Alicia Keys — Underdog Piano Sheets

Alicia is back!

Here is a new song in my piano sheet music archive. The original amateur interpretation of a tune. This sheet music is created in a transformative manner. Plus music notes in the arrangement doesn't copy any existing material.

Piano Player Ability Rating: Intermediate

To print piano sheet music save the direct PDF (mirror)




How to play this sheet music


Underdog is composed in a binary verse-chorus form. Both sections are repeated before a short coda.
This song follows the traditional model for the soul form. Its rhythmic basis is sustained throughout, so the LH’s principal duty will be to provide a rock-steady footing.
Underdog score requires arduous effort. I will ad an easier one if this page will be popular.

Piano Playing Method


Accuracy in articulation are essential for playing Underdog piano sheet music.
Your tone should be warm and gentle. It should impart the lilting feel of a lullaby. Figuratively speaking, you should communicate a sense of comfort, ease, or pleasantness. To sound quietly, keep your fingers close to the keys and do some firm practice from the knuckles.
The articulation in this piece is tricky because it alternates between legato and staccato.
Accent every note, varying the accents each time you play. Once played lightly and up to speed, the ornament should flow naturally.
It’s worth trying out this technique for the entire song.

Among the hardest facets of piano playing is controlling a lightness of attack, and when coupled with playing at a faster speed, a reliable warm-hearted leggiero touch must rank as among the most prized piano skills.

The patterns in verses can become repetitive if not coloured imaginatively and played with rhythmic stamina.

Right Hand


Listen to the actual track Underdog as you begin to learn the arrangement, in order to balance parts in left and right hands.

In playing any piano transcription of a song, the aim is to give the impression of a singer (the RH) that is being accompanied by a sensitive pianist (the LH). Imagine a duet between a band and a singer, so color the two hands differently. Coordinating the parts may take some time to organise convincingly.

The RH here plays a melody (topline) and the LH provides some harmony (accompaniment). First separate the melody from the accompaniment in the LH. Try singing the melody as you play, so you can mentally separate the topline from the accompaniment in the LH.

Practise slowly at first, giving a distinct emphasis on the topline while playing the accompaniment as gently and as evenly as possible. To begin with, play the melody line by itself to develop a confident mastery over the weaker fingers. Once the RH top line has settled, add the accompaniment.

Don’t forget to bring dynamic colour to your performance by quickly moving from piano to forte; play every new part with different volume level.

Left Hand


After getting familiar with the RH, focus on the LH. The LH is generally soft throughout. This is one of those pieces where the bulk of the practising will be devoted to an accompaniment.

A relaxed wrist will help you to balance the sound.
Make full use of the pedal when calculating how best to present Alicia Keys’ ingenious harmonies.

While it might seem counterintuitive to use the left thumb to reach down for single bass notes, it ensures a smooth, decisive downward progression.

Pedal


Judicious use of the right pedal can do much to enhance the music.

More Piano Sheet Music from Alicia Keys

Free and easy piano sheet music with direct digital preview of music notes.
All credits go to songwriters. The arrangement in sheet music is transformative.

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