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How to Write Songs on Keyboards - A Complete Course to Help You Write Better Songs Book/CD (Softcover) Paperback – October 1, 2005


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How to Write Songs on Keyboards - A Complete Course to Help You Write Better Songs  Book/CD (Softcover) + The Songwriting Sourcebook: How to Turn Chords into Great Songs (Fully Updated and Expanded Edition) (Fastforward) + How To Write Songs On Guitar - Revised
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Backbeat Books; 2nd edition (October 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0879308621
  • ISBN-13: 978-0879308629
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.7 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #166,637 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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45 of 46 people found the following review helpful By Chris on November 11, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am a rabid follower of Rikky Rooksby's music theory/songwriting books, as he is a constant provider of quality songwriting techniques, ones that legendary bands and underrated singer-songwriters use in nearly all of their songs.

If you're familiar with Rikky's debut "How To Write Songs On Guitar", you'll know that that book is absolutely essential if you're an aspiring or even advanced songwriter.

This book, titled the same with the word "Keyboards" instead of "Guitar", lacks a lot of what made Rikky's first book a milestone.

It's nice having a CD to listen to as you learn these tried-and-true techniques, but the examples are far too short. They're not really explained exceptionally well as the examples and citations in "...Guitar."

Aside from this minor gripe, I still find this book incredibly useful, as I do all Rikky's books. The only reason I'm giving it four stars instead of 5 is because it's not "...Guitar."

As I wrote in other reviews of Rikky's books, I think his writing and overall book quality is declining, as it seems that "Guitar" was so popular, that Backbeat started releasing one or two books by him per year, which, may be a bit impatient, but maybe not. In my opinion, it just seems like he's rushing through explaining these songwriting and chord progression techniques, where with "Guitar" he clearly explained them and gave TONS of pop song examples (pop as in Jeff Buckley, The Smiths, Simon & Garfunkel, etc. not pop like Britney).

Still, it's Rooksby. I own all of his books, at least the ones with this cover theme (huge capitalized titles).

In my opinion, Rikky's books, in overall quality are (1 being the best):

1.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Carmella Diforte on November 13, 2005
Format: Paperback
This is not a book on how to play the piano, even though learning chords is probably more than half the battle, this book does everything it says it does, it teaches you the most common chord structures and progressions in most popular music. I sat down at my keyboard and played one of the progressions, they are very effective, and I had heard them before in other songs. The notation is very intuitive for the none music reading songwriters-to-be. It shows the keyboard visually on the page with dots on the keys to be struck for the chord. All in all this is an excellent book, with a nice cd letting you listen to the progressions to get a better idea of them, one motto from the book is not too worry about what chord you are playing, if it sounds good.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By B. Nguyen on July 8, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
APPEARANCES:
After opening the shipping package, I found that this book is in a format of 8.5 inches (wide) x 11 inches (high) x 5/8 inches (thick) with a glossy double-fold paper cover. As I fanned the 256 pages of the book across my face to glance at it, I saw lots and lots of pictures. Roughly, I saw about three or four paragraphs of text on the left pages and mostly diagrams on the right pages. I saw NO ["en", "oh"] musical staff with traditional musical notes though! A 90-track CD is included and well protected in a plastic pocket on the inside back cover. The book comes with a 1-page preface, 5-page introduction, 12 sections of mostly chord progressions, and a 14-page appendix which includes technique page references, chord diagrams, chord formulas, and a glossary of terms and concepts.

Each of the 12 sections begins with its title and a famous quote printed on the left (even) page with a black background which helps to segregate itself from other sections visually. On the facing (odd) page, there is a discussion of a new concept or a special notation, followed by a series of techniques which are numbered the same way as their corresponding CD tracks.

MY SUBJECTIVE OPINION:
If you are like me (taking a year or so of piano lessons during your elementary years, being overwhelmed and bored with music theory in high school, forming a garage band, being able to read *some* music but mainly lyrics with chord tabs, attempting to expand your artistic traits by writing a song of your own, and being a VISUAL learner), this book is for you.

If you are looking for a book on how to play keyboards, this book is NOT it. Go on with something else!
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Jeff Parker on October 17, 2006
Format: Paperback
When I found this book and looked inside, I was blown away! Finally a book that shows you just what you need to know without drowning you in theory and WITHOUT being geared towards guitarists! I make electronic dance music and found this book (along with a chord wheel) to be an amazing resource to improve your songwriting techniques. I went from 2-chord songs with no discernible structure to amazingly complex songs with dramatic chord changes!

Since I use a computer sequencer along with my keyboard, programming these chords into my sequencer then playing them back while improvising melodies on top of them has been absolutely amazing. I really think if you're making electronic dance music you can benefit a lot from this book, but to a larger extent any songwriter could find something here that makes it worth the purchase price!
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How to Write Songs on Keyboards - A Complete Course to Help You Write Better Songs  Book/CD (Softcover)
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