Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Teaching From Lead Sheets

                                             Periscope #9   

                Just learn the melody and improvise the left hand

     Have you ever used just a lead sheet to learn music? As a musician I am called upon all the time to do just that. For example, yesterday I was playing the piano as a volunteer for a group called MusicMendsMinds. We do music with those suffering from Alzheimers, early dementia, and some residents from our local Care Center. When we arrive, the musicians scramble to come up with an agenda. The guitarists only use lead sheets so they hand me the music and expect I will be able to improvise. In periscope #9 I reviewed some steps to teach from a lead sheet.

  1. Teach the right hand melody line
  2. Review the chords written above the melody as block chords
  3. For the easiest LH play only the bottom notes of the chord.
  4. Play the melody and bottom notes of chords together
  5. Try fifths in the LH
  6. Harmonize the melody by dropping some notes from the chord under the melody
  7. Play together
  8. Try a different LH, such as, waltz broken chords or arpeggiated chords.
         Faber Piano Adventures uses a lead sheet in every level of their 2nd edition lesson books.


Next week on Periscope is still undecided. I am there on Tuesdays at 10:30 PST and my screen name is GabriB. I hope you will visit me.

     Periscope is a free app by the Twitter company that allows you to broadcast all over the world. There is no time limit. Viewers can participate by typing messages and questions and by sending hearts for content they like. The recorded broadcast is viewable for 24 hours after airing.


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