Ever wanted to play piano without the headache of complex sheet music? Today’s video is your ticket to mastering chord charts with ease!

Here’s what you’ll discover:

  • Unlock the secret to playing your favorite songs without complex sheet music.
  • Master all the chords needed to play chord charts on the piano successfully—seriously: ALL OF THEM.
  • Learn how to make your chord charts sound more interesting and professional.
  • Watch as I demonstrate the whole process with a popular song you’ll love.


What songs are you excited to play using these techniques? Let me know in the comments!

Video Transcription:

Hey Jude, don’t make it bad.

Take a sad song and make it better.

Yep, you guessed it. That was Hey Jude by The Beatles played entirely from a chord chart. This is a super quick way to be able to play your favorite songs. So today I’m going to show you everything you need to know to be able to play a chord chart on the piano. That way, you can play your favorite songs quickly just like I did. So let’s get going.

What is a chord chart? A chord chart is like a cheat sheet for musicians. It shows you which chords to play in a song, usually with the lyrics. Instead of reading complicated sheet music, you’re just going to read the chord symbols. Chord charts help you fall along with the song and know exactly when to play each chord. They’re handy for guitarists, pianists, and really any musician. You’ll see tons of bands using chord charts and also worship bands. So how do you read a chord chart? Play the chord where it lines up with the lyrics like this.

Hey Jude, don’t make it bad.

Take a sad song and make it better.

So you’re going to keep playing each chord until you get to the next chord. Now, you might be wondering what all those chord symbols mean. So I’m going to go through them all with you really quickly. Major chords are written as just the root note. For example, a C for C major. They’re sometimes written with a capital letter or with a mag at the end. Minor chords are written with a lowercase M, for example, Cm for C minor, sometimes written with a minus sign. For example, C-.

Diminished chords are usually written with a dim or a small circle after the root note, for example, Cdim or C with a little circle. Now getting into suspended chords. Suspended second are going to be written as sus2 and suspended fourth are going to be written with sus4. Sometimes you’ll see it as just sus, and that means sus4, which is more commonly used. That is sus. Just kidding. Slash chord, sometimes this blows people’s minds, but it’s written as the root/base. So for example, C/G is the C major chord with a G in your left hand or at the bottom, like this.

So basically the letter before the slash indicates the chord and the letter after the slash indicates the base note. Dominant seventh chord is written with a seven after the root note, for example, C7 for a C dominant seventh chord, sometimes written with a dom7 as well. Major seventh chords written with a mag7 after the root note, for example, Cmag7 for a C major seventh chord, sometimes abbreviated as just M7. For example, CM7. Minor seventh chords written with a m7 after the root note, for example, Cm7 for C minor seventh chord, sometimes written with a min7. For example, Cmin7.

So where do you find all these magical chord charts? Fear not, my friends, because the internet is your best friend. Websites like ultimateguitar.com have tons of chord charts, and they’re free. Just type in the name of your song, and you’ll find a chord chart there. Now I’m going to start showing you exactly how I would go through a chord chart and play it. I’m going to show you how I would jazz it up to make it sound good. But before I do that, let me know in the comments, what songs are you wanting to learn with a chord chart? Let me know.

So let’s talk about how to truly go through a chord chart. I’m going to show you me going through Hey Jude, and how I would play it. So if you’re starting from the very beginning, you just want to play the regular chord in your right hand. So for example, F major is the first chord we’ve got. And if you’re a total beginner, you could just play an F in your left hand, or you could play a fifth like this. So a fifth is when you go five notes up from the root of the chord. For example, F major, the root is F. So 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.

Okay? So that’s another way you could play it. Or if it’s not too challenging for you, you could also play in octave, which is what I’m usually going to do when I’m playing. And that is when you go from F to F eight notes apart. So those are three different ways you could use your left hand with a chord chart. So the chord in your right hand, and then one of those three ways with your left hand. So if I just played the chords of, Hey Jude, it would be like this.

Hey Jude, don’t make it bad.

But I want to make it more interesting. So once you’ve gotten familiar with playing chords, start to make it more interesting and use rhythm patterns. So this is how I would play the first verse of Hey Jude.

Hey Jude, don’t make it bad.

Take a sad song and make it better.

Remember to let her into your heart.

Then you can start to make it better.

And in this song, it kind of pauses there. So I would be like:


And then I would go into the next part of the verse, and I might make it a little bit different of a rhythm pattern here in the second part of this song because it kind of builds. So again, this is music. It has emotion, so let’s build it some.

Hey Jude, don’t be afraid.

You were made to go out and get her.

The minute you let her under your skin.

Then you begin to make it better.

So I added a little bit more dynamics. I made it a little bit louder and slightly more powerful than the first part. So we’re going to hold that F major chord from the word better. We’re going to keep building here. Ready?

And anytime you feel the pain, hey Jude, refrain.

Don’t carry the world upon your shoulders.

For well you know that it’s a fool who plays it cool.

By making his world a little colder.

So I made that a little bit more powerful by adding more oomph in my octaves in the left hand. I made it louder. I love this part where we’re going down with our slash chords. I just like that. So you can see I didn’t just play chords. I built it up and jazz it up a bit. And as you keep learning the piano, you can learn more things like chord inversions. You can learn how to use the sustained pedal and more. And those are other ways to really jazz up those chord charts and make them sound more interesting.

There’s truly so much that you can learn when you’re learning the piano. Chord charts are just the tip of the iceberg, because like I said, none of this is going to sound good if you don’t know how to use the sustained pedal correctly or use chord inversions. So I recommend watching my free training. And in that training, it’s going to show you the exact steps to take to go from zero to playing your favorite songs much more quickly. It’s going to show you the exact topics that you need to learn in order, because everything on the piano can build from each other. Just like Jim who said this about my piano accelerator program …

And what I have learned in the time that I learned it. If you had told me that before, I would’ve never believed it. So I’ve gotten a lot out of it so far.

I’m very proud to say he learned the piano a lot faster than he expected to. To watch Jim’s full testimonial and to see my free training, head to the links in the description below. And if this video helped you, be sure to like and subscribe, and I will see you next time.