Favorite Icon, Full size
Songbook Review: Piano Solos
Kate Moody
Cover image of the songbook Piano Solos by Kate Moody
Piano Solos
Kate Moody
2006 / CoCo Lounge
89 pages / 19 songs
Review by Kathy Parsons
Piano Solos is a songbook collection of nineteen original compositions selected from four of Kate Moody’s CD’s: “Grateful Heart” (1993), “The Seeker” (2002), “Welcome to Piania” (2002), and her latest, “inscapes” (2007). The music was transcribed and notated by Moody herself, ensuring that the sheet music is her own interpretation of the pieces, not someone else’s. In playing through the book several times, I was struck by how diverse the music is. The majority of pieces are fairly quiet and slow, but not all of them. Some are simple melodically and rhythmically, but some are quite complex and even discordant in places. This variety gives us a broad sense of Moody’s compositional spectrum and how her music has evolved over the past fourteen years. All that said, this songbook is a lot of fun to play, and should be suitable for players from the upper intermediate levels to fairly advanced. I did find small mistakes in some of the scores (I proofread a lot of sheet music, so I can’t help myself!), but I don’t think they will be a problem. I have only heard “inscapes” of Moody’s four CDs, but the piano scores from that CD are faithful to the recording, so it’s logical that the others are, too. If you aren’t familiar with Kate Moody’s recorded music but are a good pianist, this book will serve as a great introduction to her music. If you are a fan of the CDs and also play, you’ll love these thoughtful and well-constructed scores that allow you to bring your own impressions and interpretations to the music.

I enjoyed playing all nineteen pieces, but I do have some favorites. “Elegy” from “inscapes” is a piece I keep going back to. Written in memory of “a great cat,” I can certainly relate to the emotions expressed. Full of sadness and loss, there are also lingering sweet memories that allay the grief somewhat. It’s a gorgeous piece, and an easy one to pour your own soul into. If you’ve played and enjoyed Jim Chappell’s “Gone,” you’ll adore this piece! “Pt. Lobos - Summer Fog” has a moody(!), atmospheric feel. Like fog, it has no hard edges - just a soft, chilly, mysteriousness. “Sparrow” has feelings of quiet calm and solitude. Based on a Native American flute tune, the gentle, peaceful mood is very soothing. “The Way I Feel” is a little jazzier, with a flowing swing rhythm and a slightly bluesy style. This piece is somewhat more playful. The beautiful “Wedding Day” celebrates happiness and that special day.

As you can see, there is a great variety and a consistent quality to the music in Piano Solos By Kate Moody that will provide many hours of playing and listening enjoyment and satisfaction. The book is available from katemusic.com. Recommended!
November 16, 2007