Play by Ear: Your Song

Learn how to play by ear using the Musivu system. In this class we'll use Elton John's "Your Song" as an example.
0.0 (0 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a
course's star rating by considering a number of different factors
such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the
likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
176 students enrolled
Take This Course
  • Lectures 9
  • Length 1 hour
  • Skill Level All Levels
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion
Wishlisted Wishlist

How taking a course works


Find online courses made by experts from around the world.


Take your courses with you and learn anywhere, anytime.


Learn and practice real-world skills and achieve your goals.

About This Course

Published 10/2013 English

Course Description

Learn how to play great songs by ear from Professor Kris Maloy. Using his 10 years of university teaching experience, he'll teach you to play music by ear and identify chords by only their sound, no reading sheet music required.

Learn to Play by Ear

In this course you will learn to understand music using only your ear, using the example of "Your Song" by Elton John. You'll learn to recognize notes, chords and melodies by ear.

At the end of this course you'll be able to play the song on your instrument of choice by hearing the melody, bass, harmony, and texture entirely by ear.

A Better Way to Learn to Play by Ear

Professor Maloy's new system of teaching ear training teaches you how to improve your own skills. Instead of repetitive drills, you can learn to teach yourself.

Who Should Take This Course?

Ear Training for Beginners is great for solo and band artists, and anyone who wants to learn to play music by ear. These skills can be applied to any song, not just "Your Song."

What Former Students Say

"I thoroughly enjoyed studying with Dr. Kris Maloy because he cared enough to become aware of my personal musical background and found a common ground so that he could find the best ways to explain certain concepts and ideas. I would highly recommend studying any music course with Dr. Kris Maloy and would expect you to have the same positive results and experiences that I had."
--Maggie McClure, singer/songwriter with two albums and placements in film, TV and commercials

"Dr. Maloy has a piercing ability to see through the murky, convoluted mess that is music theory and pull out all of the lowest common denominators – the fundamental building blocks of method. He shares this clairvoyance with students through a practical training that sidesteps the pretense."
--Bryan Mitschell, pro drummer and audio producer, now university faculty

"I found Kris' methods to be sound, informative, and practical. Studying with him gave me the skills, desire and enjoyment to continue working in the field of jazz arranging. I highly recommend Kris Maloy and his very skilled system of teaching."
--Mark Giammario, pro drummer, now university faculty

"Dr. Maloy has the ability to effectively communicate complicated musical ideas and techniques to musicians of any level. Dr. Maloy’s familiarity with academic music as well as modern popular music has made his curriculum uniquely relevant. My experience with Dr. Maloy has been extremely enjoyable and enlightening and I would recommend his curriculum to any musician looking to dive deeper into important musical concepts."
--Nick Poss, pro singer/songwriter

What are the requirements?

  • (Recommended) Musivu Basic Ear Training

What am I going to get from this course?

  • You'll be able to play "Your Song" on your instrument of choice
  • No reading sheet music necessary

Who is the target audience?

  • Aspiring musicians of all levels
  • Musicians who want to learn to play by ear

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.


Section 1: Welcome

We'll learn to play Elton John's "Your Song" as an application of the lessons learned in Basic Ear Training.

Section 2: How to Play the Elton John Original

The intro is its own pattern to learn, but it also informs us of the song's key.


Start by working through the bass line. Are those the notes the chord roots?

Does something sound not right? Try a different note as the root.


Following on, we'll continue through the verse in 4-bar segments.


Getting through the first half of the chorus.

Watch out for the first chord!

Elton John's unique sound comes from texture, or how he's playing notes with his right hand. We'll leave it to you to match that.


Finishing up the Chorus.

Next up: a special surprise!

Section 3: BONUS: How to Play the Ellie Goulding Cover

Ellie Goulding has a fantastic version of Your Song with a few twists.

How much can you change a song while the listener still recognizes it as a cover?


The chorus is changed a little less drastically from the Elton John original, compared to the verse.

Why? Probably to keep the harmony relatively simple - just like the rest of the cover.

Section 4: Wrapping Up

As you may have seen by now, this really is an application of Basic Ear Training.

Did you enjoy learning the song? Let us know: We listen to 100% of student feedback.

Students Who Viewed This Course Also Viewed

  • Loading
  • Loading
  • Loading

Instructor Biography

Kris Maloy, Professor of Music, Academy of Contemporary Music

With 10 years of experience, Dr. Kris Maloy has taught all major musical skills and has revolutionized learning to play by ear. His Carnegie Hall debut was in 2011. In 2012 he founded Musivu as a way to make college-level music instruction more affordable and accessible for musicians worldwide, ranging from beginners to pros.

Ready to start learning?
Take This Course