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Songbook Review: Beyond Words
Dan Chadburn
Cover image of the songbook Beyond Words by Dan Chadburn
Beyond Words
Dan Chadburn
2016 / Dan Chaburn Music
70 pages / 14 songs
Review by Kathy Parsons
The Beyond Words songbook is the companion sheet music book to Dan Chadburn’s 2016 solo piano album by the same name. All fourteen pieces from the recording are included, transcribed note-for-note by Donovan Johnson and Dan Chadburn. The recording was nominated for a number of awards including “Best Solo Piano Album of 2016” by Zone Music Reporter, “Album of the Year” by Whisperings Solo Piano Radio, “2016 Contemporary and Modern Album of the Year” at SoloPiano.com, and “Solo Piano Album of the Year” by One World Music Radio; it was also on my “Kathy’s Favorites” list on MainlyPiano.com for 2016.

Dan is an extraordinary pianist, so this music is not simple, but pianists at an upper-intermediate and early-advanced playing level (and above) will find much to love between the covers of this exceptional book. The printed version is spiral-bound with a clear plastic overlay to protect the cover and its reproduction of the beautiful album cover. The paper stock is a bright white medium weight paper that will hold up well to many years of playing. There are two pages of “Album Notes from Dan Chadburn” where he writes about the origins and meanings of each piece - a very nice bonus! The transcriptions themselves are clear, well-spaced, and easy to read. Pedaling suggestions are included and there are a few places where fingering is marked. There are only a few reaches of more than a octave, and the rhythms are not complicated.

I really like all of the music in this book, and some of my favorites are “Love Is Love,” “Falling Forward,” and “An Evening in Florence.” The book is available as a printed book and a PDF download from www.DanChadburn.com. Very highly recommended!

The song titles, the keys they are in, and the number of pages are listed below:

Awakening - Key of F minor (4 flats) - 5 pages
Joyful Morning - Key of B (5 sharps) - 5 pages
Healing Waters - Key of F# minor (3 sharps) - 4 pages
Crossroads - Key of D minor (1 flat) - 4 1/2 pages
Shelton Rain - Key of Gb (6 flats)/ G# minor (5 sharps) - 5 pages
Tears of Angels - Key of A minor (0 sharps or flats) - 3 pages
Love is Love - Key of A (3 sharps) - 4 1/2 pages
Falling Forward - Key of D minor (1 flat) - 5 pages
Lazy Sky Afternoon - Key of Eb (3 flats) - 4 1/2 pages
Lal-Boy - Key of Bb (2 flats) - 5 pages
Heroes - Key of Db (5 flats) - 5 1/2 pages
Country Harvest - Key of C (0 sharps or flats) - 5 pages
An Evening in Florence - Key of G (1 sharp) - 4 pages
Lullaby for Peace - Key of C (0 sharps or flats) - 3 pages
September 5, 2017
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Cover image of the songbook Always by Dan Chadburn