Yankee Doodle For Beginning Piano Players
Yankee Doodle is a familiar song with a strong beat — that’s the kind of song most fun to play for beginning piano students.
Here is free sheet music for Yankee Doodle, and lots of ideas for stretching your students’ understanding of what chords are all about! :
Please scroll down the page for the download links.
This funny old video, below, has the Yankee Doodle lyrics and a great male singer bringing them to life! Wait for the introduction to be done – it’s worth it:
After they play through the melody, you can turn it into a duet by adding simple chords. With you, the piano teacher, on the bottom part and them on the top part, play through together like this:
Then try it, still as a teacher/student duet, like this — much more energy in the music!
Then switch parts: let them be the Secondo or chord part!
First, have them play, with LH only, C chords all the way through the song — though the song really needs an F chord as well as the G chord, it will sound just fine to a young musician with C chords only!
To help them keep time, try using a conducting gesture — a downward movement like a bouncing ball — to compel a rhythmic response from them.
This is far more effective, I have found, than just counting aloud.
Physical movement from the teacher seems to propel their hands to move in time.
After a week or more of playing C chords only while you play the melody, have them play — again, left hand only — the F and G chords also, as 4-beat chords.
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Yankee Doodle Sheet Music For Piano
This page features five versions of Yankee Doodle for beginner to more advanced pianists. The first version features the melody in just the right hand. Version 2 trades sections of the melody back and forth between right hand and left hand. Version 3 places the melody in the right hand, with a simple, single-line accompaniment in the left. Version 4 features a slightly more involved accompaniment, and version 5 includes a more intricate accompaniment with chords. Select one of the images below for a free, printable PDF of the song.
If you would like to see the melody with the chords, and learn more about the history of the song, visit the main lead sheet for Yankee Doodle page. It includes arrangements in seven keys, as well as links to versions for band and string instruments.
If you would like to play the piece in a different key with transposing instruments, see the explanation of transposition.
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Lesson : Yankee Doodle In C F & G
Yankee Doodle gives you a chance to move around on the keys and experience a couple of crossovers with fingering.
Indeed,with the hands playing together in this tune, the fingering issues are abit more difficult. But if you master it hands-separately, and thentogether, you will be developing a skill which can only help you as yourpiano-playing abilities grow.
Learn it in C, F, and G.
Instructions for learning a piece on the piano:
-play each line with right hand until it is easy and/or memorized.
-play each line with left hand until it is easy and/or memorized.
-play each line with both hands until it is easy and/or memorized.
-stringthe lines together until you can play the whole piece. Keep it slowuntil you are comfortable and familiar with it. Then, start playing itfaster, working up to an appropriate tempo for that piece.
-Regardless of tempo, relax your arms & shoulders and keep it smooth and flowing.
For a more complete understanding of how to build your piano-playing foundation, read
The History Of Yankee Doodle
Yankee Doodle is a very popular song whose roots extend back at least 260 years in American history. We do not know who wrote the melody, but the American lyrics are attributed to a British military surgeon named Dr. Richard Schackburg, who, according to tradition, wrote them in 1755. Music historians have claimed that the melody could originally have come from England, New England, Ireland, Hungary, or any of several other parts of the world. Yankee Doodle was initially sung by British soldiers in the Revolutionary War to make fun of the American soldiers. The word Yankee had negative meanings, and Doodle was a direct insult that meant a simpleton or bumpkin. However, the American soldiers apparently were not insulted, they didnât mind being called Yankees, and they liked the melody, so they started singing it themselves. Yankee Doodle was often played by the the American troops when they went to battle, and it reportedly was played when the British surrendered to George Washington in Yorktown at the end of the Revolutionary War.
The piece remained popular throughout American history and it eventually become the official song of the state of Connecticut. In the Civil War, Confederate and Union troops both claimed it as their own and used it to make fun of their opponent. An 1862 Union publication of Yankee Doodle can be viewed on the Library of Congress website.
Also Check: G Chord On The Piano