How to Play Red River Rock on Piano

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


A step by step guide on how to play the popular rock song, “Red River Rock” on the piano.


Red River Rock is a simple, catchy melody that is perfect for beginners to learn on the piano. This tune was originally released as a single by Johnny and the Hurricanes in 1959, and quickly became a hit. It has since been covered by many other artists, including Loretta Lynn and Jerry Lee Lewis.

This song is in the key of C major, which means that it uses only the white keys on the piano. The left hand plays a basic chord progression while the right hand plays the melody. The melody is mostly made up of eighth notes, with a few quarter notes thrown in for variety.

If you’re a beginner pianist, or if you just want to brush up on your skills, Red River Rock is a great song to start with. It’s relatively easy to play and it has a lot of repetition, so you’ll be able to get the hang of it quickly.

What You’ll Need

Red River Rock is a classic rock song that has been covered by many artists over the years. The original version was released in 1958 by Johnny and the Hurricanes, and it quickly became a hit. The song is easy to play on piano, and it’s a great choice for beginners.

To play Red River Rock on piano, you’ll need a piano or keyboard, a metronome, and a copy of the sheet music. The sheet music can be found online or in a music store. If you’re having trouble finding it, ask a staff member at the store for help.

Once you have everything you need, sit down at the piano and start by playing the opening riff. The opening riff is played on the low E string, and it goes like this:


Once you’ve got the opening riff down, move on to the chords. The chord progression for Red River Rock is as follows: C – G – D – A7 – D – G. To play these chords on piano, use the following fingering:

C: G: D: A7: D: G:
e|-0—3—2—0—2—3—2-| B|-1—3—3—1—3 3 3 —| G|-0——-0——-2——-2-| D|-2—————0——-0—--| A|-3—————2—————| E|—————-3——————

Finding the Right Piano

When you’re looking for a piano, you want to find one that suits your individual playing style. If you’re a beginner, you may want to look for a smaller piano that has fewer keys. If you’re an experienced player, you may want a grand piano that has a richer sound. You also want to make sure that the piano is in tune and that the keys are not sticking.

Learning the Notes

Red River Rock is a simple song that consists of only a few notes. The first thing you need to do is to find where these notes are on the piano. The notes for this song are C, D, E, F, and G. You can find these notes on the piano by looking for the group of two black keys followed by a group of three black keys. This group of black keys is called a tritone. The note C is the white key to the left of the tritone, while the note G is the white key to the right of the tritone.

Now that you know where the notes are, you can begin to play the song. Start by playing the note C with your right hand. Then, play the note D with your left hand. Next, play the note E with your right hand. Continue alternating between playing these three notes with your right and left hands until you have played them a total of eight times each.

After you have played these three notes eight times each, it’s time to add in the fourth and fifth notes – F and G. First, play F with your right hand while continuing to hold down C with your left hand. Next, play G with your left hand while continuing to hold down D with your right hand. Keep alternating between playing these two notes until you have played them a total of eight times each.

Once you have played all five notes eight times each, you have completed one cycle of the song! You can continue playing Red River Rock for as long as you like by repeating this cycle over and over again.

Putting it all Together

Now that you know the individual notes and chords, it’s time to put them all together and play the song. Although the melody is fairly simple, the constant eighth note rhythm can be a challenge to play smoothly. Listen to the recording to get a feel for the timing, and take your time with this one. It’s worth it!

The first time through, play the melody with your right hand while keeping a steady pulse with your left hand. You can use any chord voicing you like, but we recommend starting with simple chords like root position triads.

As you become more comfortable with the melody, try adding some accompaniment with your left hand. In general, you want to avoid playing too many notes at once, so try breaking up the chords into single notes or octaves. You can also experiment with different voicings and inversions to find something that sounds good to you.

Once you have the basic accompaniment down, try adding some embellishments to the melody. This can be anything from simple passing tones to more complex Runs or arpeggios. Just be careful not to overdo it – sometimes less is more!

Practicing Red River Rock

Red River Rock is a classic rock and roll song that was popularized by Jonnie and the Hurricanes in the 1950s. The song is simple to play and only uses a few chords, making it a great choice for beginner or intermediate piano players. The key to playing Red River Rock is to practice the song until you have it memorized, so you can focus on hitting the right notes with the right timing.

To start, you will need to find a Red River Rock piano sheet. You can find these online or in music stores. Once you have your sheet, sit down at your piano and take a look at the chord symbols above the lyrics. These symbols tell you what chords you need to play for each section of the song. For example, the first chord symbol above the lyrics is C, which means you need to play a C major chord. To do this, place your thumb on middle C, place your middle finger on E (the note two keys to the right of middle C), and place your pinky on G (the note four keys to the right of middle C). Now that you know how to find and play chords, take a look at the Red River Rock sheet below and use it as a guide as you practice playing the song.

One last tip: as you practice Red River Rock, pay attention to the tempo (speed) at which you are playing. The original version of the song was fast-paced and upbeat, so try to match that tempo as best you can. With some practice, you’ll be playing Red River Rock like a pro in no time!

Performing Red River Rock

Red River Rock is a song made popular by rock and roll pioneer Bill Haley and his band, the Comets. The song was released in 1959 as a single, and it quickly became a hit, staying at the top of the Billboard charts for seven weeks. The song has been covered by many artists over the years, but it remains most associated with Haley and the Comets.

If you’re a fan of classic rock and roll, or just looking for a fun song to play on piano, Red River Rock is a great choice. This tutorial will show you how to perform the song.

The first thing you’ll need to do is familiarize yourself with the chords used in the song. Red River Rock uses three chords: A, D, and E. These are all fairly simple chords that should be easy for most beginner pianists to learn.

Once you’ve learned the chords, it’s time to start playing the song. The melody of Red River Rock is written in a simple two-octave pattern, which makes it easy to play on piano. The left hand plays a steady rhythm while the right hand plays the melody.

You can find the sheet music for Red River Rock online or in most music stores. If you have any trouble reading music, there are also plenty of free online tutorials that can help you out. Once you have the sheet music in front of you, take some time to practice before performing for an audience.

Red River Rock is a fun, upbeat song that is sure to get your audience moving. With a little practice, you’ll be able to play it like a pro!

Improvising with Red River Rock

Red River Rock is a popular song originally recorded by Johnny and the Hurricanes in 1959. The song was written by Chuck Microsoft and Joe Fuqua, and it has been covered by many artists over the years. The original recording of the song reached No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

If you’re a fan of Red River Rock, you may want to learn how to play it on piano. The melody of the song is relatively simple, so it’s a good choice for beginners. You can find sheet music for the song online or at your local music store.

Once you have the sheet music, take some time to familiarize yourself with the melody. You may want to play it slowly at first to get a feel for the rhythm. Once you’re comfortable with the melody, you can start to improvise around it. Try adding your own flourishes and embellishments to make the song your own.

Adding Your Own Style

While it is important to learn the notes and chords of a song as they are written, it is also important to add your own style to a piece to make it your own. There are many ways that you can do this with Red River Rock. Try one or more of the following:

– Add embellishments to the melody. This could involve adding trills, turns, or other ornamental elements.
– Vary the dynamics. This could mean playing some sections softer or louder than others.
– Change the tempo. You may want to experiment with playing the song faster or slower than the original tempo.
– Add improvisation. This could be as simple as adding your own flourishes to the melody or chords, or you could take things further by improvising an entirely new section.


In conclusion, we have learned how to play Red River Rock on the piano. This song is a great way to show off your piano skills and impress your friends. We hope you enjoyed this lesson and please feel free to share it with your friends.

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