29 November 2021
By Ellie Palmer
This Christmas is the perfect time to make up for the Christmas that many of us lost last year due to the pandemic. Make it one to remember with an extra special gift!
Dave Brubeck: A Life in Time
This biography, written by Philip Clark is a scrupulously researched account of the life of one of music's most famous and most loved pianists. You won’t find an account of Brubeck’s life more accurate than this one.
In issue 114 of Pianist (June-July 2020), the book’s author Philip Clark took us on a moving journey through the life of Dave Brubeck. It’s a little taster for the full book. You can read the article in full inside issue 114 here.
Schumann: The Faces and the Masks
Perhaps it takes a novelist to get inside Schumann's turbulent imagination: step forward Judith Chernaik, the scholar of another pre-eminent ear Romantic, Shelley. Fresh insights into Schumann's life emerge from access to the composer's medical records, and consideration of his output as a writer of words as well as music. It's a tale as gripping as any thriller.
'Play it again: PIANO' course
'Play it again: PIANO' is a three-book piano course written by Melanie Spanswick and published by Schott Music. Intended for those returning to piano playing after a break, the course is also be useful for any teenage or adult piano student requiring a selection of progressive piano pieces to either study alone or whilst working with a teacher.
The perfect stocking filler for a budding pianist!
Janina Fialkowska: A Note in Time
The Polish-Canadian pianist's brand new autobiography describes her meeting with the legendary Arthur Rubinstein who subsequently shaped the course of her career, her colourful adventures as a young North American woman in the male-dominated music world and her final triumph over horrific illness.
Beginning Jazz Piano
This two-part introduction into the world of jazz piano from Schott is an ideal gift for the curious pianist in your life.
Both books contain 100-odd pages and include plentiful and thorough explanations of concepts and exercises to develop your understanding and ear for the genre.
Downloadable audio files are also included!
Song in a Rainstorm: The Story of Musical Prodigy Thomas Blind Tom Wiggins
This children's book, suitable for 4-8 year olds, tells the story of the incredible musical prodigy Thomas "Blind Tom" Wiggins.
Wiggins was born into slavery in the 19th century, and cast aside as useless due to his blindness. However, those around him soon noticed he was a genius at the piano. A beautiful and at times heart-breaking story written by Glenda Armand.
Yeol Eum Son: Kapustin
Kapustin: Eight Concert Etudes Op 40, Sonata No 2, Variations Op 41 etc
There are many great contemporary composers of our time but few write music that we can relate to so easily and closely as Nikolai Kapustin. His exquisite use of techniques and musical languages of classical and jazz ensures that his music appeals to a wide range of listeners.
Korean pianist Yeol Eum Son has long been a champion of the composer Kapustin, and even and became friends with him. This album is therefore a personal and affectionate tribute to this unique genius and a wonderful introduction to his music.
Jean-Yves Thibaudet: Carte Blanche
Works by Brahms, Chopin, Elgar, Gould, Marianelli, Sancan, Scarlatti, Schubert, Gershwin arr. Wild etc
To celebrate his 60th birthday this year, Jean-Yves Thibaudet has – in defiance of the usual tradition – given himself a birthday treat, although happily it’s one he’s sharing with the rest of the world. And what a treat it is.
Thibaudet has chosen a selection of music that he has never recorded before, including Dario Marianelli's commissioned 'Pride & Prejudice Suite' to build on 97m streams for 'Dawn', plus Thibaudet's own transcriptions of Disney's 'When You Wish Upon a Star' and Barber's Adagio for Strings.
Vinyl Record Player
The technology of sound systems may have advanced dramatically since vinyl was first introduced, but it's still incredibly hard to find another music player that can give the same authentic sound as a vinyl player can.
Impressively, modern vinyl players these days still manage to retain most of that authenticity while also combining it with some modern features to make it more accessible. This vinyl player, for example, comes with bluetooth and aux input to allow you to play music from your phone directly onto the player.
A smart little gift.
This fun little beanie is a snug fit. Single knit fluffy layer with a white embroidened quaver.
John Cage 4'33 mug
Give the gift of comedy this Christmas with this humorous John Cage mug.
The mug comes in three different sizes as is made with durable ceramic construction and an easy-grip handle.
Yamaha P-45 digital piano
Looking to gift a new piano to a young learner? The Yamaha P-45 may be the ideal one for them.
The piano includes an 88-note Graded Hammer Standard keyboard, making it ideal for a learner around 11+ given its length. It also uses Yamaha's unique AWM technology to create a wide selection of sampled instrument voices; from acoustic and electric pianos to strings and organs.
What's extra special about this model is that it comes with 3 FREE months of access to Flowkey, a learning app ideal for those who have just started playing the piano.
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