by total coincidence, I came across a version of that song on YouTube by Steve Lungrin that was fantastic! And that’s when it hit me – CONSISTENT LEFT HAND RHYTHM! So I started looking into Steve Lungrin’s course “The Piano Man Approach” and immediately signed up – I’m only partway through the 28 day “Crash Course” and my playing has already improved significantly.
What Does This Course Teach You
The first week of the 28 day “Crash Course” teaches you the basics (the keys on the piano, intervals, basic scales and chords). Then, the course progresses into teaching you your first basic rhythm pattern, and starts adding in lessons on improvisation, additional chords, inversions etc. Then the course continues as you learn the other basic rhythm patterns, more improvisation techniques etc.
How Does This Course Teach You
The main course is a set of 28 video lessons that make up his “Crash Course”. For each lesson, Steve goes over what the lesson is about with an intro video and then an overhead video where he demonstrates the exercises / techniques.
After the well narrated overhead video concludes, the lesson continues with a narrated song example on YouTube that reinforces the topics and techniques discussed in the lesson. Steve has a knack for choosing the perfect song example to practice each technique, and also manages to do so with songs from a huge range of genres; it really exemplifies how his approach works equally well with rock, pop, country and with songs from the 50’s all the way to modern day.
Piano Man Approach – Package Options
When I joined the Piano Man Approach, I chose the “Deep Dive” collection because it includes the main 4 week course, as well as a huge number of additional training videos Steve has accumulated over the years.
4 Week “Crash Course”
The basic package available is the 4 week “Crash Course”; this is a step by step 28 lesson course that takes you from a beginner level to being able to play credible accompaniment versions of your favorite modern songs, using the Piano Man Approach.
The “Deep Dive” Collection
The full package available is the “Deep Dive” collection. This includes the 4 week crash course, but adds a huge number of additional resources and training videos that are organized by topic (advanced chords, improvisation, rhythm patterns, etc) so you can easily focus on areas in which you want to improve.
Other Features And Bonuses
- Facebook Group with weekly live Q&A sessions
- The Facebook group is an awesome vehicle for students to share their progress, ask questions of Steve (and other students to get their perspectives)
- Steve does a live Q&A session once a week that is a great way to get additional feedback and answers to any questions you may have
- Live Concerts
- Steve streams live performances regularly, and will even try to take requests. He is a fantastic performer, and while it is awesome to tune in to enjoy the show, you can also learn things as well
- Song Tutorials
- Steve has an archive of song tutorials for popular songs by Elton John, Billy Joel and others that is categorized and made available
The Added Value That Pushes This Course Over The Top = Steve Lungrin
Steve Lungrin is a very talented pianist who has earned his living playing piano for most of his adult life, both from performing live and from training others. But the real added value Steve provides is that he is super approachable, friendly, encouraging and is a very talented instructor – he has a knack for explaining things in a way that is very easy for a beginning pianist like me to digest.
The Verdict (so far) – The Piano Man Approach
I am about half way through the “Crash Course” at this stage. I have completed the intro section, and been introduced to 2 rhythm patterns and 1 improvisation technique so far. And I must say that my overall playing has already improved significantly. The focus on maintaining a consistent rhythm in the left hand that functions as the “backbone” of a song similar to drums and bass in a band makes a massive difference. Songs that I could play before starting this course have all improved as a result.
I am super excited about continuing to work through this course, but I am taking it slowly to ensure that I can master each concept before moving on so that I can get the most out of it. I have already browsed through the additional resources and training included in the “Deep Dive” collection that is waiting for me once I finish the “Crash Course”, and there is enough material there to keep me busy with my piano learning journey for a VERYlong time!
I will update this review again once I have completed the “Crash Course”, but I am so impressed with what I have seen so far that I can already confidently HIGHLY recommend signing up for the Piano Man Approach by Steve Lungrin right away.
I’ve included my affiliate link below for the Piano Man Approach, so if you want to check out the course further I would really appreciate it if you used that link to get started. The link takes you to a free webinar where Steve introduces himself and explains his teaching approach and courses in more detail, so you really should check out the webinar. I hope to see you soon in the Facebook group.