Accompanying Blog Post For Video: “How to play ‘CAN YOU FEEL THE LOVE TONIGHT’ by Elton John on the piano”
What a fantastic song… well, whole soundtrack really! This and the rest are so nostalgic for me, having grown up with the Lion King movie. I remember singing this one at the top of my lungs 🙂
But this one in particular is a very good learning tool for intermediate level pianists trying to push up through the next level and improve their playing. Here are a few reasons why:
1. Variety in the Left Hand!
The song may sound simple and somewhat repetitive, but don’t let that fool you… There are some subtle changes that will throw you off if you’re not careful!
The one land mine in particular is the E natural that creeps its way in to some of the chords midway through the section. In measure 6, not even on the downbeat but rather half way through on beat 3, our Eb changes to an E natural to suggest a C major harmony. This is not only a surprise because of the key signature, it can also be a surprise for your left hand fingering and hand position.
And halfway through this section, we don’t see a full repeat of the first half as we sometimes do with intermediate level arrangements of popular music. Instead, we still see that E natural pop its head back up, but this time in a different way. In measure 14, the C/E chord is voiced differently, again so that your hand has variety in its chord structures and hand positions!
2. Long Form Chorus
Simply put, the chorus is not a symmetrical 8-bar phrase that repeats, so it demands more focus and learning before you are comfortable playing it all from memory.
3. A Melody That Stretches
At the intermediate level, it’s good to get practice playing a song section that requires you to move your hand around to different positions often. So this is a perfect learning tool!
If you love using your favorite songs to learn the piano, check out ‘CAN YOU FEEL THE LOVE TONIGHT’ at the Playground Sessions YouTube channel. If you like what you see you can download the app to learn the rest with our interactive sheet music.
For more blog posts by Playground Teacher Phil Anderson, click here.
Subscribe to Playground’s YouTube channel for more song lesson video.
Download the Playground Sessions APP for full interactive learning.