Chord Bass

The first left hand technique most beginners learn is chord bass accompaniment. Using this style, you simply play and hold three note chords in your left hand while your right hand plays the melody. This is a great way to learn the different chords and it provides an easy way to play popular music without too much effort. Of course, any pattern becomes stale if overused, so treat this just as a starting point for more advanced left hand techniques.

Beware of popular piano courses that emphasize the chord bass method as a way to sound like a professional. They promise incredibly fast results with little or no effort. What they don't tell you is that professionals rarely use the chord bass method. It is a beginner's technique that you will quickly replace as you progress.

The important thing to remember with this style is that all three notes of the chord must sound together at the same time, and that your fingers remain curved in the proper form. The tendency will be for the pinky to flatten out which will cause the pinky note to be softer and slower than the rest. Fight this tendency by making sure the pinky remains curved and that you play the keys with the pads of your fingertips and not the whole finger flattened out on the keys. Be sure the right hand melody is moderately louder than the left hand.

FIGURE 14-1: Chord bass

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