Ed. Note: The following is a reprint of a story in the January edition of “Music & Sound Retailer,” and is used with permission.
West Haven resident, John McCarthy, founder of The Rock House Method, designed a new way to learn to play piano.
KeyTab is a patented number and letter system that allows players to learn songs and progressions quickly, in weeks compared to years using standard music notation. According to McCarthy, however, KeyTab was not created to replace standard notation.
“I created the KeyTab piano music reading system 15 years ago because students at my music schools grew impatient to learn songs while learning using standard notation,” McCarthy explained. “To learn songs with two hands using standard notation can take up to two years. I invented a way that students could actually start playing songs after three or four lessons and this was huge! With today’s instant gratification mindset, students needed to have a way to fulfill their ambitions to stay interested in learning. When I used this in combination with standard notation it was a game changer!”
McCarthy was awarded a U.S. patent in 2020 for this unique way to learn piano. The KeyTab system comes with a “KeyTab Note Strip,” on which every note is labeled and each octave is color-coded. The note strip fits perfectly behind the keys on any piano or electronic keyboard. Users simply line up the black keys and are ready to rock.
“There are so many people that have a piano in their home but never learn to play it,” McCarthy said, emphasizing that casual piano players will now be able to learn more quickly. “With KeyTab you can learn songs quickly and easily. Many people want to play piano but don’t want to be a classical player or take years to go through piano methods. KeyTab is a perfect solution to help people wipe the dust off the piano keys and start learning songs.”
Rock House Method will have the first “Piano KeyTab Songbook” ready to release in 2021. This book will include 30 popular hit songs and the KeyTab Note Strip. Customers will also be able to access full videos that walk players through the parts of each song slowly than at regular tempo.
The book will be distributed by Hal Leonard Publishing. KeyTab will also be a part of my new music school management and learning platform called “AmpliTeach” that will be unveiled this Summer.