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Grade 7 Piano Exam

Play rock & pop songs on the piano the way that you want to.

Ofqual Accredited (EQF Level 4) Award £79.00 GBP

Between 12 and 16 UCAS pointsAS/A Level Equivalent

Rockschool equivalent costs £111.00 GBP (£32.00 GBP saving)

Grade 7 Popular Piano Exam

Grade 5 popular Piano syllabus

Grade 7
Popular Piano Pieces

For this piano exam you need to play five pieces

A minimum of 1 verse, 1 chorus, any middle 8s must be included & a creative final section.

The creative final section might include any of the following: 

melodic embellishments, licks, change of metre, re-harmonisation and restyling.

  • One Traditional Rock & Pop piece from the syllabus list,
  • Two pieces from after 2000 from the syllabus list,
  • Two pieces of your choice (Gaming and Movie Themes are acceptable).
Piano Syllabus

Own Choice

Own choice pieces should be of a similar level of difficult. The Grade Parameters can be found below. It's not expected that your piece will meet every aspect within the table, but it serves as a general guide as to the standard required.

Trad Rock & Pop Playlist

2000 Onwards Playlist

How to choose your Own Choice Piece

Grade 7 Popular Piano Exams

How Your Pieces are Marked

Grade 6-8 Piano Learning Objectives

£29.99 GBP one-off payment

All Grade 7 Toolkit Areas

£29.99 pcm including 

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Learn piano, refine & shine

Excel with Our
Celebrity Grade 7
Piano Practice Toolkit

We want all pianists who love popular music to progress and achieve and be recognised by offering access to high quality and affordable music exams with international level supporting materials on our innovative online platform.

In order to really succeed in piano exams, we need to practice.  Practising can seem boring, but NOT HERE!  Here you will find a range of resources that will help you become the pop musician that you’ve always wanted to be.  

Rhythm Tracks for your Piano Groove
Rhythm Tracks to Find Your Groove

Rhythm Backing Tracks 

Support your fluency, improvise in time in 3/4, 4/4 and 6/8 with tracks created by our Masterclass Tutors Marcus Brown (Madonna and more) and Nicky Brown (legendary producer & BBC).

Tracks:
  • 4/4 Rock
  • 3/4 Time
  • 6/8 Time
  • New York Loop
  • Slow Funky Loop
  • Slow Drive Loop
  • Pop Loop
  • Detroit Loop
  • Ballad Loop
 
Bonus: Establishing 4 beats per bar Masterclass Lesson by Nicky Brown.
Piano Scales Step by Step
Learn Your Keys & Scales Step by Step

Scale & Key Fun

Scales are not a requirement in the exam, but they are great for understanding keys and improvisation.  We do them in a really fun way!
 

This pack also includes a step-by-step phrase structure Blues Scale tutorial backing track from the Richard Michael BEM course.

Interactive step-by-step tracks in C, F, G, D, A E, Bb, Eb, and Ab Majors helping you start with just one note per key, then 2 notes, “add it and nail it” without feeling overwhelmed.

Bonus Masterclass – Add it and Nail It method by Mick Donnelly (Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Robbie Williams & more)

Multi-style backing tracks in C, F, G, D, A, E, Bb, Eb and Ab Majors (plus Mixolydian, and relative natural minors and harmonic minor in Am, Dm, Em, Bm, F#m, Gm, Cm, C#m and Fm) in different styles to support your concept of key and improvisation.  There are also tracks with the bass removed so that you can develop your LH and RH separately:

  • Pop (Pentatonic/Major)
  • Soft Rock (Mixolydian)
  • Reggae (harmonic minor)
  • Funk (natural minor)
  • Blues/Country (mixolydian/blues)

Pentatonic and Major are very common in pop songs.
Mixolydian is really common in rock guitar solos.

Natural minor is also particular common in guitar solos.
Blues scale is used to create inflexions in many blues and gospel solos.

Free Piano Courses
Song Style Backing Tracks

Song Style Backing Tracks 

These are chord progression tracks inspired by songs from the Grade 7 syllabus to help develop your improvisation. 

  • As it Was (Harry Styles)
  • A Thousand Miles (Vanessa Carlton)
  • Piano Man (Billy Joel)
  • Billy Jean (Michael Jackson)
  • Billie Bossa Nova (Billie Eilish)
  • Superstition (Stevie Wonder)
 
These tracks have been created exclusively by Andrew Sparham, our Guitar Tutor.
Improv tips for the Pop Art improv
Pro Tips: Pop Art of Improv on the Piano

Exclusive Pro Tips

EXCLUSIVE Improvisation lessons, tips, tracks, teaching techniques from World-Class Masterclass Tutors, including pianists who played on some of the original pop songs, interesting anecdotes, professional piano player insights, and session musician perspectives.  For Grade 7 tracks by international level pianists include:

  • “Oh Happy Day” Masterclass Excerpt.
  • “Superstition” Ebm Pentatonic Improv demonstration by leading guitarist (Andrew Sparham)
  • Introduction to 7ths via Oh When the Saints (Richard Michael BEM)
  • Samba Inspired Texture/Rhythm (Marcus Brown – Madonna, James Morrison and more)
  • Connecting Melody and Chord Voicing (Marcus Brown – Madonna, James Morrison and more)
  • Fats Domino Style Texture and Bass (Nicky Brown  – BBC, Four Weddings and a Funeral, Emeli Sande, Earth Wind and Fire and more)

 

learn grade 7 piano

Pop Piano Courses & Masterclasses

There’s a wide range of supporting resources on The Maestro Online platform to help you learn and polish your performances.

PIano grades Pop Songs

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What to expect from the Grade 7 Popular Piano Exam

 There is no requirement to play from the notation, but links are provided as an indication of the level of difficulty required. 

There are many students who will find that notation is not for them. They may find it too difficult, be dyslexic or neurodivergent. That’s totally okay! The links to scores of pieces on the syllabus give you a good idea of the standard and technique required.

 

All Piano Students

Grades 7 & 8 will include more LH arpeggios (arpeggios often covering a 2 octave range), RH and LH chords in octaves, complex rhythmic patterns and significant melodic or pattern decoration/embellishment.

Structure A significant section of the song, or a solo improvisation section, is strongly encouraged. Players will not to be clones of others, but have their own sense of individuality, character and flair. Both choruses and verses need to be performed in each song and any middle 8s/bridges must also be included; multiple verses/choruses may be necessary to ensure that pieces stay within the grade duration length specified.

Style & Improvisation Candidates are encouraged to create their own introductions and endings as well as embellishing the piece in order to gain extra marks. They might consider improvising a section with their own interpretation. Restyling a piece is welcome, and at this grade playing a traditional pop song influenced by a Latin style such as Bossa Nova would be highly welcomed. The candidate might consider rhythm and bass riff patterns. An emerging personal style will begin to be communicated more fully to the audience. Occasional Latin licks may be introduced by the candidate as part of their stylisation.  Restyling a piece is might also include changing a traditional pop song into a blues fir example. The significant improvisation/embellishment of an entire section (instrumental, middle 8/bridge, verse or chorus) to create a “solo” section is strongly encouraged. A section with significant contrast is encouraged.

Significant improvised melodic or pattern decoration/embellishment is encouraged, or via a purchased score. Licks learned from other artists might be added by the candidate to their repertoire.

Chords and Harmonies Candidates at this level might also explore some re-harmonisation as a feature within the final section. ii-V-I progressions in related keys and secondary dominants can be considered to add colour to the original song. Chords with higher level dissonances such as 9ths and 11ths will feature more often. Candidates are welcome to add them to existing pieces as part of developing their own stylisations. Chord changes every half-bar/2 beats will be much more common at this level.
 

Dynamics Detailed dynamic detailing, including a good balance between RH and LH. A section with significant contrast is encouraged. 

Songs should be performed in their original keys.

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Pop Piano Exam

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