Collection of appealing compositions for piano by Manfred Schmitz in popular music styles, ranging from easy to challenging
In addition to the innumerable piano pieces for children by famous composers, we also know the well-loved and proven pieces of teaching literature from:
- Album For The Youth (Robert Schumann)
- Youth Album (Peter Tchaikowsky)
- Children's Album (Aram Chatchaturjan)
In these works, the composers introduce us to their own personal style in a loving and responsible fashion through small piano pieces. These musical vignettes are both an acoustic and enduring documentation of their respective musical languages and differing eras. A YOUTH ALBUM like the one you have in your hands is, in respect to the chronology of the albums mentioned above, long overdue. Including Jazz, Rock, Blues, Boogie Woogie, Ragtime and Pop pieces, this album concentrates solely on popular music which itself has developed and its influence widened in the most diverse and undreamt -of ways in the course of the last few decades. Today, popular music captivates young people and functions as their primary listening environment from the earliest days of childhood. It's only natural that one wants to play the music that one hears everyday. And as soon as the basics of piano playing have been tackled and one can get around the keyboard with some facility, it's time for something new!
Although one can easily sing along and "feel" the beat of popular music, each individual style has it's own typical characteristics and difficulties, which, primarily concerning rhythm, take some getting used to on the keyboard. Certain melodic turns, chord progressions and rhythmic anomalies define each style whether it's Jazz, Rock, Blues, Boogie Woogie, Ragtime or Popmusic. In this YOUTH ALBUM, these features are taught in a fun way starting with the easiest pieces. The subtleties of stylistically typical articulation elevate your interpretation and increase the fun factor at the same time. You should thus pay careful attention to them.
The YOUTH ALBUM should be your long term partner as you can find pieces at your present technical level (i. e. very easy – easy - medium -advanced) and in your favorite style. Curiosity can lead to playing other styles; maybe you will find a new favorite! Given the broad spectrum of styles and levels of difficulty covered in the book, the YOUTH ALBUM can become the constant companion of every one who plays the piano.
So, have lots of fun and practice, practice, practice!
Youth album for piano
Who wouldn’t draw a link between the “Youth Album” by Manfred Schmitz and similar titles of piano music compositions from the last centuries as the "Youth Album" by Peter Tchaikovsky, the "Children's Album" by Aram Khachaturian and especially the "Album for the Youth "by Robert Schumann? Those collections of pieces reflect not only the individual style of its composers, but also the musical language of their time. Manfred Schmitz’s “Youth Album for Piano” ranges in this sense and tradition as a collection of appealing pieces in currently popular music styles for pianists-to-be.
Manfred Schmitz (1939-2014), who was as a pianist, composer and arranger one of the most important representatives of the popular music of his time, was an extraordinarily prolific teacher and author of didactical music literature. As a lecturer at the conservatoire Franz Liszt in Weimar he already composed the JAZZ PARNASS, which is now a standard book which practically every pianist in Germany-speaking countries knows.
Extensive experiences with students of all ages are reflected in several works for piano and ensemble. Many of his teaching and playing books were published with AMA, just like his last book for piano with the meaningful title POP PARNASS. A central concern of his didactic work has always been to solidly mediate the craft of stylistic elements of Jazz, Blues and Pop while always having fun through all learning phases.
In this sense, the Youth Album with its 121 pieces in Jazz, Rock, Blues, Boogie-Woogie, Ragtime or Pop-Romance, ranging in difficulty from very easy to challenging, frames the perfect addition to Schmitz’s textbooks. This collection can be a longtime companion for learning or playing the piano and can complete the “classical” repertoire for piano class and or solo concerts.
Inspiration for one’s own interpretation can be found on a separate CD (
AMA No. 626647) through recordings by the composer himself.
The “Youth Album for Piano” by Manfred Schmitz received the German Music Editions-Award 1999 in the category “school and teaching literature for children”.
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