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Just a quick description (you can read the full article from my music.download.com site, down below)
- Self taught pianist with seven years of experience
- Returned to composing orchestral pieces after a two year stint in the electronica genre
- No formal musical education besides a set of ear training sessions I have recently started
Written on May 22, 2005
"Every composer, artist, and musician has their own personal journey through the world of music which shapes and forms their sound. Their experiences will often give insight to the vision behind certain pieces or help clarify the emotions which they often portray. I will not go so far as to say that this short account of my journey will give you 20/20 vision from my perspective. But, I hope that it will provide a clearer understanding of where I come from musically.
Of all the genres of music, classical was my first love. At six years of age, I would listen to a performance of Bach's Toccata and Fugue in D Minor at least five times a week on audio cassette. It was always a thrill to experience it and was my first inspiration to someday learn to play a keyboard instrument. At the time, it seemed hopelessly distant. Yet, I also believed it was a very real part of my future. All I could do was sigh and rewind my cassette player for another run of Toccata and Fugue.
When I was about eight years old, I learned from my mother how to read the notes on a scale from the F below middle C to C an octave up. Soon afterwards, I began playing Christmas carols for the family. Though quite simple, it was thrilling to be able to draw out some sort of music on a keyboard, even though I didn't really understand why it all worked. This continued for two years, after which I became very discouraged at my complete lack of progress. I wanted to keep moving on in my musical journey, but the steep hill before me was too daunting. Perhaps it was a lack of devotion to playing and negligence to ask for lessons on my part. I wasn't exactly considered a prodigy or child genius, so it appeared to me in my immaturity that I wasn't destined to become anything more. For the next two years, I completely dropped the keyboard.
When I turned thirteen, I started to realize that I really missed playing the keyboard. I began to think more and more about making a return to it. One night, after talking with my family about some pieces, I found a book with Beethoven's "Fur Elise". It inspired me to push myself as hard as possible to learn to read the entire scale and improve my technique. Once I started trying harder, one thing lead to another. Over the years, I bought over fifty music books and received over a hundred from friends. At age sixteen, I bought a Yamaha 76 key keyboard with touch sensitivity and a sustain pedal. It only took a year for me to realize that 76 keys were not enough and I would need another instrument. Unfortunately, the keys were also not weighted and I developed severe tendonitis in my wrists. This hampered my playing and forced me to stop for several months at a time.
I have now purchased a Yamaha digital piano which has satisfied every need, except auditory. I now realize that my lack of motivation in my early years was mainly because of the quality of the instruments I played. I never played an acoustic piano until I was about fourteen. Now that I have a digital piano to practice on, I have developed a new love for and understanding of the instrument. A piano to me now has much more than keys and pedals. When a piano is being played, it almost becomes a living and breathing object.
But, you might ask, how does this all relate to composing? I believe that my experiences have developed a unique sound which I impart in pieces which are very close to me. Many of my pieces feel as if they are reaching out for something which they will never attain. As a composer, it is sometimes hard for me to move on and finish pieces of that kind. The longing I always had, to be able to make something beautiful out of musical notes of which I had no grasp, has left its mark.
Formally, I have not had any musical education. What I picked up over the years has been on a trial and error basis, excluding a series of ear training CD?s I happily discovered recently. I first started composing two and a half years ago, when I was seventeen. My first tool was a simple MIDI sequencer which I used for a few months. Most of the time, my works would be simple repeating melodies which were usually not the best examples of arrangements. After I gained a simple understanding of intervals, my next investment was a Cakewalk program. I began to compose orchestral pieces with it. It was at that time that my auditory senses began to become more selective. Being somewhat of a perfectionist, my pieces in comparison to professional work began to discourage me.
After a dozen attempts at pieces, I dropped classical compositions and entered into the electronic genre. For two years my work was devoted to writing and engineering techno and trance. In this time, I learned a lot about the different aspects of sound engineering. Now, with the release of GigaStudio 3, my dream has finally come true. I now have the ability to produce music with stunning reality right from my computer.
There is still much I must learn about this musical world. It is my sincere hope that this is only the beginning of my journey. I have had GS3 for a week now, so I am offering you this short work of mine which I finished the day after I opened the box. I hope to bring you more music soon and hope that you will enjoy every second of it. To my fellow artists: May all of your journeys be long, happy, and successful.
I compose orchestral pieces and engineer them on a computer, so obviously I can't play that live. However, I have played the piano at small parties. I have recently begun experimenting with impromptus, which are usually pretty popular.
I use GigaStudio3 Orchestral Edition, a Yamaha Motif ES-8, Sonic Implants, a Tascam US-122 as my GSIF2 card, and I use FLStudio6 Producer Edition as my DAW/sequencer.
You can hear my electronic music at these sites: