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Piano & Ensemble album

Something About the Moon

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In his second recording, Matt shows his early arranging skills with the addition of saxophone, cello, flute, guitar, drums and bass on six of the tunes. The title track duet between piano and drums highlights Matt's fascination with the moon.

Listen ~ Download Audio Files

 
 

Download ~ Print Sheet Music

All of the music from this recording has been transcribed for solo piano and is available below.

Click a title to download the sheet music:

~ Katja

~ Rainy Day Comfort

~ Serenade (for Dolce & Nuit)

~ A Little Gem

~ Something About the Moon

~ Chatham

~ Our Song

~ Longing for Yesterday

Download all the pieces
  in one Collection:

~ Something About the Moon Collection

Something About the Moon - SCORE icon
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Matt offers his original music with no expectation of payment. The above audio files and musical scores are absolutely FREE for your personal use and enjoyment.
However, donations are always appreciated.

Recording Information and Credits

Matt Johnson, 1988

 

International Standard Name Identifier

ISNI 0000 0004 6875 3420

Title: Something About the Moon


Artist: Matt Johnson
Release Date: March, 1989
Producer: Matt Johnson, with Karen Kane


Engineer: Ed Goodreau


Assistant Engineer: Mark Tanzer
Record Label: Dolce & Nuit Productions


Recording Studio:


~Blue Jay Recording Studio—Carlisle, MA


Mixing Studio:


~Blue Jay Recording Studio—Carlisle, MA


Mixed by:
 Matt Johnson,

   with Karen Kane and Ed Goodreau


Mastered by: Dr. Toby Mountain at


~Northeastern Digital Recording

CD Number: DNP2688-2


Cassette Number: DNP2688-4
Library of Congress


Catalog Card Number: 88-743010

UPC: 045011268827

 

Total Disc Time: 41 minutes, 43 seconds
 

Musicians:

~Michael Di Amore: alto sax
~Ray Frisby: percussion
~Matt Johnson: piano
~Sato Knudsen: cello
~Carol Kramer: alto flute, C flute, piccolo
~Lauren Passarelli: guitar
~Pengbian Sang: electric and fretless bass
~Ric Wright: drums

 
 

Graphics created for this recording

REVIEWS

Album Review: Something About the Moon

Matt Johnson
1988 / Dolce & Nuit Productions
42 minutes

Review by Kathy Parsons/www.MainlyPiano.com


Something About the Moon is the second album by pianist/composer Matt Johnson. Originally released in 1989, six of the eight original compositions are arranged for piano and ensemble and two are solo piano. Composed in a variety of styles from light jazz to classical to new age and pop instrumental, there is something for just about anybody on this recording. A classically-trained pianist from the age of six, Johnson received his Bachelor of Music degree in Piano Performance from Oklahoma Baptist University and his Master of Music degree from New England Conservatory of Music in Jazz Studies and Composition with a Distinction in Performance. Also a teacher and church musician, the wide variety of influences on Johnson’s music gives him a unique and distinctive musical voice. Although it has been about 31 years since Something About the Moon was released, the music has stood the test of time and still sounds fresh and inviting.

The album begins with “
Katja,” a piece dedicated to Johnson’s wife. It opens with a sax solo that segues to an elegant piano solo before becoming an ensemble piece for piano, sax, drums, electric bass and flute. Sometimes soulful and sometimes upbeat and playful, it’s a great opener! “Rainy Day Comfort” is a favorite. Beginning with the sound of rain and thunder, it is otherwise a piano solo. Dreamy and more than a little bit wistful, it is easy to imagine staring at the rain with this gorgeous piece playing in the background - a perfect accompaniment to being lost in thought. “Serenade” is also a favorite. The beautiful piano melody overflows with emotion and is supported by cello, guitar, flutes and drums. Not overly complicated and rather slow, the passion of all of the instrumentalists makes this piece a real stand-out. Love it! “A Little Gem” is a jazzy trio for piano, drums and electric bass. Joyously upbeat and optimistic, this one will have your toes tapping in no time! The title track "Something About the Moon" begins with a very free solo piano intro that sets a mysterious tone before the drums enter with a steadier rhythm. At just under nine minutes, several different themes are interwoven in what could be considered a multi-movement work that is played without pausing between sections. At about the mid-point of the piece, both musicians pull out all the stops and “let ‘er rip” before returning to a much softer and gentler tone, rebuilding the power, and then trailing off at the end. I really like this one, too! “Chatham” picks up the tempo for a jazzy ensemble piece for piano, sax, drums, electric bass, drums and percussion. Bright with a driving beat, this one is full of exuberant fun. “Our Song” is a jaunty little piano solo that grins from ear to ear as it expresses the bliss of being with someone you love and walking on air. The soulful “Longing For Yesterday,” a duet for piano and sax, is pretty much the opposite mood of “Our Song.” Dark and melancholy, it brings the album to a quiet, moody close.

Something About the Moon is available on Amazon, iTunes and CD Baby, but it is also available as a free download from www.MattJohnsonMusic.com. The sheet music for all of the pieces is also available as a free download on Johnson’s site.

 

 

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

​Songbook Review: Something About the Moon Collection

Matt Johnson
2003 / Dolce & Nuit Productions
129 pages / 8 songs

Review by Kathy Parsons/www.MainlyPiano.com

 


The Something About the Moon Collection is the companion sheet music book to Matt Johnson’s 1989 album by the same name. Only two of the pieces on that album are piano solos, so the other six pieces will sound different from the recording simply because they were/are composed as ensemble pieces (the sheet music is fully notated for solo piano except for the last piece, “Longing For Yesterday,” which has the melody and chord charts).

The songbook was transcribed by Matt Johnson himself, and he gives the pianist quite a bit of interpretive discretion in his “Composer’s Notes” at the beginning of the book. He also suggests ways to make the music your own with the caveat “as long as the performer remains true to the identity of each piece.”

I should point out that some of these pieces are very long, and none of them are easy. Johnson often uses complex jazz rhythms that need careful attention to play correctly. The notation is clear, roomy and easy to read, and that really helps. I downloaded the songbook to my iPad Pro, and it reads very well on that. Johnson offers his sheet music as free downloads on his website (donations are gratefully accepted!), so you won’t be out any money if you find the music is too difficult for your playing skills. My favorites to play in this collection are “Serenade,” Rainy Day Comfort” and “Our Song.”

Matt Johnson’s music is impossible to categorize by genre because his background and influences are so varied (always a good thing, I think!), so some of the sheet music is jazzy and some is more classical or pop, fast and slow, upbeat and moody - something for just about everyone as long as your playing abilities are fairly competent.

The titles, the keys the pieces are in and the number of pages are:

~
Katja - Key of Db (5 flats) - 14 pages
~
Rainy Day Comfort - Key of C (0 sharps or flats) - 9 1/2 pages
~
Serenade - Key of D minor (1 flat)/ D major (2 sharps)/ E major (4 sharps) - 20 pages
~
A Little Gem - Key of Ab (4 flats)/ E (4 sharps) - 27 pages
~
Something About the Moon - Key of A minor (0 sharps or flats) - 26 pages
~
Chatham - Key of D (2 sharps) - 16 pages
~
Our Song - Key of C (0 sharps or flats) - 12 pages
~
Longing For Yesterday - Key of C (melody and chord charts) - 2 pages