Pop Rock Favorites: Volume 2 Songbook

The Pop Rock Favorites: Volume 2 collection features twelve piano solo arrangements for intermediates and up by Jennifer Eklund. Includes favorites like, "Ironic" (Alanis Morissette), "My Favorite Mistake" (Sheryl Crow), "Slide" (Goo Goo Dolls) and "You Get What You Give" (New Radicals).

This post is part three of the Pop Rock Favorites Songbook Series.
Pop Rock Favorites: Volume 2 Songbook

🎸 About the Pop Rock Favorites songbook series:

Pop rock is a genre of music that emerged in the late-20th century, combining elements of both pop and rock music styles. It is characterized by catchy melodies, straightforward song structures, and a focus on hooks that are easily accessible to a broad audience. Pop rock songs typically feature a strong emphasis on vocals and harmonies, often accompanied by electric guitars, drums, and other traditional rock instruments. This genre is known for its radio-friendly sound, making it a staple of mainstream music charts and appealing to a wide range of listeners.

These song selections are drawn primarily from the 1990s and 2000s and feature tracks played often on the PopRocks channel on SiriusXM (channel 12) and the arrangements are appropriate for intermediates and up.

🎶 Pop Rock Favorites: Volume 2 Songbook

The following twelve songs are included in the Pop Rock Favorites: Volume 2 songbook.

These are all available as separate singles, but you get the most value by purchasing the whole collection. All of these arrangements are appropriate for intermediates and up.

  1. Because the Night (10,000 Maniacs)
  2. Complicated (Avril Lavigne)
  3. Cool Kids (Echosmith)
  4. Dirty Little Secret (All-American Rejects)
  5. Ironic (Alanis Morissette)
  6. It’s All Been Done (Barenaked Ladies)
  7. My Favorite Mistake (Sheryl Crow)
  8. Ordinary World (Duran Duran)
  9. Photograph (Nickelback)
  10. Slide (Goo Goo Dolls)
  11. Til I Hear It From You (Gin Blossoms)
  12. You Get What You Give (New Radicals)

🎹 Watch a performance of the entire volume:

Let’s dive deeper with some more details about a few of my personal favorites from Pop Rock Favorites: Volume 2 songbook.

1. “Complicated” by Avril Lavigne (2002)

“Complicated” is a song by Canadian singer-songwriter Avril Lavigne, released as her debut single and the lead single from her debut album, “Let Go,” in 2002. The song was co-written by Lavigne and the production team the Matrix (Lauren Christy, Scott Spock, and Graham Edwards). It’s a pop rock ballad that addresses the idea of people being insincere and two-faced. Lavigne’s lyrics emphasize the importance of honesty and authenticity.

The song received positive reviews from music critics who praised its infectious pop-rock sound. “Complicated” achieved considerable commercial success, peaking at number two on the Billboard Hot 100 and spending 31 weeks on the chart. It also reached number one on the Billboard Adult Top 40 chart and the Mainstream Top 40 chart. The single was certified 3× Platinum in the United States, making it Lavigne’s best-selling debut single.

Internationally, “Complicated” topped the charts in countries such as Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, and Norway, and it reached the top five in over twenty countries. The song was nominated for two Grammy Awards, for Song of the Year and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance. It received accolades at the MTV Video Music Awards and the Juno Awards.

The music video for “Complicated,” directed by the Malloys, features Lavigne and her band causing havoc in a shopping mall and performing the song at a skatepark. The video was well-received and has garnered over 600 million views on YouTube as of June 2023. Lavigne won Best New Artist in a Video at the 2002 MTV Video Music Awards for this song, further solidifying her early success in the music industry.

🔎 Sheet music sneak peek:

2. “Cool Kids” by Echosmith (2013)

“Cool Kids” is the debut single by American indie pop band Echosmith, featured on their 2013 debut studio album, “Talking Dreams.” The song was written by Echosmith, Jeffery David, and Jesiah Dzwonek, and produced by Mike Elizondo, with additional production on the radio edit by Rob Cavallo. Originally released on May 31, 2013, as the iTunes Store Single of the Week, the song gained popularity in the United States the following year when it officially impacted radio stations.

The song’s lyrics tell the story of a boy and a girl who both aspire to be noticed or fit in with the “cool kids.” It captures the universal feeling of wanting to belong and be accepted by a certain group. Guitarist Jamie Sierota explained that the song’s theme resonates with people because many have experienced the desire to be like someone they admire.

The song’s official music video was filmed in Los Angeles and directed by Gus Black. It was released on June 21, 2013, on Echosmith’s YouTube channel. The video portrays the band members and other young people exploring the city at night.

“Cool Kids” had a significant commercial impact, debuting at number 87 on the Billboard Hot 100 and eventually peaking at number 13. It also reached the top ten on the Billboard Mainstream Top 40 and Adult Top 40 charts, at numbers 9 and 5, respectively. The song was certified gold by the RIAA in October 2014 and sold over 1.1 million copies in the United States by December 2014. Additionally, it peaked at number 6 on the Australian singles chart and received a double platinum certification in Australia.

🔎 Sheet music sneak peek:

3. “Ironic” by Alanis Morissette (1996)

Just take the jagged little pill:

“Ironic” is a song by Canadian singer Alanis Morissette, released in February 1996 as the third single from her album “Jagged Little Pill.” It was written by Morissette and Glen Ballard and produced by Glen Ballard. The lyrics of the song describe various situations that are labeled as “ironic,” although there has been ongoing debate about whether these situations truly fit the definition of irony.

The song achieved considerable success, topping the Canadian RPM Top Singles chart for six weeks and reaching the top five in countries like Australia, New Zealand, and Norway. In the United States, “Ironic” peaked at number four on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming Morissette’s highest-charting single on the chart. The song also won the Juno Award for Single of the Year and received two Grammy Award nominations in 1997 for Record of the Year and Best Short Form Music Video.

The song’s lyrics sparked discussion due to their usage of the word “ironic” to describe various situations. Many argued that these situations were not truly ironic, leading to debates about the song’s lyrical content. Despite this, “Ironic” remains one of Alanis Morissette’s most well-known and successful songs, with a memorable music video directed by Stéphane Sednaoui featuring multiple versions of Morissette in a car, each representing different aspects of her personality. The video received several award nominations and has been parodied by various artists and comedians.

🔎 Sheet music sneak peek:

4. “It’s All Been Done” by Barenaked Ladies (1998)


“It’s All Been Done” is a song by the Canadian alternative rock group Barenaked Ladies. It served as the second single from their 1998 album, “Stunt.” The song achieved significant success in Canada, reaching No. 1 on the RPM Top Singles chart and becoming the band’s highest-charting song in their home country. Additionally, the song was used as the theme song for the television series “Baby Blues.” Notably, it marked one of the band’s early songs to feature an electric guitar solo by Ed Robertson.

The music video for “It’s All Been Done” was directed by Doug Aitken and was filmed in the former house of comedian Andrew Dice Clay. The unique concept of the video depicted the perspective of various household pets, including a cat, a dog, a goldfish, and a bird. However, Ed Robertson and Steven Page, members of the band, were initially dissatisfied with the video during its production, feeling that it didn’t capture the intended concept. The video also featured Kevin Hearn, who was bald at the time due to undergoing chemotherapy, playing a Hohner Clavinet.

Barenaked Ladies performed the song on various television shows, including Saturday Night Live, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, and The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. During their performance on The Tonight Show, actor David Duchovny joined the band, playing an egg shaker in the musical segment. This collaboration came about after an impromptu meeting between the band and Duchovny, who had appeared as a guest on the program earlier in the show.

🔎 Sheet music sneak peek:

5. “Ordinary World” by Duran Duran (1992)

New Wave superstar holdovers from the 80s:

“Ordinary World” is a song by the English rock band Duran Duran, released in December 1992 as the first single from their self-titled album, often referred to as “The Wedding Album.” The song achieved notable success, reaching No. 1 on the US Billboard Top 40/Mainstream chart, the Canadian RPM 100 Hit Tracks chart, and the Italian Singles Chart. It also peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100, No. 2 in Iceland and Sweden, and No. 6 on the UK Singles Chart.

The song’s lyrics, written by lead vocalist Simon Le Bon, reflect themes of loss and trying to cope with the death of a best friend. Musically, the song features keyboard arrangements by Nick Rhodes and John Jones, drums played by Steve Ferrone, and a guitar solo by Warren Cuccurullo. It became a significant emotional outlet for Le Bon and resonated with listeners who could relate to its themes.

Simon Le Bon performed “Ordinary World” alongside Luciano Pavarotti at a benefit concert for War Child, with new Italian lyrics specially written for the performance. The collaboration was well-received, and the performance was later released on home video as “Pavarotti & Friends: Together for the Children of Bosnia.”

Critics praised the song for its emotional depth and elegant composition. It was considered a surprising comeback for Duran Duran, whose popularity had waned in the early 1990s. The music video for “Ordinary World” was filmed at Huntington Gardens in San Marino, California, and contributed to the song’s success.

🔎 Sheet music sneak peek:

6. “You Get What You Give” by New Radicals (1998)

Another awesome one-hit-wonder:

“You Get What You Give” is a song by the American alternative rock band New Radicals, released in 1998 as the lead single from their album “Maybe You’ve Been Brainwashed Too.” The song achieved significant success, reaching No. 36 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and No. 8 on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart. Internationally, it reached No. 5 in the UK, No. 4 in Ireland, and No. 1 in Canada and New Zealand.

The song’s lyrics touch on themes of societal issues, including criticism of the health insurance industry, FDA practices, and celebrities. The song’s closing lyrics garnered attention for their commentary on these issues and references to famous figures.

The music video was filmed in a shopping mall, serving as a metaphor for a controlled, consumer-driven society, and depicted a group of teenagers causing chaos.

Over the years, “You Get What You Give” has received recognition as a one-hit wonder and was voted among the greatest songs of the 1990s.

🔎 Sheet music sneak peek:

🤔 Looking for more Pop Rock sheet music? We’ve got you covered!

👋 Do you have a favorite Pop Rock tune from this volume? I’d love to hear about it!

Jennifer Eklund
Written by Jennifer Eklund
Jennifer Eklund holds a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in music from California State University, Long Beach. She is an avid arranger, composer, and author of the Piano Pronto® method books series as well as a wide variety of supplemental songbooks. She is also a Signature Artist with Musicnotes.com with a large catalog of popular music titles for musicians of all levels.


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