A few weeks ago, I received a friendly email from composer Dror Perl asking if I’d be willing to write a review of his music books. I, of course, said yes, and so Dror sent me complimentary copies of the Red and Purple books. Here is my full review of his wonderful books!
- Titles: Purple, Red, and Blue
- Composer: Dror Perl
- Number of Pages: about 30 pages each
- Level: Mid to Late Intermediate
- Other Information: These books are available for purchase at SheerPiano.com, where there are also duet parts (for nearly any instrument) and recordings available.
Dror has composed three books, each titled “Red,” “Blue,” and “Purple.” The differences between the three books:
- Purple: Jazz & Blues (easiest of the three books)
- Red: Jazz, Blues, & Funk
- Blue: Contemporary Music with a Harmonic Twist
Each book contains 12-14 pieces that are 2-3 pages in length. The piece titles are very creative and appealing. Some examples:
- Grape jam session
- Beet it!
- Once in a blue moon
- Unchartered waters
The books are very attractive and professional looking. They are bound with a staple (just as music books usually are). Inside, each book uses colored ink that matches the color of the cover (don’t worry; the print is still easy to read).
The pieces are appealing to the ear and would make a great supplemental book for a student interested in blues and jazz styles. I think they would work equally well both for young students and teen/adult students. Dror states that he composed these books with the intent that they would motivate students: they are simple pieces but sound complex and impressive.
All three of these books are at the mid to late intermediate level. The pieces contain syncopated rhythms, triplets, grace notes, 6/8 meter, and more. The advanced harmonies in these pieces are appealing to the ear, and great for getting students hearing/playing harmonies other than I, IV, and V! The chord symbol markings will help the student with memorization and also lend themselves to theory learning. There are also good fingering and pedal markings. Most of the pieces are in the keys C, G, D, Bb, and F, although there are also a couple in the key of Eb. The pieces are not at all “position-y,” so these books would be an excellent supplement for a method that is position-y so that the student gets accustomed to playing outside of the “safety” of positions.
The corresponding website, SheerPiano.com, has duet parts available for almost any instrument so that students can play along with a friend or family member.
In short, these books would be a perfect solution for an intermediate-level student with an interest in jazz or blues styles and is motivated by pieces that sound more advanced and complex than they actually are. The pieces will benefit the student by presenting challenging rhythms, advanced harmonies, and forcing the student to play outside of the traditional “positions.”
Visit SheerPiano.com to learn more about Dror’s books and listen to recordings of the pieces! Also – stay tuned for an interview coming soon to learn more about both composer Dror Perl and his books!