by Danny | 3:10 pm

I love Bethel Music, they’ve taken the worship music world by storm in the last 10 or 15 years with amazing songs and albums.

Their current latest release, Come Up Here, is an awesome album with lots of great songs.

But this one, Surrounded by Holy, is probably my very favorite on the album.

I’ve also been to Bethel Church in California twice, and I’ve loved being there in the amazing atmosphere of God’s presence that’s there.

 

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But in this article, I’m going to tell you the best way to play Surrounded by Holy by Bethel music on piano!

Just as a side note, this is just how to play the chords on piano and accompany a singer or a band, not the melody itself on piano.

So if you’re ready to learn how to play it, read on!

And if you want a general “how to” for worship piano, check out my article for that here.

The Basics

When it comes to the basics, I basically mean the scale.

Surrounded by Holy is originally in the key of Eb, at least on the album recording.

If you’re playing it in a different key, learn and master that scale!

But let’s talk about Eb because that’s what key we’re in now.

The key of Eb has 3 flats, and they are: Bb, Eb, and Ab.

Learn the Eb scale, with the proper fingering, and play it again and again until you have a really good feel for it.

This is super important, because otherwise you could be playing notes that aren’t in the scale… and for a song like this that could sound pretty unpleasant!

Before we go any further, I’m going to share with you my video that I’ve made for how to play Surrounded by Holy on piano.

It will show you exactly how to play the scale with the proper fingering, along with the chords and everything else!

This is a full piano tutorial for the song, how to play great sounding chords that will accompany a full band or just a singer.

Give it a watch and that will show you how to play the scale, which is much easier than writing out the notes and fingering!

The Chords

Of course, the chords are the meat of the whole thing, and that’s what we really want to look at.

I have a system that I love to use for the left hand, and I call it an octave with a 5th in the middle.

So that means, whatever chord it says, I play that note in an octave, and I put the 5th scale degree in the middle.

If we look at an example or two, if the chord is an E major chord, then for the left hand I’ll play E – B – E.

If the chord was G, I’ll play G – D – G in the left hand.

To see this in action more, the video shows you the left hand shape for all the chords!

For the right hand, keep your thumb on the note of the key that you’re in, with the next four fingers on the next notes in the scale.

Don’t move your right hand around very much, and that will make it easier to play chords that sound great with ease!

Again, you can see all of this in action in the video.

Closing (And A Quick Rhythm Tip)

If you need some help with the rhythm, I suggest playing all the notes at the same time when you first play a chord, then right hand work, then left hand arpeggiated from the bottom to top.

That way you’ll have some good variation between the hands and your playing won’t sound robotic!

But that “ground rule” isn’t a 100% of the time kind of thing.

I do that at least 80% of the time, but sometimes if a chord change is too fast, I might not have time to do that whole sequence.

Or, if a song is really slow and mellow, I might usually just do single hits with all notes at the same time.

There certainly are exceptions, but the “all together, right hand, left hand” technique is a good one to think about most of the time!

This is a great song, I love playing it, and I hope that this article and the video will really help you too!

If you have any questions or comments about it, please feel free to let me know and I’ll be happy to hear from you and help you in any way I can!

So have a great time practicing and worshiping!

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