Performance tips video: We’re Marching to Zion

As promised, here is a video I did to demonstrate some tips for how perform We’re Marching to Zion (my new arrangement).

I don’t know that I have ever talked here on the blog about a few of these things but then I don’t know I have ever published an arrangement like this before either. We are talking about the highly elusive and intuitive concept of swing.

If you are like me, you come from a fairly traditional and conservative background. You probably heard some pianists playing this way in your churches but maybe were not allowed to play this way yourself. Many many teachers would look down on this kind of music and discourage you from every trying. Without any prior experience, you might just end up befuddled by the style now, especially when you learn that swing rhythm is not really something that can be accurately notated.

When I started trying to learn this years ago, I cannot tell you how much I struggled. I just kept listening and practicing and eventually the style found its way to me. Be patient. This is in some ways requires a very different learning process than any other music you have every played.

My goal here is not just to talk swing but also to just make the arrangement less intimidating. It really is not as hard to play as it looks. Also, keep in mind that if you get style down, you can pretty much ignore a lot of what I wrote anyway. Just approximate it!

If you don’t see the video below, click here: