Old Joe Clark
for Beginning Pianists

Old Joe Clark piano music for beginners, now with an easier G-to-F chord progression, has fun lyrics and great rhythm. With silly words about his 18-story house filled with chicken pie, Old Joe Clark is fun to sing too. It's also pretty easy! Here it is in several different versions... 

Old Joe Clark free sheet music for piano beginners


Download Old Joe Clark for beginners

Like a number of my favorite teaching songs, I've made several versions of Old Joe Clark piano sheet music.

This first version is for beginners just getting comfortable around Middle C, but ready to take a leap into playing skips (or thirds) in unfamiliar songs. (Skips in a FAMILIAR song such as Mary Had a Little Lamb, and Yankee Doodle seem to be much easier for kids, because their ear is helping them.)

Work with them on these skips -- you may want them to "help you" spot all the skips and put loops around them, perhaps with a colored pen or pencil.

This version below has a few "AlphaNotes" to help with the hardest spots:

Old Joe Clark with made-easy notes to read


Download Old Joe Clark with keyboard music notes with names

I have not put any fingering in the LH -- you'll have to help your student decide whether they prefer their "2" finger or their "1" on bass clef B. Some kids really dislike cramming their thumbs together on Middle C, and will fight against any fingering that tries to force them that way, all the while reading the actual note itself just fine.

Frequently in method books, the specified fingering is arbitrary, and could just as well have been something else. By encouraging kids to (sometimes!) make their own choices about fingering, I hope that they will come to realize musical decisions are rarely cast in stone. I want to give them a sense of control, and the desire to think for themselves. 


Here is an Old Joe Clark regular piano notes version with chord symbols added:

Piano chords for Old Joe Clark


Download Old Joe Clark piano sheet music for beginners with chord symbols 

Use the chord symbols to suggest an accompaniment, or a Secondo, with the melody being the Primo. For an idea of how to do the chords, see the Secondo version below. A "boogie" back-and-forth kind of chord suits Old Joe Clark piano music very well, and the kids like the "bluesy" sound of the G7th at the very end...

I used to use a D7 chord as the contrasting chord, but substituting the F chord has made it possible for real beginners to play this part... they don't have to move far at all. The D7 chord was a big jump away from G. (Also, according to some commenters on my guitar version of Old Joe Clark, the F chord is more authentic.) 

Old Joe Clark chords for piano sheet music


Download Old Joe Clark boogie chords

After kids can play the 2-handed melody easily, come back to it later with a bit of harmony: 

Easy piano sheet music Old Joe Clark


Printable piano music Old Joe Clark with harmony 

Now the following arrangement it is very fun! It uses a D7 chord instead of F.  I give this to students who are familiar with Old Joe Clark already, and who like the sound of 12-bar-blues boogie piano: 

Old Joe Clark for piano with a boogie left hand chord pattern


Download Old Joe Clark with chords in left hand

It is exactly the same melody, and same chords, but written so that one person can read and play the whole song without a duet partner. The penultimate F# chord brings a smile to students' faces the first time I play it for them! 


Enjoy this free easy sheet music! And thanks for stopping by. 




Recent Articles

  1. Christmas Song Lyrics and Free Piano Sheet Music for Holly and Ivy

    Christmas Song Lyrics & sheet music of "The Holly and the Ivy" for your intermediate & now BEGINNING piano players: 3 energetic arrangements with flowing left hand chords and one SIMPLE Middle C arran…

    Read More

  2. Gabriel's Message: The Angel Gabriel from Heaven Came

    Gabriel's Message: "The Angel Gabriel from heaven came" is a beautiful Christmas song that is almost unknown. It makes a lovely vocal duet. - now updated and SIMPLIFIED.

    Read More

  3. Teaching Young Singers Who Have No Music Background

    Teaching young singers: what do you do with a non-musician who can't even read their own language, much less music notes? Here is some QUICK ADVICE!

    Read More

  4. Coventry Carol, Also Known as Lully Lullay or Lully Lulla

    Coventry Carol, a beautiful and somber English Christmas Carol. With EASY piano duet parts for elementary and early intermediate students.

    Read More

  5. All You That In This House Christmas Sheet Music from England

    "All You That in This House" Christmas sheet music is a quick-to-learn song I'll bet you've not heard before! Now with a stirring piano arrangement. This is a beautiful minor melody with 10 verses of…

    Read More

  6. Masters in This Hall Christmas Carol Lyrics & Music

    Masters in This Hall is a fast-moving old English carol, with several new arrangements to tempt your piano students! Very few people are familiar with this pretty song, but it sounds like it comes fro…

    Read More

  7. Snakes Go for a Walk Skips versus Steps Exercise

    Snakes Go for a Walk (or with a new name, Crickets Go Hopping), an exercise hiding skips among the steps! You'll spot IN A HURRY if your students are understanding the difference!

    Read More

  8. All the Pretty Little Horses, an Easy Lullaby with Free Guitar Tabs!

    All the Pretty Little Horses is a lullaby with a very lovely melody - SO EASY for your students, because three lines are just the same!. Now with sheets to help play melody and chords simultaneously…

    Read More




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...








Sign up for "Take Note!" to see what's new every month.





Comments

Have your say... Leave me a comment in the box below.