HearandPlay.com Monthly Newsletter --- January 2004!
Serving 68,464 Musicians Worldwide!
I. Welcome
II. Exciting Announcements!!!
III. Online Classroom:
       "Using 5-1 Progressions to Enhance Your Playing!"
Dear Subscriber,
Happy New Year!
If you're like most people, you've decided to make some changes for the upcoming year. Whether the dealing with bad habits or the making of new commitments, you've made some resolutions --- AS WE ALL DO.
To help you in your piano playing, I've decided to create 'themes' for each newsletter series that I'll be sending you. For the next six months, the theme will center around "Chord Progressions."
We will start with the most basic progressions and by June, we will have explored over six different types of progressions, ranging from the classic "5-1" to the monstrous "7-3-6-2-5-1" progression!
For your convenience, I have listed the titles of the next six newsletters below. Please check your e-mail every month for each lesson as you'll be sure to learn something new and innovative ... I promise!

Newsletter Archive - Click here or visit https://www.hearandplay.com/newsletters.html

2004 Theme: Chord Progressions
(starting with most basic to most advanced)
January 2004 Newsletter: "Using 5-1 Progressions to Enhance Your Playing!"
February 2004 Newsletter: "Opening and Closing Your Songs with 2-5-1 Progressions!"
March 2004 Newsletter: "The Incredible Power of 6-2-5-1 Progressions in Gospel Songs!"
April 2004 Newsletter: "How to Add Bigger 3-6-2-5-1 Progressions to your Songs!"
May 2004 Newsletter: "The 7-3-6-2-5-1 Progression and How to Use It!"
June 2004 Newsletter: "Exploring Fancy Chords and Progressions!"
Exciting Announcements!
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HearandPlay.com Chatroom: Visit: https://www.hearandplay.com/chat every Monday and Thursday night as I answer your questions, share new chords and progressions, and help you to overcome any issues you're facing.
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"The Secrets to Playing Piano By Ear" is full of easy-to-understand tricks, tips, techniques and secrets to playing piano by ear! For this month only, I've also been able to throw in a few bonus items (3 additional piano software programs). Click here to learn the secrets to playing absolutely any song on the piano in virtually minutes! You won't regret it!


Online Classroom:
"Using 5-1 Progressions to Enhance Your Playing!"
Note: You might want to print this lesson out for easier
If you know anything about chord progressions, you'll understand that each one has its own functions and roles. For example, one progression may be common for beginning a song, while another progression may be common for ending a song.
Certain progressions are likely to be played during modulations to new keys while others aren't. In other words, you want to understand the ROLES of chord progressions.
To know a "2-5-1" chord progression, for example, but not know where to play it is useless when it comes to playing by ear. So in the next few months, we will explore different progressions and where to use them!
The "5-1" Progression
The "5-1" progressions will commonly end a song, chorus, or verse. Being that the "1" chord represents the actual key that you're song is being played in, it makes sense for it to be the very last chord played.
So again, in most cases, the "1" chord will end the song. However, there are times when other tones of the scale will end the song instead (like the sixth degree played as a major chord or the fourth degree played as a dominant chord in fast gospel songs). But for the purposes of this lesson, we will focus on the majority of songs that end on the "1" chord.
Think of the "5-1" chord progression like this:
If you were watching a live theatrical performance or even a musical concert of some sort, when would you know to clap? Isn't it true that the audience as a whole always knows when to clap even though they're not all musicians? How do they know when the song is over? How do we know when to clap?
Because, we have already been trained to recognize "5-1" progressions whether we're musicians OR not!
The "5" chord by itself is that chord right BEFORE the end of the song. You know the song is about to end because you hear the "5" chord (and of course, I am referring more to slow songs that fast ones). Perhaps, the pianist will hold the "5" chord for a while ...  but you still don't clap because you know it's not the last chord. So, in essence, the "5" chord prepares us for the "1" chord. It creates such a strong pull towards the "1" chord that we can even predict how the next chord is suppose to sound in our minds.
Imagine if a pianist was holding the "5" chord and all of a sudden gets up and walks away. The audience would totally be shocked because we would think he didn't finish his song completely. That's because the "5" gives us the feeling of something about to end, but not quite at the absolute ending (again, that's why we don't clap yet). And in cases where the song doesn't actually end, it will alert us that the song is returning back to the beginning of the verse or chorus for another round
Examples of "5-1" endings:
a) "Hap-py Birth - Day  to  You"
Ending on the "5" in this example would be like not singing the final "you." You've sang the "happy birthday to..." but until you say "you," the song hasn't ended.
The "5" in this example is the word "to," while the final "1" chord would be played on "you."
Are you following me?
If not, feel free to post messages on our board about this lesson.
b)  "... Was blind, but now I see"
This line is taken from "Amazing Grace." Can you figure out where the "5-1" progression would be played in this line?
If you're having trouble, just think this to yourself...
If I wasn't a musician at all and simply listening to this song, at what point would I know the song is JUST about to end???
The word "I" prepares you for the ending so it would definitely be accompanied by a "5" chord. But don't think that a "5" chord only applies to the one last word before the ending. You can play a chord over multiple words.
So in this case, I would say that the "5" chord begins on "now" and is held until "I" is sang. Finally, when "see" is sung, the song ends and obviously you'd play a "1" chord.
Actual "5-1" Progressions You Can Play
Here are some nice-sounding "5-1" progressions you can start playing right away. Make sure to listen for them in some of your favorite songs (especially slow ballads).
These progressions will be based in the key of Db major. For simplicity, I will simply "spell out" each chord, one by one. Feel free to mix and match different chords from the "5" and "1" columns.
A "  /  " slash means that the note to the right will be played on the bass (left hand).
"5" chord "1" chord
C + F + A  / Ab Bb + Eb + Ab / Db
Gb + Bb + Db + F / Ab Eb + Ab + Db / Db
C + E + Ab + B / Ab B + Eb + Gb + Bb / Db
Eb + Ab + Bb + C / Ab Db + Eb + F + Ab / Db
More Progressions  
This concludes January's Online Classroom Lesson
If you were intrigued by the online classroom lesson above,
then you would definitely benefit from my course!
*** “The Secrets to Playing Piano By Ear” 300-pg Course ***
With 20 chapters and over 300 pages, the home piano course provides several resources, techniques, tips, principles, and theories to playing the piano by ear. Along with hundreds of chords and scales, you'll also learn how to turn them into gospel, jazz and blues chord progressions and better yet, how to use them to play ABSOLUTELY any song you want ... IN VIRTUALLY MINUTES! Again, don't miss this opportunity. I've even added an additional bonus if you purchase the course this week --- You can read more about the course at:

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Yours Truly,
Jermaine Griggs

Further References

"The Secrets to Playing Piano By Ear" 300-pg Course

[5] Chord Progressions: pgs 65-78, 105-130, 147-165, 182-227.

Do you know what a2-5-1” or "3-6-2-5-1" progression is? Or perhaps the famous 12-bar blues chord progression? In this piano course, you will not only learn how to play gospel, blues, and jazz progressions, but how to recognize them in songs. In addition, you will learn the simple techniques to playing these progressions, hymns, and songs in all 12 major keys! ... Enjoy learning:

The famous "2-5-1" Chord Progression: pgs 114-120, 153-156, 208, 235-236.

I - IV - I - V - I Chord Progressions: pgs 66-70.

I - IV - V - IV - I Chord Progressions: pgs 77-78.

Techniques behind the famous "5-->1" progression: pgs 68-72.

I --> IV,  I --> V Chord Progressions: pgs 74-75.

"Circle of Fifths" Chord Exercises: pg 78.

Major and Minor Chord Progressions: pgs 105-130.

"6 - 2 - 5 - 1" Chord Progressions: pgs 121-122, 157-159.

"3 - 6 - 2 - 5 - 1" Chord Progressions: pgs 122-123, 160-162.

"7 - 3 - 6 - 2 - 5 - 1" Chord Progressions: pgs 124-125, 190-191.

Gospel Chord Progressions ... ranging from "up-tempo praise" chord Progressions to "worship-oriented" chord progressions: pgs 65-78, 105-130, 147-165, 182-227.

Various Blues Progressions ... 12-bar, seventh chords, diminished chords ... and others: pgs 163-165, 192.

Jazz Chord Progressions ... using dominant ninth, eleventh and thirteenth chords: pgs 193-240

Study the different types of Root Progressions --- closing, opening, circular and other types of progressions: pgs 121-122.

Study how chord tones and scale degrees relate to each other [which chord progressions are most likely to be compatible]: pgs 122-130.

Learn various "turn-around" progressions [used in gospel music]: pg 213-214.

If you don't have the 300-pg Course, click here to read more about it.