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robin nolan's songbooks- how are they organized

rafapakrafapak ✭✭
edited January 2012 in Gypsy Jazz 101 Posts: 197
hi guy

I plan to buy first volume of mr nolan's songbooks. I wonder how are they organized. There is probably melody line together with chords but don't know exactly. Can you learn to improvise from those songbooks? Please, share some details.
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Comments

  • Robin's book looks like a playalong. It seems as if the chords and melody are laid out cleanly and the accompanying cd has a backing track, one time through with the melody and a few passes through the song form without the melody. It's a good place to start as knowing the melody and chords in this (or any) style is paramount.

    His Fast Track online series looks to be a full package of melody, chords, and tips to how to play a solo over the song. It's a six song package that seems to cover many of the common song forms you might encounter. That might be more of what your after if your new to the style, but enrollment for this will be closing tomorrow. He seems to be a good teacher from the videos I've seen posted here.

    I don't think there is anyone book that's going to teach everything in one shot, but there are a number of great resources in Michael's store to get you headed on the path.
  • HotTinRoofHotTinRoof Florida✭✭✭
    Posts: 308
    rafapak, I have a few of Robin's books and as a beginner into this music I've found them to be a nice introduction. His Songbooks are essentially the simple straight forward melody lines in tab and standard notation, chords with rhythm notations, and a well written blurb for each song where Robin share's his thoughts about playing each song. You can download Swing De Paris from his site for free here:

    http://www.robinnolanteaches.com/swing-de-paris.htm

    This looks literally ripped out of one of his songbooks. Same layout, info, everything. Check it out.

    Robin's Guitar Lick books are his ideas for soloing over the several songs. Each song will have anywhere from 2-5 tabbed soloing "passes" - each a different idea for approaching the given song's chordal arrangement.

    All of Robin's books come with an audio CD which has a slow and up-to-speed version of all his examples.

    Robin is a talented teacher with solid communication skills. I don't feel he's purposely hiding anything as I have felt with other instruction books (not in this style of music). I will say that the addition of Wrembel's - Mel Bay intro to Gypsy Jazz guitar is an excellent addition to Robin's books as they dive into chordal arpeggio's and the theory/thinking behind soloing over chords - which ideas reveal themselves consistently in Robin's soloing ideas. This really opened the door for me with Robin's books. I look at his soloing approaches now and think, "wow that's just the A6 arp right there!"

    Mind you Robin approaches educating the player with jumping right into learning songs and building a repertoire while Wrembel gets right down to the nitty grit of "why". I'm finding that learning each of these approaches is really helping me grasp a more even keeled understanding of gypsy jazz.

    Andy
  • NolanNolan Amsterdam✭✭✭✭
    Posts: 149
    Hi Guys - You can take a sneak peek preview of my latest Fast Track course right here.

    http://www.youtube.com/user/gypsyjams

    The response has been phenomenal and we are open until 31st midnight.

    cheers!

    robin

    www.GypsyJazzFasttrack.com
    www.GypsyJazzSecrets.com
    www.Gypsyjazzworldpassport.com
  • HotTinRoofHotTinRoof Florida✭✭✭
    Posts: 308
    The man himself! A pleasure Robin. Quite an effective video there - received your email and link in my email inbox.

    Andy
  • Posts: 30
    rafapak wrote:
    hi guy

    I plan to buy first volume of mr nolan's songbooks. I wonder how are they organized. There is probably melody line together with chords but don't know exactly. Can you learn to improvise from those songbooks? Please, share some details.

    Did you buy one of Nolan's books? I am just curious. How did you find it? I wonder why nobody ever mentions the fact that he invented his own TAB system, rather than using a perfectly good system that everyone already knows how to read.
  • HotTinRoofHotTinRoof Florida✭✭✭
    Posts: 308
    How do you mean? He still uses "tab" - six horizontal lines each representing a string. Frets are represented by a number on the corresponding string.

    He uses a few ornaments on top but IMO nothing out of ordinary. Or am I missing something?
  • PerltonePerltone ✭✭✭
    Posts: 29
    Actually, his tab is different from anything I have seen, and not, IMHO, in a good way. I read tab for banjo, mandolin and guitar, always with the numbers, representing notes, on the lines.
    Robin, in his songbooks, not his Licks book, puts X's on the line and the number above the staff. It is cumbersome and took me awhile to get used to it.
    That being said, I use his stuff every day and find it very well organized.
  • Posts: 30
    HotTinRoof wrote:
    How do you mean? He still uses "tab" - six horizontal lines each representing a string. Frets are represented by a number on the corresponding string.

    He uses a few ornaments on top but IMO nothing out of ordinary. Or am I missing something?

    You are missing the fact that he does NOT put the fret number on the string. He puts it above the whole string set. He puts stylized notes (x's with tails) on the string. You have to interpret the meaning of the X, then your eye has to jump up to see the fret number.
  • Posts: 30
    HotTinRoof wrote:
    How do you mean? He still uses "tab" - six horizontal lines each representing a string. Frets are represented by a number on the corresponding string.

    He uses a few ornaments on top but IMO nothing out of ordinary. Or am I missing something?

    You are missing the fact that he does NOT put the fret number on the string. He puts it above the whole string set. He puts stylized notes (x's with tails) on the string. You have to interpret the meaning of the X, then your eye has to jump up to see the fret number.
  • HotTinRoofHotTinRoof Florida✭✭✭
    Posts: 308
    Double post! You must be really serious! :lol:

    I see now, I haven't looked at the lead lines in his books for quite sometime. :D Yeah it's not the best for quicker lead runs but I think his main emphasis is to communicate the rhythm - which it does quite well. None of the song hooks are very complicated - the trick to nailing them is learning the groove which his notation is clearly showing. Granted he's also challenged with trying to shove an awful lot of info onto a single page.

    He switches to normal tab for his lead books with the quicker runs where the rhythm aspect isn't as much of an issue to communicate.

    My main two cents with his books is that in hindsight I would have just bought his gig book instead of buying the first song book separately and still having less than half of the songs in the songbook!
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