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Play Rock Songs on Piano

Coffee Break Piano 8: We Will Rock You

Playing piano in a rock band is exciting, just imagine the lights and your solo! Develop your own improvised high-energy rock piano solos that will excite your friends and family in just 5 steps.

We start the 2nd week in the Coffee Break Piano Course series, teaching you Major Scales and keys in just a coffee break 10 minutes via We Will Rock You!

How to play Rock Piano?

  • 1 Right Hand: Just 4 Notes & You’ll Rock Major Scales

  • 2 Left Hand: Rock Piano Chords & Accompaniments

  • 3 Ear Training & Aural: Rock a Major Scale Game

  • 4 Read Rock Piano Notes on Lead Sheets

  • 5 Rock Piano Improv, Licks & Turnarounds

Learn to Play We Will Rock You on Piano

Rock Piano Major Scales using We Will Rock You

Right Hand: Just 4 Notes & You’ll Rock Major Scales

Get ready to rock! Learning a major scale on the piano is a fundamental step that can get you playing some of the most popular rock songs in no time.

The cool thing about We Will Rock You is that it only uses 4 notes. What’s even cooler is that if you start on an B, play We Will Rock You on your piano, then start on an E and play We Will Rock You lower, then you’ve actually played a complete Major Scale. I bet Queen and Freddie Mercury didn’t realise that they were teaching Major Scales through Rock Piano lessons did they?!

Left Hand Rock Piano Chords & Accompaniments

Let’s use We Will Rock You to teach a range of left hand coordination and texture techniques.

A great way to learn how to play rock piano is to recognize the characteristics of rock music itself. Rock typically includes pounding and distorted drums, thick electric guitars, clear bass lines, powerful melodic moments and plenty of energy. To capture this spirit with your own piano playing, focus on creating strong piano textures and basses. Experiment with different left hand chord patterns to achieve the unique emotion that rock brings — you’ll be rocking out in no time!

When playing rock songs on the piano, accompaniment is an important part of creating a great sound. To start learning how to play rock style accompaniments, use left hand octaves low in the bass and simple chords . Build the intensity of the song and keep it going in exciting way!

Solfège Ear Training & Aural:

Rock a Major Scale Game

So this iconic rock anthem works with the notes Do-Ti-La-So and Fa-Me-Re-Do. Check the piano out – they both begin with one falling semitone step and then 3 tones (see the video for an explanation). These groups of step patterns or ‘intervals’ (the distance between notes) are called “tetrachords”. The two tetrachords form a Major Scale (arguably the most common ladder of notes used to write melodies in Western music).

Let’s play a game! If you already know the Kodaly technique or sing in a choir, you might know it. I call it the “cumulative note game” because you add one note at a time. It’s fun, it’s fast, let’s rock ‘n roll!

Piano Scores & Rock Lead Sheets

If a Rock pianist or keyboardist follows notation, then the most that they would follow would usually be a “lead sheet”. What do I mean by this? It’s a sheet of music notes in treble clef with the letters of each chord above. If the letter is followed by a lower case “m”, then it’s a minor chord.

This little snippet doesn’t allow for much rock lead sheet reading…. so… let’s try it in a few different keys, looking for semitone steps and then 3 tone steps. Get rockin’ those keys!

To best utilize lead sheets while playing, focus less on playing exact notes, and instead aim to use the general guidance laid out by the chords indicated on the sheet. As you learn to play rock pieces, remember to make use of piano improvisation techniques such as adding fills in between sections or riffing off of chord changes to bring them to life!

Rock Piano Improv, Licks & Turnarounds

Improving your rock piano skills by developing your own personal licks and turn arounds is the best way to make each song your own. To improvise on the piano, it’s useful to understand common scale patterns and chords used by pianists in pop/rock music. This can help you create unique licks within a family of notes and also help identify turnarounds that you can use at the end of sections – a great way to add more excitement!

Using Piano Chords In Many More Popular Songs

(in a Coffee Break)

Want to learn how to play rock piano and pop piano songs on the piano easily? The Coffee Break Piano tutorials are certainly for you! If you’d like more detailed piano courses, then explore The Maestro Online Piano Lessons Library of Courses & Celebrity Masterclasses. Master rock piano through an enormous range of courses (over 100 in total) through many popular songs.

Unleash your inner rock-n-roller and become the life of the party with easy piano rock song courses! From learning to play classic rock anthems to exploring modern pop, get ready to wow any crowd with your impressive skills on the keys. So grab your instrument and let’s start playing some awesome music – it’s time to rock out on piano!