Learn How To Play “Ordinary People” on Piano

John LegendJohn Legend is one of the most original voices in modern pop piano, having won nine Grammy Awards, and a Starlight Award from the Songwriters Hall of Fame while still in his 30’s. His successful collaborations with established artists such as Jay-Z, Alicia Keys and Lauryn Hill have only fueled his creative reputation.

Here we are featuring his song Ordinary People, is a Grammy-winning track from his debut album Get Lifted. It’s a great ballad with a lot of dynamics that can be played as simply or with as much flourish as you wish. Click on the YouTube image below to see a clip of Legend playing it live.

John Legend LiveHow to Play Ordinary People on Piano

  • A piano score can be found here. It is a level that a beginner/intermediate pianist could play, and includes the melody.
  • Listen to the original by John Legend here.
  • Watch this video that simplifies it even further and outlines the basic piano chords for learning how to play Ordinary People. This is great if you or a friend are singing the song.

Practice Hints

If the parts seem difficult, try learning the parts for each hand on their own. And remember that the piano exercises in eMedia piano lesson software can help you to master hand independence and more dynamic playing.

Artist Notes

Legend (born John Roger Stephens) has always been internally driven to succeed. Homeschooled by his mother, at age four he started playing piano and performed with his church choir at seven. After a salutatorian graduation from high school, he was offered scholarships to Harvard and Georgetown University, but decided on the University of Pennsylvania. While there, he was the musical director for a jazz and pop a cappella group called Counterparts, and met Lauryn Hill who hired him to play piano on her 8X platinum album, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. The album launched her Neo Soul sound to the forefront of pop music and helped start Legend’s professional career.

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* NOTE: Technology tracks single notes with acoustic piano, and both notes and chords with a MIDI keyboard.