Play Along With The Classics

Decades ago, when my daughter learned to play oboe in school band, I learned to play it as well.

As I got more accomplished in my playing, my favorite thing to do with it, was to play the oboe part along with a recording of a symphony orchestra, from a piano transcription of Brahms' 4th symphony.

That may seem strange, but what might you expect from a teenager constantly listening to Brahms and Beethoven?

When I got my first synthesizer, I began improvising additional instrument parts, along with classics of piano music, such as Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata.

I would just suggest that you improvise your own duet with these pieces, except that with most classical music, they use a lot of accidentals (notes not in the key-signature), which makes improvising with it much more challenging.

But here, I have done the 'heavy-lifting' of improvising an additional part with it, and writing the music, so you can just play from the music.

So what do these pieces this sound like?

Here's an example of what I improvised along with Chopin's Prelude in E-Minor. In this case, I added an Oboe part (the lead), with a Viola part reinforcing the melody of the piano part.

You can listen to it by clicking the following link:

Audio Example Of Chopin's Prelude In E-Minor

This sounds comfortably within classical realms to me. But I can picture either the Oboe part, or the Viola part, done by a wailing distortion guitar, and something that lead guitar players could have fun with.

Hey – if Jimi Hendrix can do it with The Star Spangled Banner, why not you, with Chopin?

Keep in mind, that when you learn to play a new piece of music, it's much easier when you only have to play a single part (such as trumpet, an oboe, or a flute) than to play all of the many parts in a piano piece.

That being said, where the pieces are fairly long, you need to be able to read sheet-music, and to count-out rhythms in sheet-music, to play these pieces. Memorizing the rhythm from the audio file, and then just matching-the-dots for the pitch, works best for shorter pieces, with fewer accidentals.

So if you can read music, and would like to be able to play along with the classics, read on.

With the KeyMusician Keyboard, or a synthesizer, you can play any of the solo parts, and even try your own choice of instrument sounds for them.

Certainly, the enjoyment of playing these pieces is well worth the time learning them. And who knows? It might be in your musical performance future!

Malcolm, playing a Cello solo with piano accompaniment

Here is an alphabetical list of the music I've prepared, for playing along with the classics:

Beethoven – Moonlight Sonata, 1st & 3rd Movements

Chopin - Etude in E-Major

Chopin - Prelude in E-Minor

Watch for more pieces to be added to this list in the future.

I hope this music provides you as much enjoyment, as it has to me! - Aere

You can view the index of all KMK Newsletter articles, by clicking the link below:

Index Of All Newsletter Articles