Seven Nation Army: Piano

Orientation to the piano

In order to play any song on the piano, we must be able to find the right keys to press!  To do this we need a reference point. The easiest reference point to refer to on the piano are the black keys – note in the following diagram they are group in groups of 2 and 3:

When we need to find specific white keys, I will reference there location relative to the black keys. So for example, say we wanted to find an ‘A’. I would direct you to first find a group of 3 black keys. Then I’d direct you to find the white key to the left of the furthest right of the 3 black keys. Throughout all the following videos, I will reference how to find the correct keys this way.

Seven Nation Army: What does it sound like?

Listen to the following video of Seven Nation Army so you can get an idea of how the song sounds. Listening to it will help you learn it in several ways. Firstly it will give your ear a reference point to how the song should sound – this will help you to identify errors when you’re learning it. It will also help you get to know the structure of the song and how the various components come together.

Riff 1

Seven Nation Army is a simple song with minimum components. If we can learn this one riff, we will know a fair portion of the song! The following video takes you through learning this basic riff.

 

Riff 2/Chords G and A

For the next segment of the song, we need the following 2 chords: G and A. The following 2 pictures show what notes we need (the red dots). For each chord, we need to press all 3 keys simultaneously. In the case of both G and A we will use the right hand, using fingers 1 -3 -5.

G Major

A Major

The following video will take through learning the chords and how long to play them for.

Putting it together: structuring our riffs and chords into a song.

The next step is to take the riff and chords we have learnt and start putting them into a finished structure. This is what makes a complete song. Lets have a look at the structure of Seven Nation Army:

Verse:

Riff 1 x 12

Pre Chorus

| G for 4 beats | A for 4 beats |

Chorus

Riff 1 x 4

| G for 4 beats | A for 4 beats |

This whole structure then repeats 3 times:

Verse 1, Pre Chorus, Chorus | Verse 2, Pre Chorus, Chorus | Verse 3, Pre Chorus, Chorus |

(In the original, there is a guitar solo after the chorus in the second verse – we will leave this out. Riff 1 continues throughout the guitar solo).

The following video takes you through this structure.

Extension Work 1: Adding the left hand

Extension Work 2: Singing and playing the song at the same time

Extension Work 3: Chords for the chorus

February 14, 2017