At the end of the day …. The Piano Guys Series, second CD … #1!

~~April 25, 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. 

Paul Anderson owned a piano shop in St. George, Utah. He met musician Jon Schmidt as the latter walked in to ask if he could practice there for an upcoming concert. Months later, Paul Anderson and Tel Stewart (then just for fun) started making videos together with Jon Schmidt. It was not too long after that they did their first collaboration with Jon Schmidt, Steven Sharp Nelson, and Al Van Der Beek as the studio and music technician. After the five of them started collaborating the group really started to take off, producing a music video each week and posting it to YouTube.


Several of the group’s YouTube videos have over 20 million views, while all of them have over 750,000. As of February 2014, The Piano Guys’ YouTube channel has over 345 million total video views and about 2,500,000 subscribers.


The Piano Guys 2 is the third studio album by American musical group The Piano Guys. It was released on May 7, 2013, by Portrait (a division of Sony Masterworks). The album made its chart début at number 38 on the US Billboard 200.

The deluxe version of The Piano Guys 2 comes with a DVD featuring 11 music videos.

Today we are featuring “Begin Again” from their second CD with a major record label.


Begin Again” is a song recorded by American singer-songwriter Taylor Swift for her fourth studio album, Red (2012). It was written by Swift and produced by Nathan Chapman and Dann Huff, with Swift’s aid.

The song was generally acclaimed by music critics, many of whom praising Swift’s songwriting and complimented for coming back to her country roots for the close of the album. “Begin Again” generally was commercially successful, it became her second top ten hit on both US and Canadian charts following the hit single “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together“, peaking at number seven and four respectively.

The single has been certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). “Begin Again” was nominated for the Grammy Awards for Best Country Song at the 56th Grammy Awards.

Taylor Swift — Begin Again (Piano/Cello Cover)


~~The Story~~

Ironically this song for us was about beginning again .. .and we filmed it in a café … on a Wednesday (see Taylor Swift’s lyrics). No kidding. But what’s crazy is we didn’t plan it that way. Just like so many of our songs and videos, miracles made it happen.

We were writing another cover tune and it was flowing like molasses uphill in January. After beating our heads against the wall for too long trying to make it work we stepped back and reset … and decided to begin again. But like so many things in life the struggle had a great payoff.

While we were writing the cover-tune-fail we found inspiration from a classical piece, as we often do — J.S. Bach’s “Sheep May Safely Graze” (Cantata No. 208 — you can hear a version of the original here:…). As we were listening to this piece it called to memory a tune from Taylor Swift’s album, “Red.” Her “Begin Again” melody and Bach’s Cantata seemed so well matched it was a mash-up made in Heaven.

We switched to Swift’s tune immediately and our arrangement finally started flowing like the Fountains of Versailles. 🙂 There were even moments (especially the Bridge melody of “Begin Again” and the primary melody of the Cantata) when the two seemed to play off and echo each other naturally. We wanted this arrangement to be a mix of the two styles — a pastoral, classical feel paired with a pop-country vibe … polished off by a bit of Valentine romance.

Then it was on to find a location!

We just did what we always do … find a bunch of locations that have potential only to find, at the last minute, that they don’t fit, can’t work, or won’t allow us to film…then, after all we can do, we’re gifted a location by a miracle! The day before we were scheduled to film, one of us woke up with an image in his head — a vision of a green European garden café. Where could we find any living plant, let alone a quaint outdoor Euro-café, in the middle of winter in Utah?


As this blessing would have it, we found a perfect indoor garden setting in a greenhouse with a café vibe that was just what we had envisioned. And it was 4.3 miles away from where we were meeting! On top of that, an employee there said she was a “big fan” and went straight to the owner for us … who turned out to be a high school friend of Steve’s parents! And what day could they fit us in? A Wednesday. We don’t believe in coincidences.

Life’s too meaningful to believe in meaninglessness.

We ALL are connected through MUSIC!! 

~~Taylor Swift – Begin Again~~

~~Published on Oct 23, 2012~~

Music video by Taylor Swift performing Begin Again. (C) 2012 Big Machine Records, LLC.

We ALL are ONE!!