News & Views Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Category: New Publications

Stanton’s LIVE!: 2014 New Band Music Reading Clinic Recap 20 November, 2014

by Ken Tilger, Band Education Specialist -

The 13th annual Wind Band Invitational and New Band Music Reading Clinic was held November 14-15 at Capital University in Columbus, Ohio. This two-day event featured the reading of 70 of the best new pieces for band with a total of 90 works performed! In addition, 134 students from 59 schools participated in the Honors Wind Ensemble under the direction of Paula Crider and Honors Concert Band directed by Jeffrey Gershman and James Swearingen.

Pickerington HS NorthThe New Music Reading Clinic consisted of 3 reading sessions, 2 by the Directors’ Reading Band; 1 with the Capital University Wind Symphony, covering 61 new band titles from grade 0.5-4.5. Instead of the professional gloss of publisher preview recordings, band directors heard the titles as they were sight-read by live musicians and sight-read some themselves. This is a great way to preview new music in detail, get programming ideas, and network with colleagues after the long marching band season. In addition to the reading sessions, other new titles were presented in a fantastic guest concert performance by the Pickerington High School North Symphonic Winds under the direction of Marc Parulekar.

The Wind Band Invitational featured 4 more concert performances including the Capital University Symphonic Winds, Capital University Wind Symphony, Honors Concert Band, and Honors Wind Ensemble. The honors bands are a wonderful opportunity for some of the best high school players from around Ohio to perform together and work with world-renowned conductors and clinicians, while the university concerts present some of the most challenging repertoire for wind band performed at the highest level.

If you missed this year’s reading clinic, head over to Stanton’s Virtual Workshop – you can view the reading sessions there, and catch footage from the second Directors’ Band session.  You can also check out our previous reading sessions for more great programming ideas, and keep reading our blog for more Stanton’s LIVE events!

About the Author:
Ken is a former band director, and has been with Stanton’s since 2004. He is thankful for his family (especially his 2 year old son), his day gig in the music industry, and that he still gets to play the saxophone.  Oh, and pie!


Five-Finger Holiday Favorites 19 November, 2014

00129231Hal Leonard five-finger piano songbooks are designed for students in their first year of study.  This new collection includes several songs that have not been included in the same collection before.   There are eight songs, including fun favorites “All I Want for Christmas is My Two Front Teeth” and “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas”,  the timeless “The Little Drummer Boy”,  “Somewhere in My Memory” from “Home Alone”, and four more.  This collection of easy sheet music for piano includes an optional duet part for another player.  “Holiday Favorites” will keep your youngster(s) busy playing these fun songs during the holiday season!  For more information about this book of Christmas piano music or others you may be interested in, call us at 1-800-42-MUSIC, email us at keyboard@stantons.com, or visit our website.  Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


New from Broadway Jr. and Getting To Know 18 November, 2014

broadway jr

logoG2KOur friends at Hal Leonard, MTI, and Rogers & Hammerstein Inc. have some great new choices for you in their “Broadway Junior” and “Getting To Know”  series.  Purchasing the performance pack listed for each show includes everything you need to produce it and grants you the rights to perform it as many times as you like with one year.  Take a look at these latest offerings that your students and audience members will love!

getting to know sound of musicGetting to Know “The Sound of Music”by Richard Rogers and Oscar Hammerstein II

The final collaboration between Rodgers & Hammerstein – The Sound of Music – was destined to become the world’s most beloved musical. When a postulant proves too high-spirited for the religious life, she is dispatched to serve as governess for the seven children of a widowed naval Captain. Her growing rapport with the youngsters, coupled with her generosity of spirit, gradually captures the heart of the stern Captain, and they marry. Upon returning from their honeymoon they discover that Austria has been invaded by the Nazis, who demand the Captain’s immediate service in their navy. The family’s narrow escape over the mountains to Switzerland on the eve of World War II provides one of the most thrilling and inspirational finales ever presented in the theater. The motion picture version remains the most popular movie musical of all time.

Preview Pack (00124211) ………………………………………………………………$15.00

Performance Pack (08754014)………………………………………………………..$650.00

Shrek jrShrek, Jr.by Jeanine Tesori

In a faraway kingdom, the green ogre Shrek finds his swamp invaded by banished fairytale misfits, runaways who’ve been cast off by Lord Farquaad, a tiny terror with big ambitions. When Shrek sets off with a wise-cracking donkey to confront Farquaad, he’s handed a task – if he rescues feisty Princess Fiona from the Dragon-guarded tower, his swamp will be returned to him. But, a fairy tale wouldn’t be complete without unexpected twists and turns along the way.

Preview Pack (00127656)……………………………………………………………… $10.00

Performance Pack (00127646) ………………………………………………………. $645.00

hairsprayjr. jpgHairspray Jr.Marc Shaiman

It’s 1962, and spunky plus-size teen Tracy Turnblad has one big dream — to dance on the popular Corny Collins Show. When she finally gets her shot, she’s transformed from social outcast to sudden star. In balancing her new-found power with her desire for justice, Tracy fights to dethrone the reigning Miss Teen Hairspray, Amber von Tussle, and integrate a TV network in the process. With the help of her outsized mom, Edna, and guest DJ Motormouth Maybelle, the rhythm of Tracy’s new beat just might prove unstoppable.

Preview Pack (00123343)………………………………………………………………..$10.00

Performance Pack (099717310)……………………………………………………….$645.00

 

If you’ve never worked with a Broadway Jr. show before, click here to read our previous post on the “how to’s,”  and here for some alternatives if you aren’t ready for a production that’s quite this big.  Questions?  Give us a call at 1-800-42-MUSIC, and we’ll be happy to assist you!

 


Stanton’s Spotlight: The Spirit of Thanksgiving 13 November, 2014

by Ken Tilger, Band Education Specialist –

“Lyrical settings by Robert Sheldon are always worth your time”.

thanksgiv-dayThis is how I chose to begin my write-up for this title, and in short, enough said. Sheldon has a propensity for writing full, lush harmonic arrangements that are great vehicles for developing ensemble musicianship – especially for young bands. Look no further than his gorgeous An Australian Sea Ballad for additional proof.

In the case of The Spirit of Thanksgiving, he has not only woven together two very familiar hymn tunes (We Gather TogetherPraise God from Whom All Blessings Flow) in a lovely concert presentation, but given us a wonderful programming option. While haunting Halloween and celebratory Christmas selections are a dime a dozen, finding a work that highlights the uniqueness and gratitude of Thanksgiving is all but impossible. Soft and reflective, yet powerful, this work is a poignant lyrical programming selection that is perfect for fall or Christmas/holiday concerts. The hymn tunes that are the basis for this work make it a wonderful choice for religious schools, as well.

Musically The Spirit of Thanksgiving is much more than your standard hymn setting. Each of the hymns is in a different time signature – the work moves from 3/4 to 4/4, then back, and there is a key change from concert Bb to F. Of course, the opportunities to develop dynamic shading, group phrasing, and ensemble blend and balance are present as well. To top it off, this piece also correlates to Book 2, Level 2 of the Sound Innovations band method.

Do yourself a favor, and give this piece a listen, then pick up a copy. Even if you don’t use it this year, think how pleasantly surprised you’ll be when you “discover” it in your library next year. It’s one that I would pick up on its programming merits alone. It’s also one that I consider a “sleeper” – no, not one to snooze through – rather a great piece that too many directors will overlook because it doesn’t stand out in all the usual ways. Instead, it stands out in all the right ways, and that’s something to be thankful for.

The Spirit of Thanksgiving
arr. Robert Sheldon
Grade 1.5
Catalog # 41910          $48.00
Lyrical settings by Robert Sheldon are always worth your time.  Blending We Gather Together and Praise God from Whom All Blessings Flow, he has created a lush, stirring ballad perfect for fall programming, as well as religious schools.  Dynamic shading, group phrasing, and ensemble blend and balance can be addressed, in addition to flowing, lyrical playing; each hymn is in a different time signature (3/4 & 4/4); the piece also contains 1 key change (Bb to F) on the powerful climax to a touching, maestoso ending.  Correlates to Sound Innovations, Book 2, Level 2.

About the Author:
Ken is a former band director, and has been with Stanton’s since 2004. He is thankful for his family (especially his 2 year old son), his day gig in the music industry, and that he still gets to play the saxophone.  Oh, and pie!


The Christmas Songbook 12 November, 2014

00-42684This hardback book of Christmas sheet music includes over 100 traditional religious and popular Christmas songs in lead sheet format.  The enhanced CD has reproducible lyric sheets for sing-alongs.  In the back of the book, there are twelve arrangements of Christmas songs for solo guitar.  From the ancient “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel” to the contemporary “Mary Did You Know?”,   from “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”  to “Believe” from Polar Express, this collection is full of favorites for Christmas!  For more information about this Christmas book or others, call us at 1-800-42-MUSIC, email us at keyboard@stantons.com, or visit our website.  Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


January Sacred Choral Reading Session 11 November, 2014

Since most church choirs are in the thick of preparations for Advent and Christmas, it seems strange to think that it’s almost time to purchase music for Lent and Easter! When the holidays are over, plan to attend Stanton’s Sacred Choral Clinic on Saturday, January 10th, 2015, and you’ll be fully prepared for the next “holiday season.”

Sacred Choral Reading Session
Saturday, January 10, 2015
9:00 am – 12:30 pm
Registration: $20.00

We will be featuring the best new choral publications for Lent, Easter and beyond, as chosen by Stanton’s sacred choral staff. We are excited to announce that this year’s clinic will be held at Livingston United Methodist Church, just a few blocks from our store in downtown Columbus Ohio.

Attending this clinic is a fantastic way for you to choose new church anthems for your choir by hearing the music read live. This January’s clinicians will be Stanton’s own Judy Henry and president emeritus Jim Strouse. Please feel free to contact Stanton’s at 1-800-42-MUSIC and speak with a choral staff member for the details of the event. We look forward to seeing you at 8:30 on January 10th for registration, coffee and doughnuts followed by a wonderful morning of singing!

Click here to watch video

Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


“Black Nativity” the Motion Picture 10 November, 2014

00124174This collection of sheet music from the 2013 movie  “Black Nativity” has recently been released.  The twelve songs from the movie reflect the inspirational journey of young Langston from street-wise teen to his discovery of hope.  The story is a modern adaptation of Langston Hughes’ story of the same name.  The songs have been written by various composers, and include arrangements of a few traditional spirituals.  Enjoy the inspirational songs from this uplifting movie musical.  For more information about this collection or others, call us at 1-800-42-MUSIC, email us at keyboard@stantons.com, or visit our website at http://www.stantons.com.  Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


Jason Mraz, YES! 07 November, 2014

00129729Jason Mraz released his most recent album, YES!, in July 2014.  It debuted at number two on the Billboard 200 chart.  Of course, the lead single, “Love Someone“, is included.  The album is available in two formats.  One is in piano/vocal/guitar arrangements.  The second is in Hal Leonard publishing’s “Recorded Versions Guitar“, which is authentic transcriptions with notes and tablature.   In either format, this album is ready to play, so pick your favorites, and play away!  For more information about these collections of sheet music or others, call us at 1-800-42-MUSIC, email us at keyboard@stantons.com, or visit our website at http://www.stantons. com.  Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


New from “Freddie the Frog” 06 November, 2014

Sharon discusses teaching with puppets at Stanton’s 2014 Elementary General Music Clinic

If you teach preschool or early elementary and you’ve never explored the use of a puppet in your classes, it is definitely something to consider.  Students love interacting with a character that “isn’t” their teacher, and they will retain information in a whole new way.  Freddie the Frog is a puppet created by elementary music teacher Sharon Burch.  Freddie has a whole series of teaching materials intended to teach pitch and rhythm literacy, composition, improvisation and a love of music through storytelling.  Click here to see all of Stanton’s Freddie products, or read on for NEW items from Sharon and Freddie.

PrintFreddie the Frog and the Jungle Jazz Sharon Burch & Rosana Eckert

Freddie the Frog®, Eli the Elephant, Babs Baboon and Micki Macaw join trumpet-playing elephants, trombone-sliding tigers, clarinet-playing monkeys and a flock of seagulls as they scat sing, swing and perform collective improvisation in this swingin’ introduction to jazz. The 25-minute musical for 2nd – 5th grade students includes five original songs and dialog with 26 speaking parts, along with unique “beginner band student” adaptations giving students a chance to squawk, buzz and growl on stage as they argue about who’s the best. Sharing their combined talent, the animal friends discover embracing each other’s differences creates the ultimate jungle jam.

Teacher Book (35029504)………………………………………………………….$49.99

P/A CD (35029507)………………………………………………………………….$49.99

Performance Kit (35029508)……………………………………………………..$89.99

freddie the forg and the thump in the night digitalFreddie the Frog and the Thump in the Night (Digital Edition)Sharon Burch

Looking for an easy way to project the Freddie the Frog® books? The well-loved story is now projectable as a digital storybook via your computer’s video player. Open the file, push play and watch! Audio plays while pages turn automatically.  Includes optional Smart Notebook and Promethean/ActivPrimary Flipchart files with step-by-step interactive lessons from the Beyond the Books teacher’s guide. Freddie and Eli cheer students along as digital flashcards, songs and games lead them sequentially through note name fun on Treble Clef Island! (Compatible with SmartNotebook 11 and Promethean ActivInspire 1.7.6 software.)

CD-ROM (35029710)………………………………………………………………………………..$26.99

freddie poster pakFreddie the Frog Poster PackSharon Burch

Freddie and Eli want to “hang” out in your music classroom! This full color set of eight posters includes 3 large posters (18″ x 22″) of Treble Clef Island, a “Welcome to Music” Freddie poster, and Eli and Freddie dancing on the bed to “Music Rocks!” The jazz cats join Freddie and Eli with 5 posters (9” x 12”) from Freddie the Frog® and the Flying Jazz Kitten, playing the trumpet, trombone, piano, drum set and double bass.

Posters (35029752)………………………………………………………………………………….$24.99

Contact Stanton’s Choral/General Music department at 1-800-42-MUSIC ex. 1 for more information on Freddie the Frog or other General Music products!


NEW from the Barbershop Harmony Society 05 November, 2014

PrintBarbershop harmony is a style of four-part, unaccompanied singing, utilizing close-harmony and intuitive voice leading characterized by consonant four-part chords for every melody note.

The Barbershop Harmony Society, legally and historically named the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barber Shop Quartet Singing in America, Inc. (SPEBSQSA), is the first of several organizations to promote and preserve barbershop music as an art form. Founded by Owen C. Cash in 1938, the organization quickly grew, promoting barbershop harmony among men of all ages. Just under 25,000 men in the United States and Canada are members of this organization whose focus is on a cappella music.

Through a new distribution partnership, Stanton’s is proud to announce the availability of music from the Barbershop Harmony Society! The arrangements below are now available directly from Stanton’s, with more authentic BHS editions coming soon:

00137952Can You Feel the Love Tonight?
Consider Yourself
Drivin’ Me Crazy
I’m Gonne Live ‘Til I Die
Lazy Day
Lida Rose/Will I Ever Tell You
Little Saint Nick
No More Sorrow
O Canada
Stand By Me
The Star Spangled Banner
Swing Down Chariot
What’ll I Do
When I Fall In Love

For more exciting resources for barbershop and other men’s ensembles, please contact us! Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


Choral Music from FROZEN 04 November, 2014

So, how many Elsas and Annas showed up at YOUR front door on Halloween? It’s a fact – FROZEN is everywhere! – and, it’s a perfect fit for your upcoming winter choral concerts. Here are all the choral arrangements from the hit Disney film:

NOW AVAILABLE:
Frozen (Choral Suite) arr. Roger Emerson – SSAATTBB, SATB divisi, SAB divisi & SA
Frozen (Choral Highlights) arr. Mark Brymer – SATB, SAB & 2-part
Do You Want to Build a Snowman? arr. Mark Brymer – SATB, SAB & 2-part
Let It Go arr. Mac Huff – SATB, SAB, 2-part & SSA
Let’s All Sing…Songs from Frozen (includes “Do You Want to Build a Snowman?,” “For the First Time In Forever,” “Let It Go,” “In Summer” and “Love Is an Open Door” – Teacher Edition & Singer Edition 10-pak

COMING SOON:
Frozen (Choral Highlights) arr. Mark Brymer – SSA
Love Is an Open Door arr. Mac Huff – SATB, SAB & 2-part

For more information, please contact us at 1.800.426.8742. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


Monster Mash for Middle School Choir 31 October, 2014

Monster Mash

Words and Music by Greg Gilpin

Recommended by Rachel Steele, School Choral Specialist

monster mash

Admit it…you smiled a little when you saw the words “Monster Mash!”   This Greg Gilpin choral arrangement of the one hit wonder from Bobby “Borris” Picket and the Crypt-Kickers has great potential for silliness.  The spoken solo we all know so well from the original version steals the show, and the choral parts are a snap to teach, full of ’60’s doo-wop fun.  Consider some of these ideas to use “Monster Mash” in performance or in your classroom:

  • Teach your kids about pop music in the 1950’s and 60’s, especially dances popular with teenagers, like the Mashed Potato and the Twist.  Try out some dance moves as you sing the song, or let small groups work on choreography for a section of the piece.
  • Ask a male teacher or even a principal (who doesn’t mind making a fool of themselves) to be your “surprise guest soloist.”  You can reveal your guest to the choir a few days before the performance when he shows up to rehearse, and then enlist them as your co-conspirators.  Ask the students to keep the identity of the soloist a mystery from their parents, friends, and concert guests-they’ll feel exclusive and you’ll give them a great bonding experience.
  • Split up the spoken solo among your students who want to “ham it up.”  Let them do a quick costume change backstage before they come out for their portion.
  • If you have some students who are into audio sampling, let them come up with your “background track” full of spooky lab sounds.  Better yet, take your whole class to the computer lab and see what they can come up with!

For more novelty number ideas, or great pieces for recruiting, give us a call at 1-800-42-MUSIC.  Shop Stanton’s for all your Spooky Sheet Music needs!

Rachel Steele has been working in the choral department at Stanton’s since 2013.  She previously taught middle school and high school band and choir for 13 years, and holds a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in music education from The Ohio State University.  Currently a member of the Heisey Wind Ensemble and a musician at Epiphany Lutheran Church (Pickerington, OH,) Rachel also enjoys reading, sewing, baking and the Pittsburgh Steelers!


New! Sight-Singing Materials for Your Choir 30 October, 2014

eisenhower-2_DONELet’s be honest, there is no perfect sight-singing resource for everyone.  Educational philosophies, students’ prior music education, ability level and teacher comfort all play a part when you choose your materials.  Here are two new sight-singing  resources that we hope many teachers will find helpful.

 

 

sing at first sight more melodiesSing at First Sight…More Melodies!By Andy Beck and Brian Lewis

Andy Beck’s Sing at First Sight books are used by many choral teachers as their sight-singing “textbook.”  This is a supplemental book that gives more practice for reading rhythms and melodies at all levels, and is useful regardless of whether or not you use Sing at First Sight as your primary text.  An included CD has reproducible PDF files for every page in the book, so you won’t have to spend your whole music budget on new sight-singing materials.  The easiest exercises begin with quarter notes on do and re only, and progress to include all key signatures, compound meter, and rhythms including dotted 8th/16th notes.

Book w/ CD (42793)……………………………………………………….$39.99

 

SOS.jpgSOS: Simplify Our Sight-Reading – By Laura Farnell & Mary Jane Phillips

Acclaimed choral composer and educator Laura Farnell has partnered with Mary Jane Phillips to create a new system for teaching sight singing.  SOS (Simplifying Our Sight Reading,) is based on the premise that students will comprehend sight singing better if they are exposed to one element at a time.  The authors separate pitch, rhythm, and notation before moving on to unison, 2 part and 3 part melodies.  An excellent supplement to the directors resource are the flash cards for both Bass and Treble Clef.  Large enough to be read by the entire choir at once, each shows one measure and can be combined with the other cards for a nearly endless number of exercises.

 

Director’s Resource (BLB009)…………………………………………………………….$9.99
Rhythm Reader (BL836)……………………………………………………………………$1.95
Flash Cards for Treble Clef (BLB010)……………………………………………………$19.99                                                                   Flash Cards for Bass Clef (BLB011)……………………………………………………….$19.99

For more recommendations of sight reading materials, give us a call at 1-800-42-MUSIC, check out our website, or visit us to browse in our store.  We look forward to hearing from you soon!


Choral Collections-Reproducible Budget-Stretchers 29 October, 2014

money_signTight budgets are a universal problem amongst teachers in general, and music teachers in particular.  Stanton’s understands that you might not always have the money to purchase new octavos, so consider one of these NEW budget-stretching collections for your group!  All are fully reproducible, so you can make as many copies as you need for your students without infringing on copyright law.  In addition, all include an accompaniment CD, making them concert ready and easy to rehearse.

 

multiple voicings,jpgMultiple Voicings for Middle School Voices - compiled by Mary Lynn Lightfoot  SAB, Three Part Mixed, SSA, TB and 2 Part.
This reproducible book is both a unique value and a great resource for quality repertoire for developing voices! Included in this collection are 2-3 different selections for each of the following voicings: SAB, 3-Part Mixed, SSA, TB and 2-Part. Reproducible PDFs are included on the supporting CD, along with the accompaniment tracks for each title.
Collection w/CD (30/3139H)…………………………………………………………….. $44.95

 

let the women singLet the Women Sing!by Greg Gilpin SSA

Let the Women Sing! is a new reproducible collection of chorals for soprano and alto voices.  Folk songs, holiday music, spirituals, inspirational songs, and patriotic themes fill this nine-song collection. This economical kit includes an enhanced CD-ROM with accompaniment and performance tracks, information about the composer, as well as reproducible vocal parts and instrument pages. Whether you have 10 or 100 female singers, this must-have collection will keep you on budget while supplying your program with excellent choral literature for your young female singers for many years to come.

Collection w/ CD (35029097)………………………………………………………………………………..$49.99

Also available:

Let the Men Sing! by Greg Gilpin (TTB)

Collection w/ CD (35012576)………………………………………………………………………………..$49.99

Just for the Gals compiled by Larry Pugh (SSA)

Collection w/ CD (30/2717H)………………………………………………………………………………..$44.95

Just for the Guys compiled by Larry Pugh (TB)

Collection w/ CD (30/2590H)………………………………………………………………………………..$44.95

Just for the Guys at Christmas compiled by Larry Pugh (TB)

Collection w/ CD (30/2850H)………………………………………………………………………………..$44.95

For more information on these collections or other choral collections, please give us a call at 1-800-42-MUSIC or email us at choral@stantons.com.

 


Have a “Jolly Jingling” Christmas! 23 October, 2014

Feature your elementary choir this winter with one of these great octavos, as featured on Stanton’s Elementary General Music Clinic with Sharon Burch:

Goldfish Christmas by Alan Billingsley
What child has not wanted a puppy for Christmas? This original novelty song is a sweet and funny look at what can happen when we don’t get exactly what we want. Written in a theatrical style, this tune lends itself to riser choreography, leading to plenty of smiles all around!

A Jolly, Jingling Carol Medley arr. Greg Gilpin
This concise arrangement seamlessly strings together six carol favorites, featuring various twists on meter and style while maintaining accessibility. It is perfect as a festive opener or closer that audiences and singers will love.

We Are Santa’s Elves arr. Greg Gilpin
Made popular on the holiday television special “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” this Johnny Marks song is a bright new work for young voices and includes optional kazoos for added fun. Simple, repetitious part-writing makes this quick to learn and easy to add staging, movement, and costumes.

Welcome Winter On This Night by Greg Gilpin
This peaceful setting features Bach’s gorgeous “Bist du Bei Mir” partnered with a gentle original melody and Greg Gilpin’s descriptive winter text. Their simple beauty combines to provide an excellent vehicle for musical expression and interpretation.

For more holiday suggestions for your young choir, please contact us!


Stanton’s Spotlight – String Riffs 22 October, 2014

String Riffs

Recommended by Dan Clark, Orchestral Music Specialist

string riffs vol. 1String Riffs is written by Karen Koger (a former Stanton’s employee!) who earned her bachelor’s degree at The Ohio State University and her master’s degree in cello performance pedagogy from Arizona State University.  As a lifelong musician, she taught private cello lessons for more than two decades and now works with 4th, 5th and 6th grade strings in the Mesa Public Schools (AZ.)  A member of ASTA, she is also an active performer in the Phoenix area.
String Riffs is divided into three progressive volumes of teaching pieces, from very easy to intermediate, complete with concept mapping lesson plans.  They work from unison lines to full harmony and along with the basic lesson for each piece, there are optional challenging parts for those students who need a challenge.  As teaching pieces, they can certainly work in the classroom, but can also be used for concerts.  Tuneful and fun as well as instructive, they have very creative titles that pique students’ imaginations.  Many pieces have a Southwestern flavor that contributes Native American and Hispanic multicultural elements.

  • Score and a CD with digital files of the parts.  Make as many parts as you need – on your honor!
  • Concept Maps – built-in lesson plans for each piece
  • Rhythm Charts – each volume adds more complex rhythmic combinations
  • Alignment with National Core Standards
  • Segmented and Multi-level pieces for teacher assignment and/or student choice
  • Wide range of musical styles so everything doesn’t sound the same
  • Substantial cello and bass parts in the advanced volumes so lower strings don’t feel left out
  • String Libs – fun, fill-in-the-blank ( a la Mad Libs) scary, stringy stories, written by Ms. Koger’s students

Volume 1 – HME2001 – Grade 1 – $49.95
Volume 2 – HME2002 – Grade 1.5 – $49.95
Volume 3 – HME2003 – Grade 2 – $49.95

String Riffs is a refreshing, new approach to young string pedagogy.  Stanton’s featured them at their New Music Reading Session in July, 2014 and nearly sold out of our first shipment.  If you work with strings in 4th, 5th and 6th grade, these are excellent resources with which to supplement your class method book.

Dan Clark has worked at Stanton’s since 1979, primarily with orchestra music and print promotions.  A “working” musician, he’s a classical cellist, a rock & jazz bassist and a folk & country guitarist/singer. His free time is spent with family or reading, gardening, cycling and working puzzles. He also has a reputation as a pretty good joke teller. Seriously.

 


Pertinent Professional Development 21 October, 2014

by Jen Sper and Ken Tilger, School Music Specialists

IMG_0809Professional development days/sessions can be of great benefit to educators – IF they are relevant and applicable to your subject area! We were honored to be invited to present sessions at the Fine Arts Professional Development Day through the Tri-County Educational Service Center in Wooster, Ohio on October 17. Music teachers from Ashland, Wayne and Holmes counties gathered at the Wayne Center for the Arts for a full day of arts-related professional development sessions – a great opportunity to both learn from outside presenters and network with other nearby music educators!

With numerous new options for band warm-up/technique and beginning band, Ken’s session for band and orchestra directors highlighted books from publishers including Alfred (Sound Innovations; S.I. Ensemble Development), Hal Leonard (Essential Elements Interactive), FJH (Measures of Success; Warm-Ups and Beyond), Kjos (Tradition of Excellence; Technique & Musicianship), and Focus On Music (Scale & Rhythm Chunks). Online resources through the Stanton’s website were explored (Jukebox, Listening Library, mobile app, etc.), as well as sharing the Top 10 New Titles for Band for 2014-2015 using a custom playlist created through the Stanton’s Jukebox.

Jen presented a reading session for the choral directors in attendance, featuring new concert, festival and holiday literature for middle school and high school ensembles. A couple of brave sight-readers even served as accompanists! Many titles included were specially selected as quality options for OMEA Adjudicated Event performances, or are new additions to the required repertoire lists. Also discussed were recent changes to the required lists, and how these changes affect teacher’s programming and budgeting options.

IMG_0812On the way back, IMG_0813a stop at Grandpa’s Cheesebarn in Ashland was a requirement (we gotta eat, right?). One of Jen’s favorite stops on her way back and forth to college, Ken had never been before – and it’s a lot to take in! Much cheese (and dip, and jelly, and cider, and and and…) was consumed. :)

Are YOU planning programming for an upcoming professional development event? Contact us and let us help! Our knowledgeable and experienced staff are able to present a wide variety of sessions (and would love a field trip out of the store!), and we’re happy to tailor our topics to fit your needs.

About the authors:
Ken is a former band director, and has been with Stanton’s since 2004. He enjoys comic books, playing with his young son, and plays saxophone with Swing’s the Thing Big Band. You should check out their album Walk On Out the Door available on iTunes and Amazon.

Jen has been with Stanton’s since 2006. A former middle school and high school choral director, and an active choral singer and accompanist throughout the Central Ohio area, she also enjoys eating good food, running (to counteract the good food…) and the Muppets.


“The Stars Point the Way” 17 October, 2014

For a special feature for your treble ensembles in your upcoming holiday performances, Stanton’s suggests:

The Stars Point the Way by Mark Sirett
The Stars Point the Way was commissioned by the Cantilon Choirs of Edmonton, Alberta and was awarded “Outstanding Choral Composition for 2010” by the Association of Canadian Choral Communities. This Christmas carol is sub-titled “Cosmic Bethlehem” and is a beautiful mix of traditional metaphors and contemporary references that will engage your singers and audiences and make the miracle relevant and personal.

Cradle Hymn by Kim Andre Arnesen
The Norwegian composer has created a beautiful, expressive piece set to a poem by the famous English hymn writer Isaac Watts. Sing it at Christmas or any time of the year.

For more stunning holiday suggestions, contact us at 1.800.426.8742. Shop Stanton’s for all your sheet music needs!


Don’t Miss These Christmas Arrangements! 15 October, 2014

by Ken Tilger, Band Education Specialist -

While we are promoting 9 excellent new Christmas titles for young band this year, these 2 are unique stand-outs that you just shouldn’t miss! Both offer great opportunities to advance the musicianship of your groups, and are creative and interesting choices that will add variety to your holiday concert program. I’ve included our promotional write-ups as well as some additional commentary about each piece. I hope you find these recommendations helpful, and that you, your students, and your audience enjoy these pieces as much as I do.

Christmas at the Circus
Randall Standridge
Grade 2.5
Fun from start to finish!  Combining themes from Thunder and Blazes and The Man on the Flying Trapeze with snippets of a ton of holiday favorites, this humorous work is fun to listen to and a blast to play.  High-wire musicianship is a must – from layered themes and accidentals to key, style, and meter changes, and 8th note rhythm dished around the band like Christmas presents, no section receives a lump of coal in this piece!  Christmas at the Circus is a great choice for advanced middle school or young high school bands.

O.K., so this one seems blasphemous not just for religious (or circus music) reasons, but also because the setting utilizes plenty of familiar Christmas songs and carols. No worries – it is very creative, puts an original programming spin on the Instant Concert concept, and gives your audience plenty to hang on to. It will be fun to perform, and don’t be fooled by the grade 2.5 difficulty – it requires enough musicianship that it is perfect for young high school bands and will be a hit with community band programs, as well.

Season of Peace
Gene Milford
Grade 1.5
Inspired by Christmas 1914 when British and German troops in the midst of World War I held an unofficial truce that included singing carols and exchanging food and gifts, Season of Peace blends Dona Nobis Pacem with Silent Night for a moment of calm reflective peace.  Besides being a stirring concert selection, the 3/4 meter, dotted quarter-note rhythms, 8th note and triplet runs, and lyricism provide ample opportunity to advance ensemble musicianship.

Two young band arrangements have been inspired by the 100th anniversary of this event, and this stirring setting stands out. Combining the Dona Nobis Pacem (“Grant us peace”) from the Latin Mass with the stillness and beauty of Silent Night is just brilliant, and our write-up says it all, “…for a moment of calm reflective peace.” That is exactly what this work will provide – a poignant moment of calm reflection amidst the celebratory jubilance (and hustle and bustle) of the season. Again, don’t be put off by the “easy” grade level. Musical maturity is always a must on lyrical works, and can be performed to great effect by more advanced ensembles – the challenge here is not technique, but musicianship. Season of Peace is a wonderful choice educationally (musicianship, music history, AND world history), and is perfect for religious school band programs.

About the Author:
Ken is a former band director, and has been with Stanton’s since 2004. He enjoys comic books, playing with his young son, and plays saxophone with Swing’s the Thing Big Band. You should check out their album Walk On Out the Door available on iTunes and Amazon.


Composer Profile: Stephen Main 14 October, 2014

by Jen Sper, Choral Music Specialist

Steve_Smile_HandHere at Stanton’s Sheet Music, choral composer Stephen Main first captured our attention with his original setting of the In the Bleak Midwinter text in 2006. While not yet prolific by any means – we’ve seen just seven titles from him – we’ve come to trust his name, and know that we’re in for something special! His work is consistently beautiful, with creative melodies and lush harmonic structure that simply feels good to both the singer and the listener.

Especially notable are Main’s contributions to holiday concert repertoire. In the Bleak Midwinter was featured on our Excellence in Choral Literature reading session in 2010, followed by The Darkest Midnight in December in 2013, and Blessed Be That Maid Mary and The Holly and the Ivy in 2014.

Born and raised in New York City, Mr. Main has music in his blood: his mother taught piano and his father, Tom Main, was a professional jazz trombonist with Si Zentner’s band in the 60s. As a choirboy Steve sang at St. Thomas Church Fifth Avenue under Gerre Hancock. He went on to study violin, piano, organ, theory and composition at the Choate School and then at Oberlin Conservatory. At the same time, he earned his B.A., M.A., and eventually his Ph.D. in Religious Philosophy from the University of Chicago. He is currently the Music Director at Piedmont Community Church, in the Bay Area, where he composes and conducts regular choral and orchestral performances. Stephen is active as an organist, harpist and conductor, with recent appearances in San Francisco, throughout Northern California, New York, Cincinnati and Los Angeles. He lives in San Francisco and LA.

As a composer, Steve’s work has included the recent publication of new choral and symphonic works, multiple commissions, and the completion of the scores for several films. He is a First Prize Winner of the John Ness Beck award for a new American choral work, and a 2007 winner of the American Composers Forum carol contest. The Minneapolis Star-Tribune hailed Stephen’s work as “evocative” music that “captures mystery.”

For more information about Stephen Main and his music, please visit his website.

Stanton’s Recommends: Blessed Be That Maid Mary, The Darkest Midnight in December, The Heavenly Table, In the Bleak Mid-Winter

About the Author:
Jen has been with Stanton’s since 2006. An active choral singer and accompanist throughout the Central Ohio area, she also enjoys eating good food, running (to counteract the good food…) and the Muppets.