How to Play from a Fake Book!
Welcome! Some of my students have been learning to play from a Fake Book, which is a great skill to have. Fake Books typically have a melody line and a chord; as the pianist you figure out how to accompany the melody. Playing from a Fake Book is NOT difficult, and it can be as simple or as complex as you want to make it!
The video lessons that I post here will show you various approaches that you can use to play “Oh Susanna” just from the melody and the chords. For the first lesson I am assuming that you are a beginning piano student with knowledge of the layout of the keyboard. After we get past the first couple of lessons the material here will be useful to advanced students too, especially if you have only played from complete scores up until now.
The video below demonstrates the melody. The downloadable documents to the right of the video are fake book versions of Oh, Susanna, and contain the melody and the chord symbols. You can use this fake book "chart" for all seven lessons.
7) Putting it all together and finding your own interpretation. In addition to combining the above techniques, you can let the right hand play more than just the melody! Experiment – the sky's the limit!