It is true to say this album took me four years to make. Though I did compose other music as well. That music, I shall look forward to including in later collections.
In January 1992 at the age of 55, I decided to write music for the rest of my life. From then, time for me had no meaning. I often found it daunting, or lonely, and always difficult to find the balance, between family life and my desire to finish a composition. I will leave you to ponder the reaction of my family, when I finally told them of my decision to spend the rest of my life writing music.
Music has always been important to me. Since I was in 'short pants' I have composed music. Before 1992 the compositions were short, only a couple went to seven minutes: I wanted to go beyond that.'Wistful Symphony' was my second 'work' to pass the twenty minutes length.
When I finished 'Wistful Symphony', I felt a wonderful sense of achievement. That encouraged and inspired me to write more. As the months and then the years passed, I reviewed old 'works'. Not because I was short of ideas, but to see those unfinished 'works' complete. In the composition notes that follow, I have said when the roots of a particular work' are in earlier music.
Initially I thought it was a good idea to orchestrate most of the music. In the end I realised, that as a new and unknown composer, I could not expect a good orchestra to consider, let alone include, some of my compositions in their portfolio. Why should they? Then I appreciated the same went for Pianists. So here I am, introducing my work played on a Digital piano in a lyrical way. Using that piano makes it possible for my music to be played worldwide through a computer, for either enjoyment or educational purposes. Of course both sheet music and computer discs can be purchased for each composition of your choice. To order: Freephone 0500 30 56 30.
The fulfilment I enjoy when composing would take more space to describe than is available. I willjust say,'It is great!', but the past thirty years come a poor second to my life now composing music.
My thanks to Rosalind, my wife, for giving me the space to be singleminded, also to Graham Watkins and Paul Henry for all their encouragement over the years.
Thank you for sharing the experience.
PS. if you found this 'first collection' an experience and entertaining, why not Freephone 0500 30 56 30 and put your name on the list for 'ALPINE SYMPHONY' a 'second collection'.
The release date will be towards the end of 1997 when you will be contacted to make payment against delivery.
With your name on the list similar arrangements can be madefor the 'third' and 'fourth' collections due for release in 1998.
For those listeners who like to read about a composition I have written a brief history of each work.
When I selected from my collection the additional compositions for this album I chose music of a 'wistful' mood. Some listeners may think differently about the last track "Enchantment".
Wistful Symphony. The roots for this are in a small unpublished 'work', four minutes long, dated February 1992. In the following May, I extended the 'work' to six minutes and gave it the name 'How would it be'. That was the time everything changed for me.
On the 11th May I wrote a poem using the title 'How would it be' as a sort of catalyst. The words flowed quickly and, when finished, it gave me the idea for a symphonic poem. As the composition developed during the latter part of 1992, frequently I sensed the sounds of the orchestra and felt the need to go beyond one movement. Later I gave names to each movement, which apart from being set out here, appear with the track details at the back of the Album.
Looking Back The first movement starts with a commanding introduction, as if to tell the listener 'pay attention now, I have something to say'. After that command, there is a quiet statement. Then the music goes through some development to the start of, what I shall call, a 'refrain'. Towards the end of that refrain the listener hears a small group of notes repeated, while ascending. The listener will also hear them in other movements.
Memories The second movement starts in a broad flowing style. It recalls some sense of the first movement Later the music quickens and ends by reminding the listener of that 'refrain'.
Tomorrow The third movement, in contrast to the quite ending of the second movement, commands the listeners attention with a loud start. Then the music passes through that 'refrain' and on to introduce new musical colour with a hint of what has gone before. Also the latter part of the movement may remind the listener to think back to the start of the second movement.
Each Moment is Now! The fourth and final movement purposefully commands the listenerís attention. It goes on to identify a particular moment by a loud chord. Perhaps the second part of the movement suggests that 'the more things change, the more they stay the same'. Towards the end that small group of notes, heard before, the listener hears again, repeated while ascending.
Subtlety It was the middle of February 1993 when I started this composition and the end of that month before I regarded the 'work' finished. My notes remind me that the construction was slow, and the simple musical thoughts, according to me, perhaps more profound than at first they appear. For me, they were delicate and refined with possibly greater meaning than I at first imagined. Therefore, the name. |
The Little Waltz I made a note when I finished this composition on the 2nd February 1993 that said, 'Only consider this item a little waltz'. So a name was easily found for one of those compositions that gave me a great sense of fun. The work flowed quickly and it was all over in an afternoon, but of course not all compositions flow like that.
The Still of the Night The roots of this music are in a 1956 unpublished composition. Then I also chose the name that, for me, summed up my musical thoughts. The beginning represents an awareness of sound, quietly reaching one from a distance, in the still of the night. Imagine an occasion after a summer party. Eventually the tempo increases to represent a dance and towards the end attention is again drawn to the still of the night.
Serenity At the end of September 1993, I produced the draft composition quickly that represented my tranquil thoughts at the time. When it was finished on the 20th October I chose the name which for me says it all.
Enchantment The draft composition was prepared between September and December 1992. Little was added to the draft until March 1993. At the end of that month what I expected to be the final draft was complete. Then as an afterthought I added the early chords. Later the single notes at the beginning were introduced. These chords give way to a quiet start, followed by a journey through the music that, in my view, can be compared a little to a roller-coaster of musical thoughts. Probably, because of that, I sensed attraction and enchantment. Also, I hear sounds of the orchestra, but that is for another time.