Hymn of Grateful Praise New Piano Arrangement

Just in time for Thanksgiving- Introducing Hymn of Grateful Praise! (For The Beauty Of The Earth) piano solo arrangement! Accessible Intermediate level piano solo arranged by Chris Dortignac. Performance Time: 3min. 44 seconds. Seven pages total. Digital download delivered right to your inbox

$2.99 Now only $1.99


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For The Beauty Cover

Hymn of Grateful Praise-Sample

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Pre-Order HYMNPROVISATION BOOK

Finally, at long last, you can now pre-order your very own spiral-bound Hymnprovisation book! Pre-order your copy today and save 40%!

Estimated ship date is October 12, 2017.

For less than the price of two piano lessons, you will get the equivalent of at least 80 piano improvisation lessons in a single spiral-bound handbook chock full of illustrations!

-44Days -22Hours -54Minutes -39Seconds

$49.99 Order yours today for only $29.99!!

ORDER NOW

This book will make you a better pianist by helping you harness your own creativity and imagination to effectively improvise and accompany hymns and gospel songs so that you can quickly become a more confident and proficient pianist!

Hymprovisation will challenge you with fresh ideas and new ways of approaching time-tested techniques. This is not a step-by-step manual, but an innovative approach which will help you develop and create your own library of techniques which you can pull from.

Learn how you can effectively play the words by using the techniques in this book to make your accompaniment dynamic!

Learn how to handle emergencies like a pro!

Master the ability to easily transpose any song!

Discover who your audience is, as well as many other valuable insights the author has learned the hard way over 20 years of accompanying soloists, congregations, choirs and ensembles.

Learn how to develop your ear.

Uncover the secrets of chords and much, much more!

Written in plain English and geared toward all levels of pianists with something for everyone, from elementary, to intermediate and advanced. Includes more than 200 pages with over 150 examples for your convenience.

What others are saying:

“Written by a “practitioner” for the people of the pew.” –Faye Lopez (SC)

“Excellent resource! I feel like there is something in this handbook that every pianist at every level could learn from.” –Annie Danae, (CA)

“…an invaluable resource.” –Becca Lee Shove (ID)              


Learn how to use creative techniques to effectively improvise and accompany hymns and gospel songs. Some of the topics addressed are how to:

  • Play the Words
  • Use Octaves
  • Runs (right and left hand, chromatic, diatonic, and patterns)
  • Chords and their inversions
  • Chord substitutions
  • Chord uses
  • Harmonies
  • Playing by ear
  • Melodic left-hand intervals (tenths, fifths, sixths, sevenths)
  • Left hand stride (Down beats and after beats)
  • Arpeggios (ascending, descending, left, right, and crossover)
  • Patterns and forms (break up chords in different ways [root, fifth, tenth, etc])
  • Simple or complex improvisations
  • Trills, mordents, glissando, octave rolls
  • Major/minor
  • Key changes
  • Segues, Bridges, Transitions, Interludes, Cadences.
  • Styles-Classical, Baroque, Romantic, Classic, Black Gospel, Southern Gospel, “Romantic Gospel”, Praise and Worship and CCM.
  • Timing nuances within (and without) the posted signature
  • Dynamics
  • Endings
  • And much more!

In over 20 years of accompanying congregations, soloists choirs and ensembles at churches, camps, and other events all over the U.S. and in Central America, this book is a partial representation of the many things I have had to learn the hard way. Now you won’t have to make the same mistakes I did! Hymnprovisation is geared toward all levels of pianists, with elementary, intermediate and some advanced techniques as well. 200+ pages with more than 150 examples.

Scheduled release: October 12th 2017

$49.99 . Pre-order for only $29.99!

PRE-ORDER YOUR COPY TODAY

(You will be redirected to our secure SamCart checkout page)

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CORRECTION on Music Conference Simulcast Start Time

I was mistaken. It happens sometimes. Maybe more often than not…

The Getty Music Conference is in the CENTRAL Time Zone, NOT the EASTERN Time Zone. I knew that! But I had mental-pause…

I just checked the countdown timer and it says they will start in a half hour…which still doesn’t line up with 1pm Central Time. What this means to you, is that you will want to tune in, oh, right about 30 min. from right now which is 10am PST, 11am MST, 12pm CST, or 1pm EST.

If you have already registered, you can still watch the simulcast HERE.

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Reminder- Getty Worship Music Conference: Sing!

Don’t forget, the Getty Worship Music Conference: Sing! begins today. If you have signed up for the live simulcast, it will begin at 1pm EST, that is 10am (just over an hour from now) for you folks on the West Coast!

If you have already registered, you can watch the simulcast HERE.

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Getty Music Worship Conference: Sing!

Why do we sing?  It seems like a funny question – in our churches, it’s just what we do, every Sunday morning.  But really, why do we sing?  Furthermore, what does our singing say about our view of God? How does it reflect our relationship with the Lord and with each other as believers? What is the importance of congregational singing?

Keith and Kristyn Getty, modern-day hymn-writers, have teamed up with an amazing list of speakers and musicians to answer these questions and more.  If you’ve heard any of the Getty’s music, you probably know the wonderful depth it has both theologically and musically.  This coming week in Nashville, more than 4,000 believers from over 16 countries will be gathering for the very first Getty Music Worship Conference: Sing!  Now, however, you can join them through the free, live simulcast they are offering, September 18-20!  RSVP now and receive a free songbook download with 25 of Keith and Kristyn’s songs.

I know this is a late notice, but I didn’t find out about it until yesterday and was unable to post anything until now. However, you can still get the entire conference on demand because they are also making available all 70 hours available by purchasing a LifeWay Digital Pass as an individual or with a group rate here.

So, what are you waiting for? While you’re there, check out the Getty’s new book titled “Sing!” (If you order through the link, you get a really great discount.)

Learn more here.

 

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Master Class with Greg Howlett and Heather Sorenson

Another Upcoming Master Class with Greg Howlett!

Saturday, March 18, from 3:00 – 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (12:00 – 2:00 Pacific Standard Time), Composer, arranger, producer, and pianist, Greg Howlett is hosting another online class, this time with highly-experienced arranger and teacher Heather Sorenson.  (Learn more about Heather here.)

The first hour will feature tips and answering questions, and for the second hour, the two musicians will evaluate 3 original arrangements sent in by students.  The cost for observers is a mere $9.99! If you think this is a lot, or aren’t sure you will get your money’s worth out of this, I can assure you that it is totally worth it! You won’t be disappointed with the wealth of information these two experts bring to the table.

Greg is very generous to do host these master classes, however, due to technical constraints, class size is limited this time, so don’t wait!

Master Class – Greg Howlett and Heather Sorenson

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Book Update March 2017

For those of you waiting on Hymnprovisation: The Art of Effective Improvisational Accompaniment-a Handbook for the church accompanist, which was supposed to be ready by March 1, I have good and bad news:

First, the bad: It isn’t done being proofed yet. We will then ahve to make the necessary changes/edits, and then send it to the printer.

The good news, is that we are really close! In the meantime, we are still working on cover art, finding the right printer, and obtaining the necessary copyright permission and a preorder page which should be up shortly.

To learn more about this book, you can visit this page.

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Damien Sneed-“Taking a Hymn To Church” Gospel Style

If you have ever wanted to apply a Gospel Style to your hymn playing, this is for you!

How to take a hymn and “Gospelize” it. Damien takes the well-known hymn, Precious Lord, Take My Hand and applies gospel styles to it. In this video, Damien shows how you can use something other than the basic I, IV, and V, or basic down beat/after beats in the left hand, for hymn playing, this video will expand your horizons a bit!

Learn gospel music techniques at the piano with accomplished pianist Damien Sneed.

Mr Sneed has an impressive biography that includes everything from Classical, to gospel, to jazz, to CCM. You can read more about him here.

This video is posted for the purpose of furthering your musical education and imagination. We believe there is valuable content in this video clip, however, not everything in every video we post is wholly endorsed by hymnprovisation.com. If you do not like it, you are free to turn it off.

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Complete Website Makeover

 

 

Dear Fellow Musicians and Worship leaders,

 

It’s a new year, and we are finally getting around a complete makeover of the Hymnprovisation.com website and branding to make it more readable, useful and practical for you.

We are in the process of a complete makeover of Hymnprovisation.com which will include a new header, logo, and new design to serve you better. In addition, we plan on adding new content, sheet music for sale, and pre-sales of the book,

Hymnprovisation- The art of improvising and effective accompaniment. 

Our goal is to serve fellow musicians by collecting and offering useful information, advice, input and training, for church musicians, worship leaders and hobby musicians. We hope to do this through the means of this website that is both easy to navigate and also meets the needs of our readers in a clean and professional manner.

We need your input!

In order to do this well, we are going to need your help!

We’ve created a short survey that we think will help us narrow down the needs of our readers to better serve them. Would you take a moment to fill this out?  We will be carefully and prayerfully considering your responses and Lord willing, we will be able to serve you better this year.

We are grateful to those of you who already have taken a few short minutes to do this!

What we hope to accomplish in 2017:

Please bear with us as we test out and try to implement some new things including,

  • Creating a professional looking website with better content, tailored to your needs in an easy to read and navigate format that doesn’t turn readers off.

 

  • Distilling and Communicating our mission and purpose better.

 

  • Collaborating with other musicians and professionals in the fields which you are interested in.

 

  • And adding additional content including:
    • Writing and posting to the blog at least twice a month.
    • More links to other helpful websites
    • More videos.
    • A new page with sales of vintage, POP and newer sheet music.
    • Pre-sales of the book as mentioned above.
    • Adding specific content related to your responses to our survey as to how we can assist you better. (Please take a moment to tell us how we can help you this year.)

Music Conferences

Many of you have asked about whether we are going to do another music conference this year. The answer is, I would like to, but simply cannot afford it at the moment. Even though we had a generous sponsor, 46 paying attendees and several very kind individuals who volunteered much of their time and resources, it just didn’t come close to covering the cost of putting it together. I was a bit concerned that the cost of attending wouldn’t be affordable to those who wanted to come, and yet, for the quality of instruction, it turned out to be a very fair deal. We are still praying about this, but unless the LORD directs otherwise, we will plan to do one again in 2018. There is still a small possibility of organizing one this Fall, but I will need volunteers in order to make this happen. (I just can’t afford to take 6 months off of my regular job this year to plan, organize and execute it myself.)

Funding for this ministry

This website is a ministry. Not a 501.C.3 tax exempt charity, but a ministry nonetheless. It is not a money-making proposition but something I do because I love quality sacred worship music, and because I like to help other people be able to make quality music. Pretty much every aspect of it cost money. Sending emails to you, taking the time away from paying work to write, improve this website and blog, select content, etc,-all of it has costs and there may well come a time when I am unable to continue this because other needs are more pressing. Until then, I have been blessed to be able to do this and hope to continue. If the LORD puts it on your heart to donate to this ministry, that would be appreciated, but I am not requiring or even asking. You can contact me privately if necessary.

 

I’m sure we are missing something, and since our goal is to serve YOU, won’t you let us know what would be helpful to you? Please take a few moments to take the survey or leave a comment below and let us know!

Once again, don’t forget to take the survey here!

 

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Should You Train To Failure?

Our Practice

I just heard a strength and fitness trainer advocating “training to failure,” and I thought that was an odd thing to say. I had to hear more.

First though, you need to understand something. It should be obvious by now that I am a big fan of improvising in music, and in fact, that’s what this website is about, in part. But not just improvising out of rebellion to the composer, but in order that the music set aside for worship can be the best possible music out there. There are times when improvising isn’t the best thing to do, but in general life throws curve balls, so I think we should look at improvisation as practice for real life situations.

With that understanding as our foundation on this topic, I’d like to explore both what the Fitness Trainer said, but in terms of our musicianship, and also another saying no doubt you have heard which goes like this:

“Practice Makes Perfect!”

Hmm…But does it really?

Like so many sayings we have come to believe because we have heard them so often, which may or may not have an element of truth, this one too, could be true or false.

Let me explain:

It doesn’t take long to think up a situation where it would not be true. If you are incorrectly practicing a piece of written music, or failing to execute a technique correctly, than you won’t get it perfect (even if everything else is right except one little thing). In this all-to-common scenario, instead, practice makes pathetic, because the incorrect rote practice now becomes a habit that is very hard to break.

However, it would be true if you practiced it perfectly through and through, each time, which is what we strive for.

Let’s face it though, how many of us actually really do this? Of course we are human and will make a mistake, but many of us are also lazy, especially when it comes to worship music? I’m not sure why, but in 22+ years of playing in churches, I have witnessed the general unspoken consensus among the musicians, that, It isn’t going to be as good as the symphony, so it doesn’t REALLY matter.

That is a sad indictment, and I hope it isn’t true of you. I’m sorry to say it has been true of me at times.

I’m not sure if it is a lax attitude among laymen because we aren’t paid, so why bother, or maybe you are paid, but you feel it is not enough to practice like a pro. Or maybe it is because we feel like the people who are listening don’t care, which is a mistake in itself because our music shouldn’t be for them, it should be for our LORD.

And He deserves only the absolute very best.

But is that even possible to deliver?

That is really the crux of the matter and a question that only you can answer:

Do YOU give YOUR very best?

Do you do as good as you would if you were first chair Violinist, or a musician invited to play with the New York Philharmonic in Carnegie Hall?

And that brings me to the other thing I want to explore:

Our Training

Some of us practice daily, while others are lay musicians who practice when they can. God has called each of us to different walks of life, and I get that. However, if He has called you to make music for Him, you should have some sort of a plan in place to ensure that you are giving your very best.

So how should we train?

Each of us will be inclined to one method or another, and some ways may work better for others. That’s understandable. What I want to do is encourage you, whichever course you take, is to train to failure. Not for failure, but to failure.

In other words, train until you can’t anymore. Until your muscles give out from exhaustion, Your brain can’t take it anymore, and there is nothing left to learn.

I don’t typically listen to celebrity trainers but as I said earlier, I happened across a short clip of celebrity trainer, Jeff Cavaliere, advocating “Training to Failure.” Since that seemed contrary to my thought process, I thought I would see what he had to say, and I heard this:

“Train until you reach failure in your technique, where your 
technique is good, but you go as hard as you can and if you 
have to change your tempo, that’s okay, as long as your form 
is still good. 
What you don’t want to do is change your… form in order to 
keep going, that would not be training to failure.”

Does that make any sense? He’s advocating training with the right technique and not letting up until you can’t go any further.

He’s not saying train so you WILL fail, but UNTIL you fail. Only then should we take a break.

This isn’t just true of athletes. I know musicians who would practice something until they got it right, and then, at that point, they would play it 100 times in a row nonstop. If they got it wrong, they would start over. And that wasn’t even for the LORD!

If we are going to bring the LORD our very best, than this kind of hardcore training is necessary to condition ourselves into the proper technique, the right notes, the perfect tempo, the exquisite dynamics, the perfect phrasing, etc.

I know that some of you won’t even know what songs you may be called on to play next. I played for many years at a church where they called out the hymns from the congregation, so I never knew what I was going to have to play. But still, I had to be ready. And you can be too. You can practice through your whole hymnbook if you are a church pianist, until you know all the hymns by heart. Words too.

I must admit here that I never learned every one of them (partly because I was lazy, and partly because we didn’t sing certain ones) but I know most of them to this day, by heart.

We can be ready for whatever we are called to at a moment’s notice, by taking the time and energy to train like an athlete. In a very real sense, this is a sacrifice of praise.

If a concert pianist would train like an athlete in preparation for a concert, why shouldn’t you or I train like an athlete in preparation for Sunday morning worship of the God of all the Universe, who gave His most prized possession to purchase us?

I’d like to know if you agree or disagree, or if you have another opinion. Please leave a comment below, and if you found this useful, share it with a friend.

 

 

 

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