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Piano Lessons PLUS
http://www.pianolessonsplus.org/

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American Folk  Songs

America has a rich vein of folk song in its tradition.  Some of the first songs were based on melodies taken from the first immigrants from England.  Later it developed its own folk songs.  I hope in these pages to share with you some of the best in American Folk Song

 

 

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Shenandoah
Shenandoah is one of Americas most beautiful folk songs. I tried to choose harmonies that captured the quiet peace and grandeur of the magnificent landscape of the Shenandoah Valley and River.

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Wayfaring Stranger
Wayfaring. Stranger takes the popular biblical image of being strangers in a foreign land while en route to a better and promised land. The melody is very plaintive and haunting. Perfect for a wayfaring stranger

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The Erie Canal

The inspiration for this arrangement was Bela Bartok. He always used very interesting harmonies in his folk song arrangements and I tried to do the same with some American Folk Songs.

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Oh! Susannah

Oh! Susannah was one of Stephen Foster’s most popular songs.  It debuted in 1848 in Pittsburgh PA.   It became so popular that it became the unofficial theme song of the famous 1849 California Gold Rush.  Mid-intermediate.

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Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen

A personal favorite.  The American Spiritual has a rich tradition in the U.S. and Nobody Knows the Trouble I've seen is one of our very best spirituals.  This expressive arrangement is for a mid to upper intermediate student and can easily be used as an offertory by church musicians.