Piano Player World

Learn London Bridge is Falling Down

london bridgeThere are a number of songs children learn while growing up that seem to stick in the ears for the entire rest of their lives. Learning how to play these easy songs on the piano is only the next practical step toward making our knowledge of these songs complete.

One of the best songs to begin with is “London Bridge is Falling Down,” which is a simple melody to pick out and presents an easy set of chords to learn.

When learning to play any song, including learning to play “London Bridge is Falling Down” on piano, the natural first step is to try to find the melody. Since any song can be played it any key, it doesn’t make sense to try to find the “right” key that this song should be played in; rather, it is best to find the easiest key when putting notes to a familiar tune.

Let’s start on a note that helps us play in a key that requires as few black keys as possible. Frequently this means starting out on a C or G. In fact, if you begin on a G, you’ll be playing in the key of C and won’t need to play anything other than white keys.

Once you have decided on the first note to play, try picking out the melody from there. It’s not too difficult to do, but you might hit several wrong notes before finding the right ones. This is normal. Try humming the song to yourself and deciding if each note is higher or lower than the one before it, then hitting the note that seems like the right direction from the previous one.

Once you feel comfortable with the right notes for the melody, it’s time to add in chords with your left hand. Normally, the approach you want to take with chords is to find the simplest chord that’s in the same key as the melody and is a chord that includes the current note of the melody you’re in.

ASA Piano Lessons - Beginner Piano Lessons With Songs

For example, for the first note, G, trying to play a C chord with it is a good idea because it is in the key of C and includes the note G. In fact, this chord is a great one that starts the song.

Now, continue playing the melody until it feels like that C chord doesn’t work anymore. This happens on the second “falling down” which begins on D. To find the next chord, follow the same rule: which chord has D in it and no black keys? Great chords to try are the IV and V chords – and it happens that the V chord, a G chord, fits this note perfectly.

When you play the third “falling down” you can go back to the C chord and just listen for how to end the song. The next chord change you need is on the “my” of “my fair lady.” When at the end of songs, dominant seventh chords tend to work well, so playing G, B, D, and E in the left hand when hitting the D in the right makes a good chord that transitions perfectly back into the C chord on the E when playing the “la-“ in “lady”. Typically, songs will end with the chord of whose key they’re in.

Getting the chords and melody under your fingers can be challenging but meaningful. Enjoy learning how to play “London Bridge is Falling Down” on piano, and you can apply this same process to any song you like.

This lesson was brought to you by Piano System

piano system text

Piano System - Piano Lessons For Beginners


<< Prev: Lesson 2 - Happy Birthday Song

Next: Lesson 4 - How to Learn Piano Songs >>

Related Articles And Lessons: