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New song: La Valse d’Amelie for guitar, piano, and ukulele

Posted on August 6, 2019

Let’s learn this beautiful tune from the soundtrack of the hit French movie Amelie. You’ll notice it feels very French – it’s like being transported to a cafe in Paris! Like many songs in this style, it has a waltz rhythm (which means 3 beats per bar, counted 1-2-3), with an accordion playing chords on beats 2 and 3. This musical combination has a distinctive and evocative feel – a great sound to add to your repertoire.

“La Valse d’Amelie”, made famous by Yann Tiersen, is now available in Yousician for Guitar, Piano, and Ukulele. A solo piano level 13 exercise is also available for Piano.

La Valse D’Amelie for Guitar
by: James Neilson, Music Education Designer for Guitar

In the basic melody exercise (level 4) you’ll play along with the melody, which has been simplified a bit to avoid the faster sections. Look out for the challenging string skips, especially between the D-string and B-string. If your picking hand is getting lost, remember to slow it down in practice mode to get used to it.

In the fingerpicking exercise (level 7) you’ll play along with the accordion chords, using fingerpicking to capture the bass-chord pattern. The fingerpicking pattern and chords themselves are fairly straightforward (Dm Am F C), but it will be challenging to play it smoothly and consistently at speed. Try starting slow until it gets under your fingers.

In the full melody exercise (level 7) you’ll play the full accordion melody (also doubled on other instruments like a glockenspiel). It’s a combination of slower sustained notes, along with quick legato passages. Make sure you practice these difficult sections slowly at first so they become second-nature, and you can focus on bringing out the beautiful melody.

La Valse D’Amelie for Piano
by: Sunny Choi, Music Education Designer for Piano

Solo piano (level 4)
This arrangement covers the essentials of the song, guiding you through the melody of the song with your right hand with minimal movement in the left hand.

Solo piano (level 6)
Your right hand will take control over the melody, while your left hand will keep up with the momentum with its waltz-like pulses in 3. Play this arrangement to experience the dance through your fingers!

Solo piano (level 9)
Challenge yourself with this arrangement to catch as many passing notes and triplets as you can that enrich the melody playing experience. Are you ready for some fun?

Solo piano (level 13)
This complete arrangement is full of fun, featuring numerous parts that begin and end with clever technical tricks. Challenge your focus to see how many notes you can catch.

La Valse D’Amelie for Ukulele
by: Vellu Halkosalmi, Music Education Designer for Bass and Ukulele

The basic melody exercise (level 4) is a simplification of the melodies in the song. Note the suggested fingering, it is one finger per fret, but not on consecutive frets, but on frets 2, 3, 5 and 7. This is a great way of fingering when you need to reach out to a larger range but still want to keep the same fingering positioning. This type of fingering is very common when playing the violin and the mandolin, that are very similarly sized instruments.

Chords exercise (level 4): Strum all the chords of this beautiful tune. Waltzes (songs with 3/4 time signature) like traditional german Ländler, Wiener Waltz and many more share this accompaniment style, where you play a chord on each 2nd and 3rd beat of a bar. This song only has 4 chords and the chord progression repeats itself throughout the song, so also try out playing this song by heart just strumming along, not looking at the screen.

Full melody exercise (level 8): Here’s a great melody-challenge for you. To master this one, you need some quick alternate plucking, one hammer-on & pull-off stunt, plus fluent use of the spread-out one-finger-per-fret fingerings.

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