House of the Rising Sun
Chords & Lyrics

House of the Rising Sun chords and lyrics for your piano students (guitar chords are coming...).  This is an irresistable and unforgettable ballad, made more so by the voice of Eric Burdon of The Animals.  See this fabulous recording from 1964, on what looks like (in my husband's assessment) a set from the original Star Trek:

I have not used the exact lyrics sung by The Animals, but instead have used the traditional public domain words.  They are almost identical.  I don't have chord symbols on these piano sheets - on purpose - but when I make lead sheets I'll add them.

House of the Rising Sun piano sheet music

Download House of the Rising Sun in 3/8 time

The next music pdf is with long broken chords.  You can see how I like to start basic, and build more complexity in.  My students like that approach too:

House of the Rising Sun with long broken chords

Download House of the Rising Sun with longer broken chords

I haven't added any fingering to this melody - when kids are good enough to read these notes easily, they generally are happier working out their own fingering.  If a couple lessons go by and I can see that they are sabotaging themselves with their poor choices, I will help them with a compromise fingering and write it in.  (Usually after a couple weeks they will believe me!  The only downside to waiting, of course, is that they may have a habit that is hard to break.)

The next skill level is to alter the rhythm to sound more like what The Animals had in their arrangement.  Look at the left hand chords - same chords, just a fancier rhythm:

Syncopated rhythm with House of the Rising Sun

Download syncopated rhythm left hand version of House of the Rising Sun

The final stage of this song is to add right hand chords to the downbeats in the melody.  My students who can do this are already familiar with making chord inversions, from years of playing chords in songs and in exercises.

Right hand chords & inversions in House of the Rising Sun

Download arrangement with right hand chords 

I plan to add lead sheets and a duet version of this great song, as well as some guitar tabs and chords.  Check back!

Comments

Do you have a funny story about this music, or does it remind you of something you'd like to share with other readers? Do you have a question? I'd love to hear it!

Please note that all comments are moderated, and will not appear until I have approved them. Also, IF YOU ARE ASKING FOR MUSIC THAT IS NOT IN THE PUBLIC DOMAIN, YOUR REQUEST WILL BE IGNORED. That's pretty much any music written in the last 75 years...

What Other Visitors Have Said

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Heidi Evans, piano teacher 
My 13-year-old student loves "House of the Rising Sun" because he thinks it sounds like "Star Wars" music! Thank you for this amazing resource! …

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