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Mel Bay Presents J.S. Bach: Six Unaccompanied Cello Suites Arranged for Guitar (Stanley Yates Series) Spiral-bound – June, 1998


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Mel Bay Presents J.S. Bach: Six Unaccompanied Cello Suites Arranged for Guitar (Stanley Yates Series) + J. S. Bach: 15 Two-Part Inventions Transcribed for Solo Guitar (Alfred's Distinguished Performer) + The Solo Lute Works of Johann Sebastian Bach: Edited for Guitar by Frank Koonce
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Product Details

  • Series: Stanley Yates
  • Spiral-bound: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Mel Bay Publications, Inc. (June 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786629665
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786629664
  • Product Dimensions: 11.8 x 8.9 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #117,711 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Johann Sebastian Bach was the first great musician to disregard the rules of harmony and rhythm that were strictly followed by other composers. This fact alone helped to make him the forerunner of musical composition as we know it today. Born the son of a violinist in Eisenach, Germany, in 1685, he received his first musical training on the violin.

At the age of 10, he went to live in the home of his brother Christoph, who taught Johann to play the harpsichord and the organ. It was also at this time that Bach began school, where his boy-soprano voice was greatly admired and appreciated. When his voice changed, Bach concentrated on the violin; but the organ soon took his interest, and he decided to devote himself to church music.

At the age of 18, Bach became the organist at Arnstadt and began his work in musical composition. After a short period of time, he moved to Muhlhausen where he married his cousin, Maria Bach. At Muhlhausen he began to experiment with changes in the music used in the church services of the German Protestant Church. It was also during this time that he began to become somewhat well known. It was this that gained for him the position as court organist and violinist to the duke at Weimar, where he remained for about nine years.

During this nine-year period, he wrote many cantatas for the Church, suites for the clavichord and harpsichord, and fugues (musical compositions in which the first melody is continually repeated and imitated throughout the entire piece). In fact, because he wrote so many fugues for the organ and piano, he is often called "the Great Master of the Fugue."

His next position at Köthen was during the period in which he produced much of his orchestral music and music for the clavichord and harpsichord. In 1720 his wife died; and a year later he married Anna Wulken, who was also a musician. She evidently helped him considerably in his work.

In 1723 Bach went to Leipzig as music director of the Thomas-schule. During his stay at Leipzig, he wrote many of his church cantatas and oratorios. Among these is his famous Christmas Oratorio. In 1749 Bach became totally blind; and in the following year, 1750, he died.

Historians tell us that Bach did not seem to associate very much with other musicians and was far more interested in his family of 20 children and in composing and directing his church choirs than in becoming "famous." In addition to his almost unequaled skill as a composer, he also was an excellent organ builder, as well as an expert music copyist.

Since most of his life was spent within a few miles of his birthplace, we also now know that Bach’s music was not widely known throughout the world during his lifetime. In fact, many of Bach’s most beautiful works were unpublished and unperformed for almost 100 years, until two later composers (Mendelssohn and Schumann) discovered the beauties of his music and began to perform them and make them known to the world.

Stanley Yates enjoys an accomplished career as a virtuoso performer and recording artist, arranger, scholar, and teacher. Described as "one of an elite breed of guitarists" ( Classical Guitar Magazine, England), praised for his "musical instinct and brilliant technique" (Suonare, Italy), and noted for the "transcendent quality of his interpretation" (Fort Worth Star Telegram, USA), Stanley's performances, recordings and editions have been received with wide critical acclaim.

A past prize-winning performer in such prestigious competitions as the Myra Hess (London) and the Guitar Foundation of America, Stanley is regularly invited to present concerts, masterclasses, and lectures at leading music schools and festivals in both the United States and Europe. He has been dedicatee and/or first performer of music by such leading guitar composers as Stepan Rak, John Duarte and Angelo Gilardino, and has given first modern performances of such rediscovered works as the Premier Concerto by Ernest Shand

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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For someone who is not a classical guitarist but does play seriously, this is great.
roan
I think this edition of the Bach's cello suites arranged for the guitar is an extremely valuable resource for classical guitar students and performers.
FDJ
This book is a terrific adaptation of the Bach unaccompanied cello suites for guitar, and is a great value.
bootbun

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Craig W. Smith on July 12, 2008
Format: Spiral-bound
I like Stanley Yates. I think hes a fantastic player and educator. I really like the sections of the book that go into great detail about transcribing Bach for guitar. I also like how at the end of each suite there is a dual staff comparison of the original cello and guitar versions of all the pieces. The problem is none of them are in the original cello keys which to me defeats the purpose of a cello/guitar comparison score. Furthermore, Yate's key choices for these suites are kind of a cop out in my opinion. Cello suite #1 in C seems very weak and anyone thats every played or heard it in D Major would most likely agree thats the key for guitar. Also Yates version of Cello suite #3 in G Major rather than A major was a bad choice. Luckily I have arrangements in the latter keys for both which I prefer.

Also #6 is missing key bass voicings which you will miss if you've ever heard anyone else play it on guitar or better yet cello. All in all a good bargain and its hard to find all 6 suites for guitar much less in one book so you could do alot worse and certainly pay alot more if purchased separately.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By bootbun on December 15, 2007
Format: Spiral-bound
This book is a terrific adaptation of the Bach unaccompanied cello suites for guitar, and is a great value. Author Steven Yates supplies a guitar arrangement of each suite, which is followed by the same suite represented in "pseudo-grand staff" (original cello line on top and adaptation in bottom staff) so one can reference how the guitar version derived from the original. The overlay is admittedly in very small type, but it is really an added bonus to get the original cello lines as well. The music is followed by a useful and interesting set of chapters with commentary on historical context, procedures for arranging such pieces for modern guitar, style, interpretation, etc. All in all, I can't think of what more you could want from a book of this nature. Highly recommended.
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By FDJ on February 2, 2015
Format: Spiral-bound Verified Purchase
I think this edition of the Bach's cello suites arranged for the guitar is an extremely valuable resource for classical guitar students and performers. It includes a written guide (with bibliography) to arranging, interpreting and performing Bach's music on guitar that is informative, non dogmatic, and clearly and intelligently written. Also in this edition are comparison scores of the original cello music and the guitar arrangement. Even though any serious student of Bach's music probably already has the original cello suites, this feature that Stanley Yates has included facilitates measure by measure comparisons and is a welcome addition.
Regarding the arrangements themselves, Yates makes some unconventional choices that might surprise a guitarist who is already playing these pieces in other keys. I have played the first suite (in G Major) for many years in D Major, the preferred choice of most guitarists. I have to say it was a bit awkward bringing myself to read through the music in the C Major that Yates has chosen. Once I got over my resistance (created largely by force of habit) I was quickly convinced by the resonance of this key as well as how naturally the music fell under the fingers.
I find the key choices as well as the detailed fingerings make all the music in this edition relatively easy to play, at least for my hands. I think Bach's music provides enough challenges without having to deal with difficult or uncomfortable fingerings and it is really amazing how beautifully and easily the music flows in this edition.
I think that whether or not the guitarist decides to use these arrangements or even if one is working on their own transcriptions that this book is certainly an invaluable resource that should not be ignored.
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Mel Bay Presents J.S. Bach: Six Unaccompanied Cello Suites Arranged for Guitar (Stanley Yates Series)
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