Posts Tagged ‘church pianist’

Quickie! Fill-in Ideas for The Old Rugged Cross

Thursday, March 24th, 2016

cross

Family coming into town any minute and just finished a quickie for church pianists to use for Easter…fill-in ideas for The Old Rugged Cross when playing for congregational singing.

Sorry I didn’t have time to share more!

Happy Easter!

Click on title to download your free copy of fill-in ideas for:  THE OLD RUGGED CROSS

Click here to download fill-ins included on sheet music of the hymnal version for this hymn.

 

Saved! Saved! Saved! Free Piano Congregational Arrangement

Tuesday, March 15th, 2016

Saved-Saved-Saved

Sorry for the delay in publishing this free piano congregational arrangement of Saved, Saved, Saved!

The words of this hymn carry the message of  joy a Christian has in having Christ as their personal Saviour 🙂

For that reason, the music should sound happy and upbeat to support the text.

Generally…the faster or more wordy a hymn goes, the lighter the note texture (in my opinion).  😉

Why a lighter texture?  Playing  frequent big; heavy  right hand chords (chords with 3 to 4 notes)  throughout… wouldn’t allow for easy mobility; thus causing the pianist to “drag” the tempo.

The occasional full chords can still occur with a fast tempo…especially on long held words such as in measure #8 (see dotted half note for right hand). Full chords also sound nice and feel comfortable toward the end as tempo gets slower (see measures #19 & 20…right hand).

I also use occasional rests to provide more ease of hand movement as in measure #8…allows right hand time to ease into the fill-in. Same idea applies in measures 10, 15 and 17-19.

The rests just seem to create a more balanced “feel” when entering busy fill-in passages.

You’ll notice I use a lot of eighth notes in groups of 3’s to drive the majority of the first verse and chorus.  I would change fill-in rhythms on the remaining verses to give my hands a break!  😉  Well…actually it also sounds nicer to use a variety of fill-ins for a  fresher sound.

I’m thinking of a couple interpretation tips to share as well.

Hmmm….sounds like another post in the works for Saved, Saved, Saved!

Click on song title below to download your FREE copy of Saved! Saved! Saved! (one verse and chorus)

Saved! Saved! Saved!Saved-Saved

 

 

 

 

 

Most Awkward Hymns to Play

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2016

Just curious…what seems to be one of the most awkward hymns for you as a church pianist to play for congregational singing?

As soon as I collect a sizable list (at least 10)…I will number them and draw a number out of the hat and write a free congregational piano arrangement of that particular hymn. *Please: One hymn suggestion per person

Special note: Please only choose hymns that are in the public domain.

Here’s how a public domain hymn may appear

Public domain hymn

*Sometimes a public domain hymn will have no credits at the bottom like this:

Public domain hymn

Just avoid choosing a hymn with this symbol © at the bottom of the page such as the following:

Copyrighted Hymn

 

But Until Then (chorus) fill-in ideas

Wednesday, February 10th, 2016

But-Until-Then-chorus-fill-ins-

One of my readers requested fill-in ideas for the song But Until Then.  I already shared fill-in ideas for the verse in a previous article HERE.

The chorus of But Until Then may be a challenge for church pianists who don’t feel comfortable improvising.  The fill-in notes are what give the music a forward motion; adding life to the hymn…IF the fill-in notes are rhythmically correct 😉

Since this particular hymn is under copyright…I’m limited on what I can share according to the US Copyright Office.

For a simple explanation, I will paste and copy a portion of the description for the Fair Use Act from US Copyright Office website:

Fair Use Copyright Act

Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright.

The amount being considered “fair use” is up for debate but I try to stay on the conservative side of usage which explains why I presented a “cut and paste” layout of only the long held words.

Click below to download your free copy of:

But Until Then (chorus) fill-in ideas

But Until Then verse fill-in ideas

Grace Greater Than Our Sin: Early Advanced Piano Arrangement

Saturday, January 23rd, 2016

As a church pianist, I’m always looking for offertories that don’t require alot of practice since I play quite often.  I also attend a small church so shorter offertories work best.

While snowed in this week, I decided to write and finish a piano hymn arrangement in one day like I use to when I first started this website.

Grace Greater Than Our Sin has been on my mind a lot lately, so decided to try writing an arrangement and the thoughts just flowed for a change!

Hope you enjoy this early advanced arrangement of “Grace Greater Than Our Sin with Amazing Grace”.

Grace Medley
Early advanced sacred piano solo, 4 pgs.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Price: $3.95

 

 

Church Pianist News!

Friday, January 22nd, 2016

Grace-Medley-wm

I’m publishing a new early advanced piano arrangement tomorrow entitled, “Grace Medley”.

I’m snowed in and this arrangement was the result 🙂

Here’s a sneak preview…

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Forgotten Hymn: May the Mind of Christ My Savior

Friday, January 15th, 2016

May-the-Mind-of-Christ-my-Savior

I love to look through old hymnals for long forgotten hymns that I can try to revive.

But I stumbled across this forgotten hymn in one of my devotional books this week, entitled, “Amazing Grace 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions” written by Kenneth W. Osbeck

I absolutely LOVE this book and not sure how I acquired it.

“May the Mind of Christ My Savior” had two authors: Words by Kate Wilkinson and Music by A. Cyril Barham-Gould (what a long name!)  I couldn’t find much information about either author but had to share this hymn loaded with rich meaning!

Here’s an excerpt from my devotional book which introduced this hymn…

“Each day our prayer life should include the request that the Holy Spirit reveal the mind of Christ to us.   It is vitally important that we nourish our minds daily with quality materials_ things “that are just, pure and lovely.”  Philippians 4:8

Click on title below for FREE PDF:

May the Mind of Christ My Savior (lyrics included)

 

Church Pianist: Current Writing Projects

Wednesday, January 6th, 2016
Music at Piano
Time to escape to an island where it’s just me and my piano and all I have to do is write music!
 
Working on…
Advanced piano arrangement entitled “Assurance Medley”…an arrangement I worked up after getting saved in 1991…so it’s about time I put it in writing.
 
Also VERY excited about creating piano accompaniments for Mina Oglesby’s music!! The one I’m working on now is her song “Rest Will Come in the Morning”…here are some of the lyrics:
 
“Rest will come in the morning, When the battle is o’er;
When the saved and blest enter to their rest On that hallelujah shore…”

Church Pianist Blooper!

Sunday, January 3rd, 2016

colorful notes with faces on staff

What a blooper I made today in the Sunday morning service!

I prefer (congregation included) to play short and sweet arrangements which don’t last much longer than the offering.  Occasionally I’ll play a longer offertory for extra special events.

I had a longer than normal offertory special  this morning and decided at last minute (like right before offertory prayer)…to play a different arrangement…something shorter… since the preliminaries had lasted longer than usual.

So…right before prayer I  dreamed up a home-spun offertory which worked out great since it was the same length as the offering 🙂

But….one major problem!  I forgot all about accompanying my son and his wife to sing after the offertory.  I was SO wrapped in the change of plans that I totally forgot them!  After playing the offertory, I went out back to the restroom like normal and then to slip in quietly for the preaching portion.

As I came out of the restroom my husband was waiting for me in the foyer with a concerned look on his face.  “Are you ok?” he said.   “Weird!” I thought, “he’s never done this before.”   “Well….yeah…why?”

He quickly replied, “David and Jenny were up on the platform waiting for you to play for them.”   “Oh my goodness! I forgot all about them!”  I quickly tried to explain myself away to him and one of the deacons who had come out back too.   Both of them got this funny smirk on their face but also relieved at the same time that I was “Ok”.

 

 

Nothing But the Blood of Jesus (free accompaniment)

Wednesday, December 30th, 2015

frog green notes

Several years ago, I published a piano solo (elementary level) of “Nothing But the Blood of Jesus“.   Later on, I came up with a simple accompaniment on a second piano while my student played the solo arrangement on another piano.  We played it in church and I shared the video on my youtube channel.

Since that time, several church pianists have asked for the teacher accompaniment part which was in my head until now 😉

The teacher’s part may not sound identical to the youtube version…. but it’s close!

Hope you enjoy using this free accompaniment version for “Nothing But the Blood of Jesus.” (elementary piano solo)

“Nothing But the Blood of Jesus” FREE piano accompaniment

 

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