• 4-Chord Songs: How to Become A Piano Player In A Day

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    Turn on any “top 40” radio station, and I can almost guarantee that you’ll be hearing one of the many “4-chord songs” within 10 minutes. Learn why they’re so popular and how to play them.

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    My Advice To A Student About Learning Songs

    After yesterday’s post, I received an awesome comment from Chris Johnson. I quickly replied and after re-reading our exchange, thought it appropriate to share with you.

    Chris wrote:

    Well you’ve done it again Jermaine. You know how close I am to my goals! I pretty much do all of this already but I still struggle at times and I always struggle with the bass.

    I have all of these skills under my belt except for picking out those darn bass notes…

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    The first step to playing songs by ear

    Step One: Determining the Melody The first step of the process is to learn how to determine the melody. To be very honest, this concept is very easy to grasp and doesn’t require 300 pages to accomplish. Anyone with a decent ear can eventually find the melody to a song. However, in addition to the […]

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    How to combine chords and couples to create endless possibilities

    If you’ve been following me for some time, you know that I love to teach students how to master systems and patterns. This lesson is no different. We’re going to explore various chords from my newest GospelKeysTM 202 course (…don’t worry if you don’t have this course yet — I’ll post the chords I want […]

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    The third and fourth steps to playing a song

    Step Three & Four: Altering Chords and Listening for Final Changes Depending on the style of music you are trying to produce, step three will allow you to alter the harmonizing chords used in step two. To "alter" a chord simply means to modify it. There are several ways to alter a chord: You can […]

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    How to Harmonize Melodies to Create Full-Sounding Songs Part 1

    (Part one of a two week series on harmonizing melodies)       Harmonizing melodies is different than laying chords beneath a melody.   You may have heard of fake books and chord charts where you are given chords to play under various melodies. Jazz standards are usually notated this way.   For example, the […]

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    Conversation With Students #3 (Melody & Harmony)

    From: Ms. Joanne Richardson Dear Mr. Griggs (HearandPlay.com), Let me first start by saying that I cannot thank you enough for your website and how you keep in touch with me from time to time. Your online material has been a great asset to my understanding of the piano and I hope to remain a […]

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