How many times have you listened to one of your favorite songs on the radio and wanted to play it on your piano? A lot of times we think that the music we hear so much and love in pop culture is too hard to learn, or maybe we shouldn’t mess with because we won’t learn anything that will help our piano playing.
This couldn’t be farther from the truth and I’m going to teach you some very common and easy chords patterns that are found in many pop songs and soon you will be playing them yourself on your own keyboard!
First, let’s learn the pop song chord progression pattern.
We are going to start in the key of C Major. The specific chords (in c major) that we need to play for this particular progression are:
All of the chords must have the same notes that are in the key signature for C major, since that’s the key we are in.
We can also call each of these chords by where they fall in the scale.
Why is this important to know? Because once you have learned the progression by the number of it instead of the note name, you can play this same progression in any key. This is what we call transposing.
It doesn’t matter what key you need to play in…as long as you play the chords in this progression and following the same key signature (meaning you play the corresponding sharps, flats and naturals). It’s that easy! 1-5-6-4…Or just think – 1564. You can come with any number of fun ways to remember this pattern.
If we were to do this chord pattern in the key of G Major, the chords would be:
See how you just do the same pattern although you start on G instead of C? In this case though, the difference is that you play F# anytime you have an F in the chord because G Major has F# in it, whereas C Major has F natural in it.
The key is to repeat the pattern but not the notes because you have to know the key signature before you can know what notes to play.
Start learning this progression in as many different keys as you can because you’ll find that pop music utilizes all of the different keys we have in music. Try going through the circle of fifths using this progression and you’ll reinforce they different key signature notes that you may currently be working on.
The best way to put all of this together and show you how to apply this knowledge and actually play a piece is to watch me play different examples of popular songs and how I use these tools to figure out how to play them on the piano.
If you like my tips and lessons, you will love the courses over on my website. Whether you are a beginner looking to get a solid foundation to build on or you are looking to take you existing skills to that next level, the online music courses on my website https://www.pianolessonsontheweb.com will help you do just that.
Most blogs written by