I have to admit I am not a big fan of One Direction. Totally disregard their music when they become a hit among all the tweens and teens that I teach. Then one fine day, I heard History on the radio and I wondered who on earth are the singers to these songs. Surprise, surprise, it is One Direction! Then I discovered their latest hits are actually quite pleasing to my ear.
I was really hooked to History ’cause it sounded very retro to me for some reason. (I am big fan of the 40s to 80s music, so apologies need to be made). Then I started to play the melody around on the piano and then, I just had to add some jazzy chords. I have not been following up very well on my Jazz education since university. However, I was able to write a Jazz piano duet some time last year to perform with a piano student from Penang. Maybe one day I will post that up.
In a way, this will be my latest jazzy cover of a pop song. Hope whoever comes across this will like it. Here’s also a video to have a quick impression.
Rock ballad Sempurna came out in 2007 and I first came across this song when I was still in secondary school. I can’t remember how I came across this Malay hit. It’s rare for me to like Malay songs but this one came across as special. It is recorded by Indonesian band Andra & The Backbone. I recorded a piano cover of this song.
This video was recorded way back in year 2010. My keyboard at that time was just a wee Casio, my very first piece of digital instrument. I was very into experimenting my keyboard and especially music recording. At that time, I was also very active in school choir. I remember recording all sorts of stuff on it. However, I have sold it more than 5 years ago to a uni batch mate who really needed a small keyboard but I had no use for it anymore. I upgraded to a full sized digital piano from Casio too. What’s left of it is still the keyboard stand which is very very portable.
As you can see in the video, my music arrangements were all hand written. Pity that I had not discovered digital notation at that time. Otherwise, I would have a booming collection of piano covers and arrangements by now.
They say it’s never too late. So here goes (finally!) the digitally notated Sempurna for piano:
I I’m bringing back a lot of old arrangements into the open now. When I was studying my music degree, I had the privilege of playing Gamelan music. They are really intriguing instruments and its music simple as it maybe, it’s also most wonderful.
For a contemporary music class assignment, I take joy in arranging music for all kinds of instruments. Then, I decided to take the music we learned in Gamelan class and transformed its melody into a different style – jazz, which was pretty much what I was studying as part of my major.
At that time, we had really limited instruments and skills. We had to employ the use of keyboards and pianos. The name of the Gamelan music is “Ayak-ayak” and to be honest, I do not know its meaning either!
If you have interest in trying this arrangement, please do leave me a comment!
I used to love watching a lot of Korean Dramas in my teenage years. Naturally, I also love the soundtrack produced for the dramas. This is one of my favourites from the Korean Drama, You’re Beautiful. Many years ago I did the cover of the song but never got the chance to produce the arrangement. Click for to download the pdf: still-as-ever
Today’s upload pays homage to 50 years of The Sound of Music. I discovered the anniversary as I was browsing Youtube. This movie brought back lots of fond memories of my childhood. I also hurried created a multi-frame video last Friday as I tried my best to do a good rendition with the equipment I have.