Skoove claims to be “the easiest way to learn piano” but then so do all of the courses out there. What are the merits of Skoove? Should you actually take their word for it and start to learn on their platform? Who is Skoove best for? We’ve got all of this covered in our review.
We also give you a simple overview of the features, functionality, and how it actually works when you sign up for Skoove, what are the lessons you will learn on their platform and is it worth paying a monthly fee for?
A lot of instruments such as keyboards and digital pianos come with a trial membership to Skoove included. You might get access for a few months before you have to decide whether or not this is the best method of learning piano online or whether you are going to look elsewhere.
How Much Does Skoove Cost?
Compared to a lot of the other ways piano learning online and via apps, Skoove is competitive. We’ve already mentioned the fact that a lot of people have access to a free trial already, but there is a free version for anyone to use, within which you can access 25 lessons to get a taste of whether you like the Skoove way of doing things.
Skoove Premium does offer a lot more in terms of features and functionality, as well as more songs to play, but is far more expensive if you opt for paying monthly. You can save some cash by paying for longer-term memberships.
The 12-month package works out at $9.99/month. If you want 3 months of access it will cost $39.99 altogether, so just over $13 a month. There is some debate on the approach you should take with these piano lessons. Some people just use Skoove for a few months and then move on to learning from sheet music or in other ways. It is a good way to get to grips with the basics. If you were to be a member for years on end then the cost might start to add up.
How Does Skoove Work?
Skoove works with both iOS devices and computers. This is fine for a lot of people, but some are a bit frustrated at the lack of Android learning options. No Android tablets can run the software though some Windows tablets can. If you have a newer iPad, this is probably one of the best ways of learning piano on your tablet, but if you are a tablet user not running iOS you could be out of luck.
Skoove can link with your hardware in a variety of different ways to give you real-time feedback while you play. So, you can connect your keyboard via USB if you have a USB-MIDI connection, or you can even use the inbuilt mic of your device to “listen” to you play and tell you whether you are making errors or are on the right track. You can even use your computer keyboard to learn, but this can get really confusing, and is sort of like adding an extra step to learn piano. It is far better to go straight onto a piano or a musical keyboard rather than hitting your Q key to make a note play!
Skoove has a course for you to play through and learn all of the basics. Each lesson is designed to progress you one step further through your journey to learn how to play the piano. They’re pretty well thought out, but more on that later on in the article when we discuss the Skoove curriculum.
As well as the course, there is access to a database of songs that you can use to practice. Try your hand at playing anything from Ed Sheeran to Mozart. Other benefits are included with the premium version of the app including access to specific 1-to-1 help.
Skoove’s lesson base is growing quicker than many of its competitors, too. 400+ lessons combined in 19 courses allow you to learn in a variety of different ways. The lessons use songs to focus you and allow you to learn specific piano techniques. This way you aren’t having to do boring piano exercises with no end result. As you complete the courses you will have actual songs you can show to people. This is one of the things we always look for when learning the piano online.
Skoove for Non-English Speakers
People who don’t speak English can often get left out when it comes to apps and lessons that are online. If you know someone who might want to learn how to play but you don’t speak English very well, Skoove can be a good option as it comes in six languages.
Skoove’s Curriculum – How the Course is Structured
Music lessons can quickly become complicated if you are getting your information from lots of different places or the course isn’t quite right in terms of its structure. Luckily, the way Skoove is mapped out for you means that you can learn how to play relatively quickly. There are few online piano lesson platforms that do such a good job of guiding you through the basics.
The course is structured in a way that has a few simple basic piano lessons first. This helps you to ensure that you are getting things correct before you move on to the more advanced lessons. Remember, that real-time feedback the app or software can give you means you will only advance when you have actually got it right! If you make a mistake you can keep trying.
After you have picked up the basics of music, piano and even a little bit of music theory, the course splits off into other genres to let you learn more about all of these areas. The course is based around songs and music you will probably be proud to be able to play. There are no dense activities with no merit in terms of being able to play a piece of music, everything is building towards playing actual songs.
As the course advances, you can learn more about music theory and start to flesh out your knowledge. You may also choose to specialize in a certain genre. The different lessons within the course are:
Piano Beginner (1, 2 and 3)
We’ve all got to start somewhere. These three courses introduce some of the basics of how to sit and how to actually use your hands on the piano. It also introduces notation and timings. It helps you learn the notes, and uses some sheet music to do so. There are also some fun activities to get you playing actual songs including “Tainted Love” by Soft Cell.
You also learn about combining two hands in this course and intervals. It forms a solid foundation for your music knowledge.
At the end, there is a sight-reading lesson. Whether you go through this or not depends on whether you want to learn to read music in detail or not.
Piano Songs – Beginner
Next, the course teaches you how to play some actual pieces of music with those basic, beginner skills you have picked up. There are over 80 different songs in this section and you can start to get stuck into learning a lot of different pop songs, but there are some classical pieces and even some jazz in there for good measure.
Piano Intermediate – (1, 2 and 3)
As you might have guessed, this is where the lessons try to advance you into a more intermediate skillset. There is a lot of information about key signatures, chords, scales and even chord inversions before you learn about time signatures and transposition. If you are new to learning piano then this might all sound quite intimidating.
The point is that once you have got to a basic skill level and you are comfortable with your keyboard or piano, the intermediate section of the course advances your knowledge nicely. This leads to…
Piano Songs – Intermediate
Yes, you guessed it, it is time to put your intermediate knowledge to the test with playing some more music. This time there are a few more advanced songs in there, using some of the tougher skills you’ve learned in the intermediate section.
This is where the course branches off, with some different lessons to focus on now that you have the basics of music down. The other courses include:
- Classic Piano – Arpeggios and more classical techniques as well as classical pieces to learn.
- Pop Piano – A focus on pop music.
- Piano Songs Advanced – A way to test more advanced piano knowledge once you feel you are ready.
- Blues & Boogie Woogie Piano – Blues and jazz chords as well as techniques to make you sound like you should be playing in a Blues club!
- Chords & Scales – A full knowledge of chords and scales to allow you to compose your own music as well as learn other peoples’ songs.
- Keyboard for Producers – This is where you will learn how your keyboard and piano skills tie with a DAW or other production software
We have simplified some of these aspects, but the courses cleverly take your knowledge of piano and music theory one step further as you go through. You can skip back and forward in order to get to the point where you are comfortable with a piece of information before jumping onto other lessons. Don’t skip through too quickly.
We like the way all of this is laid out. Skoove does a good job of building foundational music knowledge before getting you to try out other styles you might enjoy.
Skoove’s Ease of Use
It is worth mentioning a few things about Skoove’s layout and just how easy it is to use. Whether you are using the tablet version on your iPad or using your laptop, all of the steps are there, laid out for you. It really isn’t too tough to get to grips with the layout of the course, unlike some other online piano lessons which can leave you frustrated, trying to find specific information or link up your keyboard.
The Pros and Cons of Skoove
Time for a quick overview of the pros and cons. All online piano lessons have their good points and bad points, so how does Skoove stack up against Flowkey, Yousician and the other methods of learning to play the piano?
So, what are the pros and cons of piano for all?
- A well-structured, easy-to-follow course layout.
- Available in 6 languages for people who want to learn but don’t speak English very well.
- Uses a USB connection or the microphone of your device to listen to what you are playing and provide feedback.
- There is a free version so you can see if this is the way you wish to learn how to play before parting with cash. Take 25 lessons before you have to pay.
- The course teaches some basic theory and how to read music, a knowledge of the musical staff and an understanding of reading sheet music is important.
- No option to use this with an Android device.
- You can’t access full sheet music or print it off, you just see the versions that Skoove has made to try and make learning easier.
- No exercises for scales and building finger strength and flexibility.
- Some advanced theory has been left out. While you can get to the point where you are an intermediate, self-taught pianist using Skoove you might not reach the very top of your game.
There is always a lot to review and consider before you take the plunge with one of these platforms and learn to play the piano using an app. They aren’t cheap, but Skoove does a very good job for those who are brand new to the piano, and if you have access to a 3-month free trial then it is an even better way of getting an idea of how the course looks and feels.
Skoove isn’t excessively expensive, and as long as you aren’t looking to learn on an Android device or an older laptop then it is a perfect choice in term of compatibility. The course is well thought out, and unlike a lot of the other music and piano courses out there, the team at Skoove are constantly updating it, making it a very good choice for people who want new and exciting songs to learn.
The lessons give a great grounding and whether you plan to play on a keyboard or an acoustic piano, Skoove can give you an interactive lesson and show you exactly what you are doing right and wrong.