At the end of the day …. The Piano Guys Series #7!!

~~April 15, 2014~~

The Piano Guys are an American musical group consisting of Jon SchmidtSteven Sharp Nelson, Paul Anderson, and Al van der Beek.

They gained popularity through YouTube, where they posted piano and cello renditions of popular songs and classical music. Schmidt and Nelson’s music is accompanied by professional-quality videos shot and edited by Paul Anderson. 

Today we are featuring “Arwen’s Vigil” from their first CD. 

Since the beginning of The Piano Guys, “Lord of the Rings” has been our most requested work. As we reach one million subscribers we thought it fitting to dedicate this arrangement to our “subs.” 

“When Aragorn was abroad, from afar Arwen watched over him in thought”

–Lord of the Rings-

The YouTube stars The Piano Guys have added another popular franchise to their repertoire. This time they’ve covered The Lord of the Rings.

Back in September, 2012, The Piano Guys signed a record deal with Sony. They were told by Sony, “We love what you guys do, we want to take it to the next level, keep doing what you’re doing.”

Who exactly are The Piano Guys?


The Piano Guys cover a variety of music. They’ve covered everything from Mozart to Adele. There are two on-screen musicians in the group – Jon Schmidt plays the piano while Steven Sharp Nelson plays the cello. There are three other equally important members. Paul Anderson, Tel Stewart, and Al van der Beek do the behind-the-scenes work that makes the great videos that The Piano Guys produce.

The Piano Guys excellent cover is of The Lord of the Rings. They’ve covered other fandom related music before. From Harry PotterStar Wars and Pirates of the Caribbean to Adele, One Direction, and Bruno Mars, The Piano Guys have a large repertoire of covers.


After signing with Sony we were putting together our first official release. Just before the deadline we looked at the song list and all agreed the album needed to include a new original piece.

But we had 48 hours ….



~~Lord of The Rings – The Hobbit (Piano/Cello Cover)~~



~~Story behind the song~~

Since the beginning of The Piano Guys, “Lord of the Rings” has been our most requested work.

As we reach one million subscribers we wanted to dedicate this arrangement to our “subs.” This was an intimidating project — encompassing the power and the beauty of the many musical themes throughout the movies; capturing the emotion and the “epic” nature of the story; and all with a few cellos, a piano, and a couple Canon 5D Mark IIs.

We normally write our tunes during intense compositional binges — the bulk of our songs have been written within the period of a few days. This one was different. It was a drawn-out process during which we studied the music of The Lord of Rings, contemplated what themes to incorporate, how they could tell the story by flowing from one to the other.

We also spent a lot of time finding new ways to imitate instruments from various sections of the orchestra using Steve’s cellos — from the brass section through the woodwind section to the percussion section.

We love the story of The Lord of the Rings. It is a tale that has spiritual meaning for us. We love its messages — that “even the smallest person can change the course of the future,” that “there’s good in this world and it’s worth fighting for,” “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us” … and that everyone should have a “second breakfast.”

We love the poignant depiction of loyalty between the Fellowship of the Ring (we even included the “Fellowship” theme three times – at 0:18, 3:58 and at the end of the arrangement – to feel like a common thread in the music as it is in the story.) We wanted to paint these messages musically as vividly as possible.

Like so many things in the creative realm, and to paraphrase Mr. Bilbo Baggins, the hardest part was the first step.

After a brief introduction of the Hobbit Theme and Fellowship Theme (arguably the most relevant musical moments) we felt strongly that we needed to begin with the deeply touching melody that serves as the soundtrack to Arwen’s vision of her future son (in the extended version of Return of the King). That gave way to a Divinely-led journey from the Shire and Rivendell through Isengard and Rohan to Gondor’s victory over Mordor. We endeavored to represent each of the major allies and opposing forces in the story:

The Elves 0:44
The Ents 1:48
Rohan 2:08
Mordor and Isengard 2:32
Hobbits 3:08
Gondor 4:11

(Read rest of the story here… )


We ALL are connected through MUSIC!!

We ALL are ONE!!

2 thoughts on “At the end of the day …. The Piano Guys Series #7!!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.