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Jazz on a Winter's Night + CD: 11 Christmas classics for jazz piano (Nikki Iles Jazz series) Paperback – 27 Aug 2009

4.8 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Publisher: OUP Oxford (27 Aug. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0193365901
  • ISBN-13: 978-0193365902
  • Product Dimensions: 23 x 0.4 x 31.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 42,919 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

About the Author

Pianist and composer Nikki Iles was a founder member of the Creative Jazz Orchestra - working with Anthony Braxton, Mike Gibbs, Vince Mendoza, and Mark-Anthony Turnage. Her busy freelance career has found her playing with Peter Erskine (CJO), Kenny Wheeler, Art Farmer, Julian Argüelles, Stan Sulzmann, Norma Winstone, Tony Coe, Tina May, and Rufus Reid. Her music has been commissioned and performed also by the London Sinfonietta and Tim Garland's Underground Orchestra. A committed educator, Nikki is senior lecturer at Middlesex University, visiting professor at the Guildhall School of Music, Royal Academy, and Trinity College of Music, London, and an adviser to ABRSM. She holds a British Jazz Award (1996), an award from the International Association for Jazz Education (2002), and was twice nominated for a Parliamentary Jazz Award. 'A formidable UK jazz presence' - John Fordham, The Guardian


Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a classically trained pianist, i wouldn't know how to put together a jazz piano solo if my life depended on it. I was asked to play for a carol concert in our local church and wanted something Christmassy and not too obvious. This book caught my eye and I'm so glad I got it. The arrangements are just beautiful, I can't stop playing them, the harmonies are so clever. around grade 5 i would say. Can't wait to play for the service and am hoping I dare put the jazzy version of Santa Claus is coming to town in at the end! As the songs are not listed in the description, they are:
Have yourself a Merry little Xmas
Winter Wonderland
I saw 3 ships
In the bleak mid-winter
Noel nouvlet
santa claus is comin to town
the Xmas song
O little town of Bethlehem
Balulalow
Sans Day carol
Silent night
Can't recommend it enough if you'd like to sound jazzy and don't know how - comes with a CD too.
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Format: Paperback
Nikki Iles is a fine jazz pianist, and also involved in jazz education e.g. as a contributor to the ASM Jazz piano project.
This book falls somewhere between - original arrangements of carols and Christmas songs, each one playing with a different style or artist-inspiration. It's done with skill and affection. The pieces are careful transcriptions of Nikki's playing (on the CD) and while few are 'easy', they're all attainable for at least this amateur, and realisation does give me a feel of jazz under my fingers.
Highly recommended. If Nikki offered more of the same (not necessarily Christmas-themed), I'd buy it sight-unseen.
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Lovely book of winter arrangements and one that will keep you busy playing over the Christmas period! Probably level around Grade 5-6 at times and very enjoyable too. Soupy harmonies on 'Merry Christmas to you' have me all in a swoon! Great stuff - I love Nikki Iles's work.
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I concur wholeheartedly with the other reviewers who have given this book five stars. The pieces are relatively easy to play (around Grade VI standard) and the book comes with a handy CD of all the pieces featuring Nikki Iles on piano. Each arrangement has been influenced by a particular Jazz legend but without becoming a pastiche. Personally, I much prefer Jazz on a Winter's Night to Piano Stylings of Classic Christmas Carols (Steinway Library) and I also think that this book gives better value for money.

Contents

1. Have yourself a merry little Christmas (inspired by Nat King Cole)
2. Winter Wonderland (inspired by Take Six)
3. I saw three ships (inspired by the Modern Jazz Quartet)
4. In the bleak mid-winter (inspired by Bill Evans)
5. Noël nouvelet (inspired by the John Coltrane Quartet)
6. Santa Claus is comin' to town (inspired by Paul Bley)
7. The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas to You) (inspired by Frank Sinatra)
8. O little town of Bethlehem (inspired by Vince Mendoza)
9. Balulalow (inspired by Norma Winstone)
10. Sans Day carol (inspired by Abdullah Ibrahim)
11. Silent night (inspired by Thad Jones)
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Format: Paperback
This book is giving me such joy. You can learn the pieces 'from the notes', just like learning classical music. Or if, like me, you have some limited knowledge of jazz, you can also work out the chord structures and play around with your own improvisations as well. There's a really nice variety of styles and I would guess a Grade 5 classical pianist should be able to cope with most of them. I would recommend this book to any pianist who loves good music. Check out the harmonies as In the Bleak Mid Winter develops.
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Format: Paperback
This is an excellent book, containing a varied selection of elegantly and sympathetically arranged pieces. I'd say the pieces range from grades 4-6 (3 maybe for Silent Night). There are lush ballads and also highly groovy renditions of swinging pieces Santa Claus is Comin' to Town and Winter Wonderland. I particularly like the subtle changes in the accompaniment rhythm throughout the swinging pieces and the short solo bursts; these touches make the pieces really interesting and gives valuable insight into the world of improvisation - quite inspiring for those of us still stuck on the sheet music but with aspirations to go 'off piste'! Such a refreshing change from the dull arrangements that fill so many sheet music books. I will be looking out for other titles by this arranger.
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I have looked for years for a Christmas music book for piano that has lovely harmonies like this. It also seems to be difficult to find carol sheet music which is about this standard (Grade 5 or 6). The arrangements are suberb and included are more unusual songs too. So after years of playing the standard carols and Christmas songs which are arranged simply and with bog standard harmonies, it is exciting to play these arrangements. It is going to create a nice atmosphere when I play to family and friends.
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I absolutely love what Nikki Iles has done with these Christmas songs and carols. Her harmonies and rich and lush and they make such a refreshing change from the usual Christmas arrangements. At under £11 this book is wonderful value for money (with or without the cd!)
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