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Edly Paints the Ivories Blue

Why the Blues? | Page Samples | PDF Version | Reactions
Corrections | Buy It Now! | Peter Reynolds

Edly Paints the Ivories Blue (book 1) coverABOUT THE BOOK
Edly Paints the Ivories Blue (book 1), now in its second edition, teaches piano technique, reading skills, improvisation, chords, and related theory. It's intended for lovers of blues, jazz, rock, or any pop styles, as well as "recovering traditionally-trained players."

Edly Paints the Ivories Blue is a bright blue alternative and supplement to traditional black & white major-scale-based piano instruction books. It's as hip and fun as it is educational. Bypassing twinkling stars and little lambs, it teaches piano through blues songs written specifically for this book. 48 pages softcover, black & white, $12 (one dollar for every bar of a twelve-bar blues).

Edly Paints the Ivories Blue (book 1) is now available for $10 as a PDF. It comes by email, so there's no shipping cost. This is a “flat” PDF, meaning that it has no hyperlinks or anything. Despite the name, it is in black and white except for the color cover. In fact, except for the cover, the PDF is exactly the same as the paperback. It can be viewed on a computer or tablet, and/or can be printed.

• do-it-yourselfers
• private students with teacher
• teenage to adult beginners
• traditionally trained players wanting to move towards pop styles or improvisation, or to reduce dependence on the written note.

• beginning piano instruction using the blues as the teaching material; keys of C, G, D, A, E, and F.
• reading: notes, rhythms, symbols, etc.
• improvisation
• blues and blues scales, form, melody, and chords

• alternative primary method, or supplement to a traditional method.
• unusually hip, fun, and engaging for an instruction book
• user-friendly, humorous, heavily illustrated, attractively laid out
• much more explanation than most piano method books
• encourages experimentation, extrapolation, and improvisation


So glad you asked. In addition to the blues' own inherent rewards, it's also a close relative of many types of jazz, rock, and pop, and its chord progressions are found in many types of music. Learning and playing the blues is a great introduction to many styles*.

Second, improvisation is an integral part of the blues. Any style that fosters improvisation gets my "good teaching material" vote. Young 'uns naturally improvise in their musical play, but most traditional music instruction makes it easy for this instinct to die of attrition. This approach attempts instead to nurture it.

Third, repetition is an important part of practicing. Blues is especially full of repetition and patterns; melodic (the tune), harmonic (the chords), phrased-based, accompaniment, etc. Put 'em all together, and blues makes a great vehicle for learning piano.

Fourth, I've had students who knew they wanted to focus on blues, rock, or jazz right from the start. This book gives that focus a home.

Fifth and finally, most people practice more when they enjoy the music. Blues is fun and likeable, and therefore may get more playing time than traditional material covering the same techniques. The student progresses faster and is happy. The teacher's happy. I'm happy. Everybody's happy. Ahhh, the power of a blue note, a bit of swing, and the blues.

*... the blues is a great introduction to many styles...
Like any organism, blues has grown and changed with time. The twelve-bar form based on the I, IV, & V chords has emerged and assumed reign as the most common standard, though plenty of variations still exist. Many colors including whites have joined blacks in blues. Blues itself has produced an
impressive family tree, and has had a role in the conception and development of many styles, including jazz, rock, rhythm 'n' blues, country, pop, etc. While blues lives on in more traditional contexts, it has also been stripped and reclothed in outfits ranging from fashionable to foppish, slick to cerebral. Its influence is not to be underestimated. Why, I've even heard tell of a tale that told that the great composer J. S. Bach, while studying at Yale, would leave his wig, wife, and weekend weehearsal, motor a mod Mercedes many miles, down brown-black beer in the din of booming blues at the back of a candlelit club and be back in time to lead the next morning's cantata.


Extremely entertaining! All I could do today was read your book. I didn't feed my dogs. I didn't feed my wife. My dogs ate my wife. (That good of a book.)
~Larry Neuhardt, Elderly Instruments, Lansing, MI

Yesterday for the first time in my life, I played the blues. Not GREAT blues, but I had the feel of it and am confident that I now will learn to play the blues AND the piano. You have created a monster!! I learned more reading twelve pages of your book than I did in five years of lessons. The best message is, "Play like a child in a sand box...PLAY!" I am showing it to all my friends and catch myself sounding like an evangelist, but...I have been SAVED! I understand. I finally get it!
~name withheld, Quebec

Roseman's style is casual and loaded with humor. you will appreciate his loose-limbed approach to the blues. Even a classically-burdened player such as myself could make some respectable blues sounds by the time I reached the end of the book.
~Peggy Latkovich, Dirty Linen Magazine

...a refreshingly humorous antidote to the often drowsy world of music methodology....

~York County Coast Star

The day your book arrived was the day that piano playing started being super fun. So thank you for keeping me intrigued, challenged and for making me sound bluesy and awesome at 6 weeks.
“Five Finger Walk”… got my LH moving out of the C-Maj-chord-progression-When-the-Saints-Go-Marching-In trap that some other beginner books throw you in… and hurt my brain in a good way… a really big breakthrough for this older beginner. Total "I GET IT" moment.
I enjoyed the book's momentum from the start. The emphasis on improvisation from the very beginning has kept me sitting at the keys, for sure. Whenever I hit a raised 4th, my wife turns her head and says "ooooh, bluesy!" What fun!
~K.K., Hatfield, MA