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robin nolan's songbooks- how are they organized

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  • System77System77 New
    Posts: 3

    How do the Gypsy Jazz Songbooks compare to the Gypsy Jazz Gig Book? A quick glance at the contents show that the GJS Songbooks Vol 1-3 seem to have quite a few of the songs in the single GJ Gig Book. Is the Gig Book just a collection of the 3 Songbooks or are there notable differences?

  • CraigHensleyCraigHensley Maine New
    Posts: 74

    The Gig Book has all of Volume 1 and 2 and half of volume 3, plus more songs, 76 total. The layout is the same except there's no play along CD for the Gig Book. It's half the size (8.5x6), hard cover, and spiral bound.

    System77
  • stuologystuology New
    Posts: 196

    There are a lot of free resources available now but the gig book is still unique for the way it combines lead sheets and chord sheets. It’s a great learning tool for a beginner.

    The books were written by Paul Meader and Robin Nolan, but Meader’s name seems to often be erased when these books are mentioned. To be fair to Robin, Paul is named as first author.

    System77
  • System77System77 New
    Posts: 3

    @stuology

    Thank you. I have the gig book already and it is an amazing resource. Just wanted to know if adding the other 3 was going to be worth it. Having the play along discs would be a bonus though...

  • stuologystuology New
    Posts: 196

    I was lent vol.1 when I first started and I found it a great help but I guess that was in the days before so many amazing resources became freely available through YouTube, DC-Music etc. From memory the books are quite expensive so I’m not sure I would recommend spending a huge amount of money on them and they are really aimed at people beginning their journey, but if there's where you're at and it's not too expensive for you, then yes the playalongs are a great thing and there's nothing else quite like them, but you'll probably outgrow them eventuality.

  • billyshakesbillyshakes NoVA✭✭✭ Park Avance - Dupont Nomade - Dupont DM-50E
    Posts: 1,337

    There were originally 6 Songbooks of which I have them all. As stu says above, there was a time (early 2000s) when there really wasn't a lot out there and these were one of the few resources. The Gig Book came along as a sort of pre-iReal tool that was shaped to be kept in a gig bag or case. Almost all of the songs from the 6 books were put into the Gig Book. Some were left out and a few new ones were put in (I seem to remember Rose Room was gig book only.)

    These songbooks were a real part of my journey (especially the first few) but I think that you could find basic tutorials on youtube for free now. Robin has added some video content and he does have his previously mentioned Fast Track course, which is about 7 songs including soloing tips and licks videos to help you over the chosen tunes. Transfusion Club is sort of the same thing but it is a monthly subscription fee. I think he does a tune a month in a similar fashion offering tips, licks, etc and including a webinar and forum. He typically posts clips and content on his Gypsy Jazz Secrets youtube channel for you to be able to see the type of content you get "inside." (I am not a member so can't speak authoritatively on the level/quality of content other than what I see for free).

    I'd say Robin's material is geared for the beginner to get up to speed with the technique and repetoire of this style without diving into the whys of theory, etc. (Ex. he might just tell you it is a Dmin chord shape or a G chord rather than add/explain all the extensions). If that is for you, you can't go wrong. Different people learn in different ways. It may really work for you or you may be wanting more. It probably won't waste your time though.

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