• Welcome to your piano by ear lessons

    Considering you’ve clicked on the “piano by ear lessons” link, I’ve listed some lessons and articles below that I think will really help you the best.

    Now, because "beginner" or "intermediate" means different things to different folks, feel free to explore other recommended lesson groups below as well.

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    Ok, I think I’ve said enough. Here are the lessons I’ve automatically generated based on what you’ve told me. Again, if they’re too easy or too hard, check out the other lesson groups I’ve taken the time to organize.

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    All the best,

    P.S. – Bookmark this convenient lesson group as the links will carry you to other areas of the site. If you want to come back here, either press your back button or choose it from your favorite places.



    Here’s your personalized lesson plan…


    If you don’t know the notes on the piano and basic things like scales and major triads, click here.


    Here’s the foundational section. Understanding how to form scales is very important. Study these lessons and you’ll be a master in no time!


    Major scales workshop #1: This simple exercise takes you through all your scales.


    Major scales workshop #2: When I originally taught this, I broke it up into two e-mails. This is simply the second half of the exercise.


    Major scales crash course: I’ve been teaching online for 8 years so I have tons of material. This is just another lesson on scales. It’ll be good for review.


    Another look at major scales: If you’re an overachiever, then view one more approach to playing scales. This one may be the hardest to grasp but the most rewarding because it introduces you to the circular way in which music flows.


    Major scale fingering: Ok, so you know your scales now. Here’s the fingering so you play them correctly. The right fingering will help you to play them fast and smoothly as you practice more.


    Minor scales crash course: We’ve got the major scales out the way. What about minor scales? This lesson will get you playing them quickly.


    Another minor scales lesson: You already know… I’ve been teaching for years and want to give you all angles. Here’s another lesson I created. Use it as review if the first lesson did its job already.


    Modes of the scale: Here’s where we take it a step further. Learn all your modes in this lesson.


    Why the circle of fifths is so important when learning scales: Yup, another approach.



    So you did it! Pat yourself on the back!


    This next section is going to get you playing chords. But if you don’t know your scales yet, I wouldn’t move on until you’ve mastered the lessons above. Let’s go…


    Major chords workshop #1: Like the major scales workshops, these exercises will show you how to play major chords, the most common chords heard in music!


    Major chords workshop #2: The second half of the last exercise…


    Very cool piano chord tool: Now that you’re into chords, check out this online tool that allows you to look up any chord. It will show the chord right on your screen!


    Perfect and Major intervals: I know this is backwards but now that you know the quick way to form chords, let’s study the theory behind the intervals the create these famous major chords.


    Short review on intervals: You got the big lesson above. Here’s the quickie version.


    How to correctly identify intervals part 1: Many people don’t know how to do this properly. By mastering this lesson, you’ll be 5 steps ahead of most ear musicians.


    How to correctly identify intervals part 2: This is part two of the series.


    Inverting chords: Ok, so you know how to form major chords. Now let’s talk about how to play different versions of the same chord by moving around notes.


    The basics of chord inversion: Another lesson on inverting chords.


    How to play smoothly using the power of inversions part 1: Stop jumping from one side of your piano to the other and start understanding the power of inversions.


    How to play smoothly using the power of inversions part 2: The follow-up to the previous lesson.


    Seventh chords: Exploring seventh chords.


    Diminished chords: They’re not as scary as they sound. Check out this lesson on diminished chords.


    A nice-sounding major ninth chord: Ninth chords are among my favorite chords to play and you’ll see why in a moment.


    Stylish minor ninth chord: If you liked the major ninth chord, then you’ll love this stylish minor ninth voicing.


    Dominant ninth chords: Once you learn these, you’ll never want to play 3-toned triads again.


    Do you use secondary dominant chords: This lesson will introduce you to the "dominant of the dominant." If you don’t get it now, you’ll definitely get it by the end.


    Check out this minor 11th chord: This one is neat…


    The dominant 13th sound: I love this voicing and now’s your chance to learn it!


    A real talk with a student on the concept of relative minor: Learn about relative minor keys in this lesson…


    A minor 7th chord with a twist: Check this chord out…


    Easy ways to remember large chords part 1: Here are some shortcuts that’ll help you remember super large chords.


    Easy ways to remember large chords part 2: Here’s the second half of the lesson.

      You should only be reading this if you’ve finished the left column.


    Let’s move even further and start putting to use what you’ve learned.


    The ABCs to playing piano by ear for starters (audio): Now that you have a decent foundation, listen to this 2-hour teleclass I conducted which takes you through one of my basic processes to playing without sheet music. It will cover a lot of what you learned but take you even further.


    Incorporating scales and chords: This will show you how to use chords and scales in your actual playing.


    Playing scales with major seventh chords: This is a nice little movement you can do right when you sit down to the piano. It will impress others for sure.


    12-bar blues pattern: Heard of the 12-bar blues? Now’s your time to play it!


    How to listen effectively part 1: This lesson covers the basics of relative pitch and how to use it to learn almost any song you want.


    How to listen effectively part 2: This is the second half of the lesson…


    Playing songs and that kind of stuff…


    The first step to playing songs: Put your knowledge of major and minor chords to the test. Here’s the first step.


    The second step to playing songs: Once you understand step 1, move on to this one.


    Here’s the last two steps to playing songs: These last two steps will put the icing on the cake. Ready to play songs by ear?


    Another lesson on harmonizing melodies: Like step two from above, this lesson will delve deeper into harmonizing melodies.


    How to harmonize melodies to create full-sounding songs part 1: A full length lesson on harmonizing melodies.


    How to harmonize melodies to create full-sounding songs part 2: The second half of this comprehensive lesson.


    Quick and easy strategies for playing by ear: This lesson covers one of the required skills an ear musician has to have. Do you have it?


    How to determine the key to any song (audio): This is a recording of an audio teleclass I presented several years ago. It will really delve into how to find the key center of any song. This is a required skill for ear musicians.


    An easy way to build your ear skills: Here’s a strategy many people have found success with. Try it out for yourself.


    Unlocking the ear: Here’s a simple lesson that’ll get you started hearing the subtle differences between chords.


    Effectively practicing with the circle of fifths patterns: The circle of fifths was one of the most helpful contributions to music learning. Here’s how to apply the circle to your daily practicing.


    What key am I in? It’s very important to understand how to determine what key a song is in by the chords that occur. Learn how to do it…


    You may be ready for this section (or you may not be). Let’s study chord progressions!


    Using 5-1 chord progression to enhance your playing: One of the most commonly uses progressions, the 5-1 will show up at the end of almost every song. Learn how to play it.


    Variations of the 2-5-1 chord progression: The 2-5-1 is the next step up from the simple 5-1 progression.


    The famous 2-5-1 chord progression: Another 2-5-1 progression you can outright steal!


    Opening and closing your songs with 2-5-1 progressions: Just like it sounds, learn how to incorporate 2-5-1 at the beginning and end of your songs.


    The incredible power of the 6-2-5-1 chord progression: I love this chord progression… especially in gospel music.


    How to add bigger 3-6-2-5-1 chord progressions to your songs: Learn how to add even bigger circular progressions to spice your songs up.


    The "7-3-6-2-5-1" progression and how to use it: Wait til you get a hold of this one…


    An altered chord you can try: You’ll love this one…


    Another altered chord progression you can try: This one sounds good…


    Chord progression with various altered chords: Want to know the key to spicing up dull-sounding chord progressions? It’s altered chords.




    A midi player taken to the next level: You’ll love this program called MidiJam… and it’s free!


    How Guitar Hero can make you a better musician: Is it true? Click and find out.


    How to transpose stuff: Once you’ve learned a song in one key, here’s how to move it to any of the other 11 keys.


    I hope you enjoy!

    Now, if any of these lessons are too hard or too easy, click one of my other lesson groups below to explore other lessons. Like I said, there’s over 1,000 pages of information on this site. Don’t forget to bookmark us.


    Other lesson groups


    Beginner lessons: If you brand new, click here   Gospel beginner lessons: If you’re just getting started in playing gospel music, click here
    General ‘piano by ear’ lessons: These don’t focus on a particular style of music but playing in general.   Gospel intermediate lessons: Here are tips and techniques for musicians with some experience.
    Advanced lessons: These are for more experienced players.   Gospel advanced lessons: If you’re really playing and want to get to the next level, check these out.
    Jazz beginner lessons: If you’re just getting started in playing jazz, click here    
    Jazz intermediate lessons: If you’re already playing, check out these lessons