Thursday, March 31, 2011

New Yamaha MIDI Songs: Green Day, Taylor Swift And More!

This week we've added a few essential MIDI songs from Pop-Punkers Green Day, one of Modern Country star Taylor Swift's biggest hits, and some smooth R&B courtesy of Shola Ama. And it doesn't end there! Check out all the latest MIDI songs available exclusively at Yamaha MusicSoft and Internet Direct Connection. There's no better place to find the MIDI songs you need for your Yamaha keyboard.

Know Your Enemy
Green Day



Basket Case
Green Day



Back To December
Taylor Swift



You Might Need Somebody
Shola Ama



Umbrella
The Baseballs


Jukeboxen
Streaplers


Schenk mir einen Stern
Andrea Berg


Je vecht nooit alleen
3Js


~Drew

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Yamaha MusicSoft MIDI Year In Review: 2005!

In 2005, George W. Bush was inaugurated for his second term as US President. The largest passenger airliner in the world, the A380 made it's maiden flight, and French surgeons conducted the world's first human face transplant. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire topped the US Box Office, while Crash took home the Oscar for Best Film.


In music news, Mariah Carey was the first female artist to hold the #1 and #2 spots simultaneously on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. Madonna saw her 36th top ten single with the song "Hung Up", and 12 rock music albums scored number 1 in the USA. This was the first time even ten albums had scored number 1 since 1996.

A set of 10 simultaneous concerts called "Live 8" took place around the globe as part of the Make Poverty History campaign, and several concerts were held for Tsunami Disaster Relief.

If you'd like to take a more in-depth trip down (not so distant) memory lane, you'll find the Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles of 2005 here. Below, we'll take a look at some of our favorites from 2005, all of which are available as Play Along MIDI songs at Yamaha MusicSoft and Internet Direct Connection.

Pon de Replay
Rihanna



Soul Meets Body
Death Cab For Cutie



Read more...


Because Of You
Kelly Clarkson



Holiday
Green Day



Cool
Gwen Stefani



Mr. Brightside
The Killers



Sugar, We're Going Down
Fall Out Boy



You're Beautiful
James Blunt



Karma
Alicia Keys



~Drew

New PianoSoft: The Best Of The Best!

This week's new PianoSoft pays tribute to two influential North American composers:
Oscar Peterson and Jerry Herman.

Montreal native Oscar Peterson is considered to be one of the greatest jazz composers of all times, with over 200 released recordings and seven Grammy awards in a career that lasted more than 60 years.

Peterson's best known works include Body and Soul, Indiana, and Bossa Beguine, all of which have been arranged for solo piano and performed by Marian Petrescu on "Oscar Peterson Tribute" Listen to a few samples from this outstanding collection below:

Cakewalk


Jitterbug Waltz


Body And Soul


Here's a clip of Marian Petrescu performing Indiana live at NAMM 2011!



Jerry Herman is an American composer that is known for his work in musical theater on Broadway. His most famous works include Hello, Dolly! and La Cage aux Folles, both of which earned Herman the prestigious Tony Award. In 2009, Jerry Herman received the Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre, and in 2010 he received the Kennedy Center Honors.

"The Best Of Times" - Songs Of Jerry Herman has been masterfully crafted by Yamaha's First Lady of the Disklavier: Sue Downs! This collection features 10 solo piano arrangements of Broadway classics including Mame, Bosom Buddies, and Hello, Dolly!.

Hello, Dolly!


I Am What I Am


Time Heals Everything


Here's a touching clip from the 2010 Kennedy Honors show, which serves as a brief history of the legend that is Jerry Herman:



These new PianoSoft collections are available exclusively from Yamaha MusicSoft and Internet Direct Connection.

~Drew

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Bert Smorenburg And The Yamaha Disklavier!

Yamaha demonstrator Bert Smorenburg recently sat down with the Yamaha E3 Disklavier to explain some of the key features of this amazing instrument. Topics covered in the video below include the Silent Piano Function, Audio Playback capabilities, MIDI and Audio Recording, and Tempo and Transpose tools. Have a look at the most advanced piano in the world!




And don't forget: All PianoSoft software for the Yamaha Disklavier is 20% off through March 31st at Yamaha MusicSoft!

~Drew

Spring Sale! Save 20% On Everything At Yamaha Online Services!

The snow seems to be gone(at least in our corner of the world), and we want to celebrate! That's why we're offering a store wide 20% discount on everything available at Yamaha MusicSoft and Internet Direct Connection.

All Premium Packs and Voices, Premium Styles, MIDI files, PianoSoft, Sheet Music and Digital Lesson Books are 20% off through March 31st.




Happy Spring!

~Drew

*Offer excludes Piano Radio and all other subscription services. Offer cannot be combined with other promotions. Sale ends April 1st 12AM EST.

Friday, March 25, 2011

New Yamaha Styles Make It Easy To Be The Life Of The Party!

This week's new Yamaha Styles add more depth to the ever growing catalog of Spanish Styles at Yamaha MusicSoft, but that's not all: They'll also get your body moving! From the most authentic Rumba, to a rock inspired Bossa beat, you're sure to find something to add to your arsenal of amazing Yamaha Styles. Get in the groove and let the good times roll!!

New Rumba
The Latin percussion, piano and classical guitar are so spot on in this Style. Easily the most authentic Rumba Style to date!



Alma Blues
A Spanish Blues style with electronic drums and Latin percussion, featuring deep bass tones and some killer synth sounds!



Alaska Disco
An aggressive tempo drives this Style and makes you want to dance! A thick string section and some really funky polyryhthmic percussion give this one something extra!



Dance Field
Dance Field is a perfect Style for uptempo pop tunes. Instantly memorable, and extremely versatile with a solid beat and interesting synth patches.



Rock Bossa
A unique bossa beat with a big organ sound and screaming lead guitar. This style puts a great rock spin on a classic Spanish theme.




I also wanted to talk a little bit about how you can use Style files. In most cases, a Style is "inspired" by an actual song, but any Style can be used to play many different songs. When you load a Style into your Yamaha keyboard, it's up to you to direct the movement of the song. When you are playing chords with your left hand, you're basically directing the rest of the band to play along! Pick a popular song that you know how to play, or use Styles to work on your own compositions. It's a lot of fun!

To get you started, I made a list of Styles below that were designed with a specific song in mind. Like all Styles, you can play whatever you like, but this may give you some insight on how additional Styles can give you effective tools for practice and performing live.

Burning Rock - Try using this one to play "Burnin' For You" by Blue Oyster Cult.
Blind Beat - This Style is perfect for Stevie Wonder's "I Just Called To Say I Love You"
Groovy Ballad - I hear Phil Collins' "Groovy Kind Of Love" in this Style.
Phils Day - More Phil Collins, with a Style for "Another Day In Paradise"
Funk Rock - A perfect Style for Maroon 5's smash hit "This Love"
8 Days Shuffle - Try 8 Days A Week by the Beatles, or make up your own pop song with a 60's vibe!

Enjoy your weekend!

~Drew

NEW: The French Composer Channel On Yamaha's Piano Radio!

Since the seventeenth century, the influence of French and particularly Parisian culture could be found throughout Europe, eventually spreading to the far corners of the world in the nineteenth century. France has played an important role in the development of modern cinema, fashion, music, and cuisine, not to mention the country is more or less synonymous with romance.

We are pleased to introduce a brand new channel to Yamaha's Piano Radio service:
The French Composer Channel. The new channel features popular classical works from Claude Debussy and Maurice Ravel, who are considered to be the two "great" composers from the Impressionist period of the early 20th century. Beginning today, you can enjoy this timeless music in your home, playing on your world class Yamaha instrument, whenever you feel like listening! If you have never connected your instrument to the Piano Radio service, it's never been easier! Just visit our new Connection Guide and you can be enjoying Piano Radio in just minutes!

Here are some examples of the beautiful piano arrangements that have been included in the new French Composer's Channel on Yamaha's Piano Radio:

Serenade
Performed by Sara Davis Buechner on the PianoSoft Collection "French Miniatures"


Clair de Lune
As performed by Bryan Pezzone on the PianoSoft Collection "Debussy Piano Works"

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Pop, Rock, Punk, Metal, And More! - New MIDI At Yamaha Online Services!


This week we've added 10 fully editable MIDI song files to our ever-expanding MIDI catalog at Yamaha MusicSoft and Internet Direct Connection. Lily Allen and Mariah Carey make appearances alongside Nu Metal giants Linkin Park, and everybody's favorite Pop/Punk band Green Day.

Yamaha MIDI songs use the innovative learning technology built into Yamaha MIDI keyboards to make it easy to learn and play along with your favorite music. If you need more in depth instruction to get the musical ball rolling, try the Learn & Master Piano Course! This product has only been available at Yamaha MusicSoft for a week, and has already received overwhelmingly positive reviews! Read the full review here!

Take a closer listen to the new MIDI songs below, or browse our entire catalog here.

Bye Bye
Mariah Carey



Your Body Is A Wonderland
John Mayer



Doesn't Mean Anything
Alicia Keys



American Idiot
Green Day



The Fear
Lily Allen



Waiting For The End
Linkin Park


Stay
Hurts


Road To Hell
Chris Rea


Sentimental Journey
Pete Tex


Hey, Wir Wolln Die Eisbarn Sehn
Jurgen Drews, Puhdys


All of these MIDI songs are now available at Yamaha MusicSoft And Internet Direct Connection.

Have a fantastic weekend!

~Drew

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Yamaha Online Services MIDI Year In Review: 1975!

In 1975, Wheel Of Fortune and Saturday Night Live premiered on NBC. The Steelers beat the Vikings in Super Bowl IX, and The Rocky Horror Picture Show opened on Broadway. Bill Gates founded Microsoft in New Mexico, and Muhammad Ali defeated Joe Frazier in a boxing match in the Philippines.

In music news, Peter Gabriel left Genesis, and the seminal heavy metal band Iron Maiden is formed. Three Led Zeppelin concerts at Madison Square Garden sold out in a record 4 hours, and the film version of The Who's Tommy premiered in London. Join us this week as we review some of the best songs from 1975, all of which are available in Play Along MIDI format for your Yamaha Keyboard at Yamaha MusicSoft and Internet Direct Connection.

Love Will Keep Us Together
Captain & Tennille



Philadelphia Freedom
Elton John




Fame

David Bowie



Shining Star
Earth, Wind & Fire



Thank God I'm A Country Boy
John Denver




Jive Talkin'

Bee Gees




Kung Fu Fighting

Carl Douglas



Brown Sugar
The Rolling Stones



Pinball Wizard
The Who



Communication Breakdown
Led Zeppelin



~Drew

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

All Yamaha Premium Packs And Voices Are 20% Through March 20th!!

For a limited time, all Yamaha Premium Packs and Voices have been discounted 20% on Yamaha MusicSoft. Yamaha Premium Voices are created to the exacting standards of the factory installed voices already in your Tyros4! When you install Yamaha Premium Voices into your Tyros4, you are making a significant upgrade to the instrument, and adding an arsenal of top notch Voices to the world's best Arranger/Workstation.

Premium Packs and Voices that are now on sale:

Vintage Keyboard Pack
Included in the pack are a variety of voices which simulate classic electronic piano sounds. The unique sounds of these pianos were a result of their particular construction, in which metal tines or reeds were struck by hammers, with the sound then amplified by electromagnetic pickups.
In the Vintage Keyboard pack, Yamaha has created voices which masterfully emulate both the reed and tine variations of these ‘electro-mechanical’ electronic pianos.

In addition to the recreation of these well known electric piano sounds, this pack includes voices from two of Yamaha’s most popular keyboard models, the legendary Yamaha “DX7” and “CP80”.




SA2 Tenor Saxophones
With the new expansion, you get two great Sax sounds: the SA2 Pop Tenor Saxophone Voice is ideally suited for pop ballads and standards while the character of the SA2 Funk Tenor Saxophone Voice is a slightly harder and dirtier, making it great for jazz and funk music where you want the lead saxophone to really scream




SA2 Alto Saxophones
With this expansion, you get two great Sax sounds: the SA2 Pop Alto Saxophone voice lends itself to pop and jazz standards and is great for playing lead melodies. The SA2 Funk Alto Saxophone voice has a very dynamic sound - if you play softly it is clean and smooth, but play harder and you can really hear it growl.





Included in this pack:
Super Articulation 2 Trombone Voice
Registration Bank
Demo Song


Included In This Pack:
4 Super Articulation Voices
14 Live Voices
2 Mega Voices
10 Styles
60's Bossa
3 Multipads
2 Registration Banks
2 Demo Songs


Included In This Pack:
30 Organ Voices
10 Organ Styles
3 Multipads
2 Registration Banks
2 Demo Songs




Included In This Pack:
Super Articulation 2 PanFluteLatin Voice
Super Articulation 2 PanFluteBallad
2 Registration Banks
2 Demo Songs




20% discount is available on All Premium Packs And Voices at Yamaha MusicSoft. Offer expires at 12:00 AM EDT on Monday, March 21st, 2011. Offer cannot be combined with any other promotions.

~Drew

Introducing: The Learn & Master Piano Course from Legacy Learning Systems!

We are proud to offer the new Learn & Master Piano Course from Legacy Learning Systems at Yamaha MusicSoft! This course is absolutely perfect for any beginner, intermediate, or advanced player who wants to further their skills as a pianist.

Learn & Master Piano includes 10 DVD lesson discs, 5 play along audio CDs, as well as a comprehensive, easy to follow lesson book to guide you through all 28 lessons at your own pace. In addition, you also have access to an additional downloadable lesson book and the online student support community! As you progress through the course , you will receive video emails from the book's author Will Barrow, to give you additional pointers.

We offer a lot of lesson content at Yamaha MusicSoft, but this is the first complete master course for all skill levels. Learn & Master Piano is the next best thing to private, in-home instruction, and at a fraction of the cost. Plus, you can control your level of commitment, practicing when you have the time, and moving on when you're ready!

This course is designed to keep students interested by providing reachable goals in each session that give the student a sense of accomplishment. The student begins by learning the basics such as:

&bull The Notes On The Keyboard
&bull Major Chords and Bass Notes
&bull Minor Chords
&bull How To Use The Sustain Pedal

And this is just the first 4 lessons! At this point, you'll be ready to play most Pop or Rock songs with confidence.

Each lesson has sheet music, exercises, and references to "play along" audio tracks on the included Audio CDs. This gives the student the opportunity to play learned material in a variety of interesting and fun ways!

Intermediate players can brush up on the basics, or move right on to more advanced concepts including:

&bull Arpeggios and Triplets
&bull Major 7th Chords and Sixteenth Notes
&bull Blues Concepts (Dominant Seventh Chords)
&bull 12 Bar Blues

These lessons will build upon the basics you've already learned to give you more musical tools on the piano. The student will learn everything needed to play the Blues like a pro, while getting familiar with concepts for more advanced piano playing such as Boogie-Woogie and Syncopated Rhythms.

The more advanced pianist can jump right into complex "walking" bass lines. The left hand will get stronger and stronger toward the end of the course, with specific focus on moving bass lines and grace notes. You'll find dedicated lessons on the following ideas:

&bull Suspended Chords and Harmony
&bull Modern Pop Piano and Major 2 Chords
&bull The Blues Scale and Sixth Chords
&bull Ragtime and Stride Piano
&bull Jazz and Hot & Cool Piano
&bull Vocal Accompaniment

By the end of this course, you'll be playing ragtime and stride piano with ease, and have a firm understanding of some Jazz concepts such as swing phrasing, chord voicing and improvisation.

Check out the video below from Learn & Master Piano's author Will Barrow:




There is one thing really stands out in Legacy's Learn & Master Piano Course that sets it apart from all others: It's really easy and fun to work through. You won't find page after page of tiny transcriptions, and music theory is not forced upon the student in a traditional, stuffy manner. Here the focus is on helping the student learn enough to start playing and having fun with the piano right away. Combining interactive tools, DVD, Audio, and supplemental workshops, this is hands down the most complete piano course available today.

The Learn & Master Piano Course and the Bonus Workshop DVD's are now available from Yamaha MusicSoft.


~Drew

Thursday, March 10, 2011

St. Patrick's Day Channel on Yamaha's Piano Radio!

Saint Patrick is the most commonly recognized patron saint of Ireland, and while the origin of this holiday lies within the Catholic faith, it has since grown into an international celebration of Irish culture. In the United States, March has been declared Irish-American Heritage Month by Congress or the US President every year since 1991. Yamaha Online Services is celebrating the holiday all month long with the St. Patrick's Day Channel on Yamaha's Piano Radio! Tune in anytime you're in the mood for a traditional Irish Reel, Hornpipe, Jig, or a good old fashioned Irish Love Song!

The St. Patrick's Day Channel on Yamaha's Piano Radio will be available 24/7, now through the end of March! If you've never used Piano Radio, or have never connected your instrument to the internet, have a look at our new Connection Guide. We've made it easier than ever to connect your instrument to the internet and experience all that Yamaha Online Services has to offer!

Listen to a few examples of what you can expect to hear this month on the new St. Patrick's Day Channel:

Danny Boy
Traditional Irish Folk Song as performed by Sydney Jill Lehman on the PianoSoft Solo Collection Sydney Jill Lehman- I'm Old Fashioned


When Irish Eyes Are Smiling
As performed by John Coffey on the PianoSoft Solo Collection When Irish Eyes Are Smiling


~Drew

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Yamaha Online Services MIDI Year In Review: 1991!

In 1991, George H. W. Bush was the President of the United States, the average price for a gallon of gas was $1.14USD, Comedy Central was launched as a national network, and the Web Browser was introduced by Tim Berners-Lee.

Just as much was changing in music. Many have referred to 1991 as "The Year Punk Broke", due to the breakthrough of the Seattle band Nirvana, and the decline of 80's Glam Metal. With Nirvana's success, other seminal 90's rock bands like Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, and Alice In Chains came into the mainstream. Rock music lost Queen front man Freddie Mercury and KISS drummer Eric Carr in 1991. Metallica and Guns N Roses released wildly successful albums respectively. The Hip Hop music scene was diversifying as well. A Tribe Called Quest, and De La Soul both released important albums that would later define the Alternative Rap Genre. Since 2011 marks the 20 year anniversary of all of these changes in music, please join us in taking a look at some of the best songs from 1991. The best part is, you can load them all into your Yamaha MIDI keyboard and play along!


Nothing Else Matters

Metallica



More Than Words
Extreme



To Be With You
Mr. Big



Unbelievable
EMF



Baby Baby
Amy Grant



Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now)
C+C Music Factory




Losing My Religion

REM



Wind Of Change
Scorpions




Black Or White

Michael Jackson




All of these songs and many more are available from Yamaha MusicSoft.

~Drew

New PianoSoft- The Beatles 4Ever And "Duke Of Earl" The Best Of The Early '60s!


PianoSoft is performed by actual pianists using a Yamaha piano, so when you play them on your Yamaha instrument, you will be hearing them exactly as they were performed. It's almost like inviting a world class pianist to your home to perform your favorite songs, anytime you're in the mood to hear them!

This week's new PianoSoft adds depth to our stellar catalog of piano arrangements featuring a new collection of music from the Beatles, and the greatest songs of the early 1960's.

"I Will"
The Beatles
Arranged and Performed by Joel Plimmer

This collection features 9 of the Fab Four's greatest hits in the famous PianoSoft Plus format. Joel Plimmer's approach to the Beatles music is simply blissful. He has captured all the wonderful melodies of songs like Penny Lane, Good Day Sunshine, and Blackbird while representing the essential rhythm and harmony elements that make the Beatles music so unmistakable.

Martha My Dear


Blackbird


I Will


"Duke Of Earl"- The Best Of The Early '60s
Various Artists
Arranged and Performed by Tom Zink

Tom Zink is a gifted arranger, composer, and pianist, in addition to being one of the biggest names in PianoSoft! On the Duke Of Earl collection, Tom gives us 12 beautifully arranged tracks from the early sixties that are certain to inspire nostalgia. Favorites include Walk Right In, The Lion Sleeps Tonight, and Georgia On My Mind. When you strip a song of its instrumentation and production so all that is left is the piano, you can really hear the foundations of good songwriting. This collection illustrates this point effortlessly.

Please Mr. Postman
The Marvelettes


Save The Last Dance For Me
The Drifters


Duke Of Earl
Gene Chandler



~Drew

Friday, March 4, 2011

Remembering The Chart Topping Songs Of The 1960's At Yamaha MusicSoft!

The 60's was a time of radical change and discovery in pop music in the United States. Pop music from this era broke boundaries in place from the 50's and saw the rise of rock music. Singer Songwriters that wrote and performed their own songs became much more common. Rock music evolved to include sub-genres such as folk rock, progressive rock, and pyschedelic rock.

If you love the music from the original British Invasion, Surf Rock, Garage Rock, Roots Rock, or Blues Rock, you're sure to find all you need to play the great songs from this decade at Yamaha MusicSoft. Check out some of the Number 1 Songs from the 1960's in our recap below:

The Theme From "A Summer Place"
Percy Faith - 1960




Tossin' And Turnin'
Bobby Lewis - 1961




I Can't Stop Loving You
Ray Charles - 1962




He's So Fine
The Chiffons - 1963




I Want To Hold Your Hand
The Beatles - 1964




(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction
The Rolling Stones - 1965




Windy
The Association - 1967




Hey Jude
The Beatles - 1968




Aquarius. Let The Sunshine In
The 5th Dimension - 1969




In The Year 2525
Zager & Evans - 1969




All of these songs and more are available from Yamaha MusicSoft and Internet Direct Connection.

~Drew

Travel From Louisiana To Spain With This Weeks New Styles!

This week we have new Yamaha Premium Styles that are perfect for cruising through the bayou, or down the river! We've also added a host of Spanish Dance Styles to the Yamaha Style Catalog. Style files are great for performance and practice, and can be useful songwriting tools! The new Styles and many, many, more, are available at Yamaha MusicSoft and Internet Direct Connection.

Country Bayou
A real "pickers" Style featuring the classic I, IV, V progression that is perfect for old HanK Williams tunes. The trumpets in this style bring to mind the rebel country genre with a Tex Mex flair. Think Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, and Kitty Wells, and you're ready to play some 50's Country music! Featured voices include SA2 Harmonica and a Vintage Telecaster style guitar with just the right amount of reverb.




Sing-A-Long Waltz
This is an endlessly versatile English Waltz Style featuring the "EvenBars" Organ voice and the world famous Yamaha Piano sound. The rhythm section boasts a truly premium brush sound on the snare and a warm upright bass. With a nod to the "sweet bands" of the late 1940's and 50's, this Style easily lends itself to sing alongs, dancing and listening for pleasure.




We've also added 5 new Styles to our ever-expanding catalog. These Styles are available in optimized versions, to give you the highest quality file for your instrument.

Disko2 Samba
Funky guitar,a typical disco era string section, and authentic percussion will help you recreate the sounds of Carnaval in Rio! Also included in Spanish Style Style Pack 3


Orch Pasodoble
A firey orchestral double step Style with a melancholic undertone. Featuring traditional castanets, Spanish guitar, violin and bright trumpets. Also featured in Spanish Style Pack 3



Rumba Dance
The Rumba from Spain is a bit different than you may expect. This Style features a similar dance groove to the "Macarena" dance hit. Panned synth sounds make this one extra fun to play with headphones. Part of Spanish Style Pack 3.


Zaphire Dance
Another Spanish Dance Style featuring powerful, symphonic elements, and variable intensity. This Style ranges from very sparse to extremely orchestrated. Also available as part of Spanish Style Pack 3


Spanish Duo Ballad
This Style combines both the rhythm of Bolero in 2 of the variations, and a romantic 6/8 ballad in the others. Beautifully orchestrated, lush and powerful. Also available as part of Spanish Style Pack 3.



~Drew