Musicnotes.com Blog http://blog.musicnotes.com The official blog of Musicnotes.com Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:39:46 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.9.2 Pre-Show Rituals of Popular Musicians http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/19/popular-pre-show-rituals/ http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/19/popular-pre-show-rituals/#comments Tue, 19 Aug 2014 16:39:46 +0000 http://blog.musicnotes.com/?p=7358 We all have our own routine prior to walking on stage for a big performance. Some of our pre-show rituals include certain exercises, meditation and maybe even a ‘lucky’ song you listen to in order to shake stage jitters and get into the ‘zone.’ We’ve looked at pre-show rituals of popular musicians you may have seen in concert or heard on the radio recently. Check out their typical (and some unusual) formulas for stage success! Beyoncé “Bey” told Vogue magazine that she takes a few hours to prepare the day of a performance. “I say a prayer with everyone in the band, then we do a stretch,” she shared. “I
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We all have our own routine prior to walking on stage for a big performance. Some of our pre-show rituals include certain exercises, meditation and maybe even a ‘lucky’ song you listen to in order to shake stage jitters and get into the ‘zone.’

We’ve looked at pre-show rituals of popular musicians you may have seen in concert or heard on the radio recently. Check out their typical (and some unusual) formulas for stage success!

Beyoncé

“Bey” told Vogue magazine that she takes a few hours to prepare the day of a performance. “I say a prayer with everyone in the band, then we do a stretch,” she shared. “I sit in my massage chair while they do hair and makeup and I have an hour of peace and I have a playlist that I listen to every day.”

Katy Perry

The Dark Horse singer revealed to Ryan Seacrest that her gear-up is pretty consistent while on tour. “You know, I wake up. I sometimes throw myself on a massage table, get massaged from the previous night where I had to do a two hour show and then I go and work out and I stretch and I kick. And then I do a warm up and then I go to rehearsal and then I basically get ready for the show. I mean when it’s show day, it is all dedicated to the show. There is nothing else that’s more important. So, I’m very focused.”

Coldplay

The band also spoke with Seacrest detailing their fairly tame gear-up process. “Before we play live we have a little moment where we’re just quiet, and supportive group hug.” Front man Chris Martin, however, has said he has a pre-pre-show ritual of his own. “For me, there are about 18 things I have to do before I can go out to perform—most of them are too ridiculous to repeat! One is I have to brush my teeth before I go on stage, otherwise I just don’t feel smart.”

Mumford And Sons

Filed under the more unusual pre-show rituals, Mumford And Sons’ Marcus Mumford reportedly keeps a bit of of palo santo wood (from a South American tree related to Frankincense) burning backstage prior to performing. He claims its smoke is the only cure he’s found for pre-show headaches.

Adele

The 21 songstress has a well-documented proclivity for stage fright, although she’s said it actually motivates her and has become sort of a pre-show ritual. “The bigger the freak-out, the more I enjoy the show,” she’s said.

Passion Pit

The members of indie pop group Passion Pit gather for a ‘team’ cheer prior to going on stage, keyboardist/guitarist Ian Hultquist told Vulture. Although, their chant is nothing you’ve likely heard before. They cheer “Roote to scoot, mate!” (a gibberish phrase) in their best Scottish accents just prior to performing.

Lorde

Berries or seaweed serve as Lorde’s dinner of choice on show nights. She shared her ritual with The Guardianwhich includes noshing on one of those foods after taking a dressing room nap with her go-to blanket. Also on Lorde’s must-do list? Wearing her favorite performance outfit. “Once I’ve got my suit on, I can do anything,” she says.

John Legend

In addition to vocal exercises and warm-ups prior to hitting the stage, John Legend shard his specific pre-show dinner choice with the Today show audience. The ‘All of Me‘ singer said roasted chicken fuels him for playing in front of thousands of fans night after night.

Do you have any go-to routines or rituals prior to taking the stage? Anything you’ve found helps you focus on your performance or combat pre-show jitters? Share your pre-show rituals with us and your fellow musicians in the comments section below.

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Destination: Music! Great Musical Travel Ideas http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/15/musical-travel-destinations/ http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/15/musical-travel-destinations/#comments Fri, 15 Aug 2014 21:45:32 +0000 http://blog.musicnotes.com/?p=7890 Every city has a soundtrack, and one of the most inspiring prospects of exploring a new locale is uncovering its pulse and the stories behind its unique sound. That’s why we decided to take a look at cities known for their rich musical backdrops, cities whose rhythms can be felt the second you step foot on their soil: our great musical travel destinations! Today we’ll highlight just seven of the countless cool musical cities to consider for your next holiday away. If a trip isn’t part of the budget this year, no worries. We’ve also included a few sheet music selections to help bring a bit of each city’s flair into your own music room. London A 10 minute photo shoot outside Abbey Road Studios in
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Every city has a soundtrack, and one of the most inspiring prospects of exploring a new locale is uncovering its pulse and the stories behind its unique sound. That’s why we decided to take a look at cities known for their rich musical backdrops, cities whose rhythms can be felt the second you step foot on their soil: our great musical travel destinations!

Today we’ll highlight just seven of the countless cool musical cities to consider for your next holiday away. If a trip isn’t part of the budget this year, no worries. We’ve also included a few sheet music selections to help bring a bit of each city’s flair into your own music room.

London

A 10 minute photo shoot outside Abbey Road Studios in 1969 would establish one of the most iconic images in rock & roll history. You, too, can pull three mates along to stroll the crosswalk on Abbey Road.

Abbey Road

The Beatles weren’t the only rockers to make use of London’s fashionable streets in cover art. David Bowie‘s ‘The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars’ album was shot on Heddon Street (in front of number 23, to be exact) in 1972. Oasis chose Berwick Street as the setting for their 1995 ‘(What’s the Story) Morning Glory’ cover.  And, the video for Bob Dylan’s “Subterranean Homesick Blues” was filmed on the street behind London’s Savoy Hotel.

More notable London sites include Jimi Hendrix‘s residence on Brook Street, as well as Waterloo Bridge, Ray Davies‘ inspiration for his homage to the River Thames and his home city.

Looking for a show? Catch an awe-inspiring musical in London’s West End Theatreland, the world-renowned stage destination frequented by the best stage and screen actors, and visited by millions of fans each year.

London-inspired sheet music: “Waterloo Sunset” by The Kinks, “Ziggy Stardust” by David Bowie, “Oh! Darling” by The Beatles

New York

The birthplace and epicenter of musical theatre, more than 12 million people attended a Broadway show during the 2013-2014 season, according to The Broadway League. But, even aside from the tremendous talent and legends of the ‘Great White Way,’ New York has more musical history than you can shake a bagel at.

Make your way to Central Park to see John Lennon’s meditative Strawberry Fields memorial and its Imagine mosaic. Visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Musical Instruments permanent exhibit, and admire pieces dating from 300 B.C. Sip a cold one at Cafe Wha? in Greenwich Village, where beatniks and folk artists congressed to make music and discuss politics in the 1960s.

Apollo Theater New York

Head north to Harlem’s Apollo Theater, and see where Ella Fitzgerald first walked on stage at age 17, where Jimi Hendrix won first place in an amateur contest in ’64, and where the likes of Duke Ellington, Ray Charles, Otis Redding and Aretha Franklin knocked the socks off excited audiences year after year, night after night.

New York-inspired sheet music: “New York State of Mind,” Billy Joel, “42nd Street – Broadway Revival” collection, “Take the ‘A’ Train” by Duke Ellington/Ella Fitzgerald,  “The Boxer” by Simon & Garfunkel

 Vienna

There must be something about the fresh air rolling off the Alps or the flow of the Danube that fosters musical virtuosity. How else does one explain the talent emerging from Vienna in the late 18th and early 19th centuries?

Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert and Strauss all spent the heights of their careers in the picturesque city, and remnants of the great Viennese Classical period are evident at every turn even today.

Stand where Mozart wrote ‘The Marriage of Figaro,’ among other works, at Mozarthaus Vienna, the virtuoso’s home from 1784 to 1787. Tour the 19th district, where Beethoven spent his summers, and see the stream said to inspire the first movement “Pastoral” of “Symphony No. 6.” Visit the gardenesque cemeteries of Austria’s capital city and see the graves of Beethoven, Schubert, Strauss and Brahms next to one another. Or visit Mozart’s unnamed grave, marked by the statue of a crying angel.

Mozarts Geburtshaus

Just a short train ride west of Vienna will land you in Salzburg, Austria, where Mozart was born. Not only will you find Mozarts Geburtshaus (Mozart’s birthplace) museum in Salzburg, you can recreate all your favorite scenes from ‘The Sound of Music’ movie, filmed here in 1965.

Vienna/Salzburg-inspired sheet music: “Piano Sonata in C Major, K. 545: I. Allegro” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, “Symphony No. 6 ‘Pastoral,’ First Movement” by Ludwig van Beethoven, “Edelweiss” from ‘The Sound of Music’

Memphis

Rock ‘n’ roll is the pulse of Memphis, Tennessee, and  Beale Street is the heart of it all. It was on this 1.8 mile span that W.C. Handy brought the blues to Beale Street at the turn of the century, to be followed by legends like Louis Armstrong, Muddy Waters, B.B. King and so many more. Visit the Rock ‘n Soul Museum at 191 Beale Street for a thorough trip down memory lane.

In 1954, an unknown artist named Elvis Presley entered a small blues record label named Sun Studio and paid $3.80 to record a demo. Elvis, and Sun’s owner Sam Smith, combined Memphis blues with country, jazz and an emerging genre called rock to forever change the course of popular music . Tour Sun Studio and see where Presley, as well as Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison and more, made history.

Sun Studio

Soon after becoming the king of rock, Elvis realized he needed a more private residence for himself and his family. Enter Graceland, one of the most infamous homes in all of America. You can tour the Graceland mansion, just south of of the city, and see personal artifacts, cars and even his private jets.

Memphis-inspired sheet music: “Memphis Blues” by W.C. Handy, “The Thrill is Gone” by B.B. King, “Blue Suede Shoes” by Carl Perkins, “All Shook Up” by Elvis Presley

 Nashville

Head east a couple hundred miles from Memphis to Nashville, Tennessee, where country music reigns supreme. ‘Music City’ as its come to be known, is home to one of the longest-running radio programs in history, the ‘Grand Ole Opry.‘ The show began broadcasting from Nashville in 1925 as a one hour ‘barn dance,’ and expanded to a nationwide program  showcasing 4 hours of country, bluegrass, gospel and comedic performances by the 1940s.

The Ryman Auditorium

It was in the ’40s that the Opry moved into a former house of worship, what is now known as the Ryman Auditorium. Visit the “Mother Church of Country Music,” where honky tonk heros like Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, Roy Acuff and the Carter family played regularly. When the Opry moved to its current home in 1974, a circle of the Ryman floor was removed and placed behind the mic in the new Grand Ole Opry House.

Stroll Music Row, and see famed sites like RCA’s Studio B, where countless legends, including  Elvis Presley (after leaving Sun) and Dolly Parton, recorded. Take in the world-renowned Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, the mecca of country music history. And catch a listening session at the historic Bluebird Cafe, where a mile-long list of who’s who, from Garth Brooks to Faith Hill to Taylor Swift, have enjoyed shining career moments.

Nashville-inspired sheet music: “I Saw the Light” by Hank Williams, “Jolene” by Dolly Parton, “Friends in Low Places” by Garth Brooks

 Paris

There’s perhaps nothing more Parisian than sitting at a sidewalk cafe accompanied by an accordion player’s bal musette tunes  wafting through the open air. Paris has storied musical history, with classical, jazz and rock roots.

Opera admirers flock to the Palais Garnier, the Paris Opera, built in the second half the 19th century to house the city’s opera and ballet companies. Its opulent decor and ornate facade provided the perfect setting for Gaston Leroux’s 1910 novel, and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s 1986 musical, ‘The Phantom of the Opera.’

Palais Garnier

More classical/impressionist landmarks in or around Paris include Claude Debussy’s birthplace and now museum in Saint-Germain-en-Laye and the Cité de la Musique (City of Music) museum, which houses more than 1,000 historical instruments and pieces of musical art, including almost 200 classical guitars.

Jazz more your scene? Check out the La Chope des Puces (Espace Django Reinhardt) the city’s jazz homage to Django Reinhardt including a restaurant, school of jazz, recording studio and concert hall. The famed father of gypsy jazz lived near the site and lost the use of two of his fingers in a fire there, leading to his trademark phrasing.

Thousands of music fans tour the ornate tombs at Pére Lachaise each year, the most visited cemetery in the world, to see the grave of The Doors‘s Jim Morrison, among others. Also buried there are such luminaries as Oscar Wilde, Frederic Chopin and Marcel Proust.

Paris-inspired sheet music: “Swing de Paris” by Django Reinhardt, “Clair de Lune” by Claude Debussy, “La Vie En Rose” by Edith Piaf

Seattle

Seattle is still ubiquitous with the ‘grunge’ scene of the early 1990′s when bands like Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden and more put the city on the map as a musical destination.

Visit the sensory-rousing  EMP Music Museum to learn about the evolution of rock and popular music. The building’s exterior, designed by Frank O. Gehry, is said to be built mimicking the lines of  electric guitars.  Its ‘Northwest Passage’ exhibit focuses on on Seattle musical lore, including Jimi Hendrix’s beginnings (he’s buried in nearby Renton), the band Heart and the advent of grunge. Also not-to-miss is the museum’s Guitar Gallery.

EMP Museum

Take a trip to Viretta Park, the site of the unofficial Kurt Cobain Memorial. The park that sits just the the left of Cobain’s former residence at house number 171 is unmarked, yet serves as a place of remembrance for fans, many of whom leave song lyrics, pictures, letters and more on the park’s benches.

Complete your rock music vacation experience with a tour of London Bridge Studios. Bands including the aforementioned Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, Blind Melon and Alice In Chains recorded albums at London Bridge throughout the 1990s.

Seattle-influenced sheet music: “Magic Man” by Heart, “Come As You Are” by Nirvana, “Yellow Ledbetter” by Pearl Jam, “I Will Follow You Into the Dark” by Death Cab For Cutie

That’s all for our exploration of musical travel destinations. There are so many other great places to experience music around the globe, we want to hear your favorites! Share your most beloved musical cities in the comments below, and be sure to include your can’t-miss attractions for each destination!

Creative Commons image sources via Flickr: Abbey Road by Grahamc99, Apollo Theater by Pedro Plassen Lopes, Mozart Geburtshaus by Neil Willsey, Sun Studio by Carl Wycoff, Ryman Auditorium by arianravan, Palais Garnier by Scarletgreen, EMP by Brad Coy

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Get Your Back-to-School Sheet Music Ready! http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/12/back-to-school-sheet-music/ http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/12/back-to-school-sheet-music/#comments Tue, 12 Aug 2014 21:16:04 +0000 http://blog.musicnotes.com/?p=7857 Those magical days of reading, writing and arithmetic are just around the corner. Are you ready?  If you’re anything like some of our friends here at MNHQ, it might take a little, shall we say, extra motivation to get back into school mode. Luckily we have just the cure to beat those end-of-summer blues and gear you up for another great term: the most fun-to-play back-to-school sheet music this side of homeroom. We’ve explored the more than 260,000 arrangements at Musicnotes.com (oh, did we forget to mention we recently surpassed 260,000 arrangements!?!), and narrowed down 10 of our back-to-school sheet music front-runners. These anthems are guaranteed to punch the keys on your calculator, squeeze the juice
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Those magical days of reading, writing and arithmetic are just around the corner. Are you ready?  If you’re anything like some of our friends here at MNHQ, it might take a little, shall we say, extra motivation to get back into school mode. Luckily we have just the cure to beat those end-of-summer blues and gear you up for another great term: the most fun-to-play back-to-school sheet music this side of homeroom.

We’ve explored the more than 260,000 arrangements at Musicnotes.com (oh, did we forget to mention we recently surpassed 260,000 arrangements!?!), and narrowed down 10 of our back-to-school sheet music front-runners. These anthems are guaranteed to punch the keys on your calculator, squeeze the juice in your juice box, put the point on your pencil… well, you get the idea.

10. “School Days” by Gus Edwards

The quintessential back-to-school song, “School Days” has been around almost as long as school itself! The folk tradition was written by vaudevillian Gus Edwards in 1907 for his Broadway production of the same name.

9. “Fifteen” by Taylor Swift

A single off her ‘Fearless’ album, Taylor Swift wrote “Fifteen” detailing events that happened to herself and her best friend, Abigale, their freshman year of high school. The country pop star was sure to get her BFF’s blessing before recording the song and even asked her pal to co-star in the music video.

8. “Harper Valley PTA” by Jeannie C. Riley

A tongue-in-cheek account of one outspoken school parent, “Harper Valley PTA” became an international country music hit in 1968. The record sold more than six million copies and made Riley the first woman to top both Billboard’s Hot 100 and the U.S. country singles chart with the same song. (Dolly Parton would repeat the feat with “Nine to Five” in 1981.)

7. “Expectations” by Belle & Sebastian


Voted ‘Scotland’s greatest band’ in 2005, Belle & Sebastian’s “Expectations” was featured on the soundtrack to 2007′s coming-of-age film ‘Juno.’ Interesting fact: the indie-pop sixsome named their group after a french children’s book.

6. “Rock ‘N’ Roll High School” by The Ramones

“Rock ‘N’Roll High School” was written for the 1979 musical comedy film of the same name. Punk rock legends The Ramones appeared as honorary students in the silly film, however producers originally wanted the band Cheap Trick to play the story’s unruly rockers.

5. “Another Brick In The Wall (Part 2)” by Pink Floyd

Containing one of the most recognizable bass lines in all of rock, “Another Brick In The Wall (Part 2)” is a rebellious cry against heavy-handed authority. Perhaps not the best call for structured education, the song has definitely left its mark on history and we just couldn’t leave it off the list. Plus, it’s great fun to play!

4. “(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party)” by Beastie Boys

Another unlikely inclusion on our list, Beastie Boys’ parody-filled “Fight for Your Right” was almost a right of passage for restless teens of the late ’80s. This is another song whose hook is just so much fun to rock out with.

3. “We’re Going To Be Friends” by Jack Johnson/Jack White

Written by the White Stripes as a homage to the simplicity of childhood, “We’re Going To Be Friends”has been covered by a number of artists, including Bright Eyes and Jack Johnson. Johnson’s version was featured on the soundtrack for the 2006 ‘Curious George’ film.

2. “ABC” by The Jackson 5


The Jackson 5 knocked ‘Let It Be‘ out of the top spot on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1970 with their catchy classroom pop hit “ABC.” The song, and its ‘simple-as-do-re-mi’ title, also sits first alphabetically on all-time Billboard #1 singles and is one of the shortest top song titles of all time!

1. “No Such Thing” by John Mayer

Inspiring students to forge their own paths, John Mayer’s “No Such Thing” is a somewhat autobiographical song reiterating the popular theme of developing into what you want to become, even if that means taking the road less traveled.

Well, that’s all for our back-to-school sheet music list. Are there certain songs that come to mind when you think of going back to school? What are you most looking forward to in the coming school year? We’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below!

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Music Theory Lesson: Learn How To Transpose Music http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/08/how-to-transpose-music/ http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/08/how-to-transpose-music/#comments Fri, 08 Aug 2014 20:24:52 +0000 http://blog.musicnotes.com/?p=7806 Digital sheet music aficionados like yourselves already know how easy it is to transpose your digital files into any key you want with a simple click of your mouse. However, if you’re playing from a non-digital file (gasp!) , it’s great to know the basics of music transposition. Additionally, just as a budding mathematician studies algebraic laws, it’s important for us musicians to have a firm grasp on the theory behind what creates all those emotive, provoking sounds, and learning how to transpose music will help with just that! Transposition is simply the process of changing the key of a piece of music. Any major key can be transposed into any other major key, and
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Digital sheet music aficionados like yourselves already know how easy it is to transpose your digital files into any key you want with a simple click of your mouse. However, if you’re playing from a non-digital file (gasp!) , it’s great to know the basics of music transposition. Additionally, just as a budding mathematician studies algebraic laws, it’s important for us musicians to have a firm grasp on the theory behind what creates all those emotive, provoking sounds, and learning how to transpose music will help with just that!

Transposition is simply the process of changing the key of a piece of music. Any major key can be transposed into any other major key, and the same goes for minor keys.

Sometimes we’ll need to transpose music so that it can properly be played on different instruments. Because of the physical properties of certain instruments, it’s easier to transpose and read sheet music for them in a different key rather than read them in concert pitch (like a piano). Other times, we’ll decide to transpose the key of a piece to make it simpler to play or sing. The basic process of transposition is the same for either use.

Say you have a piece of sheet music written for a flute (a C instrument /concert pitch instrument) and you need to play it on the clarinet (a B-flat instrument / transposition instrument). A C pitch played on the flute or piano will actually sound like a C because they are concert pitch instruments. Remember the line “if it sees a C, it sounds its key.” However, if you play that same pitch of C on your clarinet, that C actually will sound like a B-flat in concert pitch, because the clarinet is a transposing instrument.  In order for that piece to sound the same on a flute and clarinet, we’ll need to transpose each of the notes by the correct interval (the distance between the notes). Find a list of non-transposing and transposing instruments here.

Ok, so we’ve determined that we do, in fact, need to transpose this very important piece of music for one of the reasons above. First, we’ll identify what key signature our original piece is in and what key signature we need to transpose to. Learn more about key signatures here. The Circle of Fifths provides an at-a-glance look at key signatures based on the number of sharps or flats.

Circle of Fifths

Circle of Fifths

Now that we’ve pinpointed our original key signature, we can identify how far up or down in tone we’ll need to transpose for our new instrument to sound the same as our original concert pitch. Below is a handy guide that shows how many steps (or half steps) we must move each note from our original score to our new, transposed score.

Music transposition chart

As you can see using the chart above, if we’re transposing from a C instrument to a B-flat instrument, we’ll want to move the key up one whole step (or whole tone). Our key of C Major transposes to a key of D Major, Key of G Major transposes to Key of A Major, key of B-flat Major transposes to the the key of C Major, and so on. You may also use this chart as a guide when transposing individual notes on your sheet music. For example, when an F instrument sees a C, it will sound like an F pitch. Or vice-versa, in your concert sheet music when you see an F written, your F instrument should see a C.

Now let’s pretend we need to transpose a melody to alto saxophone (an E-flat instrument). Your concert-pitch melody is scored in the key of A-flat Major. We can see that you’ll need to move down 1.5 steps to transpose your piece for an E-flat instrument, thus your new key is F Major. If you need help counting out the steps, following the whole and half steps on a keyboard can be helpful. Print out our piano guide cheat sheet to visualize whole and half steps between notes.

Note that a pitch may sound an octave lower or higher than the original depending on your instrument and you also may find you’ll need to change clefs. There’s more detailed information on that here. Starting out, however, just focus on transposing in the clef you’re most comfortable reading.

Practice Time: Take a look at our free downloads of the month. Print each arrangement, look at their key signatures and see how they relate to one another. Use the Circle of Fifths to familiarize yourself with the keys and the transposition chart to see how many steps (or half steps) the key moves depending on the instrument.

Now that we have our key signatures determined, the fun really begins! Print your free manuscript paper, and start transcribing your piece moving each note the same interval, or number of steps and half-steps, as your key. Again, you can use the chart above if you get stuck. Don’t forget that accidentals must also be transposed by the same interval. For example, if you see an A-flat in your concert score as an accidental, a B-flat instrument would need to see a B-flat to sound the correct concert pitch.

The easiest way to go about it is fill in your new key signature, your time signature (which will not change at all), and write out every note paying close attention to the interval between your original notes and transposed notes as well as the intervals between the notes in the individual measures. Also remember to update any changes in key signature within the piece (use your handy chart). When you’ve completed your transposition, all that’s left to do is mark in the upper left-hand corner what instrument your transposition is for. In our examples above, we’d write “Clarinet in Bb” or “Alto Saxophone in Eb.”

Are you a vocalist looking to transpose in order to change the range of your piece? Simply follow the same process of determining your original key, deciding on your new key, and moving each note the same number of steps and half steps throughout the piece. (In this situation the notes you read will be the actual concert pitch. Just remember to transpose any accompaniment in the same way.) Take a look at the Singer Pro arrangement of “Let It Go,” as an example. Listen to the original song in the key of A-flat Major (4 flats). Now, choose the C Major transposition available on the right hand side of the product page. Listen to the song in C Major (no sharps or flats) and notice how the pitch of the song in C Major, which is 2 steps higher than A-flat Major, sounds higher when you listen to it. Pretty cool, huh?

Just like with most music theory, the best way to master transposition is to practice it. Check out other free sheet music at Musicnotes.com and try transposing the pieces yourself. A great title to start with is our Beginner Notes arrangement of “Mary Had a Little Lamb.” You’ll find that not only with this help you improve your transposition skills, key signature memorization and sight reading abilities will grow by leaps and bounds!

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Accomplish Your Musical Goals With Our Top Audition Tips http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/05/musical-audition-tips/ http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/05/musical-audition-tips/#comments Tue, 05 Aug 2014 18:55:30 +0000 http://blog.musicnotes.com/?p=7770 A new school year/term  is quickly approaching, and that means audition time for many of us! Whether you’re hoping to join a particular ensemble, secure a soloist position or land a first chair spot, we’re sharing three of our best audition tips for musicians. You’ve chosen the perfect piece, spent weeks (or months) practicing, learned to control those pre-stage jitters, now all that’s left to do is step on out there and ace your audition. Even if you’re totally prepared there are things you can do to give yourself a little competitive edge come audition time. We’ll look at three awesome tricks that we’ve found to be successful, and we hope you share your words of advice
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A new school year/term  is quickly approaching, and that means audition time for many of us! Whether you’re hoping to join a particular ensemble, secure a soloist position or land a first chair spot, we’re sharing three of our best audition tips for musicians.

You’ve chosen the perfect piece, spent weeks (or months) practicing, learned to control those pre-stage jitters, now all that’s left to do is step on out there and ace your audition. Even if you’re totally prepared there are things you can do to give yourself a little competitive edge come audition time. We’ll look at three awesome tricks that we’ve found to be successful, and we hope you share your words of advice in the comments section located after the article!

Create a Performance Cue

Like each of our audition tips, this piece of advice really may be applied to any performance situation. When the cards are on the table and you’ve done absolutely everything in your power to prepare, distractions still will pop up. The air conditioning turns on, an auditioner coughs, your shoelace inexplicably comes untied as you’re walking on stage even though you double-knotted (ahem, not that that’s ever happened to us). These tiny hiccups can turn into major concentration busters in a high-pressure situation like an audition.

That’s why we suggest that you create and practice a performance cue. Think of your cue as a mantra you can repeat in your head to both keep what you must remember top-of-mind and block out distractions. The easiest way to determine your performance cue is to consider the very best times you played your audition piece. What one thing did you do differently during those run-throughs? That will be your mantra. For example, say you tend to rush your pace during a specific passage. Your performance cue may be “take your time, listen.” Or, if you sometimes find yourself hitting the keys too hard for a delicate melody, you might consider “soft fingers, look ahead.” Keep your cue short and to the point, its purpose is to be simple and narrowed, and be sure to practice your cue while rehearsing.

Don’t Neglect Visual Communication

Unless you’re participating in a blind audition, there are going to be people watching you perform. One widely reported on study , conducted by concert pianist and social psychologist Chia-Jung Tsay in 2012, found that when presented with musical competition audio only, video only or video & audio, people are more likely to determine the winner by video alone. 

Now, this isn’t to say that style trumps substance when it comes to auditions, but it does indicate that if all other factors are equal, style can give you a competitive edge. The best way to ensure your visual communication is spot-on is to video record yourself rehearsing. Work on communicating your engagement with, and passion for, the music. This can be done with gentle (read: NOT over the top) head movement, facial expressions and eye contact (if your piece is memorized).

Another consideration is dressing the part. When appropriate, try to choose attire that matches the mood of the piece you’re auditioning with. If it’s an intense number, pick an outfit that conveys energy. If it’s a dreamy aria, wear something more subdued.

Don’t Be a Robot

It’s impossible to over-stress the importance of practice prior to a big audition or performance. However,  sometimes during the process of mastery, we tend to get a bit robotic with our delivery. For this reason, we should perform mindfully. (Just as we practice mindfully. Read more about mindful practice here.)

A research paper published in The Psychology of Music describes a study in which an orchestra was asked to play the same piece twice. The first time, the orchestra was instructed to offer subtle new nuances to the piece during their performance. The second time, the group was told to simply play the piece as well as they could. Both the orchestra members and audience preferred the first version of the piece, in which subtle distinctions were made, thus suggesting the piece was being played mindfully. You certainly don’t want to improvise during your audition, but try loosening up a bit in rehearsal, and take small risks. Sometimes, if executed correctly, those small risks can pay off big in the end!

Do you have other tips to share with your fellow auditioners? Is there one thing, in particular, that you think gives you a competitive edge? Share your suggestions and expertise with us in the comments section!

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Beyond the Aisle with Pachelbel’s “Canon in D” http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/01/canon-in-d/ http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/08/01/canon-in-d/#comments Fri, 01 Aug 2014 19:30:43 +0000 http://blog.musicnotes.com/?p=7728 Perhaps the most influential eight bars of music ever written, Pachelbel’s “Canon in D” is instantly recognizable even to classical music rookies. With wedding season in full swing here at MNHQ, we thought we’d take a closer look at the story behind the nuptial favorite. Johann Pachelbel was somewhat of a mid-Baroque era superstar, credited with helping to develop the chorale prelude and fugue. His languid contrapuntal melodies were wildly popular throughout Europe, and he was a highly revered and sought-after teacher/mentor. Oh, and Pachelbel also was a close friend of the Bach family… yes, that Bach family. As is the case today, musical trends rose and fell out of fashion. Our friend Johann’s corales
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Perhaps the most influential eight bars of music ever written, Pachelbel’s “Canon in D” is instantly recognizable even to classical music rookies. With wedding season in full swing here at MNHQ, we thought we’d take a closer look at the story behind the nuptial favorite.

Johann Pachelbel was somewhat of a mid-Baroque era superstar, credited with helping to develop the chorale prelude and fugue. His languid contrapuntal melodies were wildly popular throughout Europe, and he was a highly revered and sought-after teacher/mentor. Oh, and Pachelbel also was a close friend of the Bach family… yes, that Bach family.

As is the case today, musical trends rose and fell out of fashion. Our friend Johann’s corales and fugues were replaced by splashy sonatas and modern concertos by the mid 18th century. In fact, like many of the prolific composer’s works, “Canon and Gigue in D” was nearly lost to history. A single manuscript sits in the Berlin State Library, and the work’s original use is unknown. Although, unsubstantiated speculations include that the piece was written for (what else?) a wedding.

And then, just when the obscure work was all but forgotten, a chance score inclusion in an early 20th century scholarly article breathed new life into that special ground bass chord progression. A modern arrangement of the song was published in 1929 and recorded by Boston Pops conductor Arthur Fiedler in 1940.  Pop music embraced Pachelbel’s Canon in the late 1960s, and Hollywood came calling with a leading part in 1980′s Academy Award Best Picture ‘Ordinary People.’

The song, as they say, has lived happily ever after as a featured player in countless wedding celebrations and popular culture ever since. You’ve likely recognized its D-A-B-F#-G-D-G-A (or parts/variations thereof) in a number of hit songs including:

A charming ground bass and enchanting canon repeated 28 times… it just goes to show that , just as in life, some of music’s greatest pleasures are really that simple. Click here to see all digital arrangement of the notorious “Canon in D.”

For those of you on the other side of the “Canon in D” fan spectrum (we’re looking at you cellos), check out comedian Rob Paravonian’s popular “Pachelbel Rant” video on YouTube.

Are you a “Canon in D” admirer, or do you align closer with Mr. Paravonian’s views of the piece? Are there other popular songs in which you’ve noticed variations of the canon’s chord progression? Share in the comments below!

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Honor Flight Donation Drive a Soaring Success! http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/07/29/honor-flight-2/ http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/07/29/honor-flight-2/#comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 16:23:57 +0000 http://blog.musicnotes.com/?p=7730 MADISON, WI — July 29, 2014 — More than a dozen military veterans will be honored with a trip to their respective war memorials, thanks to the help of Musicnotes customers who purchased patriotic sheet music between Memorial Day and Independence Day this year. The annual six-week Musicnotes Honor Flight donation drive provides $1 from every patriotic download to local chapters of the Honor Flight Network, a non-profit organization created solely to honor America’s war veterans through tours to Washington D.C. memorials. Exceeding previous years’ sales and reaching this year’s goal, 2014 proved to be the most rewarding drive yet. A total of $8,000 will be divided equally between the Badger Honor Flight in Madison, Wis. and the
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MADISON, WI — July 29, 2014 —

More than a dozen military veterans will be honored with a trip to their respective war memorials, thanks to the help of Musicnotes customers who purchased patriotic sheet music between Memorial Day and Independence Day this year. The annual six-week Musicnotes Honor Flight donation drive provides $1 from every patriotic download to local chapters of the Honor Flight Network, a non-profit organization created solely to honor America’s war veterans through tours to Washington D.C. memorials.

Exceeding previous years’ sales and reaching this year’s goal, 2014 proved to be the most rewarding drive yet. A total of $8,000 will be divided equally between the Badger Honor Flight in Madison, Wis. and the Stars and Stripes Honor Flight in Milwaukee. The cost of the trip is about $600 per veteran, and all expenses are paid for those who so honorably served our country.

Musicnotes has held the annual Honor Flight donation drive since 2011, when Musicnotes Chairman Tim Reiland presented the idea after witnessing an Honor Flight homecoming . Since the drive’s inception, Musicnotes is proud to have donated more than $25,000 to such a deserving cause, Reiland said.

For more information about and/or to contribute to your local honor flight program, visit http://www.honorflight.org.

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Songs of Summers Past, Do You Remember These 20 Hot-Weather Hits? http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/07/25/songs-of-summer/ http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/07/25/songs-of-summer/#comments Fri, 25 Jul 2014 20:27:33 +0000 http://blog.musicnotes.com/?p=7698 There are certain things we absolutely can count on each summer (we’re especially thinking back to the days of marching band practice). Strange tan lines, endless bottles of water, copious amounts of sunscreen, and that one summer song that we absolutely love in May and have no way of escaping come August. Enter: the big summer hit! Each summer there’s quite a bit of buzz about what song will be ‘the’ song of summer.  After all, this is the singular popular jam determined to define what the past 4 months have been all about. And, undoubtedly, these ‘earworms‘ work their way into our collective consciousness, dominating airwaves, spawning YouTube covers and infiltrating nearly every barbecue and
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There are certain things we absolutely can count on each summer (we’re especially thinking back to the days of marching band practice). Strange tan lines, endless bottles of water, copious amounts of sunscreen, and that one summer song that we absolutely love in May and have no way of escaping come August. Enter: the big summer hit!

Each summer there’s quite a bit of buzz about what song will be ‘the’ song of summer.  After all, this is the singular popular jam determined to define what the past 4 months have been all about. And, undoubtedly, these ‘earworms‘ work their way into our collective consciousness, dominating airwaves, spawning YouTube covers and infiltrating nearly every barbecue and pool party we attend.

Don’t get us wrong, we LOVE these songs of summer. They wouldn’t shoot to the top if they weren’t cool, catchy and fun to play. And, who doesn’t enjoy reminiscing about good times of summers past? What song will be declared 2014′s official summer anthem is yet to be decided. Until then, let’s take a look at the past 20 years’ worth of unofficially official songs of summer!

2013: Blurred Lines by Robin Thicke The song that might still be stuck in your head spent 12 consecutive weeks atop Billboard‘s Hot 100 during the summer of 2013. It also was the best-selling digital single of the year.

2012: Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Jepson MTV’s top song of 2012 similarly was the best-selling digital single of its year. You know you’ve made it big when you’re parodied by Cookie Monster!

2011: Party Rock Anthem by LMFAO We’re partial to the dancing hamster version of this song, which spent an impressive 68 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100.

2010: California Gurls by Katy Perry The title itself just screams summer fun! Even The Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson, arguably the all-time song of summer kings, declared the tune “infectious.”

2009: I Gotta Feeling by The Black Eyed Peas Spring debut? Check! Controversial music video? Check! Contagious beat? Check! No wonder the Black Eyed Peas’ hit spent all of Summer 2009 atop the charts.

2008: Viva La Vida by Coldplay The 2009 Grammy ‘Song of the Year’ shot to the top of of the charts immediately following its June release. It’s also the ONLY song on our songs of summer list to also have been featured on our misheard lyrics list!

2007: Hey There Delilah by Plain White T’s This one-hit wonder actually was released as a single in May of 2006, but  wasn’t deemed a hit until a year later when it was the most-played song on American radio from July 3 through July 28, 2007.

2006: Crazy by Gnarls Barkley  Rolling Stone named “Crazy” the number one song of 2009, and its 100th greatest song of all time. And, while the single catapulted to the top spot on charts around the globe, it remained at number 2 on the Billboard 100 for seven consecutive weeks due the popularity of close-runner-up for our summer 2006 song, Nelly Furtado’s “Promiscuous.”

2005: Don’t Cha by The Pussycat Dolls  Produced by one-half of the 2006 song of summer duo (Cee-Lo Green), “Don’t  Cha” was unapologetically manufactured to be a pop  hit. And a pop hit it was, both in the U.S. and abroad during the summer of 2005.

2004: If I Ain’t Got You by Alicia Keys Summer 2004 was all bout the R&B hits! In addition to the fabulous Alicia Keys’ “If I Ain’t Got You,” which peaked in July, Usher’s ‘Confessions’ album produced two hot hits, “Burn” and “Confessions Part II.”

2003: Crazy in Love by Beyoncé and Jay Z Beyonce’s much-anticipated first solo album did not disappoint, with its debut single hitting number one on the Billboard Hot 100 even before it was available for purchase!

2002: Hot in Herre by Nelly Sampling the hook from Chuck Brown’s ’79 R&B classic “Bustin’ Loose,” “Hot In Herre” was the first number one single for Nelly, and it even took the year-end Billboard singles top spot.

2001: Drops of Jupiter (Tell Me) by Train Securing a Top 40 spot for 29 weeks spanning the summer of 2001, the rock hit won two Grammy Awards, including an instrumental accompaniment honor for strings arranger Paul Buckmaster.

2000: It’s Gonna Be Me by ‘N Sync The pop group’s only number one single, “It’s Gonna Be Me” is perhaps best remembered for its music video, featuring each member as a boxed doll breaking out into the toy store.

1999: Genie In a Bottle by Christina Aguilera Back when ‘The Voice’ coach was still a fledgling vocalist, Aguilera scored THE hit of summer 1999 and the second-best selling song of the year with her first single.

1998: Everybody (Backstreet’s Back) by The Backstreet Boys And back they were with a second international album. The first single from their sophomore release spent 22 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 following its February radio debut.

1997: MMMBop by Hanson  Originally written as a ballad, the brothers Hanson decided to release an uptempo version produced by The Dust Brothers. MMMBop 2.0 hit the number one spot in 27 countries following its April 15th release.

1996: Macarena by Los Del Rio It’s boarder-line impossible to listen to “Macarena” and not dance along! The international phenomenon spent 14 weeks at number one one the Billboard Hot 100  in 1996 and was played nearly everywhere, from Major League Baseball games to wedding receptions.

1995: Waterfalls by TLC  Another single success aided by its accompanying music video, which cost a nearly then-unprecedented one million dollars, “Waterfalls” ranked 8th on  VH1′s  list of “100 Greatest Songs of the 1990s.” Fun fact: Cee-Lo Green provided backing vocals on the album track!

1994: I Swear by All-4-One and John Michael Montgomery  Initially debuting on the Hot 100  in 1993 via John Michael Montgomery’s country single, pop group All-4-One covered the song, released it in April the following year, and saw it spend a total of 18 weeks at either number one or number two on the charts.

Do you have a favorite front-runner for the 2014 Song of Summer? Are there any songs you just can’t seem to get out of your head (or escape)? Share in the comments section below!

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Q&A with Lyricist, Composer, Musical Director and All-Around Broadway Pro, Georgia Stitt http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/07/22/broadway-pro-georgia-stitt/ http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/07/22/broadway-pro-georgia-stitt/#comments Tue, 22 Jul 2014 19:03:35 +0000 http://blog.musicnotes.com/?p=7680 Dressing in a nun’s habit while singing in Latin on national live television? All in a day’s work for the supremely talented conductor, vocalist and writer Georgia Stitt! You may recognize Georgia from her role as a member of the nunnery in NBC’s ‘The Sound of Music Live!’ or as a vocal coach on ‘Grease: You’re the One that I Want!.’ You might also be a big fan (as we are) of her many  acclaimed written works including ‘Alphabet City Cycle,‘ ‘Sing Me a Happy Song‘ and ‘My Lifelong Love.’ We asked the lovely Broadway songstress to share a bit about her writing process, why she fell in love with the theatre, her best
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Dressing in a nun’s habit while singing in Latin on national live television? All in a day’s work for the supremely talented conductor, vocalist and writer Georgia Stitt!

You may recognize Georgia from her role as a member of the nunnery in NBC’s ‘The Sound of Music Live!’ or as a vocal coach on ‘Grease: You’re the One that I Want!.’ You might also be a big fan (as we are) of her many  acclaimed written works including ‘Alphabet City Cycle,‘ ‘Sing Me a Happy Song‘ and ‘My Lifelong Love.’

We asked the lovely Broadway songstress to share a bit about her writing process, why she fell in love with the theatre, her best tips for aspiring professional vocalists and the five ‘desert-island‘ songs she wouldn’t live without.

You continue to wear so many musical hats, writing, composing, arranging, performing and teaching. How do you switch gears from one activity to the other?

G.S.  Honestly, I don’t know how people can make a life in this industry if they CAN’T do many things. When I am sitting alone, composing, orchestrating, or arranging, I miss being around people. I love making all of the little detailed decisions on my score paper but I ache to hear the musicians play the notes, to hear the singers shape the words.  And then when I’m in rehearsal for too long, I get antsy to be back at my desk and my piano at home. There’s this balancing act that has to happen. I have both the desire to make something that will last forever and to make something that will fill up the space with music RIGHT NOW. So as projects appear on my desk I guess I have a kind of barometer that guides me.  I will admit that it’s hard on a given day to shift gears between something internal and something external, but it’s more like my schedule has chapters: this is a writing time, this is a rehearsing time, this is a performing time.  And, let’s face it, sometimes the job that’s paying the bills is the one that gets the most attention.

What are some of your sources for songwriting inspiration?

G.S.  I find myself wanting to write when I experience other people being enormously creative. A good novel, a beautiful piece of art, a perfect poem — all of these things can send me into my writer’s head. I am always on the lookout for adaptable material. Everything I read is colored with, “but is this a story that could sing?” Most things aren’t great fodder for musicals, but sometimes even a flawed piece of someone else’s work can make me want to take a pass at telling the same KIND of story. Once I know what I want to write about, I try to find a way to expresses a universal emotion or a common experience in a unique and personal way. The perfect response to hearing one of my songs would be, “I have felt that way before, but I have never thought about it quite like that.” I love songs that have great lyrics, I love songs that have interesting and surprising music, and I love songs that make me laugh.  So I look for stories and situations that open themselves up to those possibilities.

Are there variations in your writing processes when composing to others’ text (as in “Sonnet 29” and for ‘Alphabet City Cycle’) in contrast to writing music and lyrics together? 

G.S.  Oh yes, absolutely. When I’m working with pre-existing text, the words dictate all kinds of choices. Words, especially pre-existing poetry, have their own rhythms and their own energies. The vowels demand to be held for certain amounts of time and the meanings of the words claim prominence that I then echo with musical architecture. Sometimes when I’m setting a poem to music I feel like my job is closer to archaeologist than composer. I’m there to uncover the music that the words are showing me. It’s already there; I just find it.

When I’m building a song from scratch, however, the prep work is about finding a way of saying something that allows both the text and the music to communicate their ideas at the same time. Are the words and the music saying the same thing, or are they providing subtext for each other? Is the music telling you that the singer doesn’t mean what she says? Is the energy of the music supporting the energy of the text or is it providing an obstacle the singer has to overcome? Where are the moments of unison, and how can they be most powerful? I often make these structural decisions before I know exactly what the words are, and then the job of fitting the words into the music becomes this massive task. Then I rewrite it about forty times and finally I layer in the orchestrations and the vocal harmonies. So many layers. A good song, like a good lasagna, is very thick with layers.  That, I think, is what makes classic songs able to stand up against repeated listening. A timeless song reinvents itself to you every time you hear it.

“A good song, like a good lasagna, is very thick with layers.”Georgia Stitt

 What drew you to musical theatre, in particular, and how does writing for theatre vary from other musical art forms?

G.S.  When I was in college I was majoring in music composition at Vanderbilt and I was writing string quartets and art songs, but I was also playing piano and accompanying a lot of singers for their lessons and their recitals. My conducting teacher, John Morris Russell (who is now the conductor of the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra), asked me if I’d be interesting in joining him that summer as an accompanist for a summer stock musical theater company on Cape Cod that did nine musicals in eleven weeks. It sounded like a fun job but I had no idea how life-changing it would be. In addition to JMR and me, the music staff that summer also included Joseph Olefirowicz, now a prominent conductor in Europe, and Eric Whitacre, now a celebrity choral composer and conductor. It was as satisfying a musical experience as I’ve ever had. I turned 21 that summer, played my little fingers off and decided that there would nothing more satisfying than being a person who got to create musicals for a living. It was the first time I understood how my love of words and my love of music and my love of storytelling could all come together to make something powerful. By the end of the summer I knew I was in the right place, but I wanted a bigger piece of it. I went on to be a conductor for several seasons, and then I applied to NYU and got my MFA in Musical Theater Writing.  That led to the beginning of a career writing and conducting musicals, and I am very lucky that I’ve been able to do this work for all of this time.

Writing for musical theater is such a collaborative art form. You simply can’t make a musical by yourself. You need partners for the writing part, the performing part, the producing part, the selling part, the recording part, the promoting part… and so on.  You are constantly throwing ideas back and forth with other people. It’s art by team, or art by committee, and that comes with its own set of challenges, for sure.  I happen to enjoy people, especially smart, talented, creative people. But if you just want to sit in your studio and create something, musical theater is probably not for you.

What was it like working on ‘The Sound of Music Live!?’ How was it different from or similar to your previous roles on television (as vocal coach for ‘Grease: You’re The One That I Want,’ ‘Clash of the Choirs’ and ‘America’s Got Talent’)?

G.S. Working on NBC’s “The Sound Of Music” was a real kick.  I’d done a number of jobs in TV/film production before, as you stated above, but most of them were behind-the-scenes kinds of jobs. I have worked one-on-one as a music director or vocal coach for many of those music competition shows. In the film world I’ve also had music supervisory jobs on the ABC TV movie of “Once Upon A Mattress” and the not-yet-released feature film “The Last Five Years.” But on “The Sound Of Music” the job came with a twist. I was hired to be the music director for the nuns.  There were 20 of us in the nun-semble —  24 if you count Audra McDonald (Mother Abbess) and the three featured nuns.  Our job was to sing a cappella, in Latin, on live TV. I know that David Chase, the music supervisor of the entire project, hired me partly because he knew I could sing and that I had both conductor and TV-production experience.  So I taught the vocal parts and conducted the nuns (under David’s leadership), and then I actually got to BE IN THE SHOW as a nun. I sang alto. I wore a habit. I had my own trailer.  I conducted off-stage. It was pretty wild and so much fun.  The music-making on that show was out of this world, and the company of women in our nunnery was not to be surpassed.

Are there any essential words of wisdom to share with aspiring vocalists and/or young folks auditioning for musical theatre?

G.S.  I say get all of the experience you can in all areas of music.  Sing different styles of music. Sing in ensembles, sing with bands, sing with pianists. Audition for things that sound like fun and be willing to go on the adventure. Most of the projects we get asked to do are short-term, so even if it winds up being less spectacular than you expected, it’s still going to add something to your musical bag of tricks.  Work with people who have something to teach you, people who inspire you, people who can connect you.  And then, learn how to say no to things that don’t sound like fun, or things that don’t add to your experiences, and especially say no to things that take advantage of you. Your talent is your commodity. If you choose to give it away, it is just that: a gift. Lend your gift to benefits for organizations you believe in or people who need your help or causes that inspire your passion and your rage. But don’t give it away to people who don’t respect it or value it or understand it.  You have worked too hard to be invisible.

And lastly, you’re stranded on a deserted island, and you get to bring one instrument and five song recordings. What would you bring with you and why?

G.S.  Well, nothing’s going to stay in tune anyway, and the piano that I know I wanted to bring with me probably went down with the ship.  So if I can’t amuse myself by playing through all of Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier (which is really what I would most like to be doing), then I suppose I’d choose the ukulele.  I am learning the ukulele and it is quite versatile and fun.  But I don’t think I can really play Bach fugues on it.  Hmm.  A dilemma.

Five desert-island songs:

  • MIGRATORY V — I have a demo of Mandy Patinkin singing this Adam Guettel song. Just glorious.
  • MAMMA, MAMMA — from “The Most Happy Fella.” One of my all-time favorite moments in one of my all-time favorite shows.
  • SPEAK LOW (WHEN YOU SPEAK LOVE) - Kurt Weill. Sexiest song in the whole world.
  • ON THE SUNNY SIDE OF THE STREET - This is the song I sing to my kids to cheer them up. So, any recording, really, so long as it has some life and some pep.
  • MY ROMANCE - My very favorite song. It was sung by Jessica Molaskey at our wedding. My 4-year old knows all of the words because I sing it to her every night. Perfect song.

Musicnotes would like to offer our sincerest thanks to Ms. Stitt for taking the time to share with all of us. And, be sure to browse the excellent collection of sheet music by Georgia Stitt, which includes an awesome selection of great vocal audition pieces.

 

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Facts, stats and interesting tidbits about the Musicnotes sheet music team! http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/07/18/sheet-music-team/ http://blog.musicnotes.com/2014/07/18/sheet-music-team/#comments Fri, 18 Jul 2014 18:00:00 +0000 http://blog.musicnotes.com/?p=7398 Did you know that more than 4 million awesome musicians trust Musicnotes for their sheet music? And we’re proud to offer over 260,000 digital arrangements covering nearly every genre and instrument. But none of it would be possible without our super team of talented musicians, programmers and designers here at MNHQ in Madison, Wisconsin. We thought it’d be fun to survey our staff and learn a little more about the people behind all the great sheet music! Take a look at our results in the infographic below. Interested in learning more about Musicnotes? Check out our ‘About Us’ page for additional information. Want to join our team? See current job openings.

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Did you know that more than 4 million awesome musicians trust Musicnotes for their sheet music? And we’re proud to offer over 260,000 digital arrangements covering nearly every genre and instrument.

But none of it would be possible without our super team of talented musicians, programmers and designers here at MNHQ in Madison, Wisconsin. We thought it’d be fun to survey our staff and learn a little more about the people behind all the great sheet music! Take a look at our results in the infographic below.

Meet the team behind the sheet music

Interested in learning more about Musicnotes? Check out our ‘About Us’ page for additional information.

Want to join our team? See current job openings.

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