Today I’m introducing you to German piano player, composer and pop producer Klinger. He started his piano career with a song by German singer songwriter Vivie Ann which he did a piano rework of. It turned out so great that he decided to make some more piano music!
The song Dust is released as a single, but will also be part of an EP which will be released in the first quarter of 2020.
Tell us something about your track Dust!
‘Dust’ is so many different things. It´s everywhere but normally we don´t pay much attention. We tend to find it annoying, but it can also be very beautiful, when the sun comes through the window and all those tiny particles float in the air. When you zoom in you can see that dust is not one simple thing, but a hotchpotch of very different objects consisting of many different materials. We call them all dust only because they are very small.
Old things are always covered in dust. And so was the piano I played when I wrote that song. It´s more than 150 years old and if you listen carefully you can hear it creaking and sighing while it´s played. I guess that´s also how the name ‘dust’ came to my mind.
Thank you for the music Klinger!
Today I’m introducing you to German composer Gunter Scholler; however, Gunter has lived the past 30 years in France. I feel like Gunter tells his own story:
I had several different lives. At first I was a computer scientist, after that I worked in several opera houses, then as a freelance choir master and vocal teacher. I have always had a deep love for music. As a young man I composed songs and sang them in German cellar theaters, where I accompanied myself on piano.
I usually ask the participants to introduce the song to the blog audience. Of course I asked the same question to Gunter, but I got a very different answer. Enjoy!
I write a lot of music. Epic music, and orchestra music (string orchestra and choirs) and all I had to do, was to write down some notes on a cheet of paper. For this track I tried to work on a different way. The Idea was, that never I should play more than 3 notes on the same time.
But the problem is, on Spotify if you put your music on Spotify, they do not want sheet music, they want a finished product. Good music, good sound .
You have to produce a good sound.
I’m a self-made musician and I never did home recording or things like that. So, I wasn’t able to produce this « good, professional sound » . I tried for month’s (even years) and it never worked. And this song, “the lost kingdom” is perhaps my first song ever, that sounds OK. It’s not that I’m happy with that sound…. but it feels nearly OK.
Thank you Gunter!
Today Im introducing you to American composer John Corlis, originally from Colorado Springs, but now located in Los Angeles. John has a bachelor in Music in media composition, and graduated from CSUN in 2006. He grow up accompanying singers and choirs on the piano, and there’s where he found his passion for writing his own music.
Steady Mind is taken from the album Into The Atmosphere, which was released in November of 2019.
Tell us something about your track Steady mind!
Steady Mind is an expression of trying to do just that: steady my own mind, which let me tell you is hard to do. I thought that if I had a difficult time trying to meditate, learning to let go of the thoughts of my day and instead try to focus on just being that others must feel the same way. This song is an attempt to bring my mind to stillness and hopefully inspire others to feel that same calm, focus and presence.
Thanks for this John!
Today I’m introducing you to Italian composer Sebastiano Della Bianchina, aka Down To Myself, from Brescia near Milan. Sebastiano started out by playing different instruments as a child (clarinet and trumpet) before finding an interest in the electric guitar. In 2013 he started studying composition, and it was the start of what we’re hearing now!
The song My Winter is released as a single.
Tell us something about your song My winter!
There is no real story behind the song. Often in my compositions I try to capture my emotions and arouse emotions in the listener. If someone asked me to describe these emotions in words I could say “a relaxedly melancholic trip to the snowy mountains”.
Thank you for the music Sebastiano!
Today I’m introducing you to American composer Peter Mowry living in Portland, Maine. Peter has played music professionally for about 25 years but the release Up is endless is the first solo release ever!
The track Moonless is the opening track on the EP mentioned above, and was released on the 22nd of November 2019.
Tell us something about your track Moonless!
The track “Moonless” is about being in a place that seemingly feels dark and alone, but the presence of something more is still there. In the darkness there is light. Sometimes that feeling can feel hypnotic and I wanted the music to put the mind in a rested place that is open to reflection. These days it’s hard to step back and be present and I wanted to create something that helps create a feeling of being totally present.
Thank you for sharing this with us Peter!
What’s your real name?
How did you come up with your artist name?
I look at it more as a project name rather than my artist name. With the name, I was trying to find something that communicated a sense of depth and passion and curiosity. I was pretty pumped when I discovered that Music Within was unclaimed by any musician or composer and I just went with it!
Where are you from? And where do you live?
I’m from a city called Welland in Ontario, Canada. I now live in Toronto, Canada.
How long have you been playing the piano, and do you play other instruments as well?
Wow, well after being asked to count it out it looks like I’ve been playing the piano on and off for about 20 years now! I also play guitar and trombone regularly, and a few other instruments in a studio / production capacity.
Tell us about how you started playing music.
When I was about six years old my parents started me in piano lessons. (Big thank you to them!) My sister was already a few years ahead of me, so I was eager to catch up.
How long have you been making piano music?
Approximately 7 years.
Tell us something about that moment you realized you could make songs yourself!
My first experience writing music rather than just playing someone else’s music was actually in a band setting. When I was about 14 I played trombone in a ska/punk band. It was a lot of fun writing the horn parts and definitely opened my mind up to the reality that I could create my own music.
What are your favorite artists in this “piano genre”?
It’s difficult to say ‘favorite’ artists but here are a few that I like a lot: Angus MacRae, Joep Beving, Jasha Klebe, Bruno Sanfilippo, and Rob Simonsen. I also recently discovered an album called Waves by AVA which I’m really enjoying!
Is there one song which you play over and over again as soon as you sit down by a piano?
Waltz in D-flat major by Frederic Chopin (popularly known in English as the “Minute Waltz”)
What rules (in making music) need to be broken?
Hmm, tough question. How about the rule of music needing to fit into a “genre bin?” I’d say it’s a good one to try to consciously break. “Weird and strange” can become “unique and ground-breaking” if given the chance.
How do you record your music?
I record most of my music myself at my “project studio.” When I have parts for live strings I send it to a few musician friends who can record the parts from their own studios. For a few of the tracks on my upcoming album, the piano was tracked in a Toronto studio called Soleil Sound.
What’s your take on sampled instruments?
Without a doubt, I wouldn’t be where I’m at today without sampled instruments. When I was first starting to compose music and discovered that I could play all of these amazing, realistic sounds with my keyboard it was like opening Pandora’s box! And I still use them regularly today. So to speak down on them would be total hypocrisy. All of that said, now that I’m a bit more experienced and I’ve trained my ‘production ears’, without a doubt live instruments with live players always sound better, enhance the composition and evoke a more emotional response. How’s that for tiptoeing the line?
The last question is asked by my 5 year old son:
Where do all your songs come from?
Great question! I think they come from all around us. You can get inspired by a cloud in the sky, a ray of light, something you read, a film you watch, a sad experience, and of course other people’s music. You sit down and have fun experimenting. You chip away at the nothingness with your own personal experiences and your unique strengths.
Thank you very much Rob!
Today I’m introducing you to Brittisk composer Stephen Caulfield from Reading. Stephen has been making music for as long as he remembers and started out using the sequencer on an Atari ST computer at his school. Since then, over the years he has released several albums, soundtracks and EPs of original music.
The track Make the call is part of the album To the lighthouse which was released early November of 2019.
The album is a very personal collection of music that was inspired by the stunning Icelandic scenery combined with a number of emotional narratives and journeys that I wanted to tell through music without using any words or lyrics. The music is evocative of places, emotions and moments in time, both fictional and real-life and the album journeys from the darkest part of the night through to daylight, with golden sunlight bursting through the clouds to light and warm the landscape once again.
Tell us something about your track Make the call!
Make the Call is a song that was inspired by dealing with feelings of calm and tranquility mixed with growing feelings of impending unease. The gentle piano arpeggios are interrupted by the increasingly urgent descending bass part until it takes over the whole melody and brings the track to a conclusion. The video to the song was filmed in the remote village of Djúpavík in the Westfjords in the North West of Iceland. It was a long drive for many hours up a dead end road to get to Djúpavík, but it was well worth it. It’s a remote and desolate location, but the people there were so warm and welcoming. I can’t wait to go back there again someday.
Thank you Stephen!
Today I’m introducing you to Rebecca Jean Rossi. Rebecka is from downtown New York City and started taking piano lessons at the age of six, and started writing her own music in high school.
The track Odessa was released as a single but will also be featured on an upcoming EP early spring of 2020.
Tell us something about your track Odessa!
I’d written instrumental music in the past, but in recent years, my focus had been on my electro-pop project, Krystalmath. However, one day, in the winter of 2018, the opening right hand melody of “Odessa” came to me while sitting at my piano, and the piece felt, as most things at first, like an experiment and an exploration, and then at last, like an inevitability.As the piece emerged, I realized what it’s harmonic minor tonality reminded me of- my Eastern European Jewish heritage. I imagined the struggle of my great grandmother, Clara, who was forced to flee from Odessa after the Pogroms of 1905. I imagined the city’s symmetric and ornate architecture, the lovely black sea on the horizon, and the haunting cries of its terrorized citizens. And I felt once again connected to the piano in a way I hadn’t for years- discovering I could use it as a medium to tell the stories I’d never be able to put into words. I recorded the piece using Nils Frahm’s wonderful “Noire” package- because I thought the complex tone of the felt piano captured these opposing images quite well.
Thank you for sharing with us!
Today I’m introducing you to Italian pianist and composer Fabrizio Paterlini. Fabrizio has played the piano since the age of six, and started composing his own piano tunes about 12 years ago.
The track Eyes closed was first released as a single, but is also part of the EP Translations.
Tell us about your song Eyes closed!
This song is a pure improvisation, played on the day of the recording. The atmosphere of the ancient villa in which we were recording, together with the softness of the sound obtained by the felt mounted between the hammer and the string of the grand piano, led me to discover this unknown territory, in which everything is light and ethereal. The result is in a silky melody, which can only by listened to with eyes closed.
Today I’m introducing you to American composer Jake Randle and his project The Finley Ghost. Jake is a multi instrumentalist from Seattle but is currently located in Los Angeles.
The track Columbia is featured on his debut album Returning which was released Nov. 8th 2019
Tell us something about your track Columbia!
Columbia is the first song I wrote for the album. I wanted to encompass a space, a nostalgic place, and write the soundtrack to those memories. I had been writing a lot of alternative/pop music and wanted to get away from that structure of songwriting. I was living in Hollywood and needed to cleanse my musical palette so I just sat in my room at the piano, hit record, & started playing. There’s something special in letting the subconscious take over and to just play what you’re feeling. I used my iPhone to capture some natural ambience in my small apartment room. My friend loaned me a guitar and an effects pedal called “Organizer” that I used to help shape my sound which turned into this first track “Columbia.