Tag Archives: Piano music

Andy Iorio - II (Front Cover)

Andy Iorio -USA Classical Crossover Pianist and Composer talks about his early influences and new album II

  • Hi Andy Iorio,
  • Tell us about the moment you decided to become a composer. What did your family have to say about it?

When I was very young, the moment that I really connected with music was when I saw the film “The Neverending Story”. I fell in love with the movie instantly and more importantly I was drawn into the music that went with the moving images. Shortly after seeing that movie, my parents bought me a keyboard – my state of the art Casio SK-1, (equivelent to a Fisher-Price “plunk and plop”) and I started creating my own little pieces and experimenting with sounds. I would set up my keyboard in front of my tv and mute the sound and create my own music for what I was watching. It was in that moment that I knew I wanted to be a composer and score a film of my own one day.

  • Who are your early influences?

There are so many artists that have inspired me throughout my life! I was around 10 years old when I found my parents vinyl collection and started listening to the records I thought had the most interresting artwork on their album covers. Early influences included Pink Floyd, Billy Joel, Elton John and George Winston. As I got older, Ludovico Einaudi, Max Richter, Philip Glass, Yann Tiersen, Abel Korzeniowski and Hans Zimmer were at the forefront of my most inspirational composers. Simple tonality, beautiful melodies and soaring strings made for some of my strongest musical influences.

  • What current Australian acts inspire you and why? What international acts?

            I really like Sia; I think she has a great voice. I have been a fan ever since I heard her track “Breathe Me” in the final scene of the HBO show “Six Feet Under.” I have always been drawn to instrumental music most. So when I think of international artists, Ludovico Einaudi and Max Richter are the first two that come to mind. Both have unique musical signatures unlike any others.

  • What is the first record you bought and why?

The first album I bought was Counting Crows “August and Everything After”. I loved Adam Duritz’s lyrics and the organic sound of the band. The instrumention was so unique for the early 90’s. The phrasing of Adam’s voice was also very different from anything else I had heard up to that point. I still listen to that album in it’s entirety today.

  • Favourite artists of all time?

Billy Joel, Pink Floyd, Dream Theater, Ludovcio Einaudi, Max Richter, Philip Glass, Yann Tiersen, George Winston, Abel Korzeniowski and Hans Zimmer.

  • Fave food or drink and is there a story associated with that?

I would have to say my favorite drink is tea. Hot or cold, it is the best to calm and relax me. I can’t pick a favorite one, but there is nothing I enjoy drinking more. I actually have a 5′ long tea station at home with over a dozen international artisan teas, tea sets and tea accessories displayed on it.

  • Tell us a little about the new record and what a crowd can expect at a live show?

My music is mainly piano driven, with a cinematic and lush vibrant string section. It carries simple tonality with controlled harmony. Recently, I have been playing all of my concerts as solo piano performances. I feel it is more intimate this way and the audience can really connect with the music the way I composed each piece – always on the piano first, then with orchestrations built around the piano. Over the next year, I want to add a string quartet to bring the pieces to the live audiences the way they hear them on the album. My performances will then be a mix of piano and strings along with the intimate setting of solo piano.

600pixAndy Iorio - II - photo banner

Spotify
https://open.spotify.com/album/6ECPEnAYFEFb4KuGjFsYSE
Official
http://andyiorio.com/

fiona joy hdr mist

Fiona Joy Releases Audiophile Album Into The Mist

Australia’s very own Contemporary Instrumental success story Fiona Joy will release her new Audiophile Album ‘Into The Mist’ as part of both the LA Audiophile Show (including The Sony-sponsored Hi-Resolution Magic Bus) next month and The Australian HiFi Show where she will perform live at The Intercontinental Sydney in late July.

fion la audio bus

Into the mist epitomizes the art of contemporary solo piano recording in today’s market.
This is Fiona’s second album to be released on Blue Coast Records where once again she teams up with Cookie Marenko, Producer and Engineer, who is well known for her contributions to the world of Audiophile recordings ever since her early years at Windham Hill under the watchful eye of Will Ackerman.

Fiona brings calm, sensual and delightful sensations to her unique compositions on “Into The Mist’ .Performing on an 1885 Steinway Grand Fiona’s talent is evident in her control of the instrument.
Her previous solo piano album Signature –Solo received critical acclaim by topping ZMR’s radio chart in 2016 and winning the Award the ‘Best Piano Album’ in the same year.

Into The Mist was recorded in the Highest Fidelity Possible, a new format DSD (Direct Stream Digital). Her choice to make the album in this format and utilize new recording technologies makes her both a pioneer and role model for other musicians to follow.

cookie marenko

Producer Cookie Marenko said
“Not all artists are as easy as Fiona to work with. One of the reasons I enjoy her so much is because she let’s me do my job…. produce a great record filled with passion and emotion.”
Fiona Joy said
“It was truly an amazing experience working with Cookie again and her label Blue Coast Records (content Partners with Sony for Hi-Res) plans to officially launch Into the Mist with a customized event for our friends and supporters.  We will have exclusive access to Sony-sponsored Hi-Resolution Magic Bus - built by Jon Whitledge, its known as the world’s best car stereo. I can’t wait….”

Into the Mist: Release details:
Official Worldwide Release Date June 2nd(Blue Coast/Sony SACD)
LA Audiophile Show –  Sheraton Gateway Hotel LA Airport
3rd June 3-5pm (Show runs 2nd – 4th June).
The Magic Bus will be location at the front of the Hotel.

Australian HiFI Show
Featuring Live Piano Performances by Fiona Joy
Intercontinental Sydney July 28-30

LISTEN HERE
Interview Recorded in the Magic Bus

magic bus

 

Click the images below to Checkout two of the tunes/videos from the album

Fiona mist YT1

Fiona mist YT2

The feel of Into the Mist brings back to my mind…immediately…the wonderful years of Windham Hill, when I could buy an LP (or later, a CD) with complete confidence that I was going to love it.  Fiona’s piano, recorded to Quad DSD, is simply there, and Cookie’s mastery in the audio arts is no less than Fiona’s on piano. Together they give us a quiet tour of creative force, without sonic compromise.
Dr David Robinson- Editor in Chief Positive Feedback Mag

Social media links
https://twitter.com/fionajoymusic
https://www.instagram.com/fionajoymusic/
https://www.facebook.com/fionajoymusic/

-Official site 
http://fionajoy.com

YouTube channel  
https://www.youtube.com/user/fionajoy

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River of Life

New Music from USA’s Rebecca Harrold – “The River of Life”

Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Rebecca Harrold has spent many years working as a pianist and singer. Since moving to the Boston area she worked extensively with The Company Theater, the Voice Studio of Robert Honeysucker, and recently with Burklyn Ballet of Vermont. A true collaborative musician her abilities and willingness to play and sing diverse styles has taken her to Europe, primarily Italy and Greece. Rebecca recently completed production on ‘The River of Life with Windham Hills founder and producer, Will Ackerman.  Available everywhere.

Watch the video for her song ‘We Belong Together‘ here: youtube.com/watch?v=XgP6CGxc2DU

 

Find the album here:

iTunes
itunes.apple.com/us/album/the-river-of-life/id890181530
Spotify
open.spotify.com/album/6dM6qBBp7is5diJBvKaM8V

Social 
Website
rebeccaharroldmusic.com
Facebook
facebook.com/www.rebeccaharrold.net
SoundCloud
soundcloud.com/rebah7

Skipping on Daisies

Chris Boscole – QnA with Foghorn Media

Get Christopher Boscole’s new album Skipping On Daisies now available!

Find it here:

iTunes – itunes.apple.com/Skipping-on-daisies

CDbaby – cdbaby.com/SkippingOnDaisies

Spotify – open.spotify.com/SkippingOnDaisies

QnA with Foghorn Media

Foghorn Media: What inspired you to become a pianist? Who are your early influences?

Chris Boscole: I actually started as a violinist and then switched to viola. While I had played around in the meantime on the piano in the house, I didn’t start studying piano seriously until my teenage years. My mother, who was a classically trained pianist, was a big early influence. I was also influenced by jazz artists, such as Oscar Peterson, Bill Evans, and Keith Jarrett. I was lucky to be able to study at that time with the bassist/pianist Gary Peacock (of the Keith Jarrett trio). Later I found my own natural piano style was similar to David Lanz, Liz Story, and George Winston.  I met David Lanz and filled in occasionally at David’s piano bar gig in Seattle. I started doing my own shows around town, playing cover tunes, while working on my originals, and things progressed from there to my first album in 1986. Recently I performed at the Whisperings All Star Concert in Costa Mesa and got to meet Liz after all these years! Lately I listen to a lot of mellow classical piano and other contemporary pianists that come up on my Christopher Boscole Radio pandora channel.

FM: Tell us a little about how you write. How do the songs come? What gets you going creatively?

CB: While everything worth doing takes a measure of work and effort, I find that creativity comes when one stops trying and just relaxes into the music. This being said, one must set aside time everyday to practice, hone and refine their craft, and not rush the art, just let it be natural. The sound of an excellent piano is very important for me to be inspired, and I feel fortunate that life has rewarded me at this time with a 9’ Steinway model D Concert Grand to practice and record on at home.

FM: Your bio mentions a fun quiz, tell us about that.

CB: I took a “what musician are you in another life” quiz once and it came back as “rock guitarist -Jimi Hendrix,”

FM: What is the first record you bought and why?

CB: I was the last child of three and inherited most of the music in the house from my older siblings. I remember listening to a lot of heavy rock in the 70s and 80s with my friends, and going to big rock concerts. When I started buying music, it was every jazz pianist I could find for cheap at the used record store. We also had a great library and I listened to a lot of the music available there.

FM: What current Australian acts inspire you? International acts?

CB: I’m not familiar with much music in Australia, as I have never been there. Although I am aware of Fiona Joy’s music, which I really enjoy. As I live in Kauai, I follow most of music on the internet, and am inspired by good pianists like Rubinstein and music of impressionist composers, easily available on youtube.

FM: Tell us a little about your music and what a crowd can expect at a live show.

CB: Another of my loves is photography and recently video production, which I have combined with my music in some Youtube videos under my name.  When the venue has the facilities, I like to do my multimedia show combining my photography and music live.

FM: Favourite artists of all time?

CB: Keith Jarret, Bill Evans, Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, George Winston, David Lanz, Michael Jones, Liz Story, David Nevue, Jim Brickman, David Benoit, Dave Grusin, Ralph Towner, John McLaughlin, Frederic Chopin, Claude Debussy, Erik Satie, J.S. Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven

FM: Favourite food or drink, and a story associated with it if there is one.

CB: Big salad for dinner! Not much into drinking at my age over 50…been there done that! After one beer I am a couch potato.

FM: What are your future plans for 2016/2017?

CB: I worked hard recently during the first part of the year to get out Skipping on Daisies. Now just got the piano tuned and currently working slowly on a new recording project, kind of a best of/favorites album for 2017.  Later this summer, traveling on the mainland, doing some hiking/camping and seeing some old friends. It’s good to find that balance. Some more sheet music is in the works for release this fall.

 

christopherboscole.com

facebook.com/Christopher-Boscole-Pianist-Composer

youtube.com/ChristopherBoscole

 

 

Alexi

Alexi Musnitsky – QnA with Foghorn Media

Alexi Musnitsky QnA with Foghorn Media

Foghorn Media: What inspired you to become a pianist? Who were your early influences?

 Alexi Musnitsky: I chose piano at an early age, four years old. After seeing my sister play, I wanted to try and I just stuck to it. I was raised with classical piano, but I was never one to adhere to the rigors of “solfege.” I was lucky that my teachers let me explore my own way to express the music and they were pleased with the results. I am also a fairly quiet person, as some people say “still waters run deep.” I don’t express my feelings or emotions in words. But I do have experiences, good and bad, happy and hurtful. These feelings come out in my playing. This is why I switched from playing others’ music such as classical and began composing my own pieces. To me this is not songwriting, but a form of communication – a way for me to express the feelings I have and to let out some of the memories I keep inside.

FM: Tell us a little about how you write, how do the songs come? What gets you going creatively?

 AM: This is a difficult question for me to answer because I do not have a method or process. There is no plan or template nor do I set aside any specific time to “sit and write.” Rather, I focus on my feelings. For example, a good friend was feeling a bit lost and going through something I went through myself. So, one rainy Paris morning I remembered my feelings at the time and sat down and played.

FM: Your bio mentions working with a French/Belgian project called Daybreak and then with Will Ackerman. Tell us about that.

AM: I was contacted by Will Ackerman and asked to go to his studio, Imaginary Road Studios, to record. This is a story I think other aspiring artists should hear because there is a real “dream come true” aspect to it. I simply started to compose at home on an upright piano with a digital system, an analog to digital converter, and a Mac with Garage Band. My father likened the style to his favorite Windham Hill artists. I posted some of the music on Soundcloud so my friends could hear it. Somehow the music caught peoples’ attention and this gave me the courage to write an e-mail to Will Ackerman. Will answered and, to me, that is the most amazing part. A cold call to world champion of my music style and he answers. It took the financial help of friends and family, crowd funding, borrowed money, frequent flyer mileage, and my Aunt and cousin in the US to get me to Vermont and the Imaginary Road Studios. I entered a studio with Platinum records on the wall and Grammy awards on the shelf and I sat down with Will Ackerman, Tom Eaton and Eugene Friesen and played.

FM: What is the first record you bought and why?

AM: My sister is 3 years older so I followed some her music, such as David Bowe. I had my own Classical piano training so I listened to Glenn Gould play Bach inventions and went to see Lang Lang and Krystian Zimmerman. And I am a big fan of ColdPlay.

FM: What current Australian acts inspire you? International acts?

AM: Well, I am still a fan of ColdPlay. However, since releasing ‘Zia’, I have gotten to know Fiona Joy from Australia – she won this year’s ZMR award for best piano solo album. When I listen to Ludovico Einaudi’s music, I sometimes think “I wish I wrote that.”

FM: Tell us a little about your music and what a crowd can expect at a live show?

AM: The crowd would not be what you would expect. When I was a young child I had played at some hotel resorts in Spain and even the Amstel Hotel in Amsterdam. As you could imagine, it was an older crowd and they seemed to appreciate the music from such a young person. But then I performed for a charity at a Paris university to a young crowd where other artists were definitely not my music style. The result was amazing. The place went silent and remained focused throughout my playing – and then wanted more.

FM: Favorite film? Book? Place?

AM: My favorite film is “The Green Mile,” Favorite place to be is on the ocean in a sailboat. I am certified as a French national sailing instructor and every summer I teach sailing on the Brittany Coast.

FM: Favorite food or drink and is there a story associated with that?

AM: Growing up in France really helped because I eat almost every kind of food. Right now I am thinking of Lasagna… Favorite drink comes from my American side and is Dr. Brown’s Black Cherry soda.

FM: You are backstage with Andrew Lloyd Weber –  what do you say?

AM: I would really like to write music to be used in film (or stage). I think that emotions being portrayed through imagery and music is special. I remember seeing Phantom of the Opera on Broadway and I went home and started playing that night.

FM: What are your future plans for 2016/2017?

AM: I honestly did not know what to expect from releasing an album nor anticipated the reaction of people listening to it. I can say that the positive feedback has been a huge motivator and I am now composing new music and planning to play concerts.

 

 

Social
www.aleximusnitsky.com

www.facebook.com/AlexiMmusic

www.soundcloud.com/AlexiMusnitsky