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#975314 - 06/19/06 02:17 PM Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Agilita Offline
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Missouri
This is to begin the thread for the Carol of the Bells.

I have played through the first page. Although I can sight read it, it will take quite abit of practice to smooth it out and make it "chime".

Has anyone else started on this?

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#975315 - 06/19/06 03:50 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Opus45 Offline
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Hi Agilita,

Checking In.

I'm also working on the Croatian Rhapsody, Raindrop Prelude, Linus & Lucy, and very definitely want to work on David Nevue's 'God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen', so I'll have to take it nice & slow in order to fit everything in.


Jeff
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#975316 - 06/19/06 04:29 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Agilita Offline
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Missouri
We seem to be in pretty much the same groups! Great minds think alike? wink

#975317 - 06/21/06 12:14 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Agilita, sorry, I missed this thread before, but the blue arrow caught my eye (Thanks Jeff!)

Which arrangement are you planning on doing? The one from the Virtuoso Christmas Performer?

I defintely want to work on this piece, but not before July! So if you all start, I'll just be lurking for a bit.


Started piano June 1999. My recordings at Box.Net:
https://app.box.com/s/j4rgyhn72uvluemg1m6u

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#975318 - 06/21/06 10:30 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Yes, I ordered the Virtu-whatever Christmas Performer (can't spell that!). Actually, last night while I was practicing this, I decided that I was a little disappointed in it. It seems fairly simple. Most of the other songs in the book look more interesting. It could just be my personal preference. I like things with lush big bass, tinkly treble just doesn't do it for me.

Let me know what you all think.

#975319 - 06/24/06 03:56 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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I just received my Virtuosic Christmas book, haven't even played it yet. Anyone still working on it? Or about to begin?

SK, tt's almost July! Are you ready to start?

#975320 - 06/24/06 08:13 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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KYAAA!!! Time goes too fast! Umm, I think I'm going to start God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen first, but I'll need to look at both scores and see which is harder. Then, depending on how difficult the other pieces I'm doing are, I'll either start the easier one first, or the harder one first. Did that make sense? I didn't think so. Today, being Sunday, is a good day to compare scores. Then I'll post here again.

Who else is in this group? Anyone else ready to start?


Started piano June 1999. My recordings at Box.Net:
https://app.box.com/s/j4rgyhn72uvluemg1m6u

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#975321 - 06/28/06 01:35 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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I love this song, is the version you are using pick up on the intensity half way through and start adding more rumbly bass??

Where are you getting the score from???

What kind of time line are we looking at??

#975322 - 06/28/06 09:44 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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I think the plan is to use the version from the Virtuoso Christmas Performer. This version does get a little more intense as you go along, but if you're familiar with George Winston's version, not even close. But for me anyway, that's fortunate, because the GW version is way out of reach at the present.

Has anyone started this yet? I'm sort of tinkering with it, but I do not get the second section, maybe starting in measuer 5? (don't have the score out) where the RH and LH alternate playing and resting. Would someone please tell me what the arranger wants to say there, because I can play it with the metronome, but I have no idea what it means!


Started piano June 1999. My recordings at Box.Net:
https://app.box.com/s/j4rgyhn72uvluemg1m6u

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#975323 - 06/28/06 09:59 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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I've worked through the first page of this. I thought that the section where the right and left hand alternate sounded rather disjointed. I finally decided that it isn't going to sound right until it's played up to speed. I've been concentrating on practicing it smoothly and assuming that it will sound right once I can play it quickly. Let me know if you see other problems or figure something else out.

#975324 - 06/28/06 10:25 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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I haven't started this yet. Too much else on my plate at the moment & too little time available.

But I often have these kinds of problems when I first start learning a piece....it just doesn't sound musical until I'm able to get it up to speed and shape it well and give attention to everything else that factors in on making notes on a score sound musical.

I had my former piano teacher play this, and naturally, it sounded very lovely.


Jeff
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#975325 - 06/28/06 11:30 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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I know what you mean about time. I'm probably in too many of these groups. I can't really practice all of the pieces every day and it's a little frustrating. I need to quit my job and disown the family so I can concentrate on this! Are we over-extended? Part of me says that I should narrow down to just a couple of study groups but I just don't want to give anything up. Have you considered limiting your study groups?

#975326 - 06/28/06 11:48 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Quote
...from Agilita
Are we over-extended? Part of me says that I should narrow down to just a couple of study groups but I just don't want to give anything up. Have you considered limiting your study groups?
I don't really think so. Any pressure is self imposed. After all, we can take as long as we want to learn these pieces. Personally, I like having many different pieces to work on at one time (helps keep me sane).

You might be feeling pressure because some folks have already gone through the pieces. Don't worry about it! These folks have probably already learned these pieces and are simply polishing them up, or they are already otherwise accomplished, or have a lot more time than the rest of us, or....

I haven't really narrowed my list, but I haven't "jumped in yet" on some of them, so maybe that's another way of saying "yes, I've narrowed down my list".

We'll see.


Jeff
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#975327 - 07/01/06 07:08 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Agilita, do you have a practice menu or something similar? I make one every month, at the end of the month, I go over what I'm playing now, what I want to play, my recording goals etc. and make a menu for the coming month based on all that.

The menu includes the pieces I'm working on now and pieces I want to work on in the future, as well as pieces in my repertoire. I also put my recording goals on it, and any upcoming performances. I look at this menu every time I sit down to play, so I always know what I'm working on. When I practice something, I write the date next to it. If I didn't practice something the previous day, then I make sure to practice it today. If there's a piece that I'm not playing, and haven't practiced for a while, then I'll take it off the in-progress list and make a note to come back to it in the future. With my repertoire pieces, I don't need to practice them everyday, but I can't keep track of what I practiced when, so the menu tells me which pieces need playing when. Does that make sense? Having this menu system helps me to work on a lot more pieces without feeling overwhelmed and it also keeps me from taking on too much, because I don't play something if it's not on the menu. If I really want to, I'll add something mid-month, but usually I try to wait until the next month. A while back someone asked me to post an image of my menu, but I never got around to uploading it, maybe I'll do that now if you'd like to see it.

Re the second second of Carol of the Bells starting in measure 8 (where each hand alternates quarter note and rest with the other hand) playing that at a decent speed is essential because otherwise it just sounds like mush. Also, one thing I'm doing now is singing outloud the melody/main theme (RH part starting in measure 9) while I play measures 5 through 8, that seems to help me get a feel for it.

I'm working on measures 1 through 24 of this piece, it's seems pretty straight forward. Has anyone else started it yet?


Started piano June 1999. My recordings at Box.Net:
https://app.box.com/s/j4rgyhn72uvluemg1m6u

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#975328 - 07/02/06 05:48 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Hey, I am checking in...
I should have the book in a few weeks.
I have found a couple of samples from the web that I like and I hope that the book's piece will be as easy as the one I found...

Weeezsh this song is supposed to be a fast tempo right?


Here is a link to a sample that is harder...
Carol of the Bells

It does seem funny to be starting this in July.

It would be nice to be able to play this song from my memory and near very well perfect for my family and friends...

Christmas in July here goes...


Peace!
#975329 - 07/02/06 06:13 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Tolovemoon, I didn't see where Carol of the Bells was in that link. But if anyone wants to hear a difficult version, listen to George Winston's!

The Virtuoso version looks simple I think, but it will be challenging to get it at a good speed. But getting it up to a pretty good speed is what will make it more virtuosic. smile


Started piano June 1999. My recordings at Box.Net:
https://app.box.com/s/j4rgyhn72uvluemg1m6u

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#975330 - 07/03/06 11:12 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Shiro, I haven't kept a practice menu or anything but as I mentioned in my reply to your other post, perhaps it would help me. My major problem is just that I have a very complicated life and not enough practice time (like a lot of the adults on here I suspect). I'm gone from home about 11-12 hours on a normal day (I spend 2 hours a day just on the commute, more if traffic is bad.). I have custody of a teenage grandson and spend evenings running him to karate lessons, guitar lessons, mall, etc. Weekends are most frequently spent out of town checking in on my elderly mother-in-law. But I think that a practice menu would help me make the practice time I have more productive. I tend to just rummage through the pile of music on my piano and play what suits my mood. Since I don't have a teacher, I probably need to give myself assignments! On the other hand, I enjoy playing and that has been my only goal. Maybe that's not so bad?

#975331 - 07/04/06 10:27 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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I want to join.
I went to the site 'tolovemoon' referenced and clicked DOWNLOAD. I received a file titled 28.zip.
Is that the version we you are using?

KJ

#975332 - 07/04/06 10:52 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Halloo! I'm not signed up with this group since I already have my hands full! but am just taking a curious peek into this thread since this is one of my most favorite Christmas tunes ever! smile Anyway, I googled for Winston's version, and found one labelled "Public Domain with George Winston Arrangement" which was freely downloadable. Is this the one that you're referring to, Shirokuro?

Thanks!

#975333 - 07/06/06 05:49 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Dvdiva, without seeing the score I can't say, but I was talking about the arrangement as he plays it on the CD, which is really beautiful but much more difficult than the Virtuoso Christmas Performer version.

Where did you find the score? The Carol of the Bells itself is in the public domain, but I wonder if his arrangement is.


Started piano June 1999. My recordings at Box.Net:
https://app.box.com/s/j4rgyhn72uvluemg1m6u

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#975334 - 07/08/06 03:16 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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I got a hold of the George Winston version, because it is my favorite piano Christmas song in the world. Initially, I thought it would be an impossible piece. I am nowhere close to having it down, but I did about 100 billion left hand reps and it instantly became easier. Hopefully 5 months is enough time to prepare for the Xmas Concert. whome

I discovered that this piece is difficult, but it has a lot of exercise value. That's why I haven't given up on it yet. If I don't learn it by Xmas, at least I'll walk away with a stronger left hand.


I always wanted to pretend that I was an architect.
#975335 - 07/09/06 12:49 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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I just read my post and I'm not sure it has any relevance to this forum. That's so me.


I always wanted to pretend that I was an architect.
#975336 - 07/09/06 04:05 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Quote
Originally posted by icekid767:
I just read my post and I'm not sure it has any relevance to this forum. That's so me.
Sure it does... You defanetly pointed out something that is helpful to remind me...

Good practice, exercise, and plenty of time to get the hang of it... If not enough time to master than atleast the try was well worth it...

Its gonna take me awhile to get both hands together at the correct or decent tempo...


Peace!
#975337 - 07/09/06 06:17 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Icekid, I agree with Tolovemoon, your post was very relevent. I have a score that's a transcription of GW's arrangement of the Carol of the Bells, I don't know if it's the same as the one you're using, but I decided that that arrangement is too hard for me at this point in time. I could play it, but only if I devoted almost all of my time to that piece only. In order to continue working on several pieces at once, I have to make sure that only one or two fo them are very challenging and the rest I want to be just at or even a little below my current level. That's why I decided to wait until GW's arrangement comes more easily to me. But uour decision to work on it is very inspiring, and when I'm ready to tackle that one, I'll know where to go for advice! smile Please post here as you make progress, I'm sure we'll all love to hear how you're doing, and if you make any recordings, be sure to share them.

BTW, I think GW's playing arrangement would give a similar benefit as something like Czerny, etc that after you had it polished, you'd have some beautiful music that would become the showpiece of your repertoire!


Started piano June 1999. My recordings at Box.Net:
https://app.box.com/s/j4rgyhn72uvluemg1m6u

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#975338 - 07/09/06 11:42 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Thanks ShiroKuro. I noticed you're doing the Croation Rhapsody. In my opinion, that's more of a challenge than GW Carol of the Bells. Good luck with that, although I might join you there eventually.

At first, I was going to play the Virtuosic Performer version, but I was too impatient because it seemed I had to order the music and have it sent to me. Then, in another forum, I saw a free copy of the GW CD version, so I just went with that.

I have spent the last two days playing the GW version non-stop (I had to take breaks to eat), and I can play the first two pages reasonably well, but the hard parts are the scales and the last "clockwork" sounding segment. A part of that has to do with my weak pinky finger. That will take a while to sound right. When it does sound right, I will be sure to share it with everyone. I might save that for the approprite seaon.

I'm surprised at how well I'm doing with the Carol of the Bells, but I have to thank Professor Chang and his free book (I think that's his name). His book has made a huge difference in my playing. I think the key word here is parallel exercises or parallelism. He also has a solution to my weak pinky finger by getting the whole upper body involved. These days, I also tend to pick pieces that have something that I haven't tried before, a challenge. The main reason why I chose the Linus and Lucy group is the jazz content; something I hadn't done before. I'm way too impatient with scale exercises and Hanon stuff. I spend a lot of time away from home, so I just like to get right down to it.

Well, I'm off to the piano.


I always wanted to pretend that I was an architect.
#975339 - 07/10/06 02:37 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Icekid767, which forum did you find the sheet music on? Would it be possible to forward me a copy?

#975340 - 07/10/06 03:15 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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I would be interested in the GW version also. Can you post the URL where you found it?

#975341 - 07/10/06 10:46 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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http://www.savefile.com/files/4417997...23 songs 14Mb download

I hope that works


I always wanted to pretend that I was an architect.
#975342 - 07/12/06 09:52 AM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Thank you Icekid, it worked perfectly.
I went through it and I'm going to do it.
(The 16th note runs will be more than I can handle but, maybe I can get them 'halfway' good by Christmas.

#975343 - 07/12/06 02:40 PM Re: Carol of the Bells Study Group  
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Wow! I thought I was opening only Carol of the Bells and here's the mother lode of George Winston music. Thanks so much! (I do hope that their transcription is better than their spelling-The Holy and the Ivy?)

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