Focus: Arranging in Different Styles
Week 19 begins with the popular "Good Night Ladies" to review playing dotted quarter and eighth notes in the right hand while the left hand remains steady. It's the actual song version of the polyphonic keyboard pointers exercised several lessons ago; you'll focus heavily on working both hands independent of each other and learn a bit about how varied rhythms piece together to create a coherent whole. You'll practice the song as written, then with Alberti bass, then with several techniques covered last lesson. Duane explains how certain techniques lend themselves to very specific styles and how to evaluate a song's context before deciding which style to apply. After showing you tremelo chords and alternate bass, he puts the style discussion into practice by playing the song in both a western and ragtime styles, explaining along the way the fills used to achieve both sounds.
The lesson then moves on to a popular wedding song that exercises your hand independence as well as introduces two new chords: Fmin and Emaj. This song, too, is used as an example of style discretion; Duane explains how certain arrangement styles wouldn't work with this piece and proceeds to a series of romantic, flowing techniques that complement it as written. You'll begin work on one more song in this lesson before being introduced to augmented chords, a new sort of notation and the technique of splitting chords for an alternative sound.
This week ends with a new series of keyboard pointers designed to practice your hand independence by playing staccato notes in the right hand and legato in the left. You'll also learn about accent signs and how to interpret them in a notated piece of music.
Review by Mollie Wells