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Songbook Review: Continuance
Earl Johnson
Cover image of the songbook Continuance by Earl Johnson
Earl Johnson
2020 / Earl Johnson
76 pages / 15 songs
Review by Kathy Parsons
Continuance is the companion sheet music collection for pianist/composer Earl Johnson's 2020 solo piano album by the same name. All fifteen of the pieces from the album are included and all are original compositions. The book also includes an introductory biography for Earl, notes about the music in general and specifically to each piece. Continuance is the second of Earl's three albums (so far!), following Reflections (2014) and preceding Dawn (2021). Where Dawn told a story with music rather than words, the pieces on Continuance are not as closely related, but work together beautifully.

Also a passionate piano teacher in the Los Angeles area, Earl's sheet music is appropriate for all age levels, although teens and adults will have a better understanding of the many emotions expressed in his music. None of the fifteen pieces are what I would call difficult, but a few have more complex rhythms and key signatures that less-advanced pianists might find somewhat challenging. Some time and practice should take care of that, though! (Yes, I was a piano teacher for a lot of years!). Metronome settings are included with each piece and there aren't any reaches of more than an octave.

Printed books are not spiral-bound, but the notation is clear and easy to read. Those are available on Amazon. PDF downloads of the full book as well as individual pieces are available from Earl's website. I really enjoyed my time with this book and look forward to getting back into several of the pieces. Recommended!

The titles of the pieces, the key(s) they are in and the number of pages are:

As Time Passes - Key of C minor (3 flats) - 3 pages
Sky - Key of D (2 sharps) - 4 pages
Dark Heart - Key of C# minor (4 sharps) - 4 pages
Galaxy - G# minor (5 sharps) - 7 pages
Illusions - Key of Bb minor (5 flats) - 3 1/2 pages
Mouse Musette - Key of A minor (0 sharps or flats) - 5 pages
Into the Horizon - Key of G# minor/B major (5 sharps) - 3 pages
Light in the Night - Key of G minor (2 flats) - 4 pages
Winter Waltz - Key of E ( 4 sharps) /E minor (1 sharp) - 7 pages
Ringing Winds - Key of B minor (2 sharps) - 4 pages
Polar Ice - Key of G# minor (5 sharps) - 6 pages
Song for Sorrows - Key of F# minor (3 sharps) - 3 pages
Lost in Thought - Key of F/ D minor (1 flat) - 4 pages
Distant Spirit - Key of Eb (3 flats) - 3 pages
Field of Flowers - Key of G (1 sharp) - 5 pages
September 5, 2022
More reviews of Earl Johnson songbooks
Cover image of the songbook Dawn by Earl Johnson