A Running List of Modern Pop/Rock Songs for Piano

As promised in my last post “So your child wants to quit music lessons?“, here is a list of modern pop/rock songs for piano that you can introduce to your child or student (in no particular order).  I plan on adding songs to the list as they are released or discovered.  *Disclaimer: some are not appropriate for kids but would still be good matches for young adult/adult students.

  1. “Say Something” by A Great Big World & Christina Aguilera
  2. “Atlas” by Coldplay 
  3. “Just the Way You Are” by Bruno Mars
  4. “Jar of Hearts” by Cristina Perri (more…)

So your child wants to quit music lessons?


Is every lesson day a struggle?  Not to mention practice… forget that!  If your kid wants to throw in the towel on music lessons here are a few things to consider or try:

1.  Change up the repertoire!

Does your child sing when they think no one is listening? Do they listen to any music regularly on their iPod/iTouch/etc?  What music do they ask you to play on the radio in the car?  Whatever music excites your child, try that first!   If your child doesn’t seem to have a musical preference then check out my list of recommendations in my next post “45 Modern Pop/Rock Songs for Piano” (I’ll do a guitar list soon)!  Ask your child’s teacher to pick a good match and CRANK UP the distortion on the amp or play the piano with gusto!  And remember, you PAY the teacher!  The teacher wants to keep their student base… so don’t be afraid to be truthful with them about your child’s attitude toward lessons (though I’m sure they’ve probably noticed 😉 )!


My book (a glance inside)…


Since last September, I’ve been working diligently to bring you the first book in a series designed to help parents teach their children music… even if they don’t know music!

The Problem?  

While most children begin school with a head start on letters, numbers, colors and even words, they’ve had little or no exposure to reading music or learning music theory.  This unfortunate trend shouldn’t be surprising as there are almost no resources that enable parents, especially non-musical parents, to teach their children music.  Often, it isn’t until a child is enrolled in private lessons or takes a class at school (if their school is fortunate enough to even have a music program) that they have any music learnin



THE thing that gets me through Chicago winter!

Though it’s *technically* spring now, it’s 17 degrees right now in Chicago.

I don’t do well in cold weather.  I am self-diagnosed SAD (seasonal affective disorder).  I lose my zeal for life, I’m terrible at calling friends back, I’m not very productive, I forget to put on makeup… I have SAD bad (Dr. Seuss anyone? “Dad is sad. Dad had a bad day”).  When we were in college, my husband wrote a song “Always Winter, Never Christmas” (inspired by C.S.Lewis’ book “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe).  You don’t need to hear the lyrics to know it was really, really sad… (more…)

For the love of music! (Commence weekly challenges!)

This photo isn’t me but I’ve decided that I *must* dig up a photo of me in front of my big ol’ player piano!

When I was a young piano student, there were a couple of challenges I regularly gave myself.  You know, just because:

  1. How fast can this song be played?
  2. Can I play it from memory?
  3. Could I do both of the above, with my eyes closed?

I LOVED playing my beautiful, old, hand-me-down player piano (complete with giant scrolls that could be activated by pumping the built-in oversized foot pedal) with everything my little soul had to offer.  Later, after a couple cross-country moves, when my piano didn’t make the moving-truck-cut, I would crank up the volume on my little Yamaha keyboard, select the “church organ” sound and play Phantom of the Opera for the whole neighborhood to enjoy… err… I mean, I loved it, why wouldn’t everyone else?

All these years later I still love making and listening to good music… (more…)