Song Highlight: Our Blessed Redeemer

With the first mix sent back for the next round of post-production edits, we are getting more and more excited about the pending relesase of our new family album. The texts for the songs contained on the album have been written by the Lord’s people in many different times and situations. One in particular, “Our Blessed Redeemer,” was adapted from Fanny Crosby’s classic gospel song, “Praise Him! Praise Him!” Truly, the Lord is our Great Shepherd, our Blessed Redeemer, and the One Who rules forever.

This arrangement features a lovely SAT trio offset by children’s choir, all supported and enhanced by a dual-piano accompaniment. We can’t wait to share it with you!

New Family Recording!

We are excited and grateful to announce that the Lord has opened the opportunity for our family to be in the recording studio once again! It’s been many years, but we are thrilled to be able to offer a sacrifice of praise that will exalt our God and encourage His people. There will be updates posted in the coming days as we work through the post-production process and anticipate the release of the new album later this year. We look forward to sharing it upon completion!

The recording features the entire Neely Team in a series of vocals that includes SATB, SSA, solos, children, and more. We pulled from our years of ministry to include old family favorites, some newer compositions, and several original titles to create a musical tapestry that we pray will lift the heart, encourage the soul, and praise the Lord.


“Rejoice in the LORD, O ye righteous: for praise is comely for the upright. Praise the LORD with harp: sing unto Him with the psaltery and an instrument of ten strings. Sing unto Him a new song; play skilfully with a loud noise. For the word of the LORD is right…” -Psalm 33:1-4a

Peachtree Cove RV Park – A Wonderful Place to Stay!

Most of you receiving updates from Neely Marketplace have probably not heard about Peachtree Cove RV Park. Let us fill you in.

A year and a half ago, the Lord opened up the opportunity for a new business venture. We were thrilled to take on the family project of restoring a once-thriving RV Park to something of its former beauty and success. The Lord has blessed our efforts and the summer of 2019 marks the middle of our second season as RV Park owners. We have loved being able to meet many new people and provide a quiet haven for those needing a place to stay.

Visit our website and plan to come see us! 

Visit our FREE DOWNLOADS page and get your copy of our camping checklist. It makes the planning and packing stage of the family trip so much easier!

Independence Day Sale

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness…

Use coupon code FREEDOM2019 to receive 40% off the Lest We Forget recording and download and all companion sheet music downloads* until July 5.

*Companion sheet music titles include Prayer of Dependence, Revive Us, Godly Heroes, and Lord, Please Forgive

Summer Highlights at Neely Marketplace

Summer is one of the very best times of year, says the person writing this post. The rush of spring has begun to settle down as the maturity of summer takes its place. The grass is growing steadily, trees are fully leaved, flowers are beginning to bloom, garden produce is starting to come in; everything is just perfect!

Welcome to summer at Neely Marketplace! To celebrate the opening of June, receive 30% off Sun & Sea candles from The Candle Cove at Peachtree. Bring the fresh fragrance of the outdoors, indoors for times when it doesn’t work to be outside. You don’t want to miss these!

With the entrance of June, however, also come the sometimes startling realization that 2019 is almost half gone. It is sobering to step back from all the activity of life and see the speed with which time passes. Most resources can be replaced, but once time is gone, it’s gone.

I love to keep a journal – somewhere to record the many things the Lord is teaching me, the blessings He sends, insights from the Scriptures, and more. I encourage you: leave a record of the wonderful things God is doing in your life for those who follow behind. You will never regret being able to look on specific instances of His love and provision recorded at the time they took place. 

How do you manage your time? And do you have a record of what has filled it?
Check out these two product lines to help manage the rest of 2019 and to document it for future reference. You won’t be sorry!

Sightreading: An Essential

The title here says it all. For any musician, the skill of sightreading is absolutely essential. It doesn’t matter if you are primarily a church musician, orchestra player, teacher, or something else – there is sure to come a time when you are handed music you have never seen before and asked to play it with very little, if any, notice.

So how do we get there? I think the principles of learning to sightread are pretty much the same for most instruments. Sightreading is, at the most basic level, excellent eye-brain-hand coordination. The information has to be read, processed in a matter of seconds or fractions of seconds, and put out through the fingers. Ideally, when sightreading you will be able to maintain a metronomic tempo that moves you steadily through the measures with a large percentage of accurate notes (actually, the ideal is 100% accuracy, but after all, we’re sightreading….).

As with anything, starting out right from the beginning can make all the difference in the world. I make a point with all of my students, especially the beginners, to have them sightreading something at every lesson. More often than not, the beginners end up sightreading a small handful of short pieces during each lesson. This plants the seed for the skill very early on and it will naturally grow and mature with the student’s mastery of the instrument as they move through literature. This is definitely the best way to learn or teach it in my experience, so if you have beginning students, get them sightreading right away!

Sometimes, though, sightreading slips through the cracks. This has, unfortunately, happened with some of my students. Additionally, sometimes I take a transfer student who’s previous teacher didn’t work on this and so then I have an intermediate student who is not comfortable with the sightreading process. The good news is, it’s never too late to learn! Intermediate and early advanced pianists have an excellent chance at mastering sightreading even if they haven’t done it from the time they started lessons. Below are a few helps for learning to sightread that I have found immensely helpful both in my own journey as a musician as well as from a teacher’s perspective.

  • Do it often! For older students, I find it helpful to assign a book strictly for this purpose that they can do on their own every day.
  • Start simple! Your student may be able to play Level 10 literature, but is on par with a Level 2 sightreader. Find music with which they can succeed, no matter how easy it feels, and gradually work up the ladder.
  • Practice with variety! Is your student burned out with stumbling through the hymnbook? Try a series of simple etudes for a change (see below for recommendations). Don’t always stick with solo works, either – practice with simple accompaniments for children’s choir or other instrumental soloists.
  • Repeat it! Even though technically speaking you can only sightread something once, if you are not consciously putting effort into learning it, your brain will still process much of the information as new. Use this to your advantage and play the same thing over and again, and each time you will pick up on something else and increase your accuracy, thus combining the benefits of sightreading and structured practice.
  • KTS! This stands for Key signature, Time signature, Scan. These three things are perhaps the most important in any sightreading situation – special thanks to Mr. Pinner of Pinner Studios and Pinner Publications for this wonderful tip!


I have found the Technical Skills book by compiled and edited by Jane Magrath to be an excellent resource in helping students sightread successfully. Check out these wonderful technique building books as a resource for beginning sightreaders.

look inside Masterwork Technical Skills Level 1-2. Edited by Jane Magrath. Graded Standard Repertoire; Masterworks; Piano Collection; Technique Musicianship. Technical Skills. Masterwork. Book. 24 pages. Alfred Music #00-6583. Published by Alfred Music (AP.6583).
look inside Masterwork Technical Skills Level 3. Edited by Jane Magrath. Graded Standard Repertoire; Masterworks; Piano Collection; Technique Musicianship. Technical Skills. Masterwork. Book. 32 pages. Alfred Music #00-6584. Published by Alfred Music (AP.6584).
look inside Masterwork Technical Skills Level 4. Edited by Jane Magrath. Graded Standard Repertoire; Masterworks; Piano Collection; Technique Musicianship. Technical Skills. Masterwork. Book. 32 pages. Alfred Music #00-6585. Published by Alfred Music (AP.6585).


If you found this post helpful, please consider leaving feedback in the comment section below. Also, read other posts on music pedagogy here.

This post may contain affiliate links. 

In Righteous Paths is now in stock!

In Righteous Paths is a collection of sacred solo arrangements for intermediate viola, complete with piano accompaniments. These arrangements were written with the amateur violist in mind, but are also appropriate for those who have reached more advanced levels. Also included is a bonus arrangement of Abide with Me set for violin/viola duet with piano accompaniment. Artistic yet simple, these solos are perfect for church services, sacred recitals, special events, and more.

Titles include: Love Divine, All Loves Excelling, Shepherd’s Hymn, Blessed Assurance, At the Cross, Day by Day, Redeemed, How I Love to Proclaim It, Just as I Am, Praise Him! Praise Him!, and Abide with Me.

A spiral book of scores, supplemented with a separate booklet of solo parts is included in purchase.

Easy Gift Idea for Under $2! Potted Plant

Looking for a special gift for a special someone, that doesn’t break the bank? Check out this potted plant idea! Cost is less than $2! This would be an ideal gift for teachers, coworkers, students, neighbors, friends… really, who doesn’t like a fresh flower? Even if you’re crunched for time, you can easily put this together in a couple minutes, and it’s a gift that will last for months! We assembled about 30 of them to use as a little gift to celebrate Easter.

We purchased Snapdragon flowers to use as our potted plant, because they’re hardy enough to endure colder spring temps. 

We found 15 little peat pots for less than $4, and the potted plant can be placed in the ground with pot and all! 

Pick up a pack of pencils from the dollar store, download this printable sheet (or design your own if you don’t want Easter tags), and you have simple instruction flags to insert into each plant.

It’s such a joy to be able to give a little “thinking of you” gift, or to share a little something to celebrate a special holiday! 

A New Product Line is Here!

That’s right! We are thrilled to be able to offer Legacy journals as a part of Neely Marketplace’s unique collection of products for living, gifts for giving. For years, we have enjoyed giving and using these beautiful journals and it is with great joy that we are able to make them available to each of you.

With a variety of covers to choose from, Legacy journals are sure to meet your journaling, note-taking, and creative writing needs, as well as those of your friends. Hop over to our online store and take a look!


P.S. Don’t forget about upcoming holidays and occasions: Easter – April 21, Mother’s Day – May 12, graduations, and more!