Musicarta EASY PIANO Style
Three Fourths and a Pair

TFAP Lesson One

The previous module in this workbook is called ‘One Fourth and a Pair’ - because the chords in its chord sequence are A minor, E minor and D. A minor and E minor are ‘the fourth’ (the roots are a fourth apart), and E minor and D (major) are the pair.

In harmony, this root-falling-a-fourth is a powerful and much-used dynamic. The study in this module uses three interlocking root-falling-a-fourth pairs. The fourths overlap by one scale tone. The pair of chords is A minor and G.

Here is the chord sequence chart and the lesson performance. There’s an extended ending, as in the last module study.

Now here's the virtual keyboard performance with the music. Watch and listen for the 'three fourths and a pair' chord structure shown in the chord chart below.

Building your performance

We build the performance by rehearsing the variations on the ‘skeleton music’ of the piece.

Looking into a piece to see its ‘skeleton music’ – and then rehearsing it – is a valuable and time-saving study technique, which you will use from here on in the workbook.

Now you start developing this ‘bare bones’ version, using all the techniques from the previous modules. Here’s one possible first stage.

You see that the new material has already invited a a new left-hand - in bars 2 and 4, where quaver 7 (on count 4) is dropped.

Next comes the right hand syncopation. The left hand is the same.

Next, run the right hand down to the root of the second chord in each pair.

Notice the different left hand patterns and the little brackets, where you have to quickly get out of the way for the melody note.

The count and TLR (together, left, right) analysis has been written in, chiefly as a reminder to go through this process in your head whenever you see complicated, syncopated rhythms like this.

To prepare for a final version, practice running up to the first melody note of the next pair, itself anticipated. Use the left hand from the previous version.

The Musicarta Easy Piano Style is an open-ended formula for creating music at the keyboard.

The ‘final’ version of the module performance given here is only a suggestion. The main eight-bar phrase repeats – with slight variations each time to keep the music interesting. You can choose and invent other variations to combine into your own unique version.

Read the chord chart as you listen to the performance again.

Watch for:

  1. The simple ‘statement of the theme’;
  2. Three variations; and
  3. The extended ending.

Thanks for studying with Musicarta
- Come back soon! -

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