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Topic: Easy Fun Songs Child  (Read 513 times)

Offline toliver

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Easy Fun Songs Child
on: February 06, 2021, 10:25:25 PM
My daughter is 8years old and has been playing piano for 1 year. The weekly songs with her teacher are getting quite boring, I downloaded 'Can't stop feeling in love - elvis' Which is her favourite song and easy to play. Any suggestions for 'easy' fun songs would be great, Thank you !

Offline dogperson

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Re: Easy Fun Songs Child
Reply #1 on: February 06, 2021, 11:03:46 PM
My daughter is 8years old and has been playing piano for 1 year. The weekly songs with her teacher are getting quite boring, I downloaded 'Can't stop feeling in love - elvis' Which is her favourite song and easy to play. Any suggestions for 'easy' fun songs would be great, Thank you !

It’s hard to know what your daughter would consider ‘fun’, since I would have never included an Elvis hit in her fun plle. 

I can suggest a couple of options:
Music notes: look at songs she enjoys for ‘easy piano’ versions.  You can hear and view their music before you buy.

Look at Martha Mier:  graded books of jazz and blues  (you can ‘look inside’ at  Amazon) 
                                Best of Martha Mier: her original comps, graded 

Ben Crosland has a series called ‘Cool Beans’

Offline j_tour

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Re: Easy Fun Songs Child
Reply #2 on: February 07, 2021, 12:11:57 AM
Dr. John aka Mac Rebennack, "Louisiana Lullaby," from the album Tango Palace.  It's a tune meant to be a very straight interpretation of what can be racous affair of a "go-to-sleep" (un fais do-do) for, I believe, a niece of Mac. 

Very nice, gentle lyrics, good vibes.  It's meant to be a child's song, really:  in the sense that Debussy's Children's Corner is for children, but not really played by children without some adaptation.  AFAIK.

There's a partial transcription of the basic idea from the original Homespun recordings instructional tapes.  And there's a solo piano version without lyrics from the extended version of the "Dr. John Plays Mac Rebennack" sessions, but I've only heard that version a few times.  Back as a young/mid teenager, those albums were a big influence, though. 

Probably should be simplified a lot, since octaves+ are an important part of the style.  But could be a good introduction to one of the core piano styles.

Billy Preston, "Nothing From Nothing" could be good.  Not the solo from the record (a lot of octaves in the RH, and kind of fast). but the basic tune and maybe simplify the LH chords.  Basic tune accompaniment is just chords with a little "pushing" of the beat.  Speaking of Billy Preston, and The Beatles, why not "Get Back"?  Maybe not Billy Preston's solo, although I adapted it for a peer who wanted to play it who couldn't manage the octaves and the stuff in between, quite a while ago.  Good tune, anyway, full of piano.

Chuck Leavell, piano accompaniment from The Allman Brothers Band tune "Jessica."  Not the solo (!!), just the melody of the tune, really.  Probably slow it down from the original:  it's kind of quick, but it needn't be played that way.  I think it's in A, or maybe D, and on the album, the piano accompaniment is kind of rudimentary blues-based, sort of groove.  Forget about the solo, but just the tune:  it's a good one.

Elton John, "Rocket Man."  I don't care what they say, it's a cool tune, and to play it just need be a few chords and a slightly jazzy "pushing" of the chords a bit ahead of the beat.

Led Zeppelin, "Black Dog."  Nuff said:  just do the riff and some LH business.  Hits the technique of stop-time, drones in fifth (aka "power chords") maybe in the LH, and some room to breath.  In A IIRC.

Ray Charles.  Pick one.  "Drown in My Own Tears," "What'd I Say," etc.

Aretha.  Pick one.  Aretha was not just an incredible singer, but a very well-developed pianist.  She didn't play all the parts on the Atlantic rtecords, but she could have.  A very capable pianist.  I think she tended to put tunes around G concert, for her voice, which is an "easy" key, I guess.  C as well.  But, like Ray, Aretha could and did play and sing in any key that was required.

Cannonball Adderley, Joe Zawinul, "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy"

I'm 100% sure there are transcriptions of some kind on the web, but if not, it could be good ear training to just take them off the record.

Just melody and some of the groove for each should be plenty.

I really don't know about eight year olds, but if brain-dead adults with a mental age of three who haven't even been playing for a year can play these, probably while high or drunk, it's not a problem.

I don't know absolutely any music written for children in books.  I really don't know.  Maybe some of the Bartók, I guess, or Bach, of course.  Play some real stuff, just adapt it, and learn it off the record like a musician. 8's about the perfect age to learn music diverging from the standard method books.  Won't probably be perfect, not until some closer listening, but it's a good place to start.

While continuing to read and study.

Scott Joplin, at the very least, if fancy music with printed notes is a desideratum.  "The Easy Winners," or "Bethena," for example.  I know there are at least some simplified versions of ones like "The Entertainer," but, you know, one can roll one's own, pretty much, with some good guidance.

Gospel tunes.  "Pass Me Not," "How Great Thou Art," "Just A Closer Walk."  Just use out of some hymnal or something.  Can be basic, can give it the whole treatment, whatever denomination doesn't matter:  some of the foundations of American/British pop music.

Country music:  look at the piano accompaniments to earlier George Jones records from legends like Pig Robbins.  "Wine Colored Roses," or whatever sounds good.  While I think eight year olds can and will obviously play anything, the lyrics are probably not going to be understood.  Or, you know, the theme from the movie Blazing Saddles:  that's a good tune.

I'm guarantee there are arrangement/reductions of likely any of these (99% of these at least) in a sheet music from the publisher, which are likely plenty simplified for reading and as a basis for listening and adding elements from the records to taste.

That's just, obviously, off the top of my head, but that's a pretty good set of basic, representative tunes from pop (and traditional) music from both sides of the pond (you know, the UK and North America, at least).  And, you've got keys like A, D, C, Eb, F, G, E, and simple melodies and basic "cowboy chords," for the most part.

There's a fantastic fakebook with the title, like *1001 Tunes For Professionals Only* (something corny like that!) that has a ton of show tunes, early rock and roll, and even divided up "ethnic" tunes according to places like Ireland, Germany, France, Sweden, Norway, Russia, Mexico, Scotland, the US military service branches, and so forth. 

Oh, this guy Jeff Gutcheon, I think, had a book out by, maybe Hal Leonard publishers called something like "Improvising Rock Piano"....something like that.  IIRC he had an amusing demonstration of "strength training for pianists" featuring a doughy guy in grainy B&W pictures....not the book's strongest portion, but IIRC combination of original tunes/contrafacts based on Aretha, Jerry Lee, Richard Tee, Carole King and so forth, but also at least a few attempts at transcriptions....I think there was a Dr. John tune and an Allen Toussaint tune in there and....damn, I still have it somewhere, but I'm sure the table of contents are online.  Had some good biographical information about each artist, and some good B&W photos throughout.

IME, that was one of the better books in that series of "Improvising blahblah" and whatever, because it had some real stuff in it, even if a bit simplified.  A teenage/young adult friend/bandmate cut out the pictures of Jeff G "strength training" for piano from my copy and put it on his basement apartment wall for laughs.  Long time ago!  :)

Lots of places to go! 

Cutting any of these tunes down to size should take any pianist/teacher approximately zero effort, and you've got the publishers' official sheet music, as well as any number of excellent fake books to fall back on.

I think the prognosis is excellent.  My emphasis here is on tunes that probably many people have heard, but have simpler structures and can be adapted in an ad hoc fashion for whatever size hands or however adventurous or traditional your kid is. 

And we haven't even got to The Rolling Stones...lots of tunes, lots of piano.  Or Pink Floyd, during and after *Dark Side of The Moon* period. 

In one of the recent issues of TapeOp magazine, there's a good interview with a session bass player/producer (ETA Norbert Putnam) who played on well over a hundred record dates with Elvis:  he gives a very positive recollection of what it was like recording with Elvis, and stressed that Elvis was more than proficient at nailing the cut vocals on the first take.

So, put Elvis together with piano and you've got rock and roll, pretty much.  Jerry Lee, Johnnie Johnson (he was Chuck Berry's piano player and uncredited songwriter for tunes like "Johnny B Goode" etc), Doc Pomus, Dr John, Billy Preston, and into soul music, Aretha, Ray, and everybody fits in that bag, some way or another.

ETA:  I don't want to call out your teacher/employee, but this IMHO should be really basic for any good piano picker to adapt on the fly and so forth.  Perhaps not, but this is meant to be on the easier side of things.  I wouldn't expect an average teacher to know about French-Canadian/New Orleans music or even gospel or soul music.

But, that's why there's the publishers' sheet music, and, if not, fake books and so forth, which anybody can help your kid out with.  More important is probably just remove some of the "mystique" about music:  it's just some women and some fellows in a room around a few microphones.  Nothing your child can't do, or learn to do.  It takes a while, but the sooner the better.

My name is Nellie, and I take pride in helping protect the children of my community through active leadership roles in my local church and in the Boy Scouts of America.  Bad word make me sad.

Offline taraweaver

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Re: Easy Fun Songs Child
Reply #3 on: February 09, 2021, 06:13:40 PM
Faber and Faber has the "PreTime to BigTime" series of books for beginner/method book level students. The series has seven levels with popular music, Disney music, jazz, etc. They also have a "studio collection" from each of the first six levels with a mix off all the "genres."
They may work for you.
Good luck!

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