Teachers, students, professionals and dreamers, welcome to the jazz reference mecca. This is comprised of some of the great literary resources, DVDs and method books for the aspiring jazz musician. Learn the keys of success from people who have success in the profession. With these must-have resources, you’ll be jamming, gigging and living the jazz life in no time.
1. How To Listen To Jazz by Jerry Coker – To play jazz you must learn how to hear jazz. The great Jerry Coker beautifully explains how to train your ear and what to listen for in jazz music.
If you’re like me, the most stressful part of the holidays is finding the perfect gift for all my friends and loved ones. As so many of us here are musicians, we thought we’d share some gift ideas for musicians we’d love to see under our Christmas trees this year! We hope they’ll help you find just the right gift for the musicians in your life.
If you’re familiar with the sounds of jazz greats like Sonny Rollins, John Coltrane, JJ Johnson or Miles Davis, it’s likely that you were spellbound by their amazing improvisational solos. This book contains a very thorough method with which to acquire a solid foundation for growing your improvisational skills. The best part about this book that it contains a play along CD to practice improvisation over a wide variety of chord changes. This is a perfect gift for the budding jazz musician.
Trombonist and Assistant Marketing Manager
Grappling for gift ideas for your musically inclined loved ones? Your family and friends will be impressed by the thoughtfulness of this creative gift that represents their musical side. This watch is the perfect gift for the enthusiastic musician. Also available for men and with a chromatic face. Plus, every musician needs to be on time and know their scales!
Whether you or one of your kids is embarking on a journey into the world of music, there is help to guide you along the way. These great resources will give you tips on how the music industry works, how you fit into it and how to survive. Intrigue, information and experience – the learning starts now!
Halloween is upon us. If you go to any orchestra concert or listen to classical radio during this time you are likely to hear Halloween greats like “Night on Bare Mountain” (Mussorgsky) from Disney’s Fantasia, “In the Hall of the Mountain King” (Grieg), or even “Symphonie Fantastique” (Berlioz). They are classically spooky and fun. If your performers or Classical DJ’s are real professionals, they might even program Piano Sonata No. 2 in Bb (Chopin), which has the famous funeral march theme that everyone hums when trouble is near. Now you know where it’s from; thanks Chopin.
If you’re willing to delve a little deeper, I’ll show you some truly dark music filled with passion and despair. Music you may not know, but music you’ll love from composers you love. Who knew that the same composers who were capable of writing such beautiful music were also able to pull out frightening melodies, disturbing harmonies and unidentifiable orchestral colors. These striking compositional techniques can be likened to combining half the crayons in your box and coloring over and over again in the same area of a blank canvas. Let’s start things off by first visiting the more “The Ultimate Classical Halloween Program”…
The time is drawing near for students to start applying for fall admission to college. If you’re applying right now, this article is just for you! While it may seem like a daunting task at first, there are several things that you can do to make the process easier and find the school that is right school for you. Here are some things I found useful when making my decisions:
When people are asked to name a famous composer off the top of their heads, their answers may vary from Bach and Beethoven to Mozart and Schumann. Yet the composers named often have three qualities in common. They are talented, white, and predominantly male.
So where are the women? Why have none been remembered in the way that Bach and Beethoven are glorified? One factor may be that there were fewer women composers to start with.
The Romantic period, which took place from 1820 to 1900, was part of the Romantic movement that occured as a reaction to the reason and rationality celebrated during the Enlightenment. The movement induced changes in the art, literature, music, and even politics of the era—feelings, freedom, and emotions were embraced over structure and rules. Poets, artists and musicians celebrated the awe of nature, the terror and strangeness of the supernatural, and the exotic qualities and limitlessness of the world around them.
Have you ever read a composer’s name on a music program and realized that you had no clue how to pronounce it, much less know what to expect for his or her music? (Mr. Dvořák, I’m talking about you.) While the pronunciation is simple to learn (it’s DVOR-zhahk by the way), it’s even easier to get a sense of a composer’s style, once you remember the period that he or she is from. If you need a refresher on the Baroque period, you can read more in our previous article here.
The Baroque period, which took place between approximately 1600 and 1750, contrasted with the restraint and rationality of the Renaissance. It is unsurprising that the art and music of that era, most of which were commissioned by the Catholic Church and by royalty, were marked by their emotional intensity, grandiosity, and ornate beauty.
You and your choir have worked tirelessly on uniform vowel formation, well-tuned singing, focusing the tone, singing correct notes, beautiful phrase lines. You’re feeling good. But step back and give a listen and you’ll often find there isn’t a consonant to be heard. It is our task as singers to articulate so the listeners can share in the delicious words and message.
We want clear, well-defined consonants in our singing and it’s a challenge to achieve. When our listeners know the text as in a well-known hymn or carol, we are understood because the context is known. This is far from the case when the text is unknown.
The topic of consonants is far-reaching, but here are a few tips I use in rehearsing in the English language with my volunteer choir.