- File Size: 61042 KB
- Print Length: 184 pages
- Publisher: Hal Leonard; 2 edition (June 1, 1993)
- Publication Date: June 1, 1993
- Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00G28U8DS
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #123,439 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
|Digital List Price:||$22.95|
|Print List Price:||$24.99|
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The Elton John Keyboard Book (Knowledge Representation, Learning, and Expert Systems) Kindle Edition
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Intermediate level piano
Direct transcriptions of the piano part from the album versions of the songs
Gives great insight into Elton John's piano style
All the intros, riffs, gestures, and short solos in some great vintage Elton John songs
Not for those who want a 'full' melodic arrangement of music
Not for beginners--this is intermediate level piano
Very occasional transcription errors (a missed accidental here or there)
Syncopations are transcribed but don't sound quite right unless you add a little 'swing'
The Elton John Keyboard Book is part of the Hal Leonard Note for Note series. There are those who have a great ear and can pick out the piano part from amidst the ensemble and simply play. The Note for Note series and this book in particular are for those of us who can't.
The key here is that the book is a transcription of what Elton John plays on the original album versions of these songs. Please realize that these are NOT the standard, sheet arrangements that you might buy in a music store. The run of the mill sheet music emphasizes playing the melody and only rarely reflects how the original artist played the piano. If you want a 'full' arrangement that brings out the melody of a particular Elton John song, these arrangements are not for you. However, if you want to see what Elton John actually plays when he performs on stage, these transcriptions are invaluable. (Realize that even when Elton John accompanies himself with piano alone, the piano rarely plays the melody for a performance. Rather, the piano backs up the vocal.)
Like many out there, I learned to play piano oh-so-many years ago using the John Thompson method books and then built up to more complicated classical pieces. I love classical piano, but I really wanted to be able to branch out into some rock and roll and jazz. So for me, the book is a godsend. It gives me an opportunity to really see what Elton John does to get his particular sound out of the piano. The riffs, the nuances, and the techniques. This book has really given me the tools to do that and I love it for that.
The fact that these are transcriptions, however, means that some of these arrangements are really meant to be played in the context of a full band. The authors realize this, and have done two things to compensate. They have placed a melody line above the music, so you can see how the vocal part fits in with the piano. Depending on the song, they have also added important parts from other band instruments when the actual piano part is more supportive. These supplementary parts can be found below the piano part and are transcribed for piano so that no matter what instruments they were played on in the original recording they are in the correct key for the piano. If you want to incorporate these as part of a performance to get a fuller sound when playing solo, they are there for you. However, there are no specific instructions as to how you might do this. It certainly can be done but sometimes you have to get creative.
That said, because of the way the book was put together, the arrangements don't always stand on their own. The ones that work particularly well in my opinion are no surprise: Candle in the Wind, Daniel, Empty Garden, Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters, Tiny Dancer, and Your Song. These are very piano-centric songs. The arrangements for piano will sound full below a vocal on top. Ones that didn't work as well for me, but still gave me great insight into Elton John's methods, are Bennie and the Jets, Crocodile Rock, and Don't Go Breaking My Heart. The rest fell somewhere in between for me.
Still, even where pieces rely more on the rest of the ensemble to fill things in or the major aspect of a piece is the interplay with the vocal and the bass line (e.g. Bennie and the Jets), there is still a lot you can get out of the transcription. You still get a full helping of vintage Elton John intros, riffs, and fills. You also get an opportunity to look at the short solo sections and see how Elton John puts these together.
Realize, as well, that Elton John doesn't necessarily play each song exactly the same way each time he plays it. Moreover, he adjusts the piano part with different performances. If you listen to a song such as Candle in the Wind, the major riffs and gestures are the same from performance to performance, but he plays the piano differently when playing with different ensembles or when playing solo.
What really struck me about the songs here was that the piano parts, on the whole, are strictly intermediate level playing. This is not technically difficult music to play for the intermediate to advanced player, but is not for the beginner. This isn't any slight to Elton John. For one thing, he has to sing and play at the same time. For another, the effect that he gets with simple gestures on the keyboard are the particular genius here. Moreover, the album work doesn't cover the breadth of his piano playing; for example, the kind of extended solos that he might do in concert.
There isn't much of a downside to these transcriptions for me. There were the very occasional mistakes, but these were only a missed accidental here or there--no bigee. When the piano plays a more supporting role in a song, there can be long sections of filler chords that can be tedious. This is a book of transcriptions, however, so you have to expect this. Finally, it is often difficult to write out the rhythms exactly as played. Rock has a strong back beat, but there are often syncopations that require a little swing to sound right. If you try to play the rhythms exactly as written, the music will sound mechanical. This is where it helps to listen to the original recording if something doesn't sound quite right to you.
This book really gives a piano player insight into how Elton John gets his particular sound out of the piano. It has really been invaluable to me and a great learning experience for me, given a mostly classical piano background. Once again, this is not a book that could be recommended to a beginner. It is for the intermediate to advanced intermediate piano player. Highly recommended.
Bennie and the Jets
Candle in the Wind
Don't go breaking my heart
Don't let the sun go down on me
Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
I guess that's why they call it the Blues
Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters
Someone Saved My Life Tonight
Sorry Seems to be the Hardest Word
If you're like me, then as you play these pieces you notice yourself making breakthroughs in your playing. Although I am still working through this book, I particularly enjoyed working on pieces such as Bennie and the Jets, Rocket Man, and Your Song.
I highly recommend this book, and hope you found this helpful.
Top international reviews
Die Noten beinhalten:
- eine separate Gesangsstimme (die Melodie muss also gesungen bzw. von einem zweiten Instrument übernommen werden)
- eine zusätzliche Klavierpartitur zu zwei Händen
- ab und zu weitere Noten für das begleitende Elektropiano
- eine akkurate Akkordnotation (Major 7, None und Tredezime sollten bekannt sein)
Hier eine Übersicht aller beinhalteten Lieder:
- Bennie And The Jets
- Blue Eyes
- Border Song
- Candle In The Wind
- Crocodile Rock
- Don't Go Breaking My Heart
- Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me (featured in the Motion Picture LOST BOYS)
- Empty Garden (Hey Hey Johnny)
- Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
- Honky Cat
- I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues
- Little Jeannie
- Mona Lisas And Mad Hatters
- Rocket Man (I Think It's Gonna Be A Long Long Time)
- Someone Saved My Life Tonight
- Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word
- Tiny Dancer
- Your Song
Und hier die Vorteile des Buches:
- Die Lieder sind leicht zu finden, da sie alphabetisch geordnet sind
- Alle Begleitvariationen sämtlicher Strophen sind minutiös notiert (inklusive kleinerer Verspieler :-)
- Schwierigkeitsgrad: leicht - mittelschwer, lässt sich vom versierten Hobbyspieler nach einigem Üben fast vom Blatt spielen. Ein gutes Rhythmusgefühl oder Zählkentnisse sind von Vorteil
- Die Akkorde helfen, andere Instrumente zu integrieren bzw. das Lied schnell zu erlernen
- Die Klaviernotation ermöglicht eine genaue Analyse der Spielweise von Elton John
- Das zusätzliche e-Piano ist "nice-to have", wird aber in keinem Lied zwanghaft benötigt, falls mal "nur" zwei Hände zur Verfügung stehen ;-)
- Die klassische Klebebindung statt einer teureren Spiralbindung gewährleistet gerade ungewolltes zu- oder umklappen
- Da sämtliche Lieder eine Doppelseite deutlich überschreiten ist fleissiges Umblättern ohne Ende angesagt.
Man könnte diese Stücke klassisch vom Blatt spielen lernen. Wer sich allerdings von Rhythmik und Begleitstil inspirieren lässt, kann sich innerhalb kurzer Zeit den Spielstil Elton Johns zu eigen machen. Und dank der akkuraten Akkorde lassen sich die Lieder auch einfach einprägen.
Nach diesem Buch ist es für mich nicht mehr nachvollziehbar, warum es all die halbseidenen Billignoten von Elton Johns Stücken gibt. Wer will, kann dank Akkordnotation vereinfachen, wer wissen will wie's wirklich gespielt wird, darf sich Note für Note inspirieren lassen. Und Elton John spielt absolute Simplizität überraschend abwechslungsreich (bei "Crocodile Rock" z. B. werden einfachste Begleitmuster verwendet, aber fast jeden Takt ein anderes).
Absoluter Geheimtipp und ein echtes Juwel!
Diese Serie heißt übrigens "Note-for-Note Keyboard Transcriptions" und ist bei Hal Leonard. Alle Bücher sind alle bei Amazon erhältlich und bieten ein breites Spektrum an Musikrichtungen für jeden Geschmack. :-)