Blue Monday: Bittersweet Blues

Right now over at Hear and Play, Jermaine Griggs is having a sale on the Song Robot. It's a great software tool where you can get free midis on the internet and watch the keys light up with the right notes and chords. You'll learn how to play many songs at your finger tips. I think he's asking $37.00 and the sale continues through Monday. I have the program and recommend it to you.

Bittersweet Blues  (Key of G) 4/4 time Signature

First practice the L.H. alone, setting a steady beat.

Fashion each L.H. interval with a small down-up motion of the wrist. This will keep your hand relaxed.


GD/Bb, A, G (single notes, triplets)

GE/B, A, G

GF/Bb, A, G

GE/Bb, A, G

Measure 2 

GD/B (hold the B key 4 counts, a whole note, while moving the l.h.)

Measure 3 

GD/Bb, A, G

GE/Bb, A, G

GF/Bb, A, G

GE/Bb, A, G

Measure 4


Measure 5

CG/C, Bb, G

CA/C, Bb, G

CBb/C, Bb, G

CA/C, Bb, G

Measure 6 


Measure 7 

GD/Bb, A, G
GE/Bb, A, G
GF/Bb, A, G
GE/Bb, A, G

Measure 8


Measure 9

D/D, C, A, D, C, A, D (single note in bass and single notes in r.h.)

Measure 10

C/C, Bb, G, C, Bb, G, C

Measure 11

GD/Bb, A, G
GE/Bb, A, G
GF/Bb, A, G
GE/Bb, A, G

Measure 12

GD/B, G, F

So, that's the song, Bittersweet Blues. Here's a note on how notes move in the measure.

Notes move on the staff in three ways:


Notes on or above the middle line have down stems.
Notes below the middle line have up stems.

Measuring Intervals

The distance between two notes is called an interval. Another way to say it; the distance from the pitch of one note to the pitch of another.

2nd Interval:

space or space to line.
On the keys a 2nd is like a step: from one key to the next key.
On the staff a 2nd is like a step: from line to

3rd Interval:

On the keys a 3rd is like a skip: from line to line or space to space. One skipped key is a 3rd.

4th Interval:

Two skipped keys is a 4th. On the staff a 4th is either line to space or space to line. On the keys a 4th is a larger skip.

5th Interval:

Three skipped keys is a 5th. On the staff a 5th is either line to line or space to space.
Melodic and Harmonic Intervals:

A melodic interval has single notes, like notes in a melody that are played one at a time. If you sing a note and then another then this is a melodic interval.

A harmonic interval has two notes played together to make harmony in music. If two people each sing a different note at the same time then this is called a harmonic interval.

Now that you know what intervals are why do you suppose we need to learn them?

Learning to recognize intervals, whether by sound, on paper, or an instrument, is extremely helpful for many reasons. Among them are chord building, improvisation, sight singing, composition, understanding and remembering keys and their related accidentals, and figure out music by ear. If you are trying to play a melody that is in your head or on the radio, knowing your intervals eliminates most of the time spent searching for the right notes.

One of the coolest ways to add feeling and expression while playing those piano notes is to observe road map signs or what musicians call Dynamics or dynamic markings.

Basically there are symbols that indicate varying degrees of volume. So we have degrees of loudness or softness.

Music has loud and soft signs called dynamics.

mf means medium loud.
Its Italian name is Mezzo Forte.
f means loud.
Its Italian name is forte.
ff means very loud
Its Italian name is Fortissimo.
fff means very, very loud.
Its Italian name is Fortississimo.
ppp means very, very soft.
Its Italian name is Pianississimo.
pp means very soft.
Its Italian name is Pianissimo.
P means soft.
Its Italian name is Piano.

With this understanding of how notes move while playing quietly or loudly, you will enjoy hearing yourself play with more feeling in addition to technically playing the notes correctly. Have fun!

Article Source:

If you have the time, stop by Song Robot.

"The beautiful thing about learning is that no one can take it away from you." B.B.King
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