Popular Music Lesson

Addams Family Theme Song

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Today we're going to be learning an
excerpt from "The Addams Family Theme".
There's a link below for the sheet music
in the description,
but for this video we're just going to be learning the
right-hand part, the melody.
There are some really cool things in this melody
that will be helpful to point out.
One of those is the triplet.
The opening to the
theme starts with triplet eighth notes.
As you can hear, all three of these eighth notes
will fit equally into the span of a single beat.
So if the beats
are like this: you'll hear TRI-PL-ET
1 2 3 All three of those in 1 beat.
So these first groups of notes
are all triplets ascending up like this:
TRI-PL-ET Like that.
Let's start with our thumb on G.
All these groups of notes
ascend up four notes.
We are going to start with our thumb on G and go up to C.
G up to C.
Just like that, real quick. Again,
G up to C.
The next one starts with A and
goes up to D, and it includes this C-sharp.
So we're going to play this one
like this:
A up to D.
So what you should do is be able to practice these two
groups: G up to C,
and A up to D
with that C-sharp.
Go ahead and pause the video and
practice those two groups on your own.
Great! Now let's figure out the rhythm
for this intro.
It starts with an upbeat.
So the first downbeat is not the G it's
actually the C.
So, for counting our beats it goes:
Beat 1 2 3, beat 1 2 3,
beat 1 2 3 4, 1
Like that.
Now, in these rests you can snap,
you can tap, you can clap, whatever you want. I'm
going to snap like they do in the movie.
So, let me try this again with the snaps on
those rests between the first groups.
So here I go. 1 2 3
Just like that.
Let's do it together slow.
I'm going to start again on G at the beginning,
and I'm going to speak out loud the rhythms and the snaps.
Together, 1 2 3
G up to C, snap, snap,
A up to D, snap, snap,
A up to D, A up to D, G up to C, snap, snap.
And that's it.
Now we're ready for the main part of the theme.
Now, this main part
starts with another upbeat.
A really small one, again on G,
and instead of
going all the notes to C, it just starts from G to C.
But before we get
much further, we need to talk about the rhythm.
The rhythm on the sheet music is
all eighth notes, or mostly eighth notes.
But it's not traditional eighth notes
that go: TI-TI TI-TI TI-TI, like that.
It's a swing rhythm, or
sometimes called a shuffle.
So it kind of wobbles back and forth with a long-short,
long-short, long-short, long-short, like that.
So this first note is actually the short
going to the long because it's the last
note before the downbeat.
So this long-short, long-short, long-short,
long-short, it's going to go:
long-short, long, to the downbeat.
Short-long. Good.
what's next is this descending arpeggio from E,
skipping all the way down to F
See how it just skips a note each one.
So after that C,
I'm going to do that 4th
finger again on C like we did in the intro.
And then I'm going to do all these
skips going down. E C A and F.
And I'm going to use that swing rhythm so it'll
sound like this:
See that? Let's try that again real slow. Ready, go.
And don't forget that swing rhythm. One
more time,
ready go, short-long, short-long, short-long.
The other cool thing about this melody is the syncopations.
A syncopation is when there is a strong
beat, but not on the beat. You feel it,
but it's somewhere between the beats that
are normally on beats 1 2 3 or 4.
And this happens right after that arpeggio.
So after I get down to the bottom of the arpeggio, I'm going to bounce way up to D,
and that's going to be a strong note, but it's going to be in the middle of beat 3, like this:
& 1-& 2-& 3-& and it's going to beat
real strong on that D.
Let's do that part again from the beginning of that part
starting on G.
& 1-& 2-& 3-&
So use our pinky on that D. It's a sixth away
from the bottom of that arpeggio.
Again, starting on G with our thumb.
3 4-& 1-& 2-& 3, like that.
And that quarter note we're going to hold extra long,
and then we're going to start again the next pattern on this A-sharp.
It's going to sound a lot
like that first group,
but starting here, that's our pick up from A-sharp to B.
So, now the downbeat would go 3 4-& 1.
And then it's the exact same shape as before,
except one step down.
So the arpeggio is going to start on the D,
and skip down from B t ...