Download (direct link):
j' FastTrack Keyboard 1 and 2, by Blake Neely (that’s me) and Gary Meisner (Hal Leonard)
- Francis Clark Piano Library, by Francis Clark (Warner Bros.)
. Hal Leonard Student Piano Library, by Barbara Kreader, Fred Kern, Phillip Keveren, and Mona Rejino (Hal Leonard)
The Jazz Piano Book, by Mark Levine (Sher Music Co.)
2 You Can Teach Yourself Piano, by Matt Dennis (Mel Bay)
Using Reference Books
In music stores and libraries, you find literally thousands of music reference books, sometimes called supplemental, about the piano. Books exist on everything from the history of keyboards to building your own piano (good luck!).
Don’t be fooled: Reference books will not teach you how to play. They should be used in addition to, not instead of, a method book or teacher. Use these books to help you further understand a concept introduced by your method book or teacher. For example, when you first start to play chords (Chapter 12), you can buy a chord dictionary.
You’ll find reference books on music theory, harmony, chords, scales, songwriting, the lives of the great composers, musical terms, orchestration, grooves, styles, and much more. My personal library contains the following books, which 1 can highly recommend:
2 1000 Keyboard Ideas, edited by Ronald Herder (Ekay Music, Inc.)
2 The Art of the Piano, by David Dubai (Harvest/Harcourt, Brace & Company)
J Blues Riffs for Piano, Ed Baker (Cherry Lane Music)
2 Chord Voicing Handbook, by Matt Harris and Jeff Jarvis (Kendor Music, Inc.)
. Complete Book of Modulations for the Pianist, by Gail Smith (Mel Bay)
2 FastTrack Keyboard Chords & Scales, by Blake Neely (who?) and Gary Meisner (Hal Leonard)
Chapter 19: Ten Ways to Go Beyond This Book
J' Five Centuries of Keyboard Music (Dover)
J’ The Great Pianists, Harold C. Schonberg (Fireside/Simon & Schuster)
J' Musician’s Guide to the Internet, Gary Hustwit (Rockpress/Hal Leonard) j1 Pocket Music Dictionary (Hal Leonard)
Those of you who are on the World Wide Web (you know who you are) can buy music reference books online from Music Books Plus at
www. vaxxi ne . com/mbp or at Amazon Books at www. amazon . com. (I talk about additional Web resources later in this chapter.)
Buying Music to Ptay
You are learning to play the piano for one simple reason: to play music.
Okay, so maybe you’re learning for another reason: to impress your friends. After you achieve the first goal, the second naturally just happens.
Unless you’re playing strictly by ear, you’ll need some music to read. Enter the concept of printed music.
Types of printed music
Thanks to five centuries worth of composers, you have a wealth of printed music from which to choose. Generally, you find it in three packages:
Sheet music: Single songs printed on 2 to 12 pages, folded or stapled together.
J1 Folios: Collections of various songs, packaged together for a specific marketing reason.
J1 Classical: Most classical pieces are very long and require an entire little book to hold one piece.
For example, you can buy the sheet music to the song “Footloose,” or you can buy a folio called “Movie Hits from the ’80s,” which contains “Footloose” as well as 50 others.
Buying folios is a great value. Sheet music sells for around $4.95 for one song, whereas a folio sells for around $16.95 and may have 50 to 100 songs. However, chances are that if it’s a really new song, it will only be available as sheet music. It’s your choice: Buy now, or wait, or both.
290 Part VII: The Part of Tens _____________________________________________________________
Printed music, whether sheets or folios, comes in many different formats. The different formats, called arrangements, allow the publisher to release the song in several levels of skill and for various keyboard instruments. It’s the same song, but the publisher has arranged the notes and chords to suit your needs.
Using the “Footloose” example, you may want to play a very easy version of the song on an electronic organ, or you may want to play an advanced piano solo version on a grand piano. Both formats are probably available. And, of course, you can probably find every other level in between.
After you master a song, it’s fun to try playing other arrangements of the same song. (I once learned to play 18 different versions of “Yankee Doodle,” ranging from plain vanilla to rock ’n’ roll. Thank goodness it was just a phase.) Your local sheet music dealer can help you find just the arrangement and style you want.
A fake book is actually a real book. This is the music industry term for a printed music book, or folio, that gives you only the melody line, lyrics, and chords of a song. Compared to a piece of sheet music that has both hands written out and fully harmonized, the fake book acts as merely a road map of the song, allowing you to play the melody, sing the lyrics, and create your own left-hand accompaniment with the chords that are shown. (Chapter 14 gives you some great left-hand accompaniment ideas.)