Piano Chord Tutorial Number Six, Rock-a-bye Your Baby (With a Dixie Melody)
In Lesson Six we are learning to play piano chords for a public domain song called Rock-a-bye Your Baby With a Dixie Melody. This is what is known as a "belter" song used by many singers as a closer for their act. The "closer" might actually be the number just before the end of the show if the artist has an "encore" number for just one more song before the curtain falls. This video shows how the song can be played in different ways.
This song has many piano chord changes. Here we show the progression if you start in the key of G. Those chords are G-D-E-A-B. Remember to try the different fingering for the piano chords as you practice the song. In previous lessons you learned each of those piano chords. Each piano chord can be done in different ways and in different octaves. As you sing the song try playing it in other keys and expanding your abilities as a piano player. The piano player who adds this song to his or her act will find lots of different ways to change the rhythm during the song to add feeling. The volume of the singer's voice and the piano can be raised to a shout at times and a whisper at other times while performing. During this lesson think about the dynamics of the song.
The song Rock-a-bye Your Baby With a Dixie Melody was a hit twice for Al Jolson and once each for Judy Garland and Jerry Lewis. Jerry Lewis is the same person who now is known for his Labor Day Telethons. I was at the Hollywood Bowl when he introduced his version of the song in 1956. He released his single record of the song with the flip side being, Come Rain or Come Shine. The record became the number one seller for Capitol Records at that time. It was a big hit for someone who was not known as a singer. Many other singers have sung this song as part of their nightclub act. This lesson will help you learn how to belt a song.