The current lesson is “She’s Not There” by The Zombies. Click below for the piano lesson and sheet music.
Of all the lessons in irocku’s catalogue, “She’s Not There” is perhaps the most representative of unadulterated rock piano. As songwriter Rod Argent explains, he approached this musical composition beginning with the bass line; inspired by Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys who often expanded a song around the bass line. The bass line in the introduction and verse is a driving straight eighth-note pattern that covers the chord changes and provides a solid foundation for the syncopated melody line which is harmonized using thirds, sixths, and octaves. In the chorus, the bass line shifts to a syncopated pattern played under an equally syncopated melody line making it the holy grail of rock piano performance. The song is written in A minor with some Dorian touches and seamlessly dances between the two minor modes. The dorian mode was explored extensively in the late 1960s by bands such as The Beatles( “Eleanor Rigby”), Jimi Hendrix(“Purple Haze”), Van Morrison (“Moondance”), The Doors(“Light My Fire”), and Santana (“Oye Como Va”). The piano solo uses the A blues scale, one of the most common scales to use when improvising in rock.
“She’s Not There” is both a rhythmically and technically challenging lesson. If you are playing at irocku level 7 you might need to throttle it back to level 5 this time around. And if you are playing at irocku level 5 you might need to drop down to level 4, and so on. The lesson was arranged and is taught by keyboardist/composer Baden Goyo. Baden makes it look easy. But please know that Baden is not your average pianist. He has earned multiple Grammy’s while still a college student. For this lesson, Baden does a great job teaching melodic harmonies, left hand rhythm patterns, and improvisation. There’s a lot of meat to this lesson. The Zombies were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this year and after this lesson you will fully appreciate why. Enjoy!
Learn how to play rock and blues piano from one of rock’s greatest. Chuck Leavell, legendary keyboardist for The Rolling Stones, The Allman Bros, Eric Clapton, John Mayer, and more.