piano accompaniment CD for theremin

Posted: 6/26/2007 5:09:06 AM

From: paris, france

Joined: 1/16/2007

Mandarin electron (the Matryomin compagny), has released the last great masami takeuchi's album "Vocalise" in a karaoke version.

All the tracks of the album are piano only, so you can practise your theremin on it.
The original album is great, so I'm really exciting about being able to practise on the piano tracks.


The page is in japanese.
The track list must be :

M01 Vocalise / Rakhmaninov (4'32")
M02 Sing not, O lovely one / Rakhmaninov (4'32")
M03 Lark / Glinka (3'35")
M04 Valse Sentimentale / Tchaikovsky (2'49")
M05 Cantique de Jean Racine / Faure (5'40")
M06 Apres un reve / Faure (4'18")
M07 Ave Maria / Bach, Gounod (3'24")
M08 O mio babbino caro / Puccini (2'13")
M09 Ave verum corpus / Mozart (2'56")
M10 Le cygne / Saint-Saens (3'01")
M11 Zueignung / R.Strauss (2'02")

For order, I guess you'll have to contact masami at : masami@mandarinelectron.com
Posted: 9/12/2007 7:58:40 AM

From: Santa Rosa, California USA

Joined: 7/25/2005

I respect Masami Takeuchi's playing, but I was disappointed and perturbed by the the accompaniment tracks. The tempo of nearly all of them is excruciatingly slow, much slower than anybody else plays them. Maybe it's a good discipline to try to work through the pieces that way, but I just can't seem to get the feeling of the musicality at that Stygian pace. I have only heard his Swan, which, unusually for him, it seems, he plays at about the normal tempo. No doubt, I should have listened to the rest before buying those tracks. I bet HE makes those tempi work just fine.
Posted: 9/13/2007 2:25:47 AM
Charlie D

From: England

Joined: 2/28/2005

Unless the pieces are live recordings, you might as well get MIDI files off the internet. It seems a good collection of theremin cliches though. ;)

Posted: 9/13/2007 7:14:13 AM

From: Bristol, United Kingdom

Joined: 12/30/2006

They must be live recordings if they're a karaoke version of an album. Take album, delete Theremin track. Twenty seconds in studio, double your revenue.
Posted: 9/13/2007 7:38:57 AM
Brian R

From: Somerville, MA

Joined: 10/7/2005

Fintushel, have you tried 1) ripping the tracks, and then 2) electronically altering the tempo?

I've used the Sourceforge "Audacity" freeware. The audio quality of the altered file will depend on 1) the original audio quality, and 2) the extent to which you're altering tempo.

I think the original audio quality is the key factor. F'rinstance, I created a practice track of the Rakh. [i]Vocalise[/i] within Sibelius, replete with little accel's and rit's, at a rather slow speed (qtr. = 40). I wanted also to have a version at a slightly faster tempo (qtr. = 44), and I didn't feel like editing all those little accel's and rit's... so I simply used Audacity to change the tempo of the whole track by 10%. Alas, thanks to the comparatively low quality of the samples, the altered version exhibits bizarre phase-shifting. So that's the bad news.

The good news is that with higher-quality audio, I've accelerated tracks by 14% or even 20%, with excellent sound quality... so with a bit of copying-and-editing, perhaps you could still make use of the Takeuchi tracks.
Posted: 9/13/2007 7:41:27 AM
Brian R

From: Somerville, MA

Joined: 10/7/2005

P.S. Oh yeah, here's the URL:

Posted: 9/13/2007 8:19:56 AM

From: Santa Rosa, California USA

Joined: 7/25/2005

Thanks, Brian--I do use Audacity for just this purpose, but the Takeuchi tracks are about 50% slower than anything you'll find elsewhere. A tempo alteration of that magnitude leaves artifacts--it all sounds very foggy and strange.

By the way, for working on midi files, I sometimes use my friend Manfred Clynes's program SuperConductor. I have some difficulty with it--I haven't yet learned all the ins and outs--but when it works it's astonishing what a lifelike rendition you get. The notes themselves and the phrases have an uncannily human quality. Manfred has found algorithms to shape the pitches and the small variations in amplitude of individual notes to enhance their musicality.
Posted: 9/13/2007 8:23:45 PM
Brian R

From: Somerville, MA

Joined: 10/7/2005

Fintushel, thanks for the tip on SuperConductor.

50% slower?!? Good grief... I wish I could get away with playing that slowly in public... but seriously, no wonder it's a challenge to shape phrases at that pace.

I've created half-speed tracks for practice, but those are purely for cleaning up intonation in rapid passagework... I wouldn't be caught dead performing any of them in public.
Posted: 1/29/2009 4:25:38 PM

From: Chillicothe, Ohio USA

Joined: 1/29/2009

As far as music genres go, my first love is the jazz standards, so I practice a lot with improvisation practice CD's, such as any of the dozens published by Jamie Aebersold, followed by The Goal Note Method by Shelton Berg. These CD's are fabulous no matter what range you want to exercise, because you can take out the bass or the piano part by adjusting the left/right speaker balance. I like to learn the melodies solidly first, then work on improvisation (I am a trained vocalist, so hearing the parts is not a difficulty for me so much as finding those damn descending perfect 4ths!), then I venture into walking the bass. Now, I have a Moog Etherwave, but the range limitation does not allow me to play really fat bass tones, but I give it a whirl anyway because it's so damn fun! Also, any vocal warm-up CD's are great, too. I have, from the beginning of my theremin journey, used the vocal warm-ups I know to practice playing each interval with accuracy, and I recently dug up my fourth-grade violin method book. There are some great exercises in there, too (Neil A. Kjos' All for Strings Coprehensive String Method Book 1 1985 edition, specifically exercises 94 to 99).
Posted: 1/29/2009 6:17:43 PM

From: Miami & Paris 50/50

Joined: 8/7/2008


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