Piano improvising C major


Piano improvising C major:

Enjoy the freedom of music making through simple improvising. With very little study you will be able to express your musical self - even if you have never played a musical instrument before. 




This page consists of 4 steps:

STEP ONE:     The Whole Routine: Scale, Chords and Improvisation.

                     (Divided into 5 sections).

STEP TWO:     The Improvisation over the guitar backing track.

STEP THREE:  The Song.

STEP FOUR:     The Classical Piece, (optional).





The "Whole Routine" video for piano improvising C major - with commentary:

Ideally, you just follow the video below (playing hands separately) and its done!

Use "pause" and "rewind" whenever you need to.

(Later, when you've played the 24 keys musical keys: hands seperately, do them again, hands together).

Please note: If you find the video too slow for you (or too fast), instead, you can follow the "Whole Routine" using the words and charts below.

In this way you can go at your own speed.

...now try the video:




The "Whole Routine"

explained in words and charts:


Important: play the Whole Routine, first with your right hand then with your left.

Once you are used to it, play the Whole Routine both hands at the same time - hands together. This will make the routine very fast, save a lot of time and improve your technique.



STEP ONE




The Scale and Chords of C major:

          (divided into 4 sections)





a) The Scale Routine:


Tony Chapman's Simple SCALE Chart, with fingering.

1) Top row: the numbers for the right hand fingering.

2) Middle row: the notes of the scale.

3) Bottom row: the numbers for the left  hand fingering.

Remember:

- as you go up the scale, your thumb goes UNDER your finger,

- as you go down the scale, your finger goes OVER your thumb.



...stick with the fingering - it is vitally important, crucial!  especially later...






b) The 8 Chords routine:


Tony Chapman's Simple CHORD Chart:

  • These 3 note chords are also called: "triads".
  • A name with just the letter means it is a major chord. A name with the letter and a small "m" after it means it is a minor chord.
  • For the Routine, play ALL 8 chords of the scale in their "root positions" - (as shown in the chart). Play them one after another, from low to high: read the chart from the bottom upwards in this order: chords: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, - all the way up the piano, (left to right on the piano keyboard). For the Routine DO NOT COME BACK DOWN THE PIANO. Play the chords upwards only, from low to high. This saves time and makes the whole routine more efficient, quicker and easier to play). 
  • The fingering is the same for each chord and is the same for left AND right hand:  fingers: 1,  3,  5.










c) The Inversions Routine:


For the Inversions: use the 3 note "Root" chord, (i.e. the chord with the same name as the key you are playing in).

Play it in this order:

firstly: Root, then: 1st Inversion, then: 2nd Inversion, then: 1st Inversion, then: Root again. 

Follow the fingering and notes in the chart below and it will be clear:



...stick with the fingering - it is vitally important, crucial!  especially later...









d) The 3 Main Chords Routine:


Now play the "3 main chords" (i.e. the 1st, 4th and 5th chords), as a combination of root and inversions, so they are close together on the keyboard, in a clump.

This means your hand can stay in one place and doesn't have to jump about all over the keyboard - which is easier for playing and it makes a much smoother and more pleasant sound

Follow the fingering and notes in the chart below and it will be clear:



...stick with the fingering - it is vitally important, crucial!  especially later...









e) The Piano Improvising Routine:



First: play the chords with your left hand and make up melodies with your right (using any fingering you like).

Second: reverse your hands: chords with the right, melodies with the left.

The first chord sequence to experiment with is the first two chords of the scale. 


Tips for improvising melody  (tunes)

on piano:


  1. RETURN OFTEN TO THE   "ROOT" NOTE, (the note with the name of the scale you are in).
  2. HOLD NOTES ON.
  3. REPEAT SHORT PATTERNS, (exactly the same 3 or 4 notes repeated over and over).
  4. PLAY MUSICAL SENTENCES, (a long run of notes, with a start and an end - can be different every time).
  5. JUMP FROM NOTE TO NOTE, (big jumps, and smaller jumps).

                             

Use the first two chords of the scale for backing: C and D minor:

C scale below:



Now have a go at recording

your own improvisation!


  • First: make up the melody with the right hand (using any fingering you like) whilst playing the chords with the left hand.
  • Second: the other way around: melody with the left hand, chords with the right.



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This is how the Whole Routine sounds when played smoothly, and a little faster. It becomes a continuous piece of music.

Something that will stay with you for life:






STEP TWO



In C major:

The Improvisation over the guitar backing track.


  • Now play the small video below and "improvise" again (using any fingering you like), but this time, over the guitar backing track.
  • Remember, concentrate on creating MELODIES and TUNES only...
  • ...you don't have to think about using chords this time - the backing guitar plays the chords for you.
  • Use only one finger or at least only one hand to improvise with.



REMEMBER THE 4 IMPROVISATION TIPS:

1. HOLD THE NOTE ON.

2. REPEATING RIFF.

3. SMOOTH MUSICAL SENTENCE

4. JUMPING NOTES.


The notes to use in C major:




STEP THREE




The Song in C major:


...listen to it  (excuse my voice, some of these keys are a bit out of my range!  :-)  then play and sing along with it - then do it on your own ...

                           ENJOY!   :-)




Whole world in his hands in C for piano.


He's got the whole world in his hands

                   G

He's got the whole world in his hands

                   C 

He's got the whole world in his hands

                    G                       C 

He's got the whole world in his hands



He's got the sun and the moon in his hands

                   G 

He's got the sun and the moon in his hands

                  C 

He's got the sun and the moon in his hands

                    G                         C 

He's got the whole world in his hands



             C 

He's got you and me sister in his hands

             G 

He's got you and me sister in his hands

              C 

He's got you and me sister in his hands

                    G                         C 

He's got the whole world in his hands



                   C 

He’s got the little bitty babies in his hands

                    G 

He’s got the little bitty babies in his hands

                   C 

He’s got the little bitty babies in his hands

                     G                        C 

He’s got the  whole world in his hands








STEP FOUR




The easy classical piece i
n C major:



A VERY IMPORTANT NOTE:

YOU DO NOT HAVE TO DO THE FOLLOWING
"CLASSICAL READING" SECTION TO BE A REAL MUSICIAN.

IF YOU ARE A SONG WRITER OR YOU JUST ENJOY IMPROVISING YOUR OWN MUSIC ON THE PIANO - YOU DON'T HAVE TO READ MUSIC - SO IGNORE THE FOLLOWING SECTION IF YOU WISH. (OR COME BACK TO IT LATER).




Thanks to Michael Pollock for his brilliant series:
"
Easy Piano in Every Key
"
 

from which the pieces below
 are taken.




Click here for guidance on how to read musical notes: (open the page as a seperate window so you can refer to it as you work through the classical piece).



VERY IMPORTANT!

IN THE DIAGRAMS BELOW NOTICE: 

"MIDDLE C"

- this is the "C" in the middle of the piano

it is your reference point when reading music.



LEFT HAND: how to read the notes.


RIGHT HAND: how to read the notes.


Please note: 

by playing the two pieces below you will use EVERY SINGLE NOTE  of the scale on this page.



...stick with the fingering - it is vitally important, crucial!  especially later...








Bonus:

Tony Chapman's hand written "Everything Chart"

for piano and guitar  

- it has just about every chord, scale, and more

- explore it - have fun! -

GREAT FOR SONG WRITING IDEAS!:


Click here for the Everything Chart in C major

Brilliant for help with:




...thats it, for this key, folks!... thanks ...