November 14, 2011

Temporary hiatus

I must apologize for my continuing lack of sheet music. I have just been too busy with various papers and tests now that the semester is coming to an end (there's one month left). Once again, I do not have anything to upload tonight, so I have decided to take a temporary break to focus on schoolwork and defeat the monster that is procrastination. I imagine it seems in somewhat poor taste to decide this after the fact (i.e. after going two weeks without uploading), so I apologize again. I will begin uploading again in December, or a bit sooner if I have time.

I would like to thank everyone who voted in the poll in the past several weeks. I have decided to relocate from Blogger to another site beginning this Winter, but I will continue to include MIDIs because a large percentage of my "readers" (I guess you can be called that) use them with Synthesia to learn to play the pieces. I'm leaving the poll up a bit longer to satisfy my own curiosity.

I've already decided on a New Year's resolution to upload videos more often. Maybe every two weeks? I bet I could pull off a new video once a week if I really set my mind to it, but I'll probably save such ambition for the months when I don't have classes.

October 25, 2011

An Important Matter


DEAR EVERYONE:
Please take a minute to read this post (whether or not you usually read my posts).

I have been considering switching to some other site for awhile now. Blogger always screws up the formatting of the sheet music page, forcing me to edit and then upload a backup html file every Monday. It also doesn't let me host my music, so I have to upload it to Mediafire and then you have to click on the external links to go download everything, unless Mediafire is down...in which case you're out of luck.

WordPress looks nice because it provides hosting for files like pdfs, so you and I could both avoid the extra hoop of having sheets on Mediafire. However, WordPress doesn't allow uploading of audio files without paying a fee (and we all know how poor college students are.... All joking aside, one day I may pay money for my own domain if my site gets popular enough to make it worthwhile.)

My question for you all is: how do you use the midi files I provide here on my site?
I put a poll in the sidebar, so please take a few moments to answer it. I know that using midis with Synthesia is rather popular among pianists who can't read sheet music (on YouTube, at any rate). Personally, I think it is more beneficial in the long run to learn to read sheet music, but I don't want to alienate those of you who do use it. SoundCloud seems like a good way to put audio on my site, but it doesn't allow uploading of midi files, which would prevent use of Synthesia.

TL;DR: Please answer the poll in the sidebar.
If you have any comments or suggestions about what free website/filehosting/audio-hosting services I could use instead of Blogger, leave a comment on this post. Thank you!

October 17, 2011

Mediafire is down

I've been rather busy with schoolwork recently, so tonight I only have one piece of sheet music for you again. Unfortunately, it seems mediafire (a.k.a. the site that hosts every single file I have available for you to download) is down at the moment. I'll check back again later tonight--keep your fingers crossed! I would be very surprised if the site were down permanently, but anything could happen.
Mediafire is back up, and I've posted "Lofty Castle" from Spyro the Dragon.

Apparently mediafire goes down often? If any of you have experienced that mediafire is unavailable more often than you think is reasonable, please leave a comment saying so. I will look into other ways I might host my downloads. Perhaps Dropbox? But for now, we're stuck with Mediafire. Sorry, everyone!

September 12, 2011

num_videos++

Edited 9/15/11:
I won't be posting any sheet music this week, but at last, here's another video!
It's Yoko Shimomura's "Moonlit City Roa" from Legend of Mana.


I also updated the "Ancient Dolphin" sheet music (and midi) to make it easier to read. It's still the same music though.

September 5, 2011

Schoooool

As you may have guessed from the decline in productivity, the fall semester has started. I have had little work to do so far, but I am a junior now and I just accepted an offer for an internship. I'm trying to build up a reserve of sheet music so I can keep a regular posting schedule once the work really begins to pile up, so I will most likely be posting only one piece a week for awhile.

I am, however, working on a super slightly special piano sheet music "project," thought I haven't decided whether or not I should announce exactly what it is before I release it. It will be a collection of sheet music, and you may be able to guess where the music is from (here's a hint: it's from a video game ;P). To my knowledge, the game has never had an official or fan-made complete piano solo release, although some of the tunes from the game are rather well-known. I estimate my progress as 30-40% complete. Are you excited yet? I am, even though posting this collection will (probably) demolish the aforementioned reserve of sheet music I'm trying to accumulate.

Regarding videos........I don't have anything yet. Please be patient! Look forward to something next week.

Once again, I'd like to point out that list of other sheet music sites I put in the sidebar. If you're looking for more sheets from your favorite video games and anime, check them out! (This endorsement was done completely of my own free will. I don't know any of the people who make sheet music for those sites.)

August 1, 2011

Lost in Translation

I decided to make a new post tonight to explain a couple things about tonight's sheets.

The first is from Heroes of Mana, a DS real-time strategy game from the Seiken Densetsu/Mana series. I've never played it, but I looked up the soundtrack as soon as I heard that Yoko Shimomura composed it. The track is cheerful and bouncy. I've only seen the title translated as "Tenacity," so I included this title in the update, but the original Japanese title is 頑張りやさん (ganbariya-san), where ganbariya appears to mean something like "hard worker" or maybe even "overachiever." I listed the title as "Mr. Hard Worker." If a native Japanese speaker could shed some light on this, I would really appreciate it.

The other piece, from Seiken Densetsu 3, is quite literally called "Ancient Dolphin." [The SD3 OST's track names are almost entirely katakana spelling out English words--in this case: エンシェント・ドルフィン enshiento dorufin]

What dolphin?

This piece is quiet and mysterious. Edited 9/15/11: The sheet music assumes that the first 20 measures will be played a total of three times (one repeat sign and one Da Capo). The directions on the left show which staves to play which times, because the bottommost staff can't be played at the same time as the other two unless you have reeeeally big hands. If you do play the whole thing through like the music says, the piece times in at 4:00 long, which may be a bit much considering the repetitiveness of the piece. If you're going to perform it, you may want to cut one of the repeats out. However, if you're playing it solely for your own enjoyment, you can play it over and over again--I find it kind of relaxing, personally.


The D-A interval at the very beginning in the top staff is meant to be played only on the third time around, in accordance with the "D.C. al fine" instruction.
Finally, the F at the end of the fourth measure has an accent over it just to draw your (the pianist's) attention. It's the one measure that doesn't follow the pattern; the other 19 measures with that figure are exactly the same, transposed. I redid the sheet music so you wouldn't need all these silly instructions. The one thing to note is that the F at the ends of measures 4 and 16 is only accented to draw your attention (because it doesn't follow the pattern). I don't intend for you to actually play it more loudly.

July 25, 2011

Untitled

Two pieces from Seiken Densetsu 3 (sometimes referred to by the unofficial title "Secret of Mana 2") tonight. "Closed Garden," which is short and cheerful. The other is "Innocent Sea/Innocent Water"--they're two pieces that are almost exactly the same, so I just combined them. I've never played SD3 (the only Mana game I have played is Legend of Mana), so I don't know anything about either piece except that they all have weird titles (like the rest of the soundtrack). My crystal ball tells me that there will be more Seiken Densetsu series music next week, and possibly some videos.

I'm considering stopping this weekly posting thing and moving to a brief list of updates (see the Newest Sheets in the sidebar for a possible idea). And there's still a chance I will start using a different site...I'm sure it would be best to do it before too many people start visiting this blogspot address (not that I expect too many people any time soon).

July 11, 2011

Not very productive

I haven't gotten much sheet music done recently, so the only piece I have tonight is the woefully short "Reminiscence" from Threads of Fate. I also uploaded a video of "Permafrost" from Boktai: (No thanks to iMovie.)


Next week's update will probably be late because I'm going out of town this weekend for a family reunion, which gives me less time to put together a finished product for posting. There will be another video next week.

Once again, I put up a poll in the sidebar asking how you 1 or 2 readers found the blog. I'm just curious. I'll try again in a year and see if I actually get a decent number of responses. Any tips on increasing readership?

July 4, 2011

Independence Day

Happy Fourth of July to all you living in the USA! Did anyone watch the Twilight Zone marathon on Syfy (a.k.a. Sci Fi)?

Today's new sheets are from Spyro: Attack of the Rhynocs and 24EFFECTS, an album of remixed/arranged music from Yume Nikki.

The first, from Spyro, may or may not be called "Darkness." There wasn't an official soundtrack release, so it's just a guess at a title, but it plays when you enter dark caves in the game. I believe the composer is Robert Baffy.

The second piece is "火星在住," which is read "kasei zaijuu" and literally means "Mars resident." It's a remix of the piece BGM_006 from Yume Nikki, which plays underground on Mars. The arrangement of that particular tune is by kiichi, and the whole album can be legally downloaded for free from the above website.

I also posted two videos today, one of 
"火星在住" and the other of "Dead Sea - Tower of Ruin" from Chrono Cross (finally!).




I added a poll on the sidebar asking how you found this blog. I put up all the reasonable choices I could think of, but if yours isn't there, just comment on this post and tell me how you found it. I'd like to know!

Finally, I'd like to give a special shout-out to another arranger, Sperion. He also transcribes and arranges music from anime, games, and J-pop. I don't know him personally, but he recently transcribed "Mechanical Kingdom" (also called "The Machinist Kingdom") from Piano Arrange: Radiant Historia, which is quite possibly one of my favorite piano arrangements ever. Gotta love Yoko Shimomura (and Sachiko Miyano).

June 27, 2011

Cutting it Close

I'm cutting it rather close to the deadline tonight, I know. It's very nearly midnight (EDT), but I've added two more sheets.

The first is "Pirate's Gigue" from Kingdom Hearts and Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories. This is actually one of the first pieces that I transcribed--over a year ago. I had been listening to it and suddenly thought, "Hey, I can figure out the notes to this pretty easily." So I sat down at the piano and played most of the melody and simple left-hand part came soon after. I didn't follow the exact chords of the original; I just played what came naturally, which is surprising because I don't ever really do that. The sheet music has been sitting on my hard drive gathering e-dust for months now because I wasn't quite satisfied with the ending. I finally opened it up again and changed the last couple measures a bit, though I will never be perfectly happy with the final result. In general the notes are not difficult, but the fast tempo adds difficulty near the end.

The other piece I uploaded is "Gathered Souls" or "Those Gathered" from Threads of Fate, known as Dewprism in Japan. It is a simple piece, though I wouldn't say it is easy as it appears. The second major section is exactly the same as the first, but transposed to another key (as in the original). I really like what I've heard of Junya Nakano's soundtracks, but they are mostly simple and repetitive. He also composed some of the music for Final Fantasy X, such as the themes of Luca and Guadosalam. If you are familiar with the Threads of Fate soundtrack, this unreleased piece from FFX should remind you of it immediately.

I must apologize for promising last Monday that I would post the video for "Dead Sea - Tower of Ruin" the next day. I got caught up in other things and forgot. I will post it very soon. I also noticed that the About page is still blank, so I will work on writing up a little bit about myself because I know that all of you (read: all 1 or 2 of you) are oh-so-curious about me.

Today is also a minor milestone for my website. I've now transcribed sheet music from 10 different video games/series now (and 1 anime). In the coming months, you can expect even more video games, some Hikaru Utada, and possibly some Imogen Heap.

June 20, 2011

A Midsummer Night's Update

The summer solstice is tomorrow, so it will be the longest day of the year in terms of sunlight. Not that the newest sheet music has anything to do with that; I just needed a relevant post title.

This week I have for your playing pleasure two more pieces:
From Chrono Cross, the beautifully woeful "Dead Sea/Tower of Ruin." (Also known as Tower of Geddon, Ruined Tower, and Tower of Destruction, which all seem to be valid translations.) I know the Dead Sea theme has been transcribed by others before, but I like it so much that I wanted to do it myself. I added some chords and octaves in the B and C sections the second time through to change the feeling of the piece and make it sound a bit more like the original. Expect a video tomorrow.

From Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door, a short one--"All Aboard the Excess Express." I gave it the tempo indication "Tempo di locomotiva" because it should be played swiftly and evenly like a moving train. The short, repeated phrase that makes up most of the left hand part can be accented to lend the piece a chugging feeling.

Despite my whiny post last week, I have made no decision yet about whether to continue using Blogger. At first I wasn't even sure using a blogging site was the right way to go, but in the end I thought it would be a good way for me to give some information on each new piece I transcribed, and it would make the potential addition of other news/information to updates easier. Any thoughts or suggestions? Does anyone even read this?

P.S. To the kind YouTuber who requested a video of "Let's Walk Together" (a.k.a. the nighttime Gear Savanna theme from Digimon World), I haven't forgotten about you! It's next on my list. It's just not the easiest piece out there...
And to the rest of you, I believe I said this already, but I intend to eventually make a video for each piece of music to replace all the MIDIs so you can get a better idea of what the music sounds like on a piano.

June 13, 2011

Webpage Woes

Two new sheets tonight: From Boktai, "Permafrost," the theme of the icy dungeon. From Legend of Mana, "Nocturne," a short piano piece (I don't know when in the game it plays though).

In other news, I'm considering changing from Blogger to some other blog/website service. This site has hardly started up, but I'm already tired of trying to fix the formatting on the Sheet Music page every time I add something new. Blogger screws it up every time by adding extra line breaks and unnecessary formatting tags, and the "Compose" tab isn't really a WYSIWYG editor, which is what I'd rather have. I don't know very much HTML, but I don't want to spend time learning it--I just want it to be simple to add new sheet music to the site! All I do is add a few lines and two links for each new piece. Geez.

June 6, 2011

Yume Nikki

Salutations, my musical readers. Today I (finally) bring you more sheet music: the soundtrack from Yume Nikki, albeit in a somewhat compressed form. Because most of the music [that can even be played on a piano] consists of short loops that are Endlessly Repeated, I included each loop only once in the sheet music. The original filename as well as a more descriptive title are given for each piece, and they are given the track numbers corresponding to the soundtrack uploaded by a user named Saya-chan here at Uboachan (NOTE: Uboachan an image board, so it's safest to assume it's always a NSFW environment). Most of the pieces wouldn't stand alone very well, but feel free to use my transcription as a springboard for making your own arrangements. I also included notes for the more melodic sound effects (i.e. the flute and stoplight effects, the instructions, etc.).

Today I also have a promise for you: now that it is finally summer, I am mostly unoccupied--I'm still searching for a job, but I don't have any schoolwork. Thus I am beginning a regular update schedule. I will post 1 or 2 new sheets every Monday for the rest of the summer, with sporadic YouTube video postings. I can't yet make any promises for the fall, but I will do what I can to keep regular updates after classes start back up.

Happy piano-ing!

P.S. A little advice for those of you who haven't played Yume Nikki: It's not for everyone; you may want to watch some YouTube videos of it before trying it. It's a Japanese game, but there is an English translation patch, though there's very little text in the game anyway. It's a "Windows-only" game, but you can get it to work on Mac OS with Wine (and probably on Linux too). I think all I had to do was go into the Wine configuration and set the virtual desktop to be 800x600 pixels.
Look around the internet if you need help. Uboachan may be a good place to start if you have questions.

May 3, 2011

Procrastination

Greetings, pianists/readers. Alas, I have no sheet music or videos for you this update--I am just posting to inform you that I am entering the last few weeks of the semester, so I will be even busier than I have been lately, BUT I have not forgotten about you! I am currently procrastinating working on some sheets for Threads of FateBaroqueKingdom HeartsChrono Cross, and Vagrant Story, which you should expect to see before the end of the month. Once the semester ends I will be able to update more regularly and more frequently, and I hope to get this site off the ground.

While I was procrastinating taking a break last night, I started reformatting the blog a bit. I will be making a few more changes soon, consolidating and actually writing an About page to answer all your most important questions about me and my blog, including my favorite color and whether I prefer Coke or Pepsi. I added a list of links on the sidebar to a number of other game/anime/J-pop sheet music sites. I am not affiliated with any of them, but I think they are all worth taking a look at. (I was particularly delighted to see that Sperion has transcribed several pieces from Radiant Historia.)

In short, this summer will go down in history as the Great Summer of the Sheet-Music-Posting and Piano-Playing. Look forward to it! I know I am.

April 3, 2011

"I'm not dead!"

Really!
I know that updating and then basically disappearing for two months is not the best way to get a website off the ground.... I apologize. At school the time just flies by, and then when I remember that I'm supposed to be transcribing sheet music and posting videos, I'm swamped with homework.
But today was very productive! I uploaded five more sheets (that have been lying around on my hard drive for a couple weeks now -_-') and recorded four videos this afternoon! Behold!
Sacred Moon:

Harami Lake

Starlit Night

OVER-K

I promise I'm not going to let this blog waste away. Expect more videos and sheets soon(ish), but remember that I have schoolwork to do too! During the summer I will definitely upload more often.

January 14, 2011

Hello, world! (for real this time)

Greetings!
My name is Ian, and this is my sheet music blog. Here you can find free piano sheet music that I've transcribed for your pleasure (and for mine).

I had kind of a false start last summer--I set up the site and then it sat around for months, but I have resurrected it and I intend to begin posting new sheet music and videos more regularly.