I'm not sure if this is the forum to ask this, really, it being so geared towards "classical" piano but I thought I'd give it a go ...
I have done up to Grade 8 in both piano and (classical) organ and have no problem learning and playing repertoire for both from traditional scores (well, repertoire within my ability anyway).
However, for various reasons have found myself wanting and indeed needing to be able to play from lead sheets / fake books - i.e., just melody and chord symbols.
I'd like to be able to play in a variety of styles from said books - just comping (to, e.g., accompany a singer or play in a band) or playing solo (so, melody + accompaniment). When I say a variety of styles I mean all music from, say, the Victorian era through to the present day - so music hall songs, showtunes, rock, and modern pop. So most styles except perhaps jazz which I'm not so keen on.
I have no problems realising chords at the piano from symbols at all in a variety of voicings.
However I have a HUGE problem in realising musically accomplished performance with rhythmic contrast, etc. For example, if someone said to me "play this in the style of Elton John" I just wouldn't know where to start.
So, my question is, can anyone recommend where to start in learning to play from a lead sheet / fake book. I have looked in the music shop but all the books I have found are pretty much uniformly terrible - just teaching you basic triad voicings and doing a block chord crotchet vamp in the left hand, say, and melody in the right, which always sounds awful on the piano.
The only thing I can realise reasonably effective is an oop-ah "stride" style which can be useful for some songs (mostly showtune). Oh, and of course a Karen carpenter-style right hand 'rocking' between root and 3rd/5th of the chord which is OK for playing some carpenters tunes and "Imagine" but not a lot else.
But modern pop or rock, music, say, and I just don't know where to start in doing either a 'comp' or a solo melody + comp.
So I wondered if anyone could recommend a good tutor book, or an approach, or even a London-based teacher?