Summary: If you need the best bassoon sheet music to learn with, you have to make sure that the music is appropriate to your skill level, the type of music you want to play, and your budget.
If you are learning to play the bassoon or are interested in playing the bassoon, you can learn to play the instrument independently or complement the lessons you get from a teacher with good sheet music.
The best bassoon sheet music to learn with should match your skill level, your knowledge of sight-reading and musical annotations, and, of course, the style of music genre you prefer.
Best Bassoon Sheet Music to Learn With
You will find a lot of sheet music for the bassoon, but the best bassoon sheet music to learn will include beginner-level music and lessons. These are some of my favorites:
Easy Classical Bassoon Solos
If you want easy classical music, then Easy Classical Bassoon Solos is a great choice. This is particularly suitable for situations where you want to learn classical pieces of music from composers like Bach, Beethoven, and Mozart. It includes 18 easy songs for beginners that can be played as a solo.
What I like most is that it does have a company meant for piano or guitar, so you can quickly turn it into a duet.
- Classical songs
- Easy and suitable for beginners
- Has duet options
- Only classical music, no other beginner sheet music lessons or sight-reading notes
Music for Two
If you are looking for Christmas music, I highly recommend this introductory volume called Music for Two. I like this book because it is all beginner level, so it’s called volume 1, which means there is a second volume of other Christmas music, but this one is intended for beginners.
It has 19 arrangements that can be done independently or combined into duets. They are designed to be duets, so while you play the bassoon, someone else can play the flute, oboe, or violin.
- Has some of the most popular Christmas songs
- Duet music with flute, oboe, or violin
- 19 arrangements
- Not a lot of solo options
As the name suggests, Broadway Favorites is a beginner collection that includes solo bassoon arrangements and band arrangements. As a huge fan of Broadway, I love all of the songs, especially Don’t Cry For Me Argentina, I Dreamed a Dream, and The Phantom of the Opera.
- Has solo and band arrangements
- Comes with sheet music and an accompanying CD so you can listen by ear too
- Only Broadway hits, so if you don’t like classic Broadway songs, you won’t like this
First 50 Songs
First 50 Songs, as the name suggests, is a book that includes the first 50 songs you should learn on a bassoon. This is a little different than the other books and sheet music listed here because it’s not just the classics. Instead, it’s pop songs, movie themes, classical melodies, and folk songs.
It has things that most people would instantly recognize. What I love most is that with such a comprehensive collection of music types like the song Happy, Stand By Me, Hallelujah, God Bless America, The Godfather, Shake It Off, and What a Wonderful World, you can add a lot of different genres to your musical portfolio and play something beyond the typical classical compositions.
- Lots of different music
- Good investment with 50 songs
- Meant only for beginners, without more intermediate options
- Solo sheet music only
Master Solos Intermediate
If you are an intermediate musician, Master Solos Intermediate is a collection of world-famous bassoon solos for an intermediate level. What I love most about this is that it’s only solo music which means I can play it on my own, but the accompanying audio files are particularly useful.
I can read music, but I love downloading the audio files and using the playback functions to change the key if I want or slow down the audio to listen to more complicated parts.
- More than a dozen well-known songs
- Has a book and online audio files
- Audio can be slowed down, or the key can be changed
- Not suitable for beginners
50+ Greatest Classics for Bassoon
50+ Greatest Classics for Bassoon is meant for intermediate and advanced performers. It is categorized from beginner to intermediate level songs based on the difficulty level.
So if you are a beginner, you can purchase this set of over 50 songs and start at the beginning of the book, and as you increase your skill, you can progress through the remainder of the book.
I like that it has some variance in the skill level because it gives me something useful beyond just the beginning phases of my musical development. I also like that you get more bang for your buck with this because it costs almost as much as every other sheet music book, but it has over 50 songs.
- Good for bassoon and mini bassoon
- Has 50 of the most famous compositions
- Arranged for all levels
- Only classical compositions
What is the Best Bassoon Sheet Music to Learn With
When you look for the best bassoon sheet music to learn with, consider whether the music is a good fit for you:
- Is the sheet music meant for your instrument? There are plenty of books for sheet music with multiple instruments, and they may not be a good investment for you if you only play one instrument.
- Is the sheet music written for your level? Lots of sheet music is categorized by beginner, intermediate, or advanced musical skill, so make sure you pick the one that fits where you are.
- Is sheet music affordable? Many music online might be sold with a minimum purchase amount, like ten copies when all you need is one copy. If the copies are $5 each, this might be well outside your budget, especially for something you want to practice with or learn at home.
How to Find the Best Bassoon Sheet Music to Learn With
Finding the best bassoon sheet music to learn means knowing what matters most to you and your situation. This is also the same criteria I used to make the selections in this guide.
When you invest in sheet music, you need to set up a budget. It can be very easy to get carried away buying sheet music, especially when you first start learning, but what ends up happening is you have too much music that you never play, and usually music that is outside of your skill level.
When I first took lessons, they were based out of a music supply shop, so the lessons took place in one half of the building and the musical instruments and sheet music were available for sale in the other half.
This was a little dangerous because, by my third lesson, I felt so confident that, being a huge fan of Broadway and Opera, I bought a $50 book of sheet music with the most popular Broadway songs and another $75 book of classic opera songs.
I have opened each of those books about four times and never managed to play anything because they are very complex, and as much as I love Broadway and Opera, the music is still not entirely on par with my skill level.
I mistakenly believed that even though the music was far too advanced for my level, I would be more inclined to learn it if I had already purchased it. That didn’t happen.
So, I like to set up a budget now where I don’t spend more than $10 per month on sheet music. This can be tricky because certain sheet music vendors sell individual songs with a minimum number of 10 copies.
In these cases, I reserve that sheet music for situations where I will perform with a group and can therefore justify buying ten copies.
Figure out how much money you are willing to spend on your sheet music every month or an annual basis. It doesn’t have to be a lot. There is ample free music out there if you want something to bolster your sheet music collection above and beyond structured sheet music books.
Look for things that will not only fit within your budget but help you meet whatever your goals are. And don’t make your goals too lofty like I did, or you’ll never meet them.
Benefits of Finding the Best Bassoon Sheet Music to Learn With
While it is true that many famous musicians have never learned to read sheet music and that you might very well know someone who plays entirely by ear, learning to read sheet music is an undeniably invaluable skill that you should have no matter what instrument you play or plan to play.
Diversify Your Skills
Once you learn to read music, you will play an array of different musical styles. This happens very quickly.
Learning to read music at a fundamental, passable level means you can open sheet music for Blues, Country, classical, jazz, or anything else and start playing in different styles and producing different sounds without additional instruction.
This applies to every instrument, which means it’s a versatile skill applied to different situations.
I have used my ability to read sheet music to play with a church group where the music is more reverent and based on hymnals, and at the same time to play with a secular community group where we get to play covers of popular music, with a trio where we get to play original music it has more of a pop vibe.
You won’t know what you like to play best and, therefore, how to cater your musical skills to that particular style if you cannot read sheet music and play songs in each style.
Perform with Others
You can effectively play with other musicians when you learn to read sheet music. If you are playing on your own by ear, you can do very little else.
When you can read sheet music, you can read one part while someone else reads another, and you can each keep the right timing, learn to play off each other, and eventually perform in even larger groups.
Memorize More Effectively
Surprisingly, being able to read sheet music helps you to memorize music more easily. Writing things down or reading something visually has a better connection in your brain.
You make mental connections between the notes moving up or down in pitch along with the staff, slowing up or speeding down, and then you remember everything you need the more you play that same sheet music.
You will find it surprisingly easier to remember or memorize the important aspects of a song that make it unique, like the retards, fermatas, and volume
Be a Better Musician
Being a confident sight-reader gives you the potential to become a better musician. Learning the rules with good sheet music helps you get a structure just like building a house, but then you get to add to that structure or decorate that structure however you see fit.
I often take for granted how vital reading sheet music is and how much that ability gives you greater flexibility and improvisational style.
When I was conducting a community choir, we needed more baritones. We had very few men, so I convinced a friend to join. He had never participated in choirs before, but I knew he had a great voice.
What I didn’t realize is that he didn’t read sheet music at all. I just assumed that everyone had some exposure to reading sheet music, especially if they were church-going because you read from hymnals every week, and he was, in fact, church-going.
It wasn’t until we were improvising as a group and I told people to disregard certain fermatas or change to pianissimo rather than mezzo-forte that he joked he couldn’t read the music anyway. He had no idea what any of those words meant.
By teaching him some essential sheet music, he learned over a few months how to successfully read a lot of the different annotations and the notes for his respective part. Before that, he was limited to just listening to what the other musicians were doing and copying them.
Learning the rules with good sheet music can help you overcome that same barrier.
Answer: The cost of the best bassoon sheet music to learn with shouldn’t be that much. When you start as a musician, you only need one or two beginner books, and these range between $15 and $40 depending on how big the book is and how many lessons it includes.
Some beginner books are meant to have everything you need to get started, including warm-ups and scale exercises, lessons, and sheet music. If it comes with an accompanying CD or audio files, it might cost more.
As you progress in your skill, you’ll end up spending less on comprehensive books because they don’t include all of those extra lessons but rather just the sheet music.
Answer: You can certainly teach yourself to play the bassoon on your own, but you need to make sure you practice regularly and have the right tools.
Playing without sheet music will be difficult because you won’t necessarily learn critical exercises that help you with your fingering, your transitions, or things like critical changes.
Answer: If money is a problem or you don’t want to spend a lot on the music you have when you first start, you can shop around to find good deals. There are plenty of times when public domain music can be found online for free using keywords like “free bassoon sheet music”.
You might also be able to capitalize on sales. Around different holidays there are usually sales online for the best bassoon sheet music no matter your level of skill. If you work with a teacher or you take lessons, they might be willing to photocopy music for you or provide it as part of the cost.
Bottomline for the Best Bassoon Sheet Music to Learn With
The bottom line is that finding the best bassoon sheet music to learn is entirely based on your skill level and musical goals.
With just a little bit of research, you can find music appropriate to your level of expertise, with books that have things like lessons or audio files included with them. This will help you measure your success and slowly progress to more difficult sheet music.
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