Category Archives: New Publications

Keepin’ it Real: Music [Education] in the Social and Digital Age

Companies large and small go in and out of business all the time, much like the ebb and flow of the tides each day. There is no sector of business immune to it, and sometimes there seems no rhyme or reason for it either. The business of sheet music is no different. Sheet music stores and sheet music publishers rise and fall, rise and fall, akin to a lilting melody in a song.

Some make it and some don’t. Take Carl Fischer sheet music, a tried-and-true music publisher that is celebrating 140 years of service this year to 1,400 sheet music retailers worldwide, Pender’s Music Co. being one of them. Consider this: when the founder of Carl Fischer first opened up for business, he didn’t sell sheet music at all. Carl Fischer, the business, was a musical instrument repair shop, and there is really little in common when comparing band instrument repair with the writing, designing, printing, publishing and distributing of a piece of sheet music.

But what about Southern Music Company, a business that was both a sheet music retailer and a music publisher, too? In February of this year, after 75 years of retailing and publishing, the San Antonio mainstay for music educators, performers and students everywhere closed its doors for good. Of course, it must be noted here that Lauren Keiser Music Publishing eventually took over the publishing division in June, but still, it’s the sign of the times —  rise and fall, rise and fall.

Like Carl Fischer, Pender’s Music Co. is also celebrating an anniversary, albeit only 45 years and counting. And somewhat similar to them, our primary focus in the beginning wasn’t sheet music either. Think soda fountain, art supplies, school supplies and more (a little bit of music), sold right on campus to college students. But even more similar? The acceptance of change, and the willingness to adapt to it, with a little bit of risk-taking for good measure.

That’s what small business is best at. That’s what a family-owned business is best at: the germ of the idea, the drive to make it happen, the willingness to cut your losses when necessary, the stick-to-it-ive-ness to ride the rise and fall, the dare to dream big all over again.

And what does all of this have to do with music education, social media, and the digital age? Quite a lot. Over the past few days, we’ve seen the viral video of Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe” as arranged and performed by the 3Penny Chorus and Orchestra. The 3Penny Chorus and Orchestra is a volunteer pickup ensemble conducted by Arianne Abela, a choral music conductor and educator who graduated from Yale’s School of Music Masters Program in choral conducting in 2010. And Colin Britt, who arranged the music for the group, was one of her classmates. He is now on the faculty at the Hartt School of Music.

We’ve also seen Korean singer’s Psy “Gangnum Style” as performed by the Ohio University Marching Band. These classically trained musicians, educators and students have put their own spin on popular music of today and shared it via social media to millions of people. Brilliant! It’s certainly a positive spotlight on choir, orchestra, and marching band.

As music educators, music makers, and the companies that supply needed goods and services to them move forward, it will be important for everyone to try and adapt to the changes of how media and information is transmitted nowadays. Embracing technology and its power of connecting people to people and products and services to people will be vital to staying strong both in education and in business. Sheet music, just as recorded music and published books before it, is rapidly transforming itself into a more digital-friendly medium — point of purchase digital downloads, online score and part perusal, streaming sample audio, etc. But let’s not forget that the content — that piece of sheet music with the lilting melody — remains the same, and the value of it is truly immeasurable.

Browse the new Carl Fischer Concert Band titles for 2012: listen to recordings, view full scores, shop online!

Notation Software: Are You Ready for an Upgrade?

Sibelius 7

In stock and available now from Pender’s Music Co…the NEW edition of Sibelius, a gold standard in music notation software! And what’s even better is that we’re able to help Educators make the upgrade!

The latest generation of one of the world’s best-selling music notation software:
Avid Sibelius 7
It’s sophisticated enough to meet the demands of top composers, arrangers, and publishers, yet simple enough for beginners and students. Work quickly with the brand-new,
task-oriented user interface. Experience your scores in stunning clarity with the exclusive, professional-quality sound library. Collaborate more easily thanks to full MusicXML interchange support and other sharing options. And view beautiful, print-quality scores with advanced typography and graphics support. Designed by musicians for musicians, Sibelius 7 is the fastest, smartest, easiest way to write music.You can even take your scores on the go with the Avid Scorch app for iPad.
Sibelius 7: Upgrade [16723461 | $149.95]
Do you have an older version of Sibelius that needs an upgrade? We can help!
Sibelius 7 Educational: Academic/Student Edition [16723452 | $295.95]
* Comes with FOUR YEARS of -F R E E- Upgrades!! *

Other Notable Software for Educators and Students

Finale 2012: Academic Hybrid Edition [16690350 | $350.00]

From inspiration to applause, music comes alive with Finale®. Easily compose, arrange, notate and print engraver-quality sheet music that plays back with world-class sounds. Whether you’re creating orchestral film scores or MP3 files for your iPod, Finale offers you the flexibility and freedom to create any music you can imagine. This NEW version will be in stock soon….call or check online for availability!

Finale PrintMusic 2011 [16704100 | $119.95]
Sibelius AudioScore Ultimate 7 [22303600 | $249.95]
Sibelius PhotoScore Ultimate 7 [16808100 | $249.95]

Give us a call, or shop our website….Our Music Specialists are here to help you in determining your particular software needs!

NEW Freddie the Frog: Beyond the Books | Finally Here!

NEW Teacher’s Book!

[The information below is taken from Sharon’s e-newsletter announcement that the long-awaited book, Freddie the Frog: Beyond the Books is finally in print. Get one now, for the beginning of your school year!]

From Sharon: How do I teach music beyond the Freddie the Frog storybooks?

The storybooks are just the introduction and the connection to Freddie.  Then, the learning really begins with Freddie introducing games, songs, and activities that always build on the foundation of the stories. Kids want to learn anything that Freddie thinks is fun!

The NEW Teacher’s Book outlines the 14 sequential lessons that I developed to teach music concepts, utilizing the storybooks and far beyond. The lessons include when and at what grade levels to introduce each book, how to introduce and review key concepts.  Plus, extension lessons that reinforce the learning.

It comes with a CD-Rom that includes:

Reproducible Student Flashcards

25 Coloring Pages

3 Interactive Whiteboard Lesson flipcharts/PPT files

Freddie the Frog® ClipArt

Assessment Report Sheet

Assessment Teacher Files

Available NOW

Sharon

Freddie the Frog®

-The Mascot of Music Education.

via NEW Freddie the Frog TEACHER’S BOOK is here!.

Other books and supplements in the Freddie Series:

Lab 2011: [UNT] One O’Clock Jazz Band

Lab 2011 , the CD from the University of North Texas One O’Clock Lab Band is now available!

For those unfamiliar with the One O’Clock Lab Band,  they’re the top-level jazz band from the University of North Texas (UNT)  Division of Jazz Studies. The University of North Texas College of Music is one of the largest music schools in the country, and their rich legacy on jazz and jazz studies is world-renowned.   The One O’Clock Lab Band has received six Grammy nominations over the years, including their recent nomination in 2010 for their CD Lab 2009.

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Pender’s Music Co. just got in several copies and this is a very smokin’ CD! Be the first on your block to own it!

via Penders Music Co.

Arranging Pop Tunes for Choir

For Choral Cache Thursday, here’s an article that was recently written for “Ledger Lines,” an e-newsletter that is produced by Alfred Publishing. It’s written by Michael Spresser, one of Alfred’s choral editors:

Arranging Today’s Pop Chorals
By Michael Spresser
Alfred Pop & Lawson-Gould Editor

In the history of choral music, the arranging of popular music is still a relatively new phenomenon. Some of the earliest arrangements of popular songs of the day were developed in the 1930s, when Fred Waring and his Pennsylvanians became one of the first ensembles known for singing ‘pop’ music. As you know, many of today’s current top pop songs are lyrically inappropriate, lack a strong melody, or the melody simply isn’t conducive to choral harmony.What does Alfred look for in a current pop choral arrangement? Many of the same things that are found in any successful choral composition:

– Does the melody stay within an appropriate range and tessitura for developing voices?

– Does the arranger use the best voice-leading possible? In other words, do the parts move in a way that help a singer experience success?

– Does the arrangement allow for proper and healthy vocal technique?

– Does the arrangement replicate the sound of the original while allowing for solid choral harmony?

– Does the arrangement encourage the building of listening skills and the teaching of basic musical concepts?

– Does the accompaniment enhance, while still supporting, the choral parts?

– Is the arrangement rhythmically accurate (true to the original), without being difficult to read?

– Does the arrangement allow solo opportunities where appropriate?

All of these questions, and more, are considered when we select our current pop arrangements. Arrangements that maintain choral integrity while also maintaining the style of the original are [some of the hallmarks] of Alfred publications.

Check out some of their newest releases that were featured at our recent choral reading session event, Sing-a-bration!


*Content used by permission of Alfred Publishing Company.

Texas UIL | PML & You

The University Interscholastic League was created by The University of Texas at  Austin in 1910. It facilitates educational extracurricular academic, athletic, and music contests, and has grown into the largest inter-school organization of its kind in the world. In particular, the Music Program of the UIL is designed to support and enrich the teaching of music as an integral component of the public school curriculum in the state of Texas.

And while your area may or may not have its own version of the UIL, there’s no doubt that the resources available from them can and are helpful to most educators, whether from the state of Texas or not. The TX UIL has been in the process of revising its Prescribed Music List, and recently, more than 100 titles were added to the band division of the list. Scroll through the slideshow below to review the latest additions, as well as to click through to audio files and pdf sample scores (where available).

Pender’s as the Arkansas Traveler

It’s always nice to have the opportunity to display at band and orchestra meetings and conventions. There’s nothing better than face-to-face time with our customers. And it’s especially nice if it’s combined with the appearance of noted clinicians, conductors or speakers.

Take the Arkansas Bandmasters Summer Meeting, for example. Anthony Maiello (from George Mason University) will be there. On Thursday (July 28 @ 9am) he’ll present the opening Keynote Address on “Never Give Up on a Student.” Following that, he’ll be conducting a Reading Band Session on music for Grades 1 to 3 (9:30am-10:20am), as well as presenting a session around his new book, Conducting Nuances: Little Things Mean a Lot (10:30am-11:20am).

Since the exhibits don’t open until 1pm on Thursday, we’ve scheduled Dr. Maiello to be in our booth from 2:00 to 2:30pm for book signings, questions, etc.

Denis DiBlasio will be at the convention, too, and he’s going to be in the Pender’s booth just after Dr. Maiello. DiBlasio has a new set of jazz ensemble charts, published by Northeastern Music. He’s also got a new improvisation book: Pathways to Improvisation: A Resource for Learning and Teaching Jazz Improvisation. Visit with Denis in our booth from 3-3:30pm on Thursday.

Later that evening, DiBlasio’s going to be an integral part of the Arkansas Jazz Educators Clinic & Concert, scheduled for 9pm.  Go to the ASBOA website for more information regarding Dr. Maiello and/or Denis DiBlasio at the Arkansas Bandmasters Summer Meeting.

See you at the convention!

Arkansas Bandmasters Summer Convention

DoubleTree Hotel & Little Rock Convention Center

Little Rock, AR

July 27-30, 2011

(Exhibits on Thursday & Friday only)

Spring Things for Strings

It’s easy to get caught up in the post-Spring Break Slump…..many are likely thinking about how many days are left in the current school year, and when does all-things-summer begin. But let’s not be too hasty! Is there a Spring concert looming ahead? Do you need some help in making some programming decisions?


Pender’s Picks the Pops for Orchestra
is here! Our Orchestra Buyer, James Nicholson, has selected the best-of-the-best to include in his top Picks of new and best-selling music for orchestra. There’s sure to be something listed that would be perfect for your group’s final performance of the year.
And not only that, but our Carrollton and Oklahoma City stores are having a Spring Sale on Full and String Orchestra music. That’s right, it’s 50% off, in-store only, on lots and lots of titles…..there are some exclusions, of course (no TX UIL music, and no brand-new titles), but there are literally hundreds of other pieces to choose from — great additions to any school library. Email or call Carrollton (jnicholson@penders.com -or- 972.818.1333/866.589.0751) or Oklahoma City (okcmusic@penders.com -or- 405.842.7825/800.772.8405) for more information. The sale ends May 31st, so take action now for the best selection, and Happy Spring!

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Tuesday’s Tidbits for Strings, the series, will post to www.pendersbuzz.com a couple of times a month, with information from our staff, our publisher partners, guest bloggers and more. Come back to this site, or access it from our main Home Page, to find out the latest buzz!

Just for Kids

Today’s Pender’s Piano Prose is a staff review on a new book, recently published by Hal Leonard:

Just for Kids is a new collection of 8 original pieces for the elementary student by Mona Rejino. It is based on the everyday experiences of kids. Titles include: Aquarium Dreams, Broken Arm Woes, Flying My Kite, I Wanna Be a Rock Star, Let’s Go on Vacation, Monday Mornin’ Blues, Pepperoni Pizza and The Tooth Fairy.

Students come up with some of the most whimsical, illuminating, and often hilarious stories during their piano lessons. The imaginative music and lyrics in this new collection were each inspired by Ms. Rejino’s own students and the book is dedicated to them. It is a collection that was driven by what kids want to be when they grow up, their favorite things to do, and the things that happen to them.

Ms. Rejino’s favorite song in Just for Kids is I Wanna Be a Rock Star, which grew from a conversation with her five-year old student, Annie. When asked what she wanted to be when she grew up, Annie took all of three seconds to throw her fist in the air and say “I wanna be a rock star!” Ms. Rejino responded by saying, “Yes, don’t we all!”

Just for Kids – Elem – $7.99

Mention the word “pizza” and a child’s eyes light up. Forget the mushrooms, onions and green peppers, kids love Pepperoni Pizza. Pepperoni Pizza is composed with a supportive teacher accompaniment that allows the student to revel in the spirited, chords of the opening measures.

Monday Mornin’ Blues is another childhood experience that all of us can relate to. After a great weekend that ends too soon, kids can feel overwhelmed by the work that awaits — just like adults. The piece is written in a blues style with legato phrasing and quiet dynamics — not too loud for Monday mornin’!

These and the other five pieces explore such musical facets as the whole tone scale, use of pedal, a solo for left hand (Broken Arm Woes), and other teaching opportunities.

Through these musical stories that kids can relate to they can use the pieces in Just for Kids as a means to express themselves and learn with fun.

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Pender’s Piano Prose, the series, posts to www.pendersbuzz.com about once a month, with information from our staff, our publisher partners, guest bloggers and more. Come back to this site, or access it from our main Home Page, to find out the latest buzz!