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Reviews of Chord Piano Is Fun
Mallory M., Piano Student, 11 years old
Using Chord Piano is Fun helped me to write a song called “A Chance For Hope”. I never thought I would be able to write a song. But, with this book it is so easy to understand chords and how to use them to write songs. I recommend it to you if you are learning piano!
Your book is just fantastic. It’s so much easier to follow and understand than others I have looked at (and I’ve looked at lots). My daughter and son have taken piano lessons for 12 years and I regret I did not find your book sooner. I will be ordering a couple more books from your website soon for them. I always tried to get their teachers to teach them the Chord Approach to playing without success. I recognized long ago that they would never become Professional Performers and wanted them to use this system so they could have fun with the piano. I’m trying to get them re-started on piano now even though they are adults and believe your book will do the trick. It is sure helping me.
John T., Guyton, Georgia
From Miles Lallemant
I realised some years ago that many piano students are discouraged by having to concentrate only on classical repertoire, while being unable to play even relatively simple popular songs, jazz standards or sic from the shows. I was brought up with a very traditional, classical approach to piano and piano repertoire which has been an amazing thing by itself but relatively recently I discovered jazz piano and chords and wondered why no one had ever told me about these things. I've seen some amazing results introducing piano chords to some of my pupils. Suddenly they have found a new enthusiam for their piano studies, by being able to play songs they like, both hands together, without a great amount of effort. While I was introducing piano chords to my students I was very much explaining it all to them in the best way I could think of at the time without any particular method or sequence of learning. I would select songs from fake books, trying to pick the easiest ones first without too many difficult chords while always wishing I had a book that explained in simple terms how to form the chords while providing some introductory simple melodies to go with them.
The beginner's method book, Chord Piano is Fun by the American jazz musician and teacher T.K. Goforth may well have been just the book I was looking for. Her aim is to enable students to understand how music is put together by chords so that they can play from chord symbols, enabling them to learn popular songs with left hand harmony very quickly. Her book uses the three scales and keys of C, G and F majors as well as their relative minors. She shows simply and efficiently how to form the scales and triads and use them with simple songs such as 'pop goes the weasel' and 'twinkle, twinkle'. After a methodical learning process through chord families, inversions, slash chords and 7th chords, she finishes with an introduction to the blues and some further resources to enable students to develop further their newly acquired skills. What I find fascinating is that I, myself didn't know many of these basic musical ideas after 20 years of piano lessons and a professional classical career. This book would I think, based on my efforts to teach chords to adults who already have some proficiency in piano playing, be useful for children and adults, beginners and more advanced students who would like to learn the very valuable and enjoyable skill of reading chord symbols.
Marty Nystrom, Songwriter ("As The Deer" and other worship songs) and Author of "Don't Mess With Moses!"
Chord Piano is Fun is the perfect resource for those that long to play piano but can’t seem to make sense of all those black dots on the
page. The book will get you quickly creating music at the keyboard through a step-wise and enjoyable understanding of chord construction. I like how things are broken things down to
approachable and achievable bite-sized steps, which is especially good for busy adults. This is not only a great tool for the pianist but also for songwriters who want to write music at the
piano. This book is very well put together and the kind of resource that I wish existed when I first desired to play piano in my
Songwriter and Author
Natalie Wickham, piano teacher, homeschooler and author of Music Matters:
Don’t you just love it when someone else does all the hard work and puts together a systematic approach to teaching something that is just the way you would do it? Honestly, it’s pretty rare to find something that’s a perfect fit, but T.K. Goforth has done just that with her book, Chord Piano Is Fun!
The book begins with a fabulous introduction of How to Create a Major Scale, then moves into chords, scale degrees, chord inversions, key signatures, 7th chords, and more! All of this is introduced with the objective of helping pianists learn how to play from a lead sheet (a.k.a. fake book). The layout of the book is very clean, with lots of helpful images, and some of the most concise explanations I’ve read for various theoretical elements in music. This would be perfect for a student who wants to learn chording skills on their own, or for a teacher who is struggling to know how to introduce scales, chords, key signatures, and playing from a lead sheet to his or her students.
I love that the terminology used is accurate, but is broken down in such a way that even beginning students can begin to grasp the concepts. The one exception to this that I’ve discovered is the use of the term, “Family Chords” rather than “Primary Triads.” I could definitely work around this, though, for the value to be gained from the rest of the book. There is even a brief lesson on song-writing in the back that I think would be appealing to a lot of students!
The primary reason that I rarely use theory books with my students is due to a lack of relevance. The written material is divorced from the music that they are playing and it becomes more of a busywork assignment than a real learning tool. A book like Chord Piano Is Fun! is a wonderful approach to learning theory because what is being learned is immediately relevant to music and styles that the student wants to learn to play. I am excited to begin using it in my studio!
Just wanted to let you know that I got your Chord Piano is Fun book and, honestly, it's the most comprehensive book I've ever seen on chords, teaching chords, and key signatures. I've tried a few other chord based approaches with students, and there's something missing in all of them.
I like the language you used in your writing. Very practical and down to Earth. Almost anyone would be able to follow your steps and understand the process. The other thing I really like is all of your charts and visuals. I LOVE the one where you illustrate the key signatures and what sharps are in each one.......fantastic!
Rachel B., Piano Teacher, Spokane, Washington
Danny, Portland, Oregon
I have to tell you that I have only made it through three lessons so far and I already feel so successful! This is fantastic!
Myra, Clear Lake, Texas
Chord Piano is Fun really is fun. I took piano lessons when I was a teenager, and again when I was in my forties, (I am now in my eighties)
but I am so poorly coordinated I could never get two hands together. Both times I gave up before I really learned to play anything. Now I do a mean rendition of "When the Saints Go Marching In", and
other recognizable pieces. This is something I can do so I am grateful for this book and wanted everyone to know!
As a seasoned piano/vocal teacher, I have been looking for a book to teach a chording method without having to write it myself! This book is exactly what I have been looking for! Chord Piano Is Fun is a fantastic tool -- a very clearly written, easy-to-understand, and thorough method of piano chording. It can be used to
self-teach as well as used as a method book with a teacher. I have added Chord Piano Is Fun as a mandatory supplement for even my youngest students to the traditional method lesson and
I have found Chord Piano Is Fun to be a very helpful tool in the areas of ear training and improvisation as well as a fun way to teach my students how to play popular music. I have further found that some of my students who were not responding quickly (or at all) to the basic method, yet were very bright as well as musically talented, were becoming so discouraged that they wanted to quit taking piano lessons altogether. At that point, in trying to salvage their self-esteem as well as their interest in piano playing, I gave them a copy of Chord Piano Is Fun and basically started over with them. What I found was renewed interest, increased passion, and a super sense of success in each of those students! At my last recital, one of those students accompanied herself with chords while she sang a beautiful song, and the other played a fairly difficult Disney piece (Under the Sea) using only the treble clef and chord symbols along with some improvisation on his part. Both were FABULOUS performances and I accredit both to the fresh start with Chord Piano Is Fun!
I also put two of my students with learning disabilities (particularly in reading) as well as ADD/ADHD students on Chord Piano Is Fun and all are excelling and enjoying playing piano when other teachers gave them no chance of learning how to play the piano! THANK YOU FOR CHORD PIANO IS FUN!
Kim S., Bellevue, Washington
Chord Piano Is Fun is the perfect title for this easy to follow, fun approach to learning to play chords on piano. There are 26 lessons which
most beginning piano students will be able to follow and practice. Each lesson takes about 25 minutes or less. The book explains the basics of music clearly and concisely. It provides worksheets,
technique practices and pages of scales and harmonized scales making practice time practical and fun. This book has inspired me to return to learning to play piano after taking a 12 year hiatus. I
will be using this accessible method when my nine year old begins lessons later this year. If there was one thing about this book I would change it would be to have had this book published years ago
when I first started piano lessons!
Carolyn S., Former Piano Teacher, Camano Island, Washington
Chord Piano is Fun is a well-written, easy-to-understand resource for learning to play the piano using chords. The book is so logically organized that it is possible to start at the beginning, with little or no understanding of HOW TO PLAY or HOW TO BUILD CHORDS, and to complete the lessons with the ability to play many songs in various styles! The method is not just for beginners, but also for the seasoned pianist who wants to play with the freedom chords allow in many kinds of music from hymns to pop. It is especially useful for the church musician who wishes to embellish the hymns or praise songs.
As a retired public school music teacher, private piano teacher and church musician, I know how valuable learning chords can be in the areas of theory concepts, ear training and just enjoying playing whatever you wish. I regret that I did not have this book when I was teaching, as I spent many hours creating my own worksheets for chord study. CHORD PIANO IS FUN.......REALLY IS!
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