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How do you read and play piano chords? #1947113
08/22/12 09:22 AM
08/22/12 09:22 AM
Joined: Aug 2012
Posts: 4
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at221 Offline OP
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at221  Offline OP
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Hi all,

I am a newbie piano player and would like to know how to play the piano chords as in this photo:

[Linked Image]


I know you play the chords shown on top of the melody line with your left hand. The bit I dont understand is the switching from one chord to another. The notes on the bass clef seems do not match the chord. Thanks you very much for reading, hope you guys can help out.

--Andy

Last edited by at221; 08/22/12 09:25 AM.
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Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1947150
08/22/12 10:38 AM
08/22/12 10:38 AM
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 2,048
Lisbon, Portugal
CarlosCC Offline
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Lisbon, Portugal
Hi, and welcome to PW.
As far as I can understand, and to do a straight answer, why don't you search on youtube for some videos of that piece showing the fingers of the player? you can check if you are reading the correct notes (which is what I think you're not doing).
Or, practice enough to get the right tempo. Sometimes only achieving this "detail" you get the right music.
Good luck.


[Linked Image]
SoundCloud | Youtube
Self-taught since Dec2009
"Don't play what's there, play what's not there."
Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1947156
08/22/12 10:50 AM
08/22/12 10:50 AM
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Posts: 4
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at221 Offline OP
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at221  Offline OP
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Thanks for the reply

i been trying to find the videos on youtube but none seem to be specific in teaching how to play the chords with other notes player on the bass clef

Last edited by at221; 08/22/12 10:58 AM.
Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1947163
08/22/12 11:02 AM
08/22/12 11:02 AM
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 2,048
Lisbon, Portugal
CarlosCC Offline
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Originally Posted by at221
Thanks for the reply

You're welcome!
Why don't you do a short presentation of yourself in the OT, Tell us about yourself thread? We'd like to hear what is your motivation, background on piano, experience, and so on.


[Linked Image]
SoundCloud | Youtube
Self-taught since Dec2009
"Don't play what's there, play what's not there."
Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1947164
08/22/12 11:06 AM
08/22/12 11:06 AM
Joined: Aug 2012
Posts: 41
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eNOTEquest Offline
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"I know you play the chords shown on top of the melody line with your left hand."

I'm not sure what you mean by this. The chords written above the staff (C, Em7, Am7, etc.) are either for another instrument, or just for guidance. You are not actually supposed to play them on piano (as far as I understand).

And even if you were playing those chords you certainly would not play them with your left hand, you'd play them with your right hand.

However what I gather from this piece is that you are supposed to play the treble clef with your right hand and the bass clef with your left hand, just like any other piece of music notation.

Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1947166
08/22/12 11:10 AM
08/22/12 11:10 AM
Joined: Aug 2012
Posts: 4
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at221 Offline OP
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at221  Offline OP
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Thanks for the advice. So I meant to ignore the chords on top if playing piano solo, which does clear a few things up.

Also, im not sure how to get to the Tell us about yourself thread :S.

Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1947170
08/22/12 11:14 AM
08/22/12 11:14 AM
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 2,048
Lisbon, Portugal
CarlosCC Offline
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CarlosCC  Offline
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Originally Posted by at221
(...)Also, im not sure how to get to the Tell us about yourself thread :S.

Try this:
http://www.pianoworld.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/984145/OT,%20%20Tell%20us%20about%20yourself.html#Post984145


[Linked Image]
SoundCloud | Youtube
Self-taught since Dec2009
"Don't play what's there, play what's not there."
Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1947175
08/22/12 11:27 AM
08/22/12 11:27 AM
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 2,048
Lisbon, Portugal
CarlosCC Offline
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CarlosCC  Offline
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Originally Posted by at221
Thanks for the reply

i been trying to find the videos on youtube but none seem to be specific in teaching how to play the chords with other notes player on the bass clef

Sorry, I'm not good reading chinese(?) crazy
What is the title of the piece?


[Linked Image]
SoundCloud | Youtube
Self-taught since Dec2009
"Don't play what's there, play what's not there."
Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1947272
08/22/12 02:37 PM
08/22/12 02:37 PM
Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 1,139
Nashville, TN
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Brian Lucas Offline
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The chords above come from analyzing the written notes. Since you have actual notes, you don't need to pay attention to the chords. If you knew the melody to the song, you could play just the melody and "fake" the rest with the chords, which is why they are usually added. When you do it this way and solo piano style, you usually play the root of the chord with your left hand and an inversion of the chord with the melody note on top with your right hand.


-Brian
BM in Performance, Berklee College of Music, 23+ year teacher and touring musician
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Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1947316
08/22/12 03:30 PM
08/22/12 03:30 PM
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 17,155
Canada
keystring Offline
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The chord names written as letter above tell the harmonic progression of that measure or beat. the music itself is built on that harmony. For example, measure 1 says FM7, and measure 3 says Em7.
FM7 = FACE
Em7 = EGBD

You play the notes in the top treble clef with the right hand, and in the bottom bass clef with the left hand. The chord names just tells you the underlying harmony.

Measures 1 & 2 have the harmony of FM7. The melody is in the left hand. You would try to play it louder, and the chords softer. The chords contain only the notes of FM7. Some of the notes in the LH of m. 2 are not part of FM7. They are non-chord notes which simply link the notes together to make the melody sound more smooth. You still get that feeling of FM7.

Some people like seeing chord names because they like to improvise or it helps them read music if they are stronger in chord names.

Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: CarlosCC] #1947318
08/22/12 03:32 PM
08/22/12 03:32 PM
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,839
Italy
sinophilia Offline

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Originally Posted by CarlosCC

Sorry, I'm not good reading chinese(?) crazy
What is the title of the piece?


I could read it if it was Chinese, but it's Japanese wink
Something to do with the wind though...


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Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1947472
08/22/12 08:30 PM
08/22/12 08:30 PM
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 388
Japan
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MaryAnn Offline
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Japan
Kaze ni naru. It becomes windy?

Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1947757
08/23/12 10:22 AM
08/23/12 10:22 AM
Joined: Aug 2012
Posts: 7
Long Island, New York
9symphony9 Offline
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In this in Japanese? I am learning it and I see hiragana written.

Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: keystring] #1948049
08/23/12 07:09 PM
08/23/12 07:09 PM
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 331
Deep East Texas Piney Woods
majones Offline
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As has been said you have a choice; 1) You can just play the bass clef as written or 2) Read the name of the chord and then compose what you think will work, i.e. using the chord tones of the chord named play what notes you think are necessary.

Fmaj7 is made of the 1-3-5-7 notes of the F major scale. Classic frozen hand - every other white notes on the keyboard.

Repeating - you have a choice you can play what is written in the bass clef or look at the chord name and decide what notes will be necessary for this specific portion of the song, i.e. just the 1 or root note could be used. As could the 1 and 5 that is enough to get harmonization. Or you could use all of the 1-3-5-7 scale degree notes.

Yes you are correct the bass clef notes do not follow the chord tones 100%. Don't worry about that right now, there is logic in what has been done -- do those three notes sound good with the melody? If so move on don't sweat it.


Last edited by majones; 08/23/12 07:24 PM.
Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: 9symphony9] #1948109
08/23/12 09:08 PM
08/23/12 09:08 PM
Joined: Nov 2011
Posts: 388
Japan
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MaryAnn Offline
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MaryAnn  Offline
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Joined: Nov 2011
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Japan
Originally Posted by 9symphony9
In this in Japanese? I am learning it and I see hiragana written.
hai. Nihongo desu. I am waiting for FarmGirl to correct my translation. :-)

Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1949698
08/27/12 08:22 AM
08/27/12 08:22 AM
Joined: Aug 2012
Posts: 13
Massachusetts, USA
edmascari Offline
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Massachusetts, USA
Andy,

To play the piano chords in the photo:
1. Ignore the introduction for now and start at with the 5 notes at the end of the 3rd line (those are the "pick up notes). The chords below begin right after that.
I would start by practicing:

Count 1-2-3-4 for each measure.
Left Hand Fingers to use are underneath
C (C-E-G) | Amin (A-C-E) | F/C (C-F-A)| G7 (B-F-G) |
5-3-1 |5-3-1 | 5-2-1 | 5-2-1 |

I have some theory lessons on my website that will help you to understand this:
http://edmascari.com/buildingblocks/index.htm http://edmascari.com/buildingblocks/index.htm

Practice this pattern over and over until it is smooth.

If you learn to use these chord symbols, you'll be able to play your song.
I have some songs on my website that will show you how these chord symbols can be played:
http://edmascari.com/simplesongs/index.htm

Hopefully, this will get you started.
All the best,
Ed Mascari


Originally Posted by at221
Hi all,

I am a newbie piano player and would like to know how to play the piano chords as in this photo:

[Linked Image]


I know you play the chords shown on top of the melody line with your left hand. The bit I dont understand is the switching from one chord to another. The notes on the bass clef seems do not match the chord. Thanks you very much for reading, hope you guys can help out.

--Andy

Last edited by edmascari; 08/27/12 08:24 AM.

Ed Mascari
Ed Mascari Piano Studio, Inc.
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http://www.youtube.com/user/EdMascariPianoStudio/feed
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Hudson, MA 01749
Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1949760
08/27/12 11:12 AM
08/27/12 11:12 AM
Joined: Aug 2012
Posts: 4
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at221 Offline OP
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at221  Offline OP
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Many thanks for all the replies. I think im beginning to understand this and am practicing bit by bit of the song. So i take it that the chords above the line are just there as an option on top of the bass clefs.

Also, this music sheet is in japanese, and is the theme song for "The Cat Returns" animation film by Ghibli Studios.

Re: How do you read and play piano chords? [Re: at221] #1949769
08/27/12 11:49 AM
08/27/12 11:49 AM
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rocket88 Offline
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Originally Posted by at221
Many thanks for all the replies...So i take it that the chords above the line are just there as an option on top of the bass clefs.


Not Really. The chord letters printed above the treble clef are the names of the chords that are created by the sum total of all the notes that are lined up below that letter.

In other words, if you see the letter "C" printed, then the notes below that are, in some fashion, an assemblage of the notes that make up the "C" chord, often along with some other note(s) that, although they are not part of the chord, create the melody at that point.

So you have a choice. You can play the notes as written in the score, and you will be automatically playing the chord.

Or you can read the written letter, (such as "C"), play your own version of the chord, and also play the melody line, which usually is the highest written note.

In either case, you are playing some version of that chord.

BTW, A lot of music does not have the written chord letter above, but it is still the same...you are playing a sequence of chords.

Last edited by rocket88; 08/27/12 12:15 PM. Reason: clarity

Piano teacher.

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