August 25th, 2008

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Videogame ragtime

I'm sure a lot of you are familiar with these tunes, but may not have YouTube accounts or be aware that I had posted these.

My ragtime pianist buddy Tom Brier is one of the best sight-readers around, and he loves to read new ragtime music. I have been surprising him since November with sheet music of ragtime from Nintendo video games. You might enjoy them -- particularly as he has an amazing ability to embellish upon first read (these videos serve as an example of his sight-reading ability, with the bonus of being tunes that gamers know and are likely to watch and thus discover Tom).

K.K. Ragtime from Animal Crossing, sight-read:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZSjER2T8ptk
A few mistakes here and there; it's in sharp keys which is unusual for ragtime, so it's a bit more difficult to read.

Overworld Theme from Super Mario Bros. 2 (USA) / Yume Koujou Dokidoki Panic, sight-read:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lgda3qc8S0A
Nearly flawless, but at a slow tempo, which was my fault. I told him to take it at a leisurely pace, being myself unfamiliar with the tempo it plays in the game. But it's quite nice at this tempo!

Athletic Theme from Super Mario Bros., sight-read:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZMroQOtS_U
Flawless, first at a typical ragtime tempo with embellishments, then at a quick pace!

Athletic Theme from Yoshi's Island, sight-read:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ffwVKDP8nzQ
A few mistakes the first time through, but the second time, when joined by a flute and tuba, it's flawless and very fun!

K.K. Ragtime from Animal Crossing, from memory now:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tEzkjkVKFxk
With flautist Julia Riley (and a random guy getting into it by adding scat-trumpet). Nice and fleshed out arrangment. Really fun!