Posts Tagged 'Schott'

Frank Sikora’s Jazz Harmony: The Best-Selling Practical Approach to Jazz Now Available in English

“There is no truth in theory – only in music!”

Frank Sikora

That’s Frank Sikora‘s creed.

Frank Sikora is also in charge of the theory department and the Master’s program in Jazz Composition & Arrangement at the University of the Arts Bern and is the author of a best-selling and widely acclaimed jazz theory book, Neue Jazz-Harmonielehre, that is now available in English: Jazz Harmony: Think – Listen – Play – A Practical Approach.

While this coincidence might seem puzzling or even contradictory at first, it is exactly what lends Sikora’s approach the nuance and balance to successfully bridge the gap between theory and practice. In Jazz Harmony: Think – Listen – Play – A Practical Approach, Sikora sets out to mold musicians who can adapt to anything, regardless of how novel and unexpected it may be. To achieve this, he establishes a close relationship between theory, the ear and our instrument, forging a dialogue between theory and spontaneity that helps musicians connect with music both intuitively and analytically.

Jazz Harmony: Think – Listen – Play – A Practical Approach is divided into three sections: Think, Listen and Play. Contrary to our natural instincts to first listen, then play and finally think, Sikora turns this order around to cultivate a knowledge of theory as a way to work past what’s ingrained and instinctive and open a playground of new possibilities. The skilled musician can then begin applying this newfound knowledge to their exploration of the sounds around them and also incorporate this new toolset into their practice until it has become part of their subconscious, intuitive vocabulary.

Ultimately a practical aid rather than a textbook, Jazz Harmony: Think – Listen – Play – A Practical Approach draws from the jazz canon to demonstrate theoretical principles and gives practical lessons on both listening and playing. In addition to a wealth of examples, exercises and assignments, there are downloadable MP3 play-along tracks and additional materials and solutions available online.

For more visibility into Sikora’s landmark text, click on the cover image below to browse through sample pages containing the table of contents and the introduction, titled “Why yet another Harmony Book?” in which Sikora himself explains his approach in detail:

Transcribing Keith Jarrett’s “A Melody at Night, with You”

KeithJarrett2

Keith Jarrett

The 1999 recording The Melody at Night, with You is one of Keith Jarrett’s most popular records. Originally created as a gift to his wife, his versions of songs from the Great American Songbook plus the traditional “Shenandoah” are permeated by a special atmosphere that makes the recording one of his most personal audio documents. Jarrett dispenses with the jazz soloist’s conventional emphasis on dexterity, the “clever” phrase and the virtuosic sleight-of-hand, and instead strips these songs to their melodic essence to gently lay bare their emotional core.

After many years of preparation, the sheet music for The Melody at Night, with You has now been published by Schott Music with Jarrett’s approval and the support of Jarrett’s label, ECM.

TheMelodyAtNightWithYou

Continue reading ‘Transcribing Keith Jarrett’s “A Melody at Night, with You”’

Artist Interview – Hans-Gunter Heumann (The Classical Piano Method)

 Hans-Gunter Heumann

Hans-Gunter Heumann

By Brendan Lai-Tong

If you’re a music teacher, it’s likely that you are on the lookout for the something new to help teach your students more effectively. Whether this is new repertoire, etudes, or method books, it’s always nice to branch out to see what else is out there. You’ll never know when  something new will work really well for a particular student!

While we were at the Music Teachers National Association Convention in Anaheim, California we had the pleasure of meeting Hans-Günter Heumann. Many of you may know of his contributions to the piano repertoire. His original compositions, arrangements and educational methods for piano are enjoyed by pianists around the world, especially in Germany.

Hans-Günter studied at theMusikhochschule Hannover, followed by further studying of composition in New York and New Orleans. He has dedicated himself to the editing of pedagogical piano material. His particular concern is to present music in an accessible way to reach a broad audience.

His newest contribution to the music world is The Classical Piano Method series.

The Classical Piano Method - By Hans-Gunter Heumann

The Classical Piano Method – By Hans-Gunter Heumann

It is geared towards helping people of all ages and levels to learn how to play piano, including those who are returning to piano after a hiatus. Continue reading ‘Artist Interview – Hans-Gunter Heumann (The Classical Piano Method)’


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