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Songbook Review: A Quiet Moment Collection
Matt Johnson
Cover image of the songbook A Quiet Moment Collection by Matt Johnson
A Quiet Moment Collection
Matt Johnson
2005 / Dolce & Nuit Productions
7 pages / 85 songs
Review by Kathy Parsons
A Quiet Moment Collection is the companion songbook to Matt Johnson’s 1985 debut album, A Quiet Moment. All seven piano solos from the album are included, transcribed by the composer himself. I have reviewed all of Johnson’s songbooks to date (5) and think this is the easiest to play overall. Don’t get me wrong, though - this music is by no means simple. There are very complex rhythms in some of the music, but in the introductory comments at the beginning of the book, Johnson allows the player plenty of room to adjust the music to his or her own playing style and level “as long as the performer remains true to the identity of each piece.” I found the book to be very enjoyable to play from cover to cover and will definitely be going back and actually learning some of these pieces - especially “Aloneness” and “A Quiet Moment.”

Since this songbook is available as a digital download only (individual pieces are also available), I can’t comment on the binding, paper or artwork, but the scores are well-spaced and easy to read. Expression and dynamics are very clear, as is pedaling. Where appropriate (not too rubato), metronome settings are noted. Fingering is marked in trickier passages. The timing is probably the most complicated part of this music, and there are also lots of passages with fast runs, but I would think it would be fine for most pianists at an early-advanced level and above. Matt Johnson generously offers his music as free downloads from his website, so feel free(!) to try it! If you’d rather pay for it, the music can be purchased from SheetMusicPlus.com.

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

Dance of Joy - Key of G (1 sharp) - 7 pages
Dee Dee’s Song - Key of E minor (1 sharp) - 7 pages
E Major Jam - Key of E (4 sharps) - 13 pages
Aloneness - Key of E minor (1 sharp)/ A minor (0 sharps or flats) - 17 pages
A Quiet Moment - Key of C (0 sharps or flats)/ A (3 sharps) - 6 pages
Changing Images - Key of D minor (1 flat) - 26 pages
The Beckoning - Key of A minor/ Ab minor (7 flats)/ A (3 sharps) / 7 pages
June 6, 2019
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