Thursday, July 25, 2013

Lead Sheets

   This summer I wanted to introduce each student to a lead sheet. I have used them over the years and they appear in the strangest places. For example, I was hired by a very passionate third grade teacher to come into her classroom to do music. This school had a music teacher and each classroom went once a week. She wanted more, so she paid me, out of her pocket for eight years. I went in on Mondays and stayed 45 minutes. I started out just accompanying, but over time she gave me more license and freedom to bring in music of my choice. The music she gave me to play was mostly lead sheets. Sometimes I had to make my own because she would hum the melody and I would jot down the tune on music paper I had with me. It was a learning adventure for me for sure.

    The Fabers have included lead sheets in their new edition lesson books. I have scoured the internet for free music to add to my collection. I start with just one note in the left hand, the root note. Then I add fifths, the first and the fifth note of the chord, and finally the whole chord.
     Here is an example of a great song to use that plan. "Walk Don't Run" sounds good with just one bass note, the fifths, and the chord. With my intermediate students who understand intervals, I show them the inverted chords, close together for fluency.
     Reasons to work with lead sheets-

  1. It opens the door to understanding chord theory
  2. Improvisation happens naturally
  3. Traditional songs come back into use, like Happy Birthday.
Wikifonia is a great internet site for finding lead sheets and even uploading your own.
                                                  Find some free lead sheets here.

No comments:

Post a Comment