Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Book Review: Champagne Melodies

Title: Champagne Melodies
Author: Optigan corporate employees
Date: 1973
Publisher: Warner Bros. Inc.
ISBN: none, but click here to see it on Amazon
Length: 48 pages of sheet music
Quote: “We have recommended certain program discs and special effects for each song, but these are by no means the only choices.”     

The Optigan was an early electronic keyboard. It played generic rhythm chords, in the keys determined by your selection from 21 chord buttons, while you picked out the melody with one finger and sang along.
If you play an instrument other than keyboard, this method of notation will make it easy for you to use whatever harmonies and rhythms work for you, while picking out any of these fifteen early-twentieth-century songs: “Ain’t She Sweet,” “Ain’t We Got Fun,” “April Showers,” “Baby Face,” “Breezin’ Along with the Breeze,” “Bye Bye Blackbird,” “Happy Days Are Here Again,” “I’m Looking Over a Four-Leaf Clover,” “Liza,” “Lullaby of Broadway,” “Oh You Beautiful Doll,” “Put on Your Old Grey Bonnet,” “Somebody Loves Me,” “Sweet Georgia Brown,” or “Zing Went the Strings of My Heart.”
If you play piano (electronic or otherwise) with two hands, you should also be able to use this book easily. If you play a different kind of electronic keyboard, however, you’ll probably have to make some substitutions, since the Optigan had diminished chords rather than seventh chords.

Prices for this book have gone up, not down, since its publication. To buy it here, send salolianigodagewi @ $10 + $5 for shipping. You pay only one shipping charge per package, so we recommend buying this book along with a Fair Trade Book or handcraft item.