Thursday, October 1, 2009

New PianoSoft This Week: TV Themes, "The Wizard of Oz" & 60's Teen Pop

This week we have three great new PianoSoft albums for you and your Yamaha instrument that will be especially interesting to those fans of piano music who happen to also be fans of the moving image. Albums featuring music from The Wizard of Oz and classic TV themes will, of course, produce wonderful music on your instrument, but they may also have the unexpected side effect of conjuring up memories from the big and small screens. Look below for more descriptions and samples.

Selections From The Wizard of Oz

This year marks the 60th anniversary of the The Wizard of Oz's first release, but the film's songs, written by Yip Harburg and Harold Arlen, have stood the test of time. Songs like "Over the Rainbow" and "If I Only Had a Brain" are now just deeply ingrained in the musical history of the 20th century, as the movie itself is in the history of television and film. Along with backing instrumentals to fill out the arrangement, pianist Jason Nyberg (who is also featured in our Exercise on Demand video) creates a piano interpretation of The Wizard of Oz which captures the same spirit of fantasy that makes the original songs and film so universal and captivating.

"Where the Boys Are" - The Feminine Side of the '60s

The early 1960s were a wonderful time for innocent, fun, tuneful pop music, and some of the best teen pop hits of the era are now available on this PianoSoft album. Pianist Sue Downs brings elegance, verve and a lighthearted sense of teenage energy to these songs that will really make them sing on your instrument. Among the most easily recognizable tunes on the album are Leslie Gore's duo of hits, "It's My Party" and "Judy's Turn to Cry". Also featured are three of Connie Francis's greatest hits, "Among My Souvenirs", "Lipstick on Your Collar", and the title track "Where the Boys Are".

The Best Jazzy TV Themes!

Sometimes a TV theme song sums up a show's felling and mood so well that it becomes inseparable from the show itself, and other times the theme song is so good it even overshadows the show. Anyone who's ever enjoyed a theme song more than a show ought to find something to love here. The album is heavy on classics from the 70s golden age of the theme song - the stirring "Suicide is Painless" from M*A*S*H, the unforgettable light hearted funk from Sanford & Son, "Love Is All Around" from The Mary Tyler Moore Show - but also includes more recent favorites like the theme from Sex and the City. Plus, the album is a real treat for Henry Mancini fans, as it includes the timeless themes he penned for The Pink Panther and the Peter Gunn spinoff Mr. Lucky. Pianist Tom Zink instills all of the songs with his characteristic jazzy flair, making the record indispensable for jazz fans and TV fans alike.

- Doug