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Arranged by Nelson Riddle Paperback – July, 1985


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Arranged by Nelson Riddle + Sounds and Scores : A Practical Guide to Professional Orchestration + The Contemporary Arranger: Definitive Edition
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 197 pages
  • Publisher: Alfred Music (July 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0897249542
  • ISBN-13: 978-0897249546
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 8.8 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #614,897 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

2.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 27 people found the following review helpful By M. Sweetz on August 27, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is definitely worth having, but it will frustrate you if you are just starting out. Like every arranging book, it gives you the breakdown of instruments and their ranges, etc. Unfortunately, it tells you nothing concerning the techniques of arranging, such as drop 2 and drop 2+4 voicings, the handling of non-chordal tones, what to do with chord extensions, etc., all of the mumbo-jumbo that you actually want to learn about.

Yes, the man is a master of arranging, but the book ends up being little more than a pleasant read...and it left me puzzled, with even more questions... questions that I found answers to in other, more detailed, books.

Of course, he's hailed one of the greatest ARRANGERS of all time, not teachers, so I write this review only to help the prospective arranging student avoid confusion, NOT to insult Mr. Riddle and the time and energy he put into this book. His charts will always have a place "under my skin".
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By J. C. Woodby on April 27, 2012
Format: Paperback
I bought this book many years ago largely to see how Mr. Riddle addressed the assignment of time signatures and rhythmic notation. The table of contents lists several sections devoted to these topics so I snatched the book right up -- but got home to discover those chapters exist ONLY in the contents, not in the book.

The page numbers are sequential and complete, so there's no chance these sections were torn out of my copy; the material simply wasn't there in the first place. Nearly a full chapter somehow got left out of the published edition.

The material that did get included is interesting and informative, and the book is not without value -- just missing around 15% of the content it promises. I don't know if this oversight was corrected in later editions, but if I'd known about the error when I purchased the book, I would not have purchased it.

UPDATE: I tracked down a more recent pressing of this book at my local library in early 2012, and the defect has NOT been corrected. Be advised that this book remains deceptively incomplete, and now that Mr. Riddle has gone to his reward, the omissions seem unlikely to ever be corrected.
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16 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Frederic Mennerat on March 5, 2008
Format: Paperback
Disappointment! I waited for many personality and information on behalf of this arranger except peer regrettably many place to detail every instrument... OK we find that "everywhere" there is almost nothing on voicings. everything is in score not transposed without chord changes. Some information to be gleaned (orchestral colors mixture of instrument, general procedures) see rather Don Sebky or Sam Nestico books ! It is really thin, keep your Money !
For a real book on the subject see rather Ken Pullig ' "Arranging for Large Jazz Ensemble"
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By JerseyManDan on March 27, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Composer friends of mine often say this "is a terrible arranging book," and then go one to rattle off things it SHOULD have. Most often the things they think it should have--the mechanical harmonizations of passing and non-schord tones, and drop-2 voicings-- are to be found the the Berklee arranging books (Modern Jazz Voicings and Arranging for Large Ensemble). Riddle's book (along with Mancini's) is most useful as a window into a luminary's creative process--and a specific style, albeit a bygone style, of arranging; therefore, the last half or third of the book is what made it all worthwhile for me (whether one counts from VII. Various Rhythms and How To Write Them or XII. Combining Various Orchestral Sections to Form An Arrangement). It's full of insights for the more experienced arranger and is worthwhile to be on your bookshelf.
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By ronjazz on February 3, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
More of a sampler than a textbook, this offers many examples of Riddle's unique combinations of instruments, but not much insight.
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