How to begin Composing

So you have a great idea for a song. You have the melody stuck in your head. Can you play the piano? Great! You are a good part of the way there. Can't play the piano? I will cover that on another day.

So go sit at the piano and find your melody. Got it? Good. Do you know what key it is in? Wonderful! Now let's find those I (1st), IV(4th) and V(5th) chords.


Let me explain further. Say your song is in the key of C...(No sharps or flats.) So your I chord is the C Chord consisting of C, E & G notes.

And your IV chord is the F chord consisting of F, A & C. Got it? No. OK, think of it another way. If C is the first note of your key, then count up four notes and where are you? That's right F. Fourth Chord...F Chord.

Get it now. Great!! So finding the V chord is now easy.......G chord!! Wonderful.

Now look at your melody. Divide it into small bites or measures. Let's start with something easy like 4/4 time. Four beats in every measure. Look at the first 4 notes of your song. What notes are they. Let's say they are C, D, E, G...So the 1,2,3,& 5 notes of your key of C. When most of the melody notes are from a certain chord use that chord in the left hand.

Follow this rule..

1,3,5 notes: use a I chord.

2, 4,5 notes: use a V chord

if you use the 6 note of the key: use a IV chord

Now, take those chunky block chords (when you play all the notes of a chord together) and split them up.

Roll through them one at a time. C on beat one, E on beat two and hold G for beats three and four. Congratulations!! You are now composing.

Stop back for another chapter about how to compose a song....

Coming soon...How to decide on the key of your song?

What is a five 7 chord?

What other patterns can a I use for my chords?