Archive for the ‘free music’ Category

Audio for Free Piano Arrangement: All Hail the Power

Friday, September 23rd, 2011

Click here for audio of “All Hail the Power”

As I’ve mentioned before…the church pianist can deviate from the melody as long as the congregation knows the song real well.  You’ll notice the “missing melody” here and there in the free congregational piano arrangement of “All Hail the Power”.  The audio contains the piano accompaniment and the melody line.

We like to change keys to add extra life to the congregational singing :)   The key change in this arrangement does add an extra measure so it would require a quick practice with pianist and song leader before trying it with the congregation.

Most of the key changes we use in congregational singing move right into the last verse without hesitation.

Church Pianist Tip:

*This free congregational piano arrangement may also be used to accompany a trumpet solo.

 Click here to download “All Hail the Power” congregational accompaniment

Free Piano Arrangement: All Hail the Power (page two)

Sunday, September 18th, 2011

I was able to finish page two of “All Hail the Power” tonight even after a busy but good week of revival at our church.   I will try to share some music highlights of our week sometime soon.

In my next article…I ‘ll share editor notes along with an audio of this free piano arrangement for “All Hail the Power” congregational accompaniment.

Click here to download “All Hail the Power” congregational accompaniment


Free Piano Arrangement: All Hail the Power (page one)

Sunday, September 11th, 2011

I enjoy playing and singing “All Hail the Power”.  The church pianist must add lots of fullness to this majestic hymn to portray the mood of the text.

Just picture it…God is on His throne and scores of angels are bowed down before Him. A huge choir is singing “All hail the power of Jesus’ name! Let angels prostrate fall…”

I think the words as I play this wonderful hymn.  The melody and text are a great match!

Ingredients for  Majestic Hymns

Lots of left hand octaves for fullness and energy

Full chords in right hand

Occasional dotted rhythm…adding extra zest!

Click here to download “All Hail the Power” congregational accompaniment


Free Piano Arrangement: At the Cross

Sunday, August 14th, 2011

Due to a hectic but wonderful weekend…I’m sharing a free piano arrangement of “At the Cross”. I wrote this particular arrangement for one of my students who is preparing to be a church pianist. Our congregation usually sings unison…so the piano accompaniment contains chords that would not support the four-part style from most church hymnals.

You’ll notice it’s also in a different key…C Major.  She only had two weeks to learn the song before playing it in church. (She  filled in for me while I was out of town)

Hopefully some of you church pianists can make use of this arrangement.  You could also use it as accompaniment for a vocal solo or ensemble singing unison.

Click here to download your free piano arrangement of “At the Cross”

Piano Introductions: Part Two (second example)

Saturday, August 6th, 2011

Trying to figure out what to play for piano introductions can be tricky at times for church pianists.

The previous article entitled: Piano Introductions (part two) provided a piano introduction of “Wonderful Words of Life” using only the verse.  Sometimes it works better just to use the starting and ending phrase of a verse. Other times, the entire first line of the verse works well for the introduction.

Always remember to end the introduction with the one (I) chord for the key you’re using. For example, if the song is in C major…make sure you end on a C major chord to provide a “finished” sound.  Otherwise, you’ll have everybody guessing when to enter.

There are times when a V 7 chord works well at the end of an introduction or during the invitation when you’re providing background music and you’re in the middle of a phrase and need to end on a chord that makes sense before the congregation starts to sing…but I will cover that at another time.  SO much to talk about!  :)

In today’s example, you’ll notice a fairly, easy piano introduction for “Count Your Blessings”. The faster the hymn, the less frills the church pianist has time to play :)

Click here for: Piano Introductions: Part Two (second example)

Piano Introductions: Part Two

Sunday, July 31st, 2011

Have you discovered how it doesn’t always work to play the first and last phrase of a hymn for an introduction? A lot of church pianists have been asking me for help in the area of piano introductions.

Sometimes it works to just use phrases from the verse for the whole  introduction.  In today’s example, I share two ways of playing an introduction for “Wonderful Words of Life”.  Decide which example sounds best to you.  I prefer the first example because the melody follows a more logical flow as opposed to the second introduction.

Click here for: Piano Introductions (part two)

I do plan to share more introduction tips and examples!

Click here for: Piano Introductions (part one)


Free Improvising Ideas: No Not One (example #2)

Tuesday, July 19th, 2011

It’s true…there is no friend like Jesus :)   The words to “No Not One” are a blessing to me but I like to dress up the accompaniment to bring the text to life.

I’m sharing another simple congregational  accompaniment for “No Not One” (verse only).  I like to alter the melody for variety and sometimes I’ll chord in place of the melody to avoid a “ploddy” tone or maybe for easier hand movement.

Click here to download: No Not One Example #2

Measure #1

Right hand: beat two and three (altered melody) Just played a stepwise movement contrary to the melody…adding a nice contrast in sound.  Beat four: played a G inverted quarter note chord in place of two eight notes for the words “is so”.  Why? Easier hand movement leading into the next chord of measure #2

Measure #2:

Right hand: beat one and two (played half note chord in place of two quarter notes for word: “lowly”.  The melody notes for this word belong in the C chord so the C chord fit nicely.

Measure $3:

I transferred the improvised (eighth note idea) from the right hand to the left hand for this second verse. To see verse one example, click on the link at the bottom of this page.

Measure #8:

Where’s the melody?!  :)    It’s ok to wander away from the melody here and there to add  extra spice!  How do I come up with this idea? Well,  first off…I know my chord structure for that measure which is…G chord, D7chord and back to a G chord for words: “No, not one!”  I basically used a stepwise movement that included stepping tones within a G chord to a D chord and ended on a G chord. Now…for a challenge…try to apply this same improvising idea to another song.

Hmmm….I need to create another article to illustrate HOW to apply this last improvising idea to other hymns with similar structure.  Once you apply an idea to several hymns…you will find yourself feeling more confident and you’ll begin to  implement this idea into your own hymnplaying :)

 Click here to see Example #1 for “No Not One” simple congregational accompaniment

Free Hymn Improvising Ideas: No Not One

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011

As promised…I’m sharing hymn improvising ideas for “No Not One”.   I love the words to this hymn but it could use some dress-up by the church pianist to give it that extra zest!  In example #1, I’ve shared a simple accompaniment for verse one.  In upcoming articles, I’ll give more examples for this particular hymn.  As I think up improvising ideas for this hymn, I consider the text and try to enrich the message by adding appropriate accompaniment.

Click here to print “No Not One” Example #1

(refer to the printed copy as you view the following notes)

Editor notes for “No Not One” Example:

I only altered a chord on measure #5 by adding G minor 7 (F natural) in left hand on word “heal”.  This particular chord (G minor 7) provides a nice “leading into” sound as it moves into a C chord on the word “soul’s”.  Adding  minor 7ths to chords always adds a warmer sound.

Ever notice how the rhythm on words “Jesus” and dis “eases” feels awkward to your hands? The hands don’t seem to go together well on these spots.  You’re right!  Take note of how I played left hand during these areas.  I basically maintained a steady beat in the left hand while the right hand played the tricky rhythm.

Click here to hear audio of: “No Not One” example #1

Free Piano Arrangement: God of Our Fathers (part two)

Friday, June 24th, 2011

Click here: God of Our Fathers  (print music and view  while reading the information below)

As promised, here is part two of “God of Our Fathers”.  I used dotted rhythm in measures # 9, 12 and 14 to liven up the accompaniment.

The busy left hand octave movement was also added to give this hymn some driving motion as in measures #11, 12, 15 and 17.  (Also in the  right hand on measure #14)

This free arrangement of God of Our Fathers can also be used as a short patriotic offertory or for congregational piano accompaniment.

God of Our Fathers part one

Complete audio of “God of Our Fathers”  (computer-generated)

Free Piano Arrangement: God of Our Fathers (part one)

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011


Click here to download and print part one of “God of Our Fathers”

“God of Our Fathers” is a wonderful hymn to sing anytime of year, but especially around July 4th. This stately hymn reminds Christians of God as their leader. 

In part one of today’s free arrangement of “God of Our Fathers” I tried to portray the majestic mood of the text by solid octave movement in the left hand and full chords in the right hand. 

The introduction (trumpet fanfare) was doubled (both hands) for a fuller sound.  The octave higher treatment gave it a brighter tone.

In measure five, I added a light touch of syncopation to the left hand  for text enrichment.  The words for this measure speak of God’s  ”…almighty hand”.

Congregational singing plays such an important role in the worship service.   As a church pianist, I try to play with enthusiasm, since I represent the Lord in all I do.  I want others to know that I truly believe the words of the great hymns of faith as I play them for God’s glory.

To be honest, I don’t always feel energetic on a Sunday morning when I’ve had maybe a couple hours of sleep… but God is good. He gives me just enough energy to make it through. I’ve found I do better during those times.  I think it’s because I’m relying more on His help…as I should ALWAYS do :)

Part two of “God of Our Father’s” will take us up an octave as we prepare for the climax of this great hymn.  Looking forward to sharing the rest!

Click here to read the story behind “God of Our Fathers”

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