How to cover Coldplay and other Pop for Ambient Piano

Thursday, May 9, 2024 by Becky Reesor | Uncategorized

πŸ₯‚ Weddings, cocktails or study vibes - this is what you need for a good ambient pop arrangement:

1️⃣ ALWAYS use a lead sheet. It’s just more efficient. Sheet music limits your imagination, chord charts require don’t have the melody.

2️⃣ FEEL the song vibe at a relaxed tempo to find a good rhythm groove. Use the chord chart to find a chord pattern that is SIMILAR to the original, but relaxed, groovy or smooth.

3️⃣ ADD 7ths, 9ths (2nds) & 11ths (4ths)! Colorful chord extensions soften the sound and add a dreamy quality. 

4️⃣ PLAY WITH MELODY. Change octaves strategically. Add lush harmony underneath when you want a big sound or just a simple single harmony note to be more subtle.

πŸ‘‰ Get coaching on your next piano cover arrangement. DM me or comment!

Arranging songs on piano for special events: "Summer," by Joe Hisaishi.

Thursday, May 2, 2024 by Becky Reesor | Uncategorized

πŸ’Have you ever daydreamed about walking down the aisle… to the ABSOLUTE PERFECT MUSIC? 

🎢This afternoon was about arranging a processional of the beautifully joyful, elegant and delightful piece entitled "Summer" by  @joehisaishiofficial9777  

✨I just love imagining how each note will punctuate the bride’s beautiful moment for the couple’s unforgettable day!!

πŸ€”What song would YOU want to arrange for a special event?

🧐Do you know how to get started? What's your process?

β™‘Let me know in the comments!!

Learning Don't Stop Beliving Riff in 5 minutes.

Thursday, April 25, 2024 by Becky Reesor | Uncategorized

How to learn the “Don’t Stop Believing” riff, in 5 minutes, learning by ear.

Mayana did it last week in our online piano lessons! Incredible.

1. We got the chords. (E, B, C#m, G#m; E, B, G#m, A)

2. We learned the pattern. (3 solid chords x 3 bass notes, alternating)

3. We mastered the twist at the end! (3 slow solid chords)

Want to see the riff for yourself? Comment RIFF to get an overhead view of the riff, live from class. 

March Newsletter 2024

Wednesday, April 10, 2024 by Becky Reesor | Uncategorized

Community Highlights from Winter 2024 in the Studio.

PEEK into Open Mic

Tuesday, April 9, 2024 by Becky Reesor | Uncategorized

πŸŽ™οΈπŸŽ™οΈLast week’s open mic was 100% a wonderful way to spend an afternoon. Take a peek!!

πŸ‘‰ Want to be on the list for next time? All ages, levels, styles & instruments are welcome. 

🎹 This time we had all piano-players.. and check us out! So fun!! 🀩

How I teach kids to improvise at the piano

Tuesday, April 9, 2024 by Becky Reesor | Uncategorized

→ Improv is NOT just ad libbing! 
♬ Make sure to save this fun tool for turning imagination into sound! 
πŸ‘‰πŸ½ You might even enjoy trying it with your kids!!

Piano & Your Community Support

Tuesday, April 9, 2024 by Becky Reesor | Uncategorized

πŸ—οΈ To tell you the truth, hard work isn’t the only key to piano success.
→ When you’re tired, discouraged or out of inspiration, it’s those who love & support you.. who encourage, motivate and propel you forward that make all the difference.
→ No matter where we are on the piano journey, we all need to be cheered on. Maybe it’s sharing recordings, ideas & successes with a friend or sister. Maybe it’s a piano friend asking your practice life and sharing about theirs. Maybe it’s soaking in your kitty’s dedication to hopping on your lap as soon as you sit at the piano. πŸˆβ€β¬›πŸŽΉβ˜ΊοΈ
β™‘ Today… don’t forget to celebrate your supports! Why not??
πŸ’¬ Maybe send a thank you text to someone who supports your music journey.
I’m going to go snuggle my cat.
And if you want mentorship on your piano journey- my dms are open!

Teaching Kids to Talk about their Practice Sessions!

Wednesday, March 6, 2024 by Becky Reesor | Uncategorized

πŸ€” Imagine your kid sitting down for piano lessons... and literally 𝙨π™₯π™žπ™‘π™‘π™žπ™£π™œ π™©π™π™š π™—π™šπ™–π™£π™¨ on "how practice went" this week. 🀯 Believe it or not, it’s possible! 

The catch --- it's not like kids already "know" how to do this. They have to be taught. Here's how I do it!


Sunday, June 16, 2019 by Becky Reesor | Uncategorized

Improvising is a great way to develop self-expression at the piano, while also freeing spontaneity and sensitivity for playing composed music. If you are new to this it can feel uncomfortable, but the only way to learn to improvise is to just do it... and often! 

1) Begin with any note.  
2) Listen to the sound you made and ask, "what do I want to hear next?" (i.e. move up/down, close/far).  
3) Make your move!  
4) LISTEN, RESIST the urge to FIX.  
5) Repeat and loop steps 2-4. 

This is teaching you to listen and respond through trial and error --- much like how we learn a new language. You are training your ears, eyes, fingers and inner ear to speak "piano" extemporaneously! Do this every day for a few minutes.. maybe first thing in the morning or last thing at night... and you will soon see yourself feeling more comfortable to just "play" what you feel. 

I started solo improvising (i.e. not within a band) mid-way through my Master of Music degree in classical piano performance. Daily (or most days) pre-practice improv became a ritual... albeit not always satisfying... that made me feel more in tune with myself personally and musically. Ultimately, it has definitely made me a freer and better musician. Here are links to the first and last improvs of my master's degree:


What are your tips for improvising?I'd love to hear from you! :)