Archive for the ‘Miscellaneous tips’ Category

Free PDF Hymn! Just When I Need Him Most

Monday, August 14th, 2017

large baby-grand-piano

I never really noticed the time signature change in “Just When I Need Him Most” until today.

We sang this at our church last night for a congregational and the people REALLY enjoyed singing it.  The words are so comforting!

It’s just one of those seasons at our church where there’s a lot of physical needs and such a song reminds us of Jesus’ ever-present help ūüôā

We sang this song in a prayerful mood with ¬†a slow walking speed so I had time to add left hand flowing patterns similar to the following free pdf of “Just When I Need Him Most”.

Most importantly, notice the key change at the chorus….but the flow will still be¬†pretty much the same ūüôā ¬†I actually changed to 6/8 timing one measure earlier than the hymnal shows… because it felt more natural to not hold as long before entering the chorus.

Maybe this will help a beginning church pianist to see what fill-ins could be used for a slow to medium hymn in 6/8 or 9/8 timing… such as my arrangement of “I Must Tell Jesus”.

Warning: This arrangement is NOT intended for piano solo use… due to missing melody notes at the beginning of the chorus…unless of course you know how to add them in ūüėČ

Click on song title for free download: Just When I Need Him Most

 

 

 

Easy to Play Congregational Collection One is Ready!

Saturday, July 29th, 2017

 

treble-clef-on-red-staff

 

Just published the Easy to Play Congregational Collection One today!  I will be out of town this upcoming week but will supply video or audio samples for this collection when I return.

Easy-to-Play Congregational Collection-One
Easy-to-Play Congregational Collection-One
Early intermediate to intermediate piano congregational arrangements, 16 pgs. Jenifer wrote these arrangements in an easy-to-learn fashion for the beginning church pianist. You'll find these arrangements to be fairly structured making for minimal practice. Song list: Amazing Grace, Day by Day, Grace Greater Than Our Sin, I Need Thee Every Hour, It is Well, Nothing but the Blood, Only a Sinner, O Worship the King, Satisfied, Trust and Obey. *Amazing Grace contains optional key change into Grace Greater Than Our Sin
Price: $12.00

Here’s a visual sampling of the Collection

MUSIC

 

 

 

 

Easy-to-Play-Congregational Collection Update

Wednesday, July 26th, 2017

MUSIC

 

Trying to finish this collection before being out of town all next week.  Not sure if I will but sure will come close!

Here’s a sampling. ¬†This picture was taken when eight were ready. I now have nine ūüôā ¬†One more to go!

 

 

Part Two: Modulating up a Fifth

Friday, July 21st, 2017

Modulating between hymns during a prelude or other background music event can create a seamless presentation.

The absence of this art makes for a¬†disjointed sound when going from hymn to hymn. (unless of course the songs are in the same key) ¬†ūüôā

Ah….but just because the songs are in identical keys doesn’t mean the songs¬†will always sound seamless without some type of transition. (another lesson!)

Every church pianist should try and learn the art of modulation to the best of his or her ability…in small bits at at time. For starters, learn to modulate between songs with same time signature as I have provided below. ¬†(The modulations will feel/flow a little different in 3/4 time versus 4/4 time.)

Below is a free pdf showing how to modulate up a fifth using the chord formula: ii7 to V7 of the new key. ¬†I’ve also shared a list of these two chords in the keys found on the free pdf of modulations.

Key of C

ii7 = D-F-A-C

 V7 = G-B-D-F

Key of G  *see visual of these 2 chords HERE

ii7=A-C-E-G

V7= D-F sharp-A-C

Key of D

ii7= E-G-B-D

V7= A-C sharp-E-G

Modulating up a Fifth Free PDF

Part One: Modulation Formula for Most Any Key Change!

Monday, July 17th, 2017

treble-clef-on-red-staff

Introduction 

Modulating during any type of prelude (church, funeral, wedding or other occasion)…creates a smooth transition between songs. Without a smooth transition between different keys, the music will sound interrupted or very abrupt. ¬†The articles associated with this lesson and future lessons will deal with modulating to a higher key. ¬†Modulating to a lower key can also be effective but such a topic belongs in a different set of lessons.

The modulation chord formula that works for most any key change uses the  ii7 to V7 chords of the new key.

(I personally like to use the V7 sus instead of a plain V7…but will will illustrate ¬†at the appropriate time).

*Part two will provide a FREE pdf with several examples of modulating up a fifth. (C Major to G Major)

Keyboard visuals of the ii7 & V7 chords in the key of G Major are shown below. (The upcoming examples will cover C to G, G to D and F to C using this chord formula)

ii7 of G Major

ii7 of G Major

V7 of G Major

V7 of G Major

Working on the examples now and hope to share this week!

 

 

Easy-2-Play-Congregational-Hymns

Saturday, June 24th, 2017

Thanks for the feedback on how to present Easy-2-Play Congregational Hymns!

How about this look for Easy-2-Play Congregational Hymns?

Satisfied

Ready-Made Hymn Arrangements!

Wednesday, June 21st, 2017

For the past couple of months…I’ve been creating “ready-made’ hymn arrangements for some of my church pianist students¬†who are need of improvised hymns for congregational singing. (Can also be used as piano solo)

These hymn arrangements are nothing more than a copy of a hymn from the hymnal with my added improvised notes in red.

Just curious, would this meet the need for others as well? I’m considering adding them to our online music store if there’s enough interest.

The cost would be less than my regular “printed arrangements”.

Here’s a FREE copy of one of these ready-made hymn arrangements. (Also trying to decide what to call them….any suggestions?)

*Also…are you all ok with it being handwritten just as it appears in free arrangement below? ¬†

*Special note: THANKS for the feedback! After reading the comments here and on facebook….I will be putting these type of easy-to-play congregationals into print instead of by hand. I will do away with the original notes from the hymnbook and ONLY type in my (hopefully) easy-to-play congregational/piano solo arrangement. Thanks again for your helpful comments! ¬†I do have (more involved ) congregational piano arrangements for sale HERE.

Ready-Made Hymns for the Church Pianist

Ready-Made Hymns for the Church Pianist

Book Review: Playing Beyond the Notes

Monday, March 27th, 2017

 

Playing-Beyond-the-Notes

Thought I’d share a brief book review on a book I’m currently reading entitled “Playing Beyond the Notes”.

The writer communicates the different musical concepts with ample illustrations.

It’s one of those kind of books you can pick up and randomly choose a chapter of interest without losing the overall flow of the book.

A great reference book for any piano teacher, piano student or church pianist wanting to sharpen their skills in the area of music interpretation!

Click HERE¬†to purchase or preview “Playing Beyond the Notes” by Deborah Rambo Sinn

 

 

Upright Piano vs. a Grand Piano

Monday, March 6th, 2017

Ever wondered what makes a grand piano sound better than most uprights?  Robert Estrin with LivingPianoVideos does a wonderful job answering this question.

I’m in the market for a new piano and educating myself before making such a large investment. Here is what Robert has to say about the upright piano vs. a grand piano.

Church Pianist in a Rut!

Tuesday, February 21st, 2017

 

 

BOOKS

So…I admit…I’m a church pianist in a rut! What to do? ¬†Time to surround myself with different arrangers’ music….which means….sightread!

Do you have a collection of books that you use mainly for sightreading purposes? I do. ¬†Most of the arrangements in these books are too long for our offertory time. I could shorten some of them but¬†that’s not always the best option since the arrangement usually builds in intensity and I don’t want to interfere with a well-rounded presentation of an arrangement.

It seems like the longer offertories are a lot of times the more challenging ones. I NEED that extra challenge to keep my fingers limber.

Occasionally, I’ll play a longer arrangement because I REALLY like the arrangement and want to share it.

Have you heard of ¬†Abiding Radio?¬†I’m listening to it (online)… for musical inspiration ūüôā

I’m curious….what do other church pianists or pianists in general do to get out of a rut? ¬†Would love to hear your ideas!

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