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Songbook Review: Lost In the Azure
Rachel LaFond
Cover image of the songbook Lost In the Azure by Rachel LaFond
Lost In the Azure
Rachel LaFond
2021 / Rachel LaFond
18 pages / 4 songs
Review by Kathy Parsons
Lost In the Azure is the companion sheet music book for Rachel LaFond's EP by the same name. The music was inspired by Ian Urbina's best-selling book, The Outlaw Ocean, and the recording is part of The Outlaw Ocean Music Project, an amazing series of albums created by hundreds of musical artists from all over the world who were also inspired by the book.

Rachel's recording contains eight tracks, with two versions of each of four original compositions - one version that is solo piano and one that is piano with orchestration and clips from Urbina's field recordings from his four years at sea doing research. The songbook contains the four piano solos and is available as a PDF download from Rachel's website. Each of the four pieces can be downloaded individually, too. The music is not too difficult (upper-intermediate to early advanced), but is very expressive and deeply emotional. The book deals with lawlessness at sea and the toll it is taking on both the environment and to the many victims of piracy, human trafficking, and other horrors on the oceans of the world, so there is drama and heartbreak as well as beauty in the music.

The scores are very clear, well-spaced and have plenty of colorful playing instructions, making it easier for pianists who haven't read the book (but should!!!) to understand what the music is about. Rachel LaFond is a very highly-trained composer/pianist and is the daughter of a prominent piano teacher in Washington State. Her music is very sound for teaching material as well as for personal enjoyment, and I recommend it for both!

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

Lost in The Azure - Key of D minor (1 flat) - 5 pages
Into the Eye - Key of C minor (3 flats) - 4 pages
Invisible Tears - Key of C minor (3 flats) - 3 pages
You Sparkle Still - Key of C minor (3 flats)/ A minor (0 sharps or flats) - 4 pages
November 22, 2021
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