• Using Amazingly Simple Patterns to Learn Contemporary Worship Songs

    in Chords & Progressions,Gospel music

    Welcome to this latest newsletter on how to use simple patterns to learn all of your favorite worship songs by ear! You might want to print this lesson out because I reveal tons of information below that you won’t find anywhere else … literally!
    Ask anyone who learns new songs regularly and they will tell you that the whole process is not about learning new chords or making new discoveries all the time. Why? Simply because chords, progressions, and changes are recycled over and over again in song after song. To know patterns is to know hundreds of songs, whether you realize it or not!
    I’m talking about patterns like these:
    1-4 patterns … 1-6 patterns … 2-5 patterns … 3-6 patterns … 3-4 patterns … and the list goes on and on. (Don’t worry if you don’t know what these numbers mean. I will explain all of this to you in this month’s classroom lesson below).
    You’ll find patterns like these in hundreds of slow worship songs. And you know what? They’re even found in jazz, r&b, and contemporary music as well! …And by the way, all of this is in the GospelKeysTM 202 video course, which has helped countless numbers of musicians play gospel worship by ear!
    In this month’s online classroom, I’m going to share with you a few concepts from the GospelKeysTM 202 video course. I warn you beforehand! You probably have never seen anything quite like this before because there’s not a lot of information out there for worship and praise music.
    What will be covered in Gk202 is the whole concept of “coupling.”
    A “couple,” as described in the course, is basically a 2-part chord progression. It consists of one chord pulling very aggressively to another chord. You saw them above as you were reading about what the GospelKeysTM 202 will teach you. They look like this:
    1-2, 1-3, 1-4,
    1-5, 1-6, 1-7,
    2-5, 2-6, 3-6,
    3-4, 4-5, 4-3,
    4-6, 4-7, 5-1,
    5-2, 5-4, 6-2,
    6-7, 7-3, etc.
    … and these are some of the many examples of what I call “couples.”
    Songs are built on progressions like these. Now most of you understand progressions like “2-5-1,” “6-2-5-1,” and “7-3-6-2-5-1” and I’ve even covered them throughout the year in past newsletters. Click here if you haven’t read my newsletters from January 04 – July 04.
    “Couples” create these larger progressions. For example, a “2-5-1” is made up of two small couples:
    A “2-5” couple and a “5-1” couple.
    Another example would be a “6-2-5-1” progressions, which is very common in gospel praise songs and even in slower tunes. This larger progressions has three smaller couples within it:
    A “6-2”, “2-5”, and “5-1” couple.
    So by using smaller couples to create larger progressions, the process will not only seem less intimidating but your ear will catch on a lot faster. It’s a lot easier to calculate 2×2 and 3×3, and then add up the resulting numbers, right? 2 x 2 is 4 … and 3×3 is 9. Add them together and you get 13.
    Learning couples is the same way. You’ll learn how to recognize “2-5” couples in songs … “5-1” couples in songs … and “6-2” couples in songs. Then, when necessary, you’ll have to combine “2-5” couples with “5-1” couples to create famous “2-5-1” progressions. It’s really a simple process and once you get it, you’ll be able to play not only worship songs but all types of songs in different genres (jazz, r&b, blues, pop, etc.).
    Ok… if you’re new, then you might wonder: “Where do the numbers come from?”
    I’m glad you asked.
    Very simply, the numbers come from the major scale of whatever key you’re playing in. So, yes, there are “2-5” couples for every key — “5-1” couples for every key — and many many more!
    Let’s say you’re in the key of Db major.
    First, you would have to know the Db major scale.
    Db major scale: Db Eb F Gb Ab Bb C Db
    But memorizing scales alone will not allow you to play by ear. You have to understand the grand scheme of things. The scales provide the numbers and that’s what you need to understand with your eyes closed.
    Db = 1
    Eb = 2
    F = 3
    Gb = 4
    Ab = 5
    Bb = 6
    C = 7
    Db = 8 (same as 1)
    … Now here is where people go wrong:
    They learn the scales. They memorize them but they do not know them by numbers! When I say “to know a scale by numbers,” that means that you must know what is the “6” of Db within three seconds … or the “5” of Db … or the “2” of Db.
    See… you don’t want to know the “6” of Db by having to start at Db and say the major scale, one note at a time, because when you are doing it that way, you aren’t learning the notes and numbers independent of each other.
    It’s like not knowing what’s after “J” in the alphabet without having to sing your “ABC’s” from the beginning. You don’t want to know what comes after “J” by having to sing the entire song from the beginning. That’s what slows you down. Playing by ear is all about thinking on your feet and if you can’t think on your feet (with the method I just shared above), then you’ll struggle time and time again.
    Ok… let’s take a quick mental test:
    If you know your major scales forwards and backwards but can’t answer these questions within 3 seconds, then you still have work to do!
    Question #1:
    What’s the “2” of Ab major? ________
    Question #2:
    What’s the “7” of G major? ________
    Question #3:
    What’s the “5” of D major? ________
    Question #4:
    What’s the “3” of Eb major? _______
    Question #5:
    What’s the “1” of A major? ________ (you have to know this one within 3 sec!)
    Question #6:
    What’s the “6” of Db major? _______
    Question #7:
    What’s the “2” of B major? _______
    ANSWERS: (Bb, F#, A, G, A, Bb, C#)
    Once you’ve mastered your scales in this way, the concept of “couples” will appear very easy.
    For example, here’s the keynotes of a “2-5” couple in multiple keys.
    C major: D to G
    F major: G to C
    Bb major: C to F
    Eb major: F to Bb
    Ab major: Bb to Eb
    Moving On…

    Now that you know where the numbers come from, it should be easy to make sense of what the following couples are:
    A “1-2” couple means a chord based on the 1st tone of the scale leading to a chord based on the 2nd tone of the same scale. An example in the key of Db would be: Dbmaj9 to Eb9. The Dbmaj9 is a “1” chord because “Db” is the 1st tone of the scale and the Eb9 is a “2” chord because “Eb” is the 2nd tone of the scale.
    A “1-3” couple means a chord based on the 1st tone of the scale leading to a chord based on the 3rd tone of the same scale. An example in the key of Db would be: Dbmaj7 to F7 (b9). The Dbmaj9 is a “1” chord because “Db” is the 1st tone of the scale and the F7(b9) is a “3” chord because “F” is the 3rd tone of the scale.
    Other couples based on the “1” chord:
    1-4, 1-5, 1-6, 1-7
    A “2-5” couple means a chord based on the 2nd tone of the scale leading to a chord based on the 5th tone of the same scale. An example in the key of Db would be: Eb9 to Ab13. The Eb9 is a “2” chord because “Eb” is the 2nd tone of the scale and the Ab13 is a “5” chord because “Ab” is the 5th tone of the scale.
    Other couples based on the “2” chord:
    2-3, 2-6, 2-7
    … And the list goes on and on:
    3-4, 4-5, 4-3,
    4-6, 4-7, 5-1,
    5-2, 5-4, 6-2,
    6-7, 7-3, etc.

    Putting It All Together…

    Basically the first hour of GospelKeysTM 202 is aimed at teaching you different chords for every tone of the major scale.

    So, in essence, you’ll learn tons of:

    “1” chords

    “2” chords

    “3” chords

    “4” chords

    “5” chords

    “6” chords

    “7” chords

    For this online classroom lesson, I will give you a sneak-peak of the GospelKeysTM 202 video course by showing you some chords from each tone of the scale. Then after you’ve learned each chord, I will show you how to couple them together to create progressions, which will then create songs! It’s that easy!

    Key of Db Major:

    Scale: Db – Eb – F – Gb – Ab – Bb – C – Db

    #’s: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8

    An Example of a “1” chord:

    Db on left hand / Bb + Eb + Ab on right hand

    An Example of a “2” chord:

    Eb on left hand / G + C + Db + F on right hand

    An Example of a “3” chord:

    F on left hand / A + Db + Eb + Ab on right hand

    An Example of a “4” chord:

    Gb on left hand / F + Bb + Db on right hand

    An Example of a “5” chord:

    Ab on left hand / Gb + Bb + Db + F on right hand

    An Example of a “6” chord:

    Bb on left hand / Ab + C + Db + F on right hand

    An Example of a “7” chord:

    C on left hand / Eb + G + Bb + D

    * Keep in mind that you will learn several chords for each tone of the scale. Because I have limited space in this e-mail newsletter, I have only included one chord per scale tone. The GospelKeysTM 202 video course will have several.

    The second hour of the GospelKeysTM 202 video course covers “coupling.” This is where you’d actually take chords from each tone of the scale and combine them together to make small couples. Try doing this with the list above.

    Take the “1” chord and “3” chord and play them one after the other.

    Then take that same “3” chord above, add the “6” chord, and play them one after the other.

    In this example, you’ve just played a “1-3” couple followed by a “3-6” couple. Since the “3” chords are the same in both couples, if you were to play a “1-3” to a “3-6,” you wouldn’t have to repeat the “3” since you’re already playing it.

    So in essence, when you combine the two smaller couples (which are easier to recognize in songs than huge progressions), you get a “1-3-6” progression.

    That same “1-3-6” progression is used to begin “Thank You Lord”, “I Really Love the Lord,” “Silver and Gold” by Kirk Franklin, “Like the Dew in the Morning,” “Trouble Don’t Last Always,” and a host of other ones! I could literally go on and on and on…

    Explore these chord types to prepare for the GospelKeys video course:

    Well, I hope you enjoyed my  newsletter and I’ll be back next time! Take care!

    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:

    Enjoy this edition? Visit our message board and let us know!
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    Yours Truly,
    Jermaine Griggs

    Further References

    “The Secrets to Playing Piano By Ear” 300-pg Course

    [5] Chords & 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.

    The Secrets to Playing Piano By Ear 300pg Course – Learn the secrets to playing literally any song on the piano with a few simple, “easy-to-understand” techniques and principles! Join Jermaine Griggs in learning tons of music theory, concepts, and tricks that will help you to learn piano by ear! Thousands of musicians have already taken advantage of this excellent program … why not you? “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!

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    Hi, I'm Jermaine Griggs, founder of this site. We teach people how to express themselves through the language of music. Just as you talk and listen freely, music can be enjoyed and played in the same way... if you know the rules of the "language!" I started this site at 17 years old in August 2000 and more than a decade later, we've helped literally millions of musicians along the way. Enjoy!

    Attention: To learn more about this, I recommend our 500+ page course: The "Official Guide To Piano Playing." Click here for more information.


    { 19 comments… read them below or add one }

    1 Albert

    These lessons are really good and I believe i will reach my music goal in less than two years by us] ing these lessons properly


    2 j.samuel gagnon

    well, i am lost in all these 1-3, 1-2, 2-3, 2-4…i was thinking this lesson would be less difficult than the theorical ones…however, it is not the case for me


    3 melony

    Hello jermaine,
    Printed off the chords for gospel, and will try them and see. will let you know if this will help me in some way. I sight read music, but haven’t played by ear since the age of 6 years old. thanks. melony


    4 melony

    Hello Jermaine,
    I printed off the suggestion you gave me. Since I already sight read music at church, but just wanted some insight. Hope this will help me. thanks.


    5 Simon


    This is my first time on your site, and i’m really intrigued by the newsletter i’ve just read. i have been looking all over for a site like this, but i guess maybe i didn’t look hard enough, I really thank God man. I wish i could just take in everything at once, it’s awesome… keep up the good work. you will be hearing a lot from me. Blessings!


    6 Freda Daniels

    Yes, I love all of your chords. I have Gospel Keys 200, and I recently purchased the 300 Page Chorus. It is just what I need to take me to the level I want to accomplish. I have always played music by ear. It is a gift that God has given me, but I really needed some more chords, and a system to show me how to make the chords. This chorus does all of that and more. I really appreciate having someone that really cares about other people, and someone who wants to share the blessing that God has given him. Thank you so much Jermaine. Keep up the good work.

    Evangelist Daniels


    7 Noel

    May the Lord continue to bless you Jermaine, this is what i call a young man of vision. The older men can now dream dreams. Anyway these kind of lessons is what i have been looking for , for YEARS, and no one could ever successfully explain or teach me.Wow this is a break through. I love the DVDS i got so far, and now added news letters, text messages with lesson, I dont care what level i am at, im just going to play “ignorant” and take in all of these lessons and DVDS etc. even if i know it already ; hey at least i’ll SPOT something i never knew. By the strength and blessing of God i am going to get season in this. “BRING IT ON JERMAINE”- its time to HEAR AND PLAY


    8 obele

    this is my very first time of visiting hear and play i have been working on sheet music, i have just found new things like couples, i have a strong believe that by the time am through with this course i will be able to play by just hearing which i have been longing for. thanks a lot Jermaine the Lord will bless u.


    9 T.J.

    Thank you this will help me sightread music as welk


    10 adeosun oluwatosin

    may the lord bless you,i really enjoy the lesson but sir am in nigeria i dont know how to order the DVD can you pls help me sir


    11 Femi

    Jarmaine u are doing a great work here thanks a lot. @tosin i can help u 2 get d DVD just call this MTN no 08160581042


    12 Stev

    pls is there any rule for getting the 1couple,2couple… etc like the example u gave using the Dbmajor?


    13 Graphic Design Derry

    Howdy adore this paper check out this


    14 Anthony

    Please tell me how to subscribe to this free newsletter please


    15 Daniel

    I really enjoys this online lesson ooo, my thanks go to my teacher, pls Sir I need some test books and DVD play to also work on, because for now am, only following the theory on this online, so hi need practical, were can hi get those book and CD close to me ,my phone no 08166874144


    16 Daniel

    More Sir, how to count half and full bet on any songs


    17 Leonard Samuel

    Nice site for anyone who wants to learn the piano but I don’t know how to get the tutorial manual and the dvd disc and I am calling from Nigeria, pls I need your help. Thanks.


    18 free robux

    Thank you so much for the making a best track for the work. So come here and get some track.


    19 Linus Gospel

    Thanks Sir for the lessons, they’ve really helped, but i think a video lesson, probably a CD player will go a long way. Thanks again.


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