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Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
#1416915 04/14/10 07:46 AM
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Hi! I've been playing piano about a year now, I'm having a really great time! Recently our pianist at church married and moved away, and I have stepped up to the plate, so to speak, and am now the pianist at our church. It's a small church and the congregation is very supportive, and I'm truely grateful to them for the support and opportunity.
I'm self-taught, mostly learning by ear, but know enough about reading music to learn most of the songs in the hymnal. My problem with this is that, although it allows me to add new music to our congregational singing, the music as written in the hymnal is pretty flat and, frankly, very simple and uninspiring. I would like to "flesh it out" more, to make it fuller.
I come from a 25 year background on guitar(also self-taught). I learned to play by listening to and learning from recordings of the music I liked. I'm looking to do the same with piano.
So my question is, for those of you who can help me, who are the pianists/groups to listen to in order to learn the Gospel/Southern Gospel style of piano? Any references would be appreciated, but I'd prefer piano-heavy music, if possible. Thanks.


Mike
Casio Privia PX 120

The only thing nescessary for evil to thrive is for good men to do nothing.
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Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
pianonewb #1417095 04/14/10 12:19 PM
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Mike,

I'm not sure this will be a complete answer to your question, but if you listen to a recording of Oscar Peterson's "Hymn To Freedom" you'll find many strong elements of Gospel playing. Primarily the chord progressions in both hands, the use of blues type grace notes, and octave trills. Hope this helps.

Andy


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Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
Manndrew #1417148 04/14/10 01:03 PM
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Thanks, Andy.


Mike
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The only thing nescessary for evil to thrive is for good men to do nothing.
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Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
pianonewb #1417194 04/14/10 02:02 PM
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I lost track of how many times I've recommended Ethel Caffie-Austin's instructional DVD.
http://www.homespuntapes.com/shop/Category.aspx?ID=144

Not only is there awesome playing and singing, but she tells you how to do it!

I'm listening to Aretha Franklin "Amazing Grace" right now, and there is good piano playing even though the piano isn't front-and-center in the mix once the vocals kick in.



Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
wavelength #1417395 04/14/10 06:39 PM
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1+ for the Ethel Caffie-Austin set of DVD's.

Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospe
Jake Jackson #1417442 04/14/10 07:59 PM
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The best book ever: Hal Leonard Style Series Gospel Piano Kurt Cowling. This book is a must have if you want to learn the style. Mr. Cowling explains how Gospel Style works and has lots of greaaat grooves to work with. I think Ethel Caffie Austin videos are great but think the gospel Piano book has more in it to understand the style. Did I mention it is the best book ever? (I do not work for Hal Leonard or Kurt Cowling.)

Be Careful. Hal Leonard Style Series also has Gospel Piano by Mark Harrison which is not what the same book I am recommending.

Last edited by Pete the bean; 04/14/10 08:00 PM.
Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospe
Pete the bean #1417641 04/15/10 02:24 AM
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Hi Mike
I think you will get really good ideas by watching Dave Frank's ustream masterclass on Bruce Hornsby. I learnt that Hornsby's upbringing in Virginia played a key role in his incorporation of gospel.
From the class you can see how musical ingredients such as sus 2 chords, various scales, imitation, can fit into a whole.

http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/6029404

Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
pianonewb #1417969 04/15/10 01:25 PM
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My thanks to all who replied. It's appreciated. For those of you who posted links to books and/or methods, while I appreciate them and may look into purchasing one, I'm not really looking for that. I want to learn this style the way it was most probably learned to start with. I want to immerse myself in this music until it's bleeding out of my pores, similar to the way blues is traditionally learned. So I'm really looking for references to bands or artists in this style, especially ones that are piano based or have piano as a prominent instrument. Old-school is preferred, but not meant to be exclusive. Please keep it coming. Again, it's greatly appreciated. Thanks.


Mike
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The only thing nescessary for evil to thrive is for good men to do nothing.
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Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
pianonewb #1417981 04/15/10 01:52 PM
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Hi Mike,

a great place to start is YouTube. Do a search for James Cleveland and you should find what you are looking for. A good example is: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6OES09u3d-I
or http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7A0d...ynext_from=PL&playnext=1&index=1 (That's Billy Preston on the piano) ;-)

McWilson

Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
Mcwilson #1419151 04/17/10 08:18 PM
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pianonewb,

Another approach to learning gospel music could be when possible to visit congregations where this music is most often played. If this option is not practical, another approach could be to tune into the services from these churches on TV, or on the internet, or on the radio to get more familiar with this kind of music.

Best wishes!

Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
pianonewb #1419164 04/17/10 08:50 PM
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I suppose Jerry Lee Lewis would be way out of line ? He is sort of gospel. Well, his cousin is Jimmy Swaggart anyway.

Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
dmsynck #1419879 04/19/10 07:33 AM
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I'd try to join a black gospel choir.. offer to turn pages (ha ha .. they don't turn pages or even use them). You really need to know chords. Also check out you tube gospel choirs and listen. Watching was better for me. It's a rhythm that is quite foreign to me and my technique is laughable.


accompanist/organist.. a non-MTNA teacher to a few

love and peace, Õun (apple in Estonian)
Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
apple* #1420308 04/19/10 09:40 PM
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Thank you all for the replies. The youtube links are great. Dmsynck, it wouldn't break my heart if I could play like Jerry, Gospel or not, lol. Apple, I know my chords pretty well. I play by ear in a chord based way, since I come from a background on guitar. But yeah, youtube it is for me. Thanks, all!


Mike
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The only thing nescessary for evil to thrive is for good men to do nothing.
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Re: Who to listen to in order to learn Gospel/Southern Gospel?
Musictuary #1420664 04/20/10 02:19 PM
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I know you aren't looking for yet another web site, but I found this one very helpful. http://www.greghowlett.com/freechristianpianomusic.aspx

(sorry)



gotta go practice

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