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Richard Clayderman
Richard Clayderman
Richard Clayderman (born Philippe Pagès on December 28, 1953, Paris) is a French pianist who has released numerous albums including the original compositions by Paul de Senneville and Olivier Toussaint, and instrumental renditions of popular music, rearrangements of movie sound tracks, ethnic music, and easy-listening arrangements of most popular works of classical music.

In 1976 he was invited from Olivier Toussaint a French record producer and his partner Paul de Senneville to record a gentle piano ballad. Paul de Senneville had composed this ballad as a tribute to his new born daughter “Adeline”. The 23 year old Philippe Pagès was auditioned along with 20 other pianists. They liked his special and soft touch on the keyboards combined with his good looks and fine personality, and finally he got the job.

Philippe Pagès' name was changed to Richard Clayderman (he adopted his great-grandmother's last name to avoid mispronunciation of his real name outside France), and the single took off, selling an astonishing 22 million copies in 38 countries. It was called Ballade pour Adeline.
Johann Sebastian Bach
Johann Sebastian Bach
Johann Sebastian Bach (31 March 1685 – 28 July 1750) was a German composer and musician of the Baroque period. He is known for instrumental compositions such as the Art of Fugue, the Brandenburg Concertos, and the Goldberg Variations, and for vocal music such as the St Matthew Passion and the Mass in B minor. Since the 19th-century Bach Revival he has been generally regarded as one of the greatest composers of the Western art musical canon.
Cole Porter
Cole Porter
Cole Albert Porter (June 9, 1891 – October 15, 1964) was an American composer and songwriter. His works include the musical comedies Kiss Me, Kate, Fifty Million Frenchmen, DuBarry Was a Lady and Anything Goes, as well as songs like "Night and Day", "I Get a Kick out of You", "Well, Did You Evah!" and "I've Got You Under My Skin". He was noted for his sophisticated, bawdy lyrics, clever rhymes and complex forms. Porter was one of the greatest contributors to the Great American Songbook. Cole Porter is one of the few Tin Pan Alley composers to have written both the lyrics and the music for his songs.
G. F. Handel
George Frideric Handel (German: Georg Friedrich Händel; pronounced ) (23 February 1685 – 14 April 1759) was a German-English Baroque composer who is famous for his operas, oratorios, and concerti grossi. Handel was born in Germany in the same year as JS Bach and Domenico Scarlatti. He received critical musical training in Italy before settling in London and becoming a naturalised British subject. His works include Messiah, Water Music, and Music for the Royal Fireworks. He was strongly influenced by the techniques of the great composers of the Italian Baroque and the English composer Henry Purcell. Handel's music was well-known to many composers, including Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven.
Chopin
Chopin
Frédéric Chopin (1 March 1810 – 17 October 1849) was a Polish composer and virtuoso pianist of the Romantic period. He is widely regarded as the greatest Polish composer, and ranks as one of music's greatest tone poets.

He was born in the village of Żelazowa Wola, in the Duchy of Warsaw, to a Polish mother and French-expatriate father, and in his early life was regarded as a child-prodigy pianist. In November 1830, at the age of 20, Chopin went abroad; following the suppression of the Polish November Uprising of 1830–31, he became one of many expatriates of the Polish "Great Emigration."

In Paris, he made a comfortable living as a composer and piano teacher, while giving few public performances. A Polish patriot,

Chopin's extant compositions were written primarily for the piano as a solo instrument. Though technically demanding, Chopin's style emphasizes nuance and expressive depth rather than virtuosity. Chopin invented musical forms such as the ballade and was responsible for major innovations in forms such as the piano sonata, waltz, nocturne, étude, impromptu and prelude. His works are mainstays of Romanticism in 19th-century classical music.
Paolo Tosti
Paolo Tosti
Sir Paolo Tosti (April 9, 1846 – December 2, 1916) was an Italian, later British, composer and music teacher.

Tosti's songs are characterized by natural, singable melodies and sweet sentimentality. He is also known for his editions of Italian folk songs entitled "Canti popoliari Abruzzesi". Tosti is remembered for his light, expressive songs. His style became very popular during the Belle Époque and is often known as salon music. His most famous works are Serenata (lyrics: Cesareo), Goodbye (lyrics: George J. Whyte Mellville) which is sometimes performed in Italian as Addio (lyrics: Rizzelli), and the popular Neapolitan song, Marechiare, the lyrics of which are by the prominent Neapolitan dialect poet, Salvatore Di Giacomo.

As a composer, Tosti is exceptional. Since the beginning of the recording era, numerous recording artists specializing in classical Italian repertoire have recorded Tosti songs, yet Tosti never composed opera. Notable examples on recording include Alessandro Moreschi (the only castrato who ever recorded) singing "Ideale", Nellie Melba singing "Mattinata" and Jussi Björling singing "L'alba separa dalla luce l'ombra".
Julie London
Julie London
Julie London is an American actress and singer. It has a misty, pleasant and relaxing jazz sound.
Date of birth: September 26, 1926, Santa Rosa, California, United States
Date and place of death: 18 October 2000, Encino-Tarzana Regional Medical Center
Koji Kondo
Koji Kondo
Koji Kondo (近藤浩治 Kondō Kōji?, born August 13, 1960) is a Japanese video game composer and sound director who has been employed at Nintendo since 1984. He is best known for scoring numerous titles in the Mario and The Legend of Zelda series.
Dvorak
Dvorak
Antonín Leopold Dvořák (September 8, 1841 – May 1, 1904) was a Czech composer of Romantic music, who employed the idioms and melodies of the folk music of his native Bohemia and Moravia. His works include operas, symphonic, choral and chamber music. His best-known works are his New World Symphony (particularly the slow movement), as well as his Slavonic Dances, American String Quartet, and Cello Concerto in B minor.

Dvořák wrote in a variety of forms: his nine symphonies generally stick to classical models that Beethoven would have recognised, but he also worked in the newly developed symphonic poem form and the influence of Richard Wagner is apparent in some works. Many of his works also show the influence of Czech folk music, both in terms of rhythms and melodic shapes; perhaps the best known examples are the two sets of Slavonic Dances. Dvořák also wrote operas (the best known of which is Rusalka); serenades for string orchestra and wind ensemble; chamber music (including a number of string quartets, and quintets); songs; choral music; and piano music.
Elton John
Elton John
Sir Elton Hercules John CBE (born Reginald Kenneth Dwight on 25 March 1947) is an English pop/rock singer, composer and pianist.

In his four-decade career, John has been one of the dominant forces in rock and popular music, especially during the 1970s. He has sold over 200 million records, making him one of the most successful artists of all time. He has more than 50 Top 40 hits including seven consecutive No. 1 U.S. albums, 59 Top 40 singles, 16 Top 10, four No. 2 hits, and nine No. 1 hits. He has won five Grammy awards and one Academy Award. His success has had a profound impact on popular music and has contributed to the continued popularity of the piano in rock and roll. In 2004, Rolling Stone ranked him #49 on their list of the 100 greatest artists of all time.

Some of the characteristics of John's musical talent include an ability to quickly craft melodies for the lyrics of songwriting partner Bernie Taupin, his former rich tenor (now baritone) voice, his classical and gospel-influenced piano, the aggressive orchestral arrangements of Paul Buckmaster among others and the flamboyant fashions, outlandishly excessive eyeglasses, and on-stage showmanship, especially evident during the 1970s.

John was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994. He has been heavily involved in the fight against AIDS since the late 1980s, and was knighted in 1998. He entered into a civil partnership with David Furnish on 21 December 2005 and continues to be a champion for LGBT social movements. On April 9, 2008, John held a benefit concert for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, raising $2.5 million.
Maroon 5
Maroon 5
Maroon 5 is a Grammy Award-winning American pop rock band. Formed with only two members at the French Woods Festival of the Performing Arts and expanded in Los Angeles, the group comprises five members: Adam Levine (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), James Valentine (lead guitar, backing vocals), Jesse Carmichael (keyboards, rhythm guitar, backing vocals), Mickey Madden (bass guitar), and Matt Flynn (drums, percussion).
Klaus Badelt
Klaus Badelt
Klaus Badelt (born 1968) is a German composer, best known for composing film scores.

Badelt was born in Frankfurt, Germany. He started his musical career composing for many successful movies and commercials in his homeland. In 1998, Oscar-winning film composer Hans Zimmer invited Badelt to work at Media Ventures in Santa Monica, his studio co-owned by Jay Rifkin. Since then, Badelt has been working on a number of his own film and television projects such as The Time Machine and K-19: The Widowmaker. He has also collaborated with other Media Ventures composers, such as Harry Gregson-Williams, John Powell, and Zimmer.
While collaborating with Zimmer, Badelt has contributed to the Oscar-nominated scores for The Thin Red Line and The Prince of Egypt, as well as writing music for many well known directors including Ridley Scott, Tony Scott, Terrence Mallick, John Woo, Kathryn Bigelow, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Tom Cruise, Sean Penn, Gore Verbinski, and Steven Spielberg.

Badelt co-produced the score to Hollywood box office hit Gladiator, directed by Ridley Scott, as well as writing portions of the score with singer/composer Lisa Gerrard. Having contributed music to Gladiator, Mission: Impossible 2 and Michael Kamen's score for X-Men, Badelt was involved in the three most successful movies in 2000. Badelt also collaborated with Zimmer on other successful films, such as The Pledge, and 2001 blockbusters Hannibal and Pearl Harbor. One of his more famous - and more popular - scores is the score to the 2003 film Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl.

Among Badelt's most critically celebrated scores are the Chinese fantasy film The Promise and Dreamworks' remake of The Time Machine, the latter which earned him the Discovery of the Year Award at the World Soundtrack Awards 2003.
Moritz Moszkowski
Moritz Moszkowski
Moritz (Maurice) Moszkowski (23 August 1854 – 4 March 1925) was a German composer, pianist, and teacher of Polish descent. Ignacy Paderewski said, "After Chopin, Moszkowski best understands how to write for the piano". Although little known today, Moszkowski was well-respected and popular during the late nineteenth century.

His music is brilliant, but has also been described as "devoid of the masculine and the feminine". He wrote over two hundred small-scale piano pieces, which brought him much popularity – notably his set of Spanish Dances, Op. 12, for piano duet (later arranged for solo piano, and for orchestra ). His early Serenade, Op. 15, was world-famous and appeared in many guises, including the song Liebe, kleine Nachtigall. Today he is probably best known for his fifteen Études de Virtuosité, Op. 72, which have been performed by virtuoso pianists such as Vladimir Horowitz and Marc-André Hamelin. Surprisingly, their first complete recording was not until 1970 (by Ilana Vered). Many of his small but brilliant piano pieces, such as Étincelles (Sparks), are used as encore performances at the end of classical concerts.
He also wrote larger scale works including the Piano Concerto in E major, Op. 59 (1898), the Violin Concerto in C major, Op. 30, three orchestral suites (Opp. 39, 47, 79), and a symphonic poem Jeanne d'Arc, Op. 19.
He wrote the opera Boabdil der letzte Maurenkönig, Op. 49, on the historical theme of the capture of Granada. It was premiered at the Berlin Court Opera on 21 April 1892, and appeared in Prague and New York the following year. It did not stay in the repertoire, but its ballet music was very popular for a number of years. He wrote a three-act ballet Laurin in 1896.
The Corrs
The Corrs
The Corrs are a Celtic folk rock group from Dundalk, County Louth, Ireland. The group consists of the Corr siblings: Andrea (vocals, tin whistle); Sharon (violin, vocals); Caroline (drums, percussion, bodhrán, vocals); and Jim (guitar, keyboards, vocals).

The Corrs came to international prominence with their performance at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia. Since then, they have released five studio albums and numerous singles, which have reached platinum in many countries. Talk on Corners, their most successful album to date, reached multi-platinum status in Australia and the UK.

The Corrs have been actively involved in philanthropic activities. They have performed in numerous charity concerts such as the Prince's Trust in 2004 and Live 8 alongside Bono in 2005. The same year, they were awarded honorary MBEs for their contributions to music and charity. The Corrs are on hiatus because Sharon, Jim, and Caroline are raising families, while Andrea is pursuing a solo career.
Mozart
Mozart
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, full name Johann Chrysostom Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (27 January 1756 – 5 December 1791) was a prolific and influential composer of the Classical era. His over 600 compositions include works widely acknowledged as pinnacles of symphonic, concertante, chamber, piano, operatic, and choral music. Mozart is among the most enduringly popular of classical composers, and many of his works are part of the standard concert repertoire.

Mozart's music, like Haydn's, stands as an archetypal example of the Classical style. His works spanned the period during which that style transformed from one exemplified by the style galant to one that began to incorporate some of the contrapuntal complexities of the late Baroque, complexities against which the galant style had been a reaction. Mozart's own stylistic development closely paralleled the development of the classical style as a whole. In addition, he was a versatile composer and wrote in almost every major genre, including symphony, opera, the solo concerto, chamber music including string quartet and string quintet, and the piano sonata. While none of these genres were new, the piano concerto was almost single-handedly developed and popularized by Mozart. He also wrote a great deal of religious music, including masses; and he composed many dances, divertimenti, serenades, and other forms of light entertainment.

The central traits of the classical style can be identified in Mozart's music. Clarity, balance, and transparency are hallmarks of his work.
Leonard Bernstein
Leonard Bernstein
Leonard Bernstein (pronounced /ˈbɜrn.staɪn/, us dict: bûrn′·stīn; August 25, 1918 – October 14, 1990) was an American conductor, composer, author, music lecturer and pianist. He was among the first conductors born and educated in the United States of America to receive worldwide acclaim. He was probably best known to the public as the longtime music director of the New York Philharmonic, for conducting concerts by many of the world's leading orchestras, and for writing the music for West Side Story, Candide, Wonderful Town, and On the Town. Bernstein was the first classical music conductor to make numerous television appearances, perhaps more than any other classical conductor, all between 1954 and 1989. He had a formidable piano technique and as a composer wrote many types of music from Broadway shows to symphonies. According to the New York Times, he was "one of the most prodigally talented and successful musicians in American history."
Zelda medley
Zelda medley
In music, a medley is a piece composed from parts of existing pieces, usually three, played one after another, sometimes overlapping. They are common in popular music, and most medleys are songs rather than instrumental. A medley which is a remixed series is called a megamix, often done with tracks for a single artist, or for popular songs from a given year or genre.

A medley is the most common form of overture for musical theater productions.

In Latin music, medleys are known as potpourrís or mosaicos; the latter were popularized by artists such as Roberto Faz and Billo Frómeta, and most commonly consist of boleros, guarachas, merengues or congas.
Selena Gomez
Selena Gomez
Selena Marie Gomez (born July 22, 1992) is an American singer and actress. Gomez first made her debut appearing as Gianna in Barney & Friends, lasting from 2002 to 2004. Following this, Gomez had cameo roles in films such as Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over (2003) and Walker, Texas Ranger: Trial by Fire (2005). In 2006, Gomez appeared as a guest star on an episode of the Disney Channel series The Suite Life of Zack and Cody, as well as Hannah Montana. Following this, Gomez starred in the Disney Channel television series Wizards of Waverly Place. The series was a critical and commercial success, earning Gomez numerous awards and nominations. Gomez later appeared in numerous Disney Channel series and films including Jonas Brothers: Living the Dream (2008) and Disney Channel Games (2008). In 2009, Gomez appeared in the films Princess Protection Program and Wizards of Waverly Place: The Movie before releasing her first studio album as Selena Gomez & the Scene, titled Kiss & Tell. The album was a commercial success, peaking inside the Top 10 of the Billboard 200.
Celine Dion
Celine Dion
Céline Marie Claudette Dion (born March 30, 1968 in Charlemagne, Quebec) is a Canadian singer, and occasional songwriter and actress.

Dion had first gained international recognition in the 1980s by winning both the 1982 Yamaha World Popular Song Festival and the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest.

Dion's music has been influenced by genres ranging from rock and R&B to gospel and classical, and while her releases have often received mixed critical reception, she is renowned for her technically skilled and powerful vocals.
Paganini
Paganini
Niccolò Paganini (27 October 1782 – 27 May 1840) was an Italian violinist, violist, guitarist, and composer. He was one of the most celebrated violin virtuosi of his time, and left his mark as one of the pillars of modern violin technique. His caprice in A minor, Op. 1 No. 24 is among his best known of compositions, and serves as inspiration for many prominent artists.

Paganini composed his own works to play exclusively in his concerts, all of which had profound influences on the evolution of violin techniques. His 24 Caprices were probably composed in the period between 1805 to 1809, while he was in the service of the Baciocchi court. Also during this period, he composed the majority of the solo pieces, duo-sonatas,trios and quartets for the guitar. These chamber works may have been inspired by the publication, in Lucca, of the guitar quintets of Boccherini. Many of his variations (and he has become the de facto master of this musical genre), including Le Streghe, The Carnival of Venice, and Nel cor più non mi sento, were composed, or at least first performed, before his European concert tour.


Playbill of Paganini's concert at the Covent Garden in 1832. Note that all solo pieces were of his composition, which was typical of all his concerts.

Generally speaking, Paganini's compositions were technically imaginative, and the timbre of the instrument was greatly expanded as a result of these works. Sounds of different musical instruments and animals were often imitated. One such composition was titled Il Fandango Spanolo (The Spanish Dance), which featured a series of humorous imitations of farm animals. Even more outrageous was a solo piece Duetto Amoroso, in which the sighs and groans of lovers were intimately depicted on the violin. Fortunately there survives a manuscript of the Duetto which has been recorded, while the existence of the Fandango is known only through concert posters.

However, his works were criticized for lacking characteristics of true polyphonism, as pointed out by Eugène Ysaÿe. Yehudi Menuhin, on the other hand, suggested that this might have been the result of his reliance on the guitar (in lieu of the piano) as an aid in composition. The orchestral parts for his concertos were often polite, unadventurous, and clearly supportive of the soloist. In this, his style is consistent with that of other Italian composers such as Paisiello, Rossini and Donizetti, who were influenced by the guitar-song milieu of Naples during this period.

Paganini was also the inspiration of many prominent composers. Both "La Campanella" and the A minor caprice (Nr. 24) have been an object of interest for a number of composers. Franz Liszt, Johannes Brahms, Sergei Rachmaninoff, Boris Blacher, Andrew Lloyd Webber, George Rochberg and Witold Lutosławski, among others, wrote well-known variations on these themes.
Leona Lewis
Leona Lewis
Leona Louise Lewis (born 3 April 1985) is an English pop and R&B singer-songwriter, and the winner of the third series of UK television talent show The X Factor. Her UK debut single, "A Moment Like This", broke a world record after it was downloaded over 50,000 times within 30 minutes.

Her second single, "Bleeding Love", was the biggest-selling single of 2007 in the UK, topped over thirty national singles charts and became a number one single on the first week in France and number one in the United States.

Her debut album, Spirit, was released in Europe in November 2007, and became the fastest-selling debut album ever in both the United Kingdom and Ireland. Released in North America in April 2008, Spirit debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 chart and made Lewis the first British solo artist to top the chart with a debut album.

With her album reaching number one in at least three continents and nine countries, Lewis has had one of the most successful launches of any television talent show contestant ever.
Sheryl Crow
Sheryl Crow
Sheryl Suzanne Crow (born February 11, 1962) is an American singer-songwriter and musician. Her music blends rock, country, pop, folk and blues, into one mainstream sound, and she has won nine Grammy Awards. Crow is also a political activist.

She has performed with the Rolling Stones and has sung duets with Mick Jagger, Michael Jackson and Kid Rock, among others. Crow's recordings have appeared on the soundtracks to Cars, Erin Brockovich, Home of the Brave, and Tomorrow Never Dies, among many others.
Casting Crowns
Casting Crowns
Casting Crowns is a Grammy award and Dove Award winning Christian band that employs a soft rock music style. The band was created in 1999 by youth pastor Mark Hall at First Baptist Church in Downtown Daytona Beach, Florida as part of a Youth Group. He also serves as a lead vocalist. Later they moved to McDonough, Georgia and more members joined creating the band now known as Casting Crowns. Some members of the band currently work as ministers for Eagles Landing First Baptist Church in McDonough, Georgia.

Discovered by, among others, contemporary Christian music legend Steven Curtis Chapman, Casting Crowns received a recording contract and vaulted to popularity in 2003 with their self-titled debut album Casting Crowns. The album quickly made them one of the fastest selling debut artists in Christian music history. Lifesong followed in 2005, debuting at #9 on the Billboard 200 Albums Chart. Both albums have been certified Platinum. The band's third album The Altar and the Door debuted at #2 on the Billboard 200 Albums Chart and #1 on the Hot Christian Albums chart upon its release in August 2007. Ten weeks after it came out it was certified Gold.

Casting Crowns has enjoyed tremendous success in the United States. They have released nine singles to date, seven of which have become consecutive number one hits on various Christian music charts. "Voice of Truth" spent a record-breaking fourteen consecutive weeks at #1 beginning in 2003. "Lifesong" spent nine weeks in the top spot, with "Praise You in This Storm" remaining at #1 for seven weeks. Casting Crowns broke their own record in 2007 when the single "East to West" from The Altar and the Door hit sixteen consecutive weeks at #1. The song ended up enjoying the top spot for a total of nineteen weeks, now their most successful single to date.
Hair
Hair
Hair: The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical is a rock musical with a book and lyrics by James Rado and Gerome Ragni and music by Galt MacDermot. A product of the hippie counter-culture and sexual revolution of the 1960s, several of its songs became anthems of the anti-Vietnam War peace movement. The musical's profanity, its depiction of the use of illegal drugs, its treatment of sexuality, its irreverence for the American flag, and its nude scene caused much comment and controversy. The musical broke new ground in musical theatre by defining the genre of the "rock musical", utilizing a racially-integrated cast and inviting the audience onstage for a "Be-in" finale.

Hair tells the story of the "tribe", a group of politically active, long-haired "Hippies of the Age of Aquarius" fighting against conscription to the Vietnam War and living a bohemian life together in New York City. They struggle to balance their young lives, loves and the sexual revolution with their pacifist rebellion against the war and the conservative impulses of their parents and society. Claude, one of the leaders of the tribe, must decide whether or not to resist the draft, as his friends have done.

After an off-Broadway debut in October 1967 at Joseph Papp's Public Theater and another run in a midtown discothèque space, the show opened on Broadway in April 1968 and ran for 1,750 performances, followed by a successful London production, which ran for 1,997 performances. Numerous productions have been staged around the world since then, and numerous recordings of the musical have been released. Several of the songs from its score became Top 40 hits, and a successful movie adaptation was released in 1979.
Gottschalk
Gottschalk
Louis Moreau Gottschalk was an American composer and pianist, best known as a virtuoso performer of his own romantic piano works. He spent most of his working career outside of the United States.
The Beatles
The Beatles
The Beatles were a pop and rock group from Liverpool, England formed in 1960. Primarily consisting of John Lennon (rhythm guitar, vocals), Paul McCartney (bass guitar, vocals), George Harrison (lead guitar, vocals) and Ringo Starr (drums, vocals) throughout their career, The Beatles are recognised for leading the mid-1960s musical "British Invasion" into the United States. Although their initial musical style was rooted in 1950s rock and roll and homegrown skiffle, the group explored genres ranging from Tin Pan Alley to psychedelic rock. Their clothes, styles, and statements made them trend-setters, while their growing social awareness saw their influence extend into the social and cultural revolutions of the 1960s. After the band broke up in 1970, all four members embarked upon solo careers.

The Beatles are one of the most commercially successful and critically acclaimed bands in the history of popular music, selling over a billion records internationally. In the United Kingdom, The Beatles released more than 40 different singles, albums, and EPs that reached number one, earning more number one albums (15) than any other group in UK chart history. This commercial success was repeated in many other countries; their record company, EMI, estimated that by 1985 they had sold over one billion records worldwide. According to the Recording Industry Association of America, The Beatles have sold more albums in the United States than any other band. In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine ranked The Beatles number one on its list of 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. According to that same magazine, The Beatles' innovative music and cultural impact helped define the 1960s, and their influence on pop culture is still evident today. In 2008, Billboard magazine released a list of top-selling Hot 100 artists to celebrate the chart's fiftieth anniversary; The Beatles reached #1 again.
George Friedrich Händel
George Friedrich Händel
George Frideric (or Frederick) Handel (/ˈhændəl/; born Georg Friederich Händel (About this soundlisten); 23 February 1685 (O.S.) – 14 April 1759) was a German, later British, Baroque composer who spent the bulk of his career in London, becoming well known for his operas, oratorios, anthems, and organ concertos. Handel received important training in Halle and worked as a composer in Hamburg and Italy before settling in London in 1712; he became a naturalised British subject in 1727. He was strongly influenced both by the great composers of the Italian Baroque and by the middle-German polyphonic choral tradition
Johann Strauss
Johann Strauss
Johann Strauss I (March 14, 1804 – September 25, 1849; German: Johann Baptist Strauß, Johann Strauss (Vater); also Johann Baptist Strauss, Johann Strauss, Sr., the Elder, the Father), born in Vienna, was an Austrian Romantic composer famous for his waltzes, and for popularizing them alongside Joseph Lanner, thereby setting the foundations for his sons to carry on his musical dynasty. His most famous piece is probably the Radetzky March (named after Joseph Radetzky von Radetz), while his most famous waltz is probably the Lorelei Rheinklänge, Op. 154.
Nikolay Rimski-Korsakov
Nikolay Rimski-Korsakov, Russian: Николай Андреевич Римский-Корсаков Russian musician, composer and music educator. Date of birth: March 18, 1844, Tikhvin, Russia Date and place of death: June 21, 1908, Lyubensk, Russia
Britney Spears
Britney Spears
Britney Jean Spears (born 2 December 1981) is an American singer and entertainer. Born in McComb, Mississippi and raised in Kentwood, Louisiana, Spears first appeared on national television as a contestant on the Star Search program in 1992 and went on to star on the television series The New Mickey Mouse Club from 1993–1994. After a brief membership with the pop musical group Innosense, Spears signed a recording contract with Jive Records, releasing her debut album ...Baby One More Time in 1999 which debuted at number one on the Billboard 200.

The title-track of Spears's debut album and its accompanying music video also established her as an international sex symbol, garnering controversy over the influence of her public image on teenage girls.

Spears is ranked as the eighth best-selling female recording artist in the United States according to the Recording Industry Association of America with 31 million certified albums and one of the world's best-selling music artists having sold an estimated 83 million records worldwide.
Christopher Norton
Christopher Norton
Christopher Norton (born 1953) is a New Zealand-born British pianist and composer. Norton obtained a degree in music from the University of Otago in 1974. He taught music in Wellington high schools, worked as a composer-in-Schools for a year, then free-lanced as a composer, arranger and pianist.
He moved to the UK in 1977 on a New Zealand Government Scholarship. His earliest publications were with Universal Edition in London, and included Carol Jazz — improvisations on Christmas tunes — and Sing'n'Swing, for choir, piano and percussion.
In 1983, Norton was signed by Boosey & Hawkes, and the first of the Microjazz series appeared, an educational music series that has expanded over 20 years to include music for all of the major instruments with piano, ensemble books and midi file backings. It is now the biggest selling music series for Boosey & Hawkes, with over a million sales to date. Boosey & Hawkes claims that it is "one of the most widely used educational series ever published."
Yiruma
Yiruma
Yiruma (born February 15 1978, Seoul, Korea) is a South Korean piano music composer. He is married to Son Hye-im.

Yiruma is well-known throughout the world, and his albums are sold all over Asia, as well as the United States and Europe. His most famous pieces are "Kiss the Rain", and also "River Flows in You". These pieces are widely mistaken for being associated with the movie Twilight. Although he formerly held dual citizenship as a citizen of the United Kingdom and South Korea, in July 2006 he gave up his British citizenship and entered the Republic of Korea Navy to begin his military service, which is compulsory for all male South Koreans. He has lived in Osaka, Japan for 5 years to promote album sales before giving up his dual citizenship.
Liszt
Liszt
Franz Liszt (October 22, 1811 – July 31, 1886) was a Hungarian composer, virtuoso pianist and teacher.

Liszt became renowned throughout Europe for his great skill as a performer; to this day, many consider him to have been the greatest pianist in history. He was also an important and influential composer, a notable piano teacher, a conductor who contributed significantly to the modern development of the art, and a benefactor to other composers and performers, notably Richard Wagner and Hector Berlioz.

As a composer, Liszt was one of the most prominent representatives of the "Neudeutsche Schule" ("New German School"). He left behind a huge and diverse oeuvre, in which he influenced his forward-looking contemporaries and anticipated some 20th-century ideas and trends. Some of his most notable contributions were the invention of the symphonic poem, developing the concept of thematic transformation as part of his experiments in musical form and making radical departures in harmony.

Liszt has most frequently been credited to have been the first pianist who gave concerts with programs consisting only of solo pieces. An example is a concert he gave on March 9, 1839, at the Palazzo Poli in Rome. Since Liszt could not find singers who — following the usual habit of the time — should have completed the program, he played four numbers all alone.

Liszt was a prolific composer. Most of his music is for the piano and much of it requires formidable technique.In his most famous and virtuosic works, he is the archetypal Romantic composer. Liszt pioneered the technique of thematic transformation, a method of development which was related to both the existing variation technique and to the new use of the Leitmotif by Richard Wagner. Liszt's piano works are usually divided into two classes. On the one hand, there are "original works", and on the other hand "transcriptions", "paraphrases" or "fantasies" on works by other composers.

Oscar Hammerstein
Oscar Hammerstein
Oscar Greeley Clendenning Ritter von Hammerstein II (/ˈhæmərstaɪn/; July 12, 1895 – August 23, 1960) was an American librettist, theatrical producer, and (usually uncredited) theatre director of musicals for almost 40 years. He won eight Tony Awards and two Academy Awards for Best Original Song. Many of his songs are standard repertoire for vocalists and jazz musicians. He co-wrote 850 songs.

Hammerstein was the lyricist and playwright in his partnerships; his collaborators wrote the music. Hammerstein collaborated with numerous composers, such as Jerome Kern, with whom he wrote Show Boat, Vincent Youmans, Rudolf Friml, Richard A. Whiting, and Sigmund Romberg, but he is best known for his collaborations with Richard Rodgers, as the duo Rodgers and Hammerstein, whose collaborations include Oklahoma!, Carousel, South Pacific, The King and I, and The Sound of Music.
Lee Morgan
Lee Morgan
Lee Morgan (July 10, 1938 – February 19, 1972) was an American jazz trumpeter and composer.

One of the key hard bop musicians of the 1960s, Morgan came to prominence in his late teens, recording on John Coltrane's Blue Train (1957) and with the band of drummer Art Blakey before launching a solo career. Morgan stayed with Blakey until 1961 and started to record as leader soon after. His song "The Sidewinder", on the album of the same name, became a surprise crossover hit on the pop and R&B charts in 1964, while Morgan's recordings found him touching on other styles of music as his artistry matured. Soon after The Sidewinder was released, Morgan rejoined Blakey for a short period. After leaving Blakey for the final time, Morgan continued to work prolifically as both a leader and a sideman with the likes of Hank Mobley and Wayne Shorter, becoming a cornerstone of the Blue Note label.
Santana
Santana
Santana is a flexible number of musicians accompanying Carlos Santana since the late 1960s. Just like Santana himself, the band is known for helping make Latin rock famous in the rest of the world.

The band was formed in 1966 in San Francisco. The first members were Carlos Santana (lead guitar), Tom Frazier (guitar), Mike Carabello (percussion), Rod Harper (drums), Gus Rodriguez (bass) and Gregg Rolie (keyboard, vocal). In the following years the members of the group changed frequently for a number of reasons, and from 1971 to 1972 there was a brief separation between the group and Santana.

Santana himself rarely sings in his songs despite being the leader of the band and recent hits have been frequently accompanied by a guest singer, rather than the members of the band.

In 1998, the group was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, with Carlos Santana, Jose Chepito Areas, David Brown, Mike Carabello, Gregg Rolie and Michael Shrieve being honored.
Lady Gaga
Lady Gaga
Lady Gaga (born Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta on March 28, 1986) is an American recording artist. She began performing in the rock music scene of New York City's Lower East Side. She soon signed with Streamline Records, an imprint of Interscope Records, upon its establishment in 2007. During her early time at Interscope, she worked as a songwriter for fellow label artists and captured the attention of Akon, who recognized her vocal abilities, and had her also sign to his own label, Kon Live Distribution.

Her debut album, The Fame, was released on August 19, 2008. In addition to receiving generally positive reviews, it reached number-one in Canada, Austria, Germany, and Ireland and topped the Billboard Top Electronic Albums chart. Its first two singles, "Just Dance" and "Poker Face", co-written and co-produced with RedOne, became international number-one hits, topping the Hot 100 in the United States as well as other countries. The album later earned a total of six Grammy Award nominations and won awards for Best Electronic/Dance Album and Best Dance Recording. In early 2009, after having opened for New Kids on the Block and the Pussycat Dolls, she embarked on her first headlining tour, The Fame Ball Tour. By the fourth quarter of 2009, she released her second studio album The Fame Monster, with the global chart-topping lead single "Bad Romance", as well as having embarked on her second headlining tour of the year, The Monster Ball Tour.

Lady Gaga is inspired by glam rock musicians such as David Bowie and Freddie Mercury, as well as pop music artists such as Madonna and Michael Jackson. She has also stated fashion is a source of inspiration for her songwriting and performances. To date, she has sold over eight million albums and over thirty-five million singles worldwide.
Alex North
Alex North
Alex North (December 4, 1910 – September 8, 1991) was an American composer who wrote the first jazz-based film score (A Streetcar Named Desire) and one of the first modernist scores written in Hollywood (Viva Zapata!).
Born Isadore Soifer in Chester, Pennsylvania, North was an original composer probably even by the classical music standards of the day. However, he managed to integrate his modernism into typical film music leitmotif structure, rich with themes. One of these became the famous song, "Unchained Melody". Nominated for 14 Oscars but unsuccessful each time, North and Ennio Morricone are the only film composers to receive the Lifetime Achievement Academy Award. North's frequent collaborator as orchestrator was the avant-garde composer Henry Brant. He won the 1968 Golden Globe award for his music to The Shoes of the Fisherman.

His best-known film scores include The Rainmaker (1956), Spartacus (1960), The Misfits (1961),The Children's Hour (1961) Cleopatra (1963), Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966), and The Devil's Brigade (1968). His commissioned score for Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) was discarded by the director, but has since been released on CD.
Though North is best known for his work in Hollywood, he spent years in New York writing music for the stage; he composed the score, by turns plaintive and jarring, for the original Broadway production of Death of a Salesman. It was in New York that he met Elia Kazan (director of Salesman), who brought him to Hollywood in the '50s. North was one of several composers who brought the influence of contemporary concert music into film, in part marked by an increased use of dissonance and complex rhythms. But there is also a lyrical quality to much of his work which may be connected to the influence of Aaron Copland, with whom he studied.

His classical works include a Rhapsody for Piano, Trumpet obbligato and Orchestra. He was nominated for a Grammy Award for his score for the 1976 television miniseries Rich Man, Poor Man. North is also known for his opening to the CBS television anthology series Playhouse 90.
Pachelbel
Pachelbel
Johann Pachelbel (baptized September 1, 1653 – buried March 9, 1706) was a German Baroque composer, organist and teacher who brought the south German organ tradition to its peak. He composed a large body of sacred and secular music, and his contributions to the development of the chorale prelude and fugue have earned him a place among the most important composers of the middle Baroque era.

Pachelbel's work enjoyed enormous popularity during his lifetime; he had many pupils and his music became a model for the composers of south and central Germany. Today, Pachelbel is best known for the Canon in D, the only canon he wrote. In addition to the canon, his most well-known works include the Chaconne in F minor, the Toccata in E minor for organ, and the Hexachordum Apollinis, a set of keyboard variations.

Pachelbel's music was influenced by southern German composers, such as Johann Jakob Froberger and Johann Kaspar Kerll, Italians such as Girolamo Frescobaldi and Alessandro Poglietti, French composers, and the composers of the Nuremberg tradition. Pachelbel preferred a lucid, uncomplicated contrapuntal style that emphasized melodic and harmonic clarity. His music is less virtuosic and less adventurous harmonically than that of Dieterich Buxtehude, although, like Buxtehude, Pachelbel experimented with different ensembles and instrumental combinations in his chamber music and, most importantly, his vocal music, much of which features exceptionally rich instrumentation. Pachelbel explored many variation forms and associated techniques, which manifest themselves in various diverse pieces, from sacred concertos to harpsichord suites.
John Williams
John Williams
John Towner Williams (born February 8, 1932) is an American composer, conductor, and pianist. In a career that spans six decades, Williams has composed many of the most famous film scores in Hollywood history, including Star Wars, Superman, Home Alone, the first three Harry Potter movies and all but two of Steven Spielberg's feature films including the Indiana Jones series, Schindler's List, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Jurassic Park and Jaws. He also composed the soundtrack for the hit 1960s television series Lost in Space as well as the fanfare of the DreamWorks Pictures' logo.

Williams has composed theme music for four Olympic Games, the NBC Nightly News, the rededication of the Statue of Liberty, and numerous television series and concert pieces. He served as the principal conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra from 1980 to 1993, and is now the orchestra's laureate conductor.
Williams is a five-time winner of the Academy Award. He has also won four Golden Globe Awards, seven BAFTA Awards and 21 Grammy Awards. With 45 Academy Award nominations, Williams is, together with composer Alfred Newman, the second most nominated person after Walt Disney. He was inducted into the Hollywood Bowl Hall of Fame in 2000, and was a recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors in 2004.
Rachmaninoff
Rachmaninoff
Sergei Vasilievich Rachmaninoff (1 April 1873 - 28 March 1943) was a Russian composer, pianist, and conductor. He was one of the finest pianists of his day and, as a composer, the last great representative of Russian late Romanticism in classical music. Early influences of Tchaikovsky, Rimsky-Korsakov and other Russian composers gave way to a thoroughly personal idiom which included a pronounced lyricism, expressive breadth, structural ingenuity and a tonal palette of rich, distinctive orchestral colors.

Understandably, the piano figures prominently in Rachmaninoff's compositional output, either as a solo instrument or as part of an ensemble. He made it a point, however, to use his own skills as a performer to explore fully the expressive possibilities of the instrument. Even in his earliest works, he revealed a sure grasp of idiomatic piano writing and a striking gift for melody. In some of his early orchestral pieces he showed the first signs of a talent for tone painting, which he would perfect in The Isle of the Dead, and he began to show a similar penchant for vocal writing in two early sets of songs, Opp. 4 and 8. Rachmaninoff's masterpiece, however, is his choral symphony The Bells, in which all of his talents are fused and unified.

Rachmaninoff sometimes felt threatened by the success of modernists such as Scriabin and Prokofiev and wondered whether to cease composing even before he left Russia. His musical philosophy was rooted in the Russian spiritual tradition, where the role of the artist was to create beauty and to speak the truth from the depths of his heart. In his last major interview, in 1941, he admitted his music, like Russian music, was a product of his temperament. He said, on another occasion, "The new kind of music seems to create not from the heart but from the head. Its composers think rather than feel. They have not the capacity to make their works exalt—they meditate, protest, analyze, reason, calculate and brood, but they do not exalt."
Rihanna
Rihanna
Rihanna (born Robyn Rihanna Fenty; February 20, 1988) is a Barbadian singer, model and fashion designer. She is the second artist, and first female, from Barbados to have received a Grammy Award (the first being Jimmy Senya Haynes). Rihanna is currently signed to the Def Jam Recordings label. She has attained four Billboard Hot 100 number ones thus far ("SOS", "Umbrella", "Take a Bow", and "Disturbia"), tying her with Mariah Carey and Beyoncé as the female solo artist with the most number ones this decade.

Rihanna came to fame in 2005 with the release of her debut album Music of the Sun, which featured her breakthrough single "Pon de Replay". Less than a year later, Rihanna released A Girl Like Me and gave her first number one single, "SOS". In 2007, Rihanna released her third studio album, Good Girl Gone Bad. The album has yielded six hit singles including five worldwide number one singles "Umbrella", "Don't Stop the Music" and "Take A Bow". Since the release of her debut album, Rihanna has amassed eleven top 40 hit singles in the U.S.
Frank Sinatra
Frank Sinatra
Francis Albert "Frank" Sinatra (December 12, 1915 – May 14, 1998) was an American singer and actor.

Beginning his musical career in the swing era with Harry James and Tommy Dorsey, Sinatra became a solo artist with great success in the early to mid-1940s, being the idol of the "bobby soxers". His professional career had stalled by the 1950s, but it was reborn in 1954 after he won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

He signed with Capitol Records and released several critically lauded albums (such as In the Wee Small Hours, Songs for Swingin' Lovers, Come Fly with Me, Only the Lonely and Nice 'n' Easy). Sinatra left Capitol to found his own record label, Reprise Records (finding success with albums such as Ring-A-Ding-Ding, Sinatra at the Sands and Francis Albert Sinatra & Antonio Carlos Jobim), toured internationally, and fraternized with the Rat Pack and President John F. Kennedy in the early 1960s. Sinatra turned 50 in 1965, recorded the retrospective September of My Years, starred in the Emmy-winning television special Frank Sinatra: A Man and His Music, and scored hits with "Strangers in the Night" and "My Way".

Sinatra attempted to weather the changing tastes in popular music, but with dwindling album sales and after appearing in several poorly received films, he retired in 1971. Coming out of retirement in 1973, he recorded several albums, scoring a hit with "(Theme From) New York, New York" in 1980, and toured both within the United States and internationally until a few years before his death in 1998.

Sinatra also forged a career as a dramatic actor, winning the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in From Here to Eternity, and he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor for The Man with the Golden Arm. His also starred in such musicals as High Society, Pal Joey, Guys and Dolls and On the Town. Sinatra was honored with the Kennedy Center Honors in 1983 and awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by Ronald Reagan in 1985 and the Congressional Gold Medal in 1997. Sinatra was also the recipient of eleven Grammy Awards, including the Grammy Trustees Award, Grammy Legend Award and the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.
Haydn
Haydn
Franz Joseph Haydn (March 31, 1732 – May 31, 1809) was one of the most prominent composers of the classical period, and is called by some the "Father of the Symphony" and "Father of the String Quartet".

A life-long resident of Austria, Haydn spent most of his career as a court musician for the wealthy Hungarian Esterházy family on their remote estate. Isolated from other composers and trends in music until the later part of his long life, he was, as he put it, "forced to become original".

Although Haydn is still often called "Franz Joseph Haydn", the composer did not use the name "Franz" during his lifetime and this misnomer is avoided by modern scholars and historians. Joseph Haydn was the brother of Michael Haydn, himself a highly regarded composer, and Johann Evangelist Haydn, a tenor.

A central characteristic of Haydn's music is the development of larger structures out of very short, simple musical motifs, often derived from standard accompanying figures. The music is often quite formally concentrated, and the important musical events of a movement can unfold rather quickly.

Haydn's work was central to the development of what came to be called sonata form. His practice, however, differed in some ways from that of Mozart and Beethoven, his younger contemporaries who likewise excelled in this form of composition. Haydn was particularly fond of the so-called "monothematic exposition", in which the music that establishes the dominant key is similar or identical to the opening theme. Haydn also differs from Mozart and Beethoven in his recapitulation sections, where he often rearranges the order of themes compared to the exposition and uses extensive thematic development.

Perhaps more than any other composer's, Haydn's music is known for its humour. The most famous example is the sudden loud chord in the slow movement of his "Surprise" symphony; Haydn's many other musical jokes include numerous false endings (e.g., in the quartets Op. 33 No. 2 and Op. 50 No. 3), and the remarkable rhythmic illusion placed in the trio section of the third movement of Op. 50 No. 1.
Michael Praetorius
Michael Praetorius
Michael Praetorius (probably 15 February 1571 – 15 February 1621) was a German composer, organist, and music theorist. He was one of the most versatile composers of his age, being particularly significant in the development of musical forms based on Protestant hymns, many of which reflect an effort to improve the relationship between Protestants and Catholics.
Franz Schubert
Franz Schubert
Franz Peter Schubert (German pronunciation: ; January 31, 1797 – November 19, 1828) was an Austrian composer. He wrote some 600 Lieder, nine symphonies (including the famous "Unfinished Symphony"), liturgical music, operas, some incidental music, and a large body of chamber and solo piano music. He is particularly noted for his original melodic and harmonic writing.

Schubert was born into a musical family, and received formal musical training through much of his childhood. While Schubert had a close circle of friends and associates who admired his work (amongst them the prominent singer Johann Michael Vogl), wide appreciation of his music during his lifetime was limited at best. He was never able to secure adequate permanent employment, and for most of his career he relied on the support of friends and family. He made some money from published works, and occasionally gave private musical instruction. In the last year of his life he began to receive wider acclaim. He died at the age of 31 of "typhoid fever", a diagnosis which was vague at the time; several scholars suspect the real illness was tertiary syphilis.

Interest in Schubert's work increased dramatically in the decades following his death. Composers like Franz Liszt, Robert Schumann and Felix Mendelssohn discovered, collected, and championed his works in the 19th century, as did musicologist Sir George Grove. Franz Schubert is now widely considered to be one of the greatest composers in the Western tradition.
John Rutter
John Rutter
John Milford Rutter CBE (born 24 September 1945) is a British composer, conductor, editor, arranger and record producer, mainly of choral music.
Tchaikovsky
Tchaikovsky
Pyotr Il'yich Tchaikovsky (May 7 1840 – November 6 1893) was a Russian composer of the Romantic era. While not part of the nationalistic music group known as "The Five", Tchaikovsky wrote music which, in the opinion of Harold Schonberg, was distinctly Russian: plangent, introspective, with modally-inflected melody and harmony.

Aesthetically, Tchaikovsky remained open to all aspects of Saint Petersburg musical life. He was impressed by Serov and Balakirev as well as the classical values upheld by the conservatory. Both the progressive and conservative camps in Russian music at the time attempted to win him over. Tchaikovsky charted his compositional course between these two factions, retaining his individuality as a composer as well as his Russian identity. In this he was influenced by the ideals of his teacher Nikolai Rubinstein and Nikolai's brother Anton.

Tchaikovsky's musical cosmopolitanism led him to be favored by many Russian music-lovers over the "Russian" harmonies and styles of Mussorgsky, Borodin and Rimsky-Korsakov.

Nonetheless he frequently adapted Russian traditional melodies and dance forms in his music, which enhanced his success in his home country. The success in St. Petersburg at the premiere of his Third Orchestral Suite may have been due in large part to his concluding the work with a polonaise. He also used a polonaise for the final movement of his Third Symphony.
Paul McCartney
Paul McCartney
Sir James Paul McCartney, MBE (born 18 June 1942) is an English rock singer, bass guitarist, songwriter, composer, multi-instrumentalist, entrepreneur, record producer, film producer and animal-rights activist. He gained worldwide fame as a member of The Beatles, with John Lennon, George Harrison, and Ringo Starr. McCartney and Lennon formed one of the most influential and successful songwriting partnerships and "wrote some of the most popular music in rock and roll history". After leaving The Beatles, McCartney launched a successful solo career and formed the band Wings with his first wife, Linda Eastman McCartney, and singer-songwriter Denny Laine. He has worked on film scores, classical music, and ambient/electronic music; released a large catalogue of songs as a solo artist; and taken part in projects to help international charities.

McCartney is listed in Guinness World Records as the most successful musician and composer in popular music history, with 60 gold discs and sales of 100 million singles. His song "Yesterday" is listed as the most covered song in history - by over 3,700 artists so far - and has been played more than 7,000,000 times on American television and radio. Wings' 1977 single "Mull of Kintyre" became the first single to sell more than two million copies in the UK, and remains the UK's top selling non-charity single. (Three charity singles have since surpassed it in sales; the first to do so—in 1984—was Band Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas?", whose participants included McCartney.)

His company MPL Communications owns the copyrights to more than 3,000 songs, including all of the songs written by Buddy Holly, along with the publishing rights to such musicals as Guys and Dolls, A Chorus Line, and Grease. McCartney is also an advocate for animal rights, vegetarianism, and music education; he is active in campaigns against landmines, seal hunting, and Third World debt.
Alessandro Scarlatti
Alessandro Scarlatti
Alessandro Scarlatti is an Italian classical composer of Baroque classical western music, especially famous for his opera works and room cantata. He is considered to be the finder of the opera genre of Naples school. His sons Domenico Scarlatti and Pietro Filippo Scarlatti are also well-known composers of classical western music.
Yanni
Yanni
Yanni (born Yiannis Hrysomallis (pronounced Chrysomallis), (Greek: Γιάννης Χρυσομάλλης, classical transcription Giannis Chrysomallis), on November 14, 1954 in Kalamata, Greece) is a self-taught pianist, keyboardist, and composer. After receiving a B.A. in psychology, he would instead seek a life in music though he had no formal training and could not read a note.

He earned Grammy nominations for his 1992 album, Dare to Dream, and the 1993 follow-up, In My Time. His breakthrough success came with the 1994 release of Yanni Live at the Acropolis, deemed to be the second best-selling music video of all time, (behind Michael Jackson's video for Thriller with nine million units). Yanni has since performed live in concert before in excess of two million people in more than 20 countries around the world. He has accumulated more than 35 platinum and gold albums globally, with sales totaling over 20 million copies. Yanni is considered to be one of the top fundraisers of all time for public television. His compositions have been included in all Olympic Games television broadcasts since 1988, and his music has been used extensively in television and televised sporting events. His music is frequently described as "new age", though he prefers the term "contemporary instrumental". The regents of the University of Minnesota conferred upon Yanni the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters.
Igor Stravinsky
Igor Stravinsky
Igor Fyodorovich Stravinsky (17 June 1882 – 6 April 1971) was a Russian-born, naturalised French, later naturalised American composer, pianist, and conductor.
He is widely acknowledged as one of the most important and influential composers of 20th century music. He was a quintessentially cosmopolitan Russian who was named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people of the century. He became a naturalised French citizen in 1934 and a naturalized US citizen in 1945. In addition to the recognition he received for his compositions, he also achieved fame as a pianist and a conductor, often at the premieres of his works.
Stravinsky's compositional career was notable for its stylistic diversity. He first achieved international fame with three ballets commissioned by the impresario Sergei Diaghilev and performed by Diaghilev's Ballets Russes (Russian Ballets): The Firebird (1910), Petrushka (1911/1947), and The Rite of Spring (1913). The Rite, whose premiere provoked a riot, transformed the way in which subsequent composers thought about rhythmic structure, and was largely responsible for Stravinsky's enduring reputation as a musical revolutionary, pushing the boundaries of musical design.
After this first Russian phase Stravinsky turned to neoclassicism in the 1920s. The works from this period tended to make use of traditional musical forms (concerto grosso, fugue, symphony), frequently concealed a vein of intense emotion beneath a surface appearance of detachment or austerity, and often paid tribute to the music of earlier masters, for example J.S. Bach and Tchaikovsky.
In the 1950s he adopted serial procedures, using the new techniques over his last twenty years. Stravinsky's compositions of this period share traits with examples of his earlier output: rhythmic energy, the construction of extended melodic ideas out of a few two- or three-note cells, and clarity of form, of instrumentation, and of utterance.
He also published a number of books throughout his career, almost always with the aid of a collaborator, sometimes uncredited. In his 1936 autobiography, Chronicles of My Life, written with the help of Walter Nouvel, Stravinsky included his well-known statement that "music is, by its very nature, essentially powerless to express anything at all." With Alexis Roland-Manuel and Pierre Souvtchinsky he wrote his 1939–40 Harvard University Charles Eliot Norton Lectures, which were delivered in French and later collected under the title Poétique musicale in 1942 (translated in 1947 as Poetics of Music). Several interviews in which the composer spoke to Robert Craft were published as Conversations with Igor Stravinsky. They collaborated on five further volumes over the following decade.
George Benson
George Benson
George Benson (born March 22, 1943) is a multi- Grammy Award winning American musician, whose production career began at the age of twenty-one as a jazz guitarist. He is also known as a pop, R&B, and scat singer. This one-time child prodigy topped the Billboard 200 in 1976 with the triple-platinum album, Breezin'. He was also a major live attraction in the UK during the 1980s. Benson uses a rest-stroke picking technique similar to that of gypsy jazz players such as Django Reinhardt.
Astor Piazzolla
Astor Piazzolla
Ástor Pantaleón Piazzolla (March 11, 1921 – July 4, 1992) was an Argentine tango composer and bandoneón player. His oeuvre revolutionized the traditional tango into a new style termed nuevo tango, incorporating elements from jazz and classical music. An excellent bandoneonist, he regularly performed his own compositions with different ensembles.

Piazzolla's nuevo tango was distinct from the traditional tango in its incorporation of elements of jazz, its use of extended harmonies and dissonance, its use of counterpoint, and its ventures into extended compositional forms. As Argentine psychoanalyst Carlos Kuri has pointed out, Piazzolla's fusion of tango with this wide range of other recognizable Western musical elements was so successful that it produced a new individual style transcending these influences. It is precisely this success, and individuality, that makes it hard to pin down where particular influences reside in his compositions, but some aspects are clear. The use of the passacaglia technique of a circulating bass line and harmonic sequence, invented and much used in 17th and 18th century baroque music but also central to the idea of jazz "changes", predominates in most of Piazzolla's mature compositions. Another clear reference to the baroque is the often complex and virtuosic counterpoint that sometimes follows strict fugal behavior but more often simply allows each performer in the group to assert his voice. A further technique that emphasises this sense of democracy and freedom among the musicians is improvisation that is borrowed from jazz in concept, but in practice involves a different vocabulary of scales and rhythms that stay within the parameters of the established tango sound-world. Pablo Ziegler has been particularly responsible for developing this aspect of the style both within Piazzolla's groups and since the composer's death.
Oasis
Oasis
Oasis are an English rock band that formed in Manchester in 1991. The group was formed by Liam Gallagher (vocals), Paul Arthurs (guitar), Paul McGuigan (bass) and Tony McCarroll (drums), who were soon joined by Liam's older brother Noel Gallagher (lead guitar, lead vocals). Oasis have sold more than 50 million records worldwide, have had eight UK number-one singles and have collected 15 NME Awards, 5 Brit Awards and 9 Q awards. The Gallagher brothers are the band's leading songwriters and the only continual members. The present lineup is completed by guitarists Gem Archer and Andy Bell, as well as unofficial drummer Chris Sharrock.

The band initially gained prominence performing on the Manchester club circuit. They were signed to independent record label Creation Records and afterwards released their debut album Definitely Maybe in 1994. The following year, the band recorded (What's the Story) Morning Glory? (1995) with their new drummer Alan White, whilst rivaling with Britpop peers Blur in the charts. The Gallagher brothers were featured regularly in tabloid newspapers for their sibling rivalry and wild lifestyles, cultivating reputations both as bad boys and as a band of the people. At the height of their fame, Oasis released their third album, Be Here Now (1997). It became the fastest-selling album in UK chart history, but lost much of its long-term appeal after the initial hype and positive reception tempered. The band suffered a notable decline in popularity in America and lost three long-time members between recording and releasing Standing on the Shoulder of Giants (2000) and Heathen Chemistry (2002).

Their sixth album Don't Believe the Truth (2005), despite turbulent recording, became their best-selling and best-received album in a decade. The following year, the band released a compilation album entitled Stop the Clocks. In February 2007, Oasis received the BRIT Award for outstanding contribution to music. Dig Out Your Soul, the seventh studio album by the band, is set to be released on October 6, 2008, with the lead single from that album, "The Shock of the Lightning", set to be released on 29 September 2008.
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