Focus: New Arrangement Techniques and Intervals
"Volga Boatman" kicks off week 14 in a famously dark way; this song is quite possibly the most advanced one attempted so far and requires a great deal of detailed practice. Duane takes you through the piece step by and step, pointing out its intricacies -- including its introduction of the C7 chord -- and guiding you the middle section's key change. He then explains relative minor scales (a concept at work in this song), and shows you how to find and recognize them.
After successfully playing the song as written, Duane takes you through the process of arranging the piece, explaining along the way the benefits of knowing how to both read music and play by ear. He runs through several off-the-cuff arrangements of the piece, stopping between each to explain what he did and the techniques he used. In the process, of course, you'll learn a variety of new arrangement techniques, including both new methods of bass chording and melody fillers.
The lesson then moves to a discussion of intervals and note reading. These topics have been covered before, but this time you'll dig into a deeper understanding of how intervals work and how they can help you read music and even become a better piano player. Duane also explains intervals in terms of arrangement; he shows you how intervals can aid in the improvisation of harmonies.
You'll end this week with a with an introduction to the waltz rhythm pattern and a supplementary book song to practice all of the techniques learned this lesson.
Review by Mollie Wells