The Piano Guys

A review by Rockhampton teacher, Christina Bond.

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“I was very excited to receive The Piano Guys Simplified Favorites: Vol 1 (Easy Piano/Optional Cello) book in the mail and sat down to play it straight away.

On playing through the pieces, I was impressed that although the arrangements were simplified, they did not sound markedly different from what you hear on the recordings.

The piano parts are written in a way that they can be played and enjoyed on their own but are enhanced even further with the cello part added.

I tested the book out with the string teacher at school and we were quickly able to sight read and play the entire book, much to the surprise and entertainment of the students passing by the piano room.

Even though it is described as “Easy Piano” I personally would reserve assigning these pieces until the student has reached a Grade 2/3 level AMEB and after discussion with our school string teacher, she suggested the cello part included with the arrangements would also be a similar level to the piano (Grade 3 level AMEB).

All in all I was pleased with the quality of these arrangements and look forward to assigning these to my students.

It is exciting that such a book has been published to allow a piano player and cellist to collaborate at an early level, performing pieces they can truly engage with.”

With their clever and inspiring takes on popular music and creative videos, The Piano Guys serve up an eclectic mix of classical, film score, rock and pop favourites that resonates with a wide variety of audiences. Play 12 of their most popular songs in these arrangements for easy piano with optional cello: All of Me • Arwen’s Vigil • Begin Again • Home • Kung Fu Piano: Cello Ascends • Moonlight • Over the Rainbow • Paradise • Rolling in the Deep • A Thousand Years • Titanium • Without You. Includes separate pull-out cello part.

127421 $29.95 (Australian RRP including GST)

All things Frozen

Once in a while a musical phenomenon comes along that takes the world by storm.

Literally the world!
DakarLast night I was chatting to friends who live in Dakar, a coastal town in the African country Senegal and they said that children in Dakar are Frozen mad! Parents doing school pick-up have the Frozen soundtrack playing in their cars and the children have watched the movie so many times they know each song and line perfectly. So, not any different from children right here in Australia.

 

Luckily for young musicians Frozen is available in any number of formats that makes it possible for just about every musician to play, no matter the skill level or instrument. These books are perfect editions to the 40 Piece Challenge students repertoire, or perhaps great gifts for parents to give as rewards for 40 Piece Challenge successes.

FiveFingerFrozenThe Five Finger (130374) piano version of Frozen is ideal for young beginners who have perhaps been learning for a year or two. Students playing pieces at a P Plate level 3, perhaps.The arrangements are gorgeous and with a lovely teacher (or older sibling/student) accompaniment, they sound just like the real thing. There are a couple of slightly trickier moments in pieces (In Summer, for instance) but the beauty of Frozen is that because the children know the songs, they will be able to play the rhythms well before they really understand the notation. And that is OK!

For pianists Frozen is also available in Beginning Piano Solo 130375 (about a Preliminary level), BigNote piano 126105 (around a Grade One level), Easy Piano 125506 (about a Grade Two level), Piano Solo 128220 (about a Grade Four level) a version for Piano Playalong 126480 (including sound alike online accompaniments) PVG 124307, Vocal Selections 128053 and a choral version called Let’s All Sing Songs from Frozen 127889.

For instrumentalists there are the Songs from Frozen, Tangled and Enchanted.

FrozenInstrumental The solos featured in this collection are ideal for students at a Grade 1-2 standard. Once again, they will know the songs, so the trickier rhythms should not prove so much of a challenge. The books feature online access to audio demonstration tracks for download or streaming.
Songs include: Do You Want to Build a Snowman? • For the First Time in Forever • Happy Working Song • I See the Light • In Summer • Let It Go • Mother Knows Best • That’s How You Know • True Love’s First Kiss • When Will My Life Begin • I’ve Got A Dream • Love Is An Open Door and So Close.

Songs from Frozen, Tangled and Enchanted are available for Alto saxophone (126923) , Cello (126930), Clarinet (126922), Flute (126921), French horn (126926),Tenor saxophone (126924), Trombone (126927), Trumpet (126925), Viola (126929) and Violin (126928).

All of these publications are available from your local favourite music retail store.

One octave is all you need!

Philip Sparke’s pieces for brass and woodwind instruments have appeared in syllabuses of examination boards around the world. His new collection, 15 Easy Classical Solos, features arrangements for instrumentalists who can play just over an octave making them ideal for young 40 Piece Challenge students.  

15EasyClassicalSolos

The principle behind this series is to allow young instrumentalists the chance to enjoy the challenge and satisfaction of playing with a piano or CD accompaniment as early as possible in the learning experience. This of course allows the performer to develop important ensemble, listening and rhythmic skills.
The carefully selected pieces include music from the 16th to the 20th century and cover a wide variety of styles, from Bach to Grieg and from Purcell to Satie.
This book will provide invaluable additional 40 Piece Challenge repertoire that will complement any teaching method and includes both piano accompaniment and a demo/play-along CD.

Songlist:

  • Waltz (Moritz Vogel)
  • Chorale – Now Praise, My Soul, the Lord (Johann Sebastian Bach)
  • Humming Song – from Album for the Young (Robert Schuman)
  • Gymnopedie No. 1 (Erik Satie)
  • I’m Called Little Buttercup – from HMS Pinafore (Sir Arthur Sullivan)
  • Study – Op. 37, No. 3 (Henry Lemoine)
  • Minuet – Z 649 (Henry Purcell)
  • Theme and Variation – from Sonatina No. 3 (Thomas Attwood)
  • Northern Song – from Album for the Young (Robert Schumann)
  • Two German Dances – from Twelve German Dances D 420 (Franz Schubert)
  • Watchman’s Song – from Lyric Pieces Op. 12 (Edvard Grieg)
  • Gavotte (Jan Ladislav Dussek)
  • Vien qua, Dorina bella – Op. 7 (Antonio Bianchi arr. Carl Maria von Weber)
  • Minuet – from Notebook for Anna Magdalena Bach (attrib. Christian Petzold)
  • The Prince of Denmark’s March – from Choice Lessons for the Harpsichord or Spinet (Jeremiah Clarke)

This collection is available for the following instruments, and can be purchase at all these great stores:
Alto Saxophone • AMP300400
Bassoon • AMP307400
Clarinet • AMP299400
Euphonium BC TC • AMP305400
Flute • AMP297400
Horn • AMP303400
Oboe • AMP298400
Tenor Horn Euphonium TC • AMP363400
Tenor Saxophone • AMP301400
Trombone • AMP304400
Trumpet • AMP302400
Tuba in B Flat BC/TC • AMP306400

For more new instrumental titles, click here