Focus: Arrangement Review
Still focusing on the supplementary book, your week 23 lesson begins with the American folk song "Blue Tail Fly." You'll play it as written, of course, before going through several arrangement techniques learned in the last several lessons. And not only are you practicing arrangement techniques, you're also covering finger dexterity; working with this song helps you to grow more and more comfortable with the piano keyboard, preparing you for the more advanced techniques yet to come in the course. You'll learn how arranging songs by way of part (i.e., verse and chorus) can allow you to create interesting changes and finish your arrangement of this song by trying out a few chord substitutions.
The lesson's next section focuses on a Welsh folk song with a written parallelism and a focus on dotted eighth notes. Duane talks at a bit more length about phrasing and form, teaching you how to identify parts and use them to your advantage when arranging. You'll review a few melody fill techniques in this song's arrangement and learn how to play up stand-out items like the parallelism.
This week ends with one last song to practice all of your arrangement techniques; it also exercises your finger dexterity and reading ability. Duane again shows you how to maximize arrangement possibilities by focusing on form and spends some time explaining color tones and how substituting minor chords for major ones (and vice versa) can add a uniqueness to your arrangements.
Review by Mollie Wells