Youtube. I started out by watching movies there, moving onto tutorials (my guilty pleasures!), and nowadays more for its music selections. Not that i wasn’t aware of it before, but it is relatively easy to find any kind of songs i’m looking for — google for artist/title, youtube for the actual music itself. Music has been my companion particularly during tedious, arduous tasks at work. When the radio plays the same sets of songs over and over again, or when my music library hasn’t been updated, i’d turn to youtube for more varieties, checking out latest releases or browsing for any listenable playlist.
One day, i read a social media post by a friend who shared how classical music helps calm her nerves and boost concentration during pressing periods. It wasn’t the first time i came across such news, but i am not the type who is able to listen to music while doing a task demanding my full attention like studying or finishing work up. However, i decided to give it a try — that’s how i hit on The cello song. ‘Covering’ Bach’s Unaccompanied cello suite no. 1: Prelude, it is an awesome rendition of the familiar music piece. What’s even more stunning is the fact that all sounds produced allegedly came out from the cello only, including the percussion drum-like beat!
To be fair, it isn’t the ‘real’ classical music i was looking for, but sometimes i find the original composition too tedious, subdued, and soothing. Hence, i tend to enjoy the contemporary arrangements more. As much as i love Pachelbel’s Canon in D, the rock version is my ultimate favorite. ThePianoGuys also has an awesome and zestful 4-cello rendition of this piece.
I know i’m totally captivated when one video is not enough and i keep hitting the replay button, clicking on related videos, checking out the profile, and looking them up on google… until i became one of their 2.3 million subscribers. ThePianoGuys is more than just guys on a piano — it’s piano+cello most of the time, but who knows piano alone, cello alone, or a combination of these two instruments can produce a lot different sounds? On their latest upload Angels we have heard on high, four of them circling a grand piano, creating distinct sounds on different parts of piano (including string sound!) as they go. Creative and compelling renditions aside, each of them is accompanied by dynamic music video often shot on rich, breathtaking landscapes with wide, sweeping, or bird’s-eye view.
What drew me in is the music, although the gorgeous shooting location surely a value added material. There’s something about musical instruments that grab my attention; i like how they sound individually (i love flute tone the most) and how wondrous they are together, especially when played at orchestral level. It is probably why i used to like The Corrs so much (yunno since they would insert instrumental sections as part of the songs, even included instrumental tracks in their albums) as well as listen to Maksim (thanks to 100% Senorita Taiwanese drama) and Yiruma. It is probably why i like incidental music a lot, which could make me like a movie/drama more or less. A great production with not as great OST/score is not really that great. It is also probably why i like
to take great pains listening to a song’s background music — given that it is rich, layered, and elaborate — then discern, decipher, and highlight them in a review or commentary…
Back to ThePianoGuys, i’m not sure how many original tunes they have produced because what’s posted on their youtube channel and featured in their major label releases are largely covers of popular songs and classical music. Two of Jon Schmidt’s compositions, All of me and Waterfall, are great pieces they should totally put more of those up. Oh! In case you’re wondering if their music delivers the desired effect mentioned above–duh! To put it in words: a relaxing yet refreshing fix for the ears, eyes, and mind.
If you haven’t heard of ThePianoGuys but enjoy instrumentals, go check their music out!
They have ‘only’ uploaded 46 videos to date, so it won’t take long to catch up 😉