In this post I will talk about a nice run to play before the starting 1 chord of slow gospel chords.
On the left hand, you go
3 4 5 6 7 1
e.g. in the key of C major, you will go
E F G A B C
On the right hand you will harmonize the following melody:
3 4 3 2♯ 2 1
by using the following chords:
1 4 3minor 2♯-minor 2minor 1.
In the key of Cmajor these chords are:
G+C+E A+C+F G+B+E F♯+A♯+D♯ F+A+D E+G+C
First chord you harmonize the E using a Cmajor chord
Second you harmonize the F using a Fmajor chord
Third you harmonize the E with a Eminor
Then you go down a half step with the same chord shape to harmonize the D♯ with a D♯ chord
You then harmonize the D with a Dminor
Then you harmonize the C with a Cmajor chord.
To make it more melodious, on the right hand you can insert a 1sus4 chord before the last 1chord. That is, insert a Csus4 chord before the last Cmajor chord. So instead of going from F+A+D to E+G+C on the right hand, you can play it like this:
F+A+D F+G+C E+G+C
Furthermore, you can make the left hand run a little more melodious by quickly adding a 2 before the 5 since 2 normally has a strong pull to 5. So the left hand run becomes
3 4 2 5 6 7 1
To summarize, on the left hand you play the following notes
3 4 2 5 6 7 1
while on the right hand you play the following chords:
I will like to talk about the 9 (add 6) chord. This chord is a nice one to use in worship songs.
You can use this for the 2 chord or the 1 chord.
E.g When playing a 6-2 progression, you can play a minor 9 for the 6 chord and a 9 (add 6) for the 2 chord. Similarly, when playing a 5-1 progression that does not end a song, you can play a 5 minor 9 chord, then a 1 9 (add 6) chord.
Here’s an example of such a chord.
D♭ 9 (add 6)
To play it, you play D♭ on the left hand. Then play F B♭ B and E♭ on the right hand.
An easy way to think about it is to play the root note of the chord on the left hand, then play a quartal 3 chord with an added ♭5 on the right hand.
For example, F is the 3 chord on the D♭ major scale. F B♭ and E♭ is the F quartal chord. And B is ♭5 on the F scale.
Using this trick, it is easy to play 9 (add 6) for any key. That’s all for now. Enjoy.
Here’s another popular gospel song I recorded while practicing on the keyboard. It’s titled Anointing in the key of D♭ major. Anointing is one of my favourite gospel songs. A drum beat was added to this song to improve the rhythm. Enjoy.
In this post I will briefly talk about a concept that’s very important to know in order to easily play songs in all 12 keys. It’s called the Number System.
Before learning the Number System, I used to find it quite challenging to transpose songs since I thought of each key as its own distinct set of notes. But by thinking of the tones of a scale as numbers, you create a common language to describe what you need to play regardless of scale. This made it significantly easier for me to play in all 12 keys. Here’s a quick example. Suppose you want to play the melody of the first line of Mary has a Little Lamb in the key of C, one can describe this as
E D C D E E E
In the key of G, it will be:
B A G A B B B
Now, instead of thinking of the tones distinctly when trying to play the song, we can use the Number System to abstract this to
3 2 1 2 3 3 3
To make this system effective, one will need to know for each key what tone corresponds to what number. E.g. C is the first tone of C, D is the second tone of C, etc. Once you master the Number System, you can apply it to chord progressions to quickly understand common patterns in music, e.g. the 2-5-1 or 7-3-6 chord progressions.