ReMix: Final Fantasy VI 'City Corner Lullaby'
2,986,338 bytes, 3:02, 128kbps
Streaming preview on YouTube
Newcomer Jared Ong, alias Jennerstein, writes:
"Having heard both McVaffe's arrangement and Uematsu's piano arrangement of the piece, I tried to compose this lullaby arrangement as a homage. My intent was to add a quiet slightly lilting feel by altering the melody in places (making it a bit more melodic) and making subtle changes to the chord progressions. My harmonic modifications are mostly found in the A section of the piece, as a walking a bass line down from the root. Originally, I planned on making more extensive chord modifications to the B section, but my attempts took the flow away from the piece and I kept the the main chord pattern intac instead.
The mix was made using a Motif ES6, and ProTools. I'm a keyboard player, so I played the piece directly into ProTools and made final tweaks and edits on the midi notes itself."
For some reason "Jennerstein" made me think of "Bennifer" crossed with Frankenstein, which would be horrific but excellent tabloid material. Regardless, we haven't had a solo piano mix in these parts for a good stretch, and though FF6 isn't exactly obscure, 'Kids Run Through the City Corner' is certainly a seldom-covered track off its epic OST. Thanks to Jared for explaining his arrangement approach in such detail - always good to have a bit more insight into the artist's thought process. This isn't a superflashy, run-fest with blazin' arpeggios of fury, and the recording level is soft enough that you'll have to pump up the dBs a bit to get into it, but what the mix lacks in flamboyance and/or amplitude it compensates for in expressiveness & subtlety. Vinnie writes:
"This is great stuff - very gentle, even compared to the original. It's conservative in structure, but I found a lot to appreciate about this arrangement in other areas. There were somewhat significant additions and changes to the melody, the left-hand part strays a good amount from the bass part of the original, and there are a couple short parts like 1:23 that are entirely original and alter the chords. I think it has enough personalization. The piano is full and crystal clear, playing is excellent, and the dynamics are good."
"Fairly close in terms of melody but you've gone the extra mile and spiced it up with melodic additions and chord changes to make this a very pleasing arrangement. You could probably have made this a finger-jerk session but I think this arrangement is terrific as is, additions like 1:23-1:35 are small but gives the piece that extra something that is needed."
An arrangement like this completely rides on whether the performance has the dynamics and emotion to carry it through, and that's what I think Jared nails. It's not overly elaborate, melodramatic, or embellished, but it's a carefully thought out, emotive, and well performed solo piano piece that adds a bittersweet nostalgia to the original composition. In more ways than one, sweet.
Forced me into repeat listens,
- cheema201 on July 4, 2012
Great skill on the piano playing, and very solid/clever arrangement to make the piece feel more intimate and mature. Recording/sound quality is very fine as well. Thumbs up in all directions! It makes me want to start learning piano seriously, which I unfortunately probably never will do!
- mv on June 10, 2009
- Mtlbro on June 9, 2009
- Martin Penwald on May 30, 2009
I have to say, this is a welcome addition to my FF6 collection.
- Zeklan on May 30, 2009
- Skullbullet on May 16, 2009
Quite interesting arrangement. I listened to this piece, as well as a couple of songs off your page. Your style reminds me a bit of Uematsu's himself, but with a more tender approach. I like the use of arpeggiated 9th chords and various chord changes. It reminds me a bit of Debussy.
I was reading your influences on your website. I was very disappointed that Rachmaninov wasn't listed. Although I'm not really suprised, as his music often has an intensity that I haven't heard from your recordings yet. I would highly recommend listening to his work, especially his first three piano concertos (especially number 2 in C minor, and number 3 in D minor); as well as his preludes (C sharp minor is a good one).
As for practice, I highly recommend Chopin and Liszt. I've been working on a couple of Chopin's etudes (i.e. the Revolutionary in C minor and Winterwind in A minor) and Liszt's "La Campanella", which is absurdly difficult for only being about 4 minutes long. While I'm not complaining about your technique, your style is not as emotional as some I've heard; it never hurts to try and expand and learn what you can from fellow musicians.
Of course, I do feel a lot of nuances are missing that you'd get from playing a live instrument instead of a keyboard. However, overall your playing is very smooth. You obviously show a lot of talent as an arranger. I might be interested in a possible collab on a future project with you.
- Ghetto Lee Lewis on May 16, 2009
- Black Mage on May 15, 2009
I wanted to try something familiar with my first remix submission and thought a good piano piece would be a way to get my feet wet. At the time of composition, I made the decision to really focus on the emotion and atmosphere of Uematsu's melody. Virtuosity seemed too distracting (and I'm no Lizst by any means anyway), but I knew I could evoke my ideas through different harmonies, 1:30 to 1:37 is probably my favorite part of the piece because of the seventh tonality that ends up being a bit melancholy.
If any of you have any suggestions for another piece that you'd like arranged let me know. I've been contemplating my next projects: I think I'll do one more piano piece in this style in order to practice the continuation of a genre, without rehashing. Does anyone have any ideas?
Also, my "experimental" piece that I'm working is an original composition that is a more dance/techno/new age hybrid. However I'm definitely trying to found a good theme to remix in that style.
- Jennerstein on May 15, 2009
Very subtle and nuanced, I absolutely adore this one.
- OA on May 13, 2009
Plus piano arrangements rock.
- Lucentas on May 11, 2009
- metalsnakejuice on May 11, 2009
- jordash11 on May 10, 2009
- avaris on May 10, 2009
- kitty on May 10, 2009