The Piano Pro

Play The Piano Like You Always Dreamed You Would

Country Piano [Friday Night Blues by John Conlee]

Pig Robbins remains my all time favorite sessions pianist in Nashville. Here’s another reason why. The song is Friday Night Blues by John Conley (MCA Records, 1980). I actually scored out two versions because my ears ain’t what they used to be. Both will work, but I honestly think the...

READ MORE

Country Piano [Don't Get Above Your Raising by Ricky Skaggs]

The late Gary Smith was one of the Nashville greats. He got his start in gospel music and had road stints with country artists Barbara Mandrell, Ricky Skaggs, and Dolly Parton. He was lightning fast and played what I cal “percussive piano.” Ricky Skaggs recorded a duet with Elvis Costello...

READ MORE

Pop Piano [Someone Like You by Adele]

Someone like You is a song by English singer-songwriter Adele. It was written by Adele and Dan Wilson for her second studio album 21. The song was inspired by a broken relationship, and lyrically it speaks of Adele coming to terms with it. The beautiful piano accompaniment and Adele’s...

READ MORE

Country Piano [Today I Started Loving You Again by Merle Haggard]

1937 – 2016 Merle Haggard’s passing is the impetus for this particular post. The thing I like most about Merle and other artists of his era is that the piano plays what I refer to as the “classic country piano” sound. Today the piano has morphed into more of a condiment, almost an...

READ MORE

Country Gospel [I'll Fly Away]

Just doing some noodling this afternoon and decided to make a quick and dirty track so I could do a little improv on the old gospel song, I’ll Fly Away. I’ll Fly Away was written in 1929 by Albert E. Brumley and has been recorded by scores of artists including Alison Kraus, George Jones,...

READ MORE

Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame Induction 2016

GMA Hall of Fame Induction Posted on May 11, 2016 I never saw it coming. Last night I was privileged to be inducted into the GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame. The Nelons were inducted along with Hezekiah Walker and Russ Taff. The Nelons made me part of their family and we are still close...

READ MORE

Country Piano [I Don't Need A Thing At All by Gene Watson)

I miss the days of old school country piano. Love the new music, but I don’t hear this kind of playing much anymore. I still love it the best. Heard this on Pandora the other night and thought it would be fun to play. Quintessential old school country piano – simply elegant, clean, and...

READ MORE

Country Piano [Together Again by Emmy Lou Harris]

This is cut two from side one on the Emmy Lou Harris album, Elite Hotel. It’s in Gb, but don’t let that scare you. The opening and closing of this piano break consists of falling broken chords, played only on the black keys. Quintessential country style piano: bent note fills, single...

READ MORE

Country Gospel - Slow Vamp in 3/4

How do you vamp in a really slow country or gospel song? Especially when it’s in 3/4 time? Hmmm In this tutorial, I talk about several possibility and then demonstrate how I would approach it if someone just handed me the chart and said, “Play this.” Key concepts covered: vamping,...

READ MORE

Fats Domino Rock, Blues, and Boogie Style

The three pianists I credit with inspiring me to want to play piano are Charlie Rich, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Fats Domino. This video covers the style that you associate with Fats Domino, a mixture of rock, blues, and boogie. Fats Domino passed this week so this is a little tribute to his...

READ MORE