Categories
Artist Musical Theatre Piano

Midnight Screams

We’ve been aiming toward doing the Open Mike interactively tomorrow night on Facebook, being as the ordinary venue is now closed. I sent this track to a young singer with whom I’ve been practicing the song. Hopefully you’ll hear Zazen’s voice to this (or to something very much like it) a bit later. I did it alone at home on my Howard upright piano. She’s going to try to preserve her slot for the Open Mike tomorrow, and sing her own version of the song “Midnight Screams” from my musical, Eden in Babylon.  Believe me, she is good.

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Categories
Artist Musical Theatre Piano

Cold This Season

Something made me put all this together, at some point.  First, this is my song “Cold This Season.” It goes into something Old English, then some Sondheim, and then finally the song “On My Own” from Les Miserables by Claude-Michel Schönberg.  It may be stuff you’ve all heard before–in some form–but there’s a certain flow and applicability here.  Hope you enjoy it. Andy Pope at the Baldwin Grand.

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A little bit goes a long, long way. 

 
 

Categories
Artist love Piano

Love is Blue

This French ballad was composed by André Popp.  (For real!  No pun intended, and he was not a distant relative.)  Lyrics were originally composed in French by Pierre Cour, with English lyrics by Bryan Blackburn.  References to the 2nd Movement — the “Allegretto” — of Beethoven’s 7th Symphony throughout. Andy Pope at the Baldwin Grand, March 12, 2020.

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A little bit goes a long, long way. 

Categories
Artist meditation Piano

Three Minutes Peace

I was recently challenged to improvise on the piano for three minutes without exploding into a fit of passion. I turned on the recorder just as I played my impromptu prelude to last Wednesday’s Taize service, and here’s how it came out:

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Categories
Artist jazz Piano

Lullaby of Birdland

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Categories
Artist Musician Piano

For No One

Okay here’s my take on “For No One” — hands chopped off and all.  I’ve deleted my disclaimers for the sake of discretion.   Hopefully the music and its message will be “for some one.”  Enjoy. :)

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A little bit goes a long, long way.

Categories
Artist gratitude Musician running Writer

Gratitude List 1397

This morning’s daily gratitude.

(1) Though I slept only four hours sporadically, I did get a solid afternoon nap yesterday and also have confidence I’ll sleep more deeply at some point in the near future.   I’m grateful for a light schedule these days that doesn’t hassle me or make me too uptight, and I’m always thankful for the power of needed sleep.

(2) Grateful to have a nice quiet apartment to myself, where I can enjoy the quiet hours of darkness before the dawn, and usually get a lot of writing done, unhindered by interruptions from others.

(3) Nice to hear the rain pitter-pattering outside my window.   After so many years of sleeping outdoors, it’s nice to be inside.

(4) The six-piece praise ensemble at my church really did an outstanding job premiering my first-ever worship song, “I Want to Worship You,” yesterday.  They were so gentle and genuine with it, I was so honored for them to have selected it.   They put their hearts into it, and I was blessed.

(5) I’ve been faithful to meditate twenty minutes daily, with a few days off here and there.  It’s helping me to effect a better balance in life, and not be so self-destructively driven in the area of creative output.  Also, a local math professor gifted me with a copy of The Cloud of Unknowing in contemporary English.   That’s the book that influenced my pastor’s meditative practice, and it’s helping to inform mine, as well.   

(6) I also just found a free pdf of the book Please Understand Me online.  Eager to delve back into David Kiersey’s unique Myers-Briggs type descriptions, from which I learned so much in the 90’s.

(7) Today marks three and a half years that I have lived indoors after many years of struggling on the San Francisco Bay Area streets.  I’ve paid my rent on time every month, and have mostly lived alone here, with a few house guests here and there.   Between my music and writing gigs, and a healthy retirement income from the government, I have not had to suffer for bread.  Everybody thought I was going to die a pathetic, meaningless death in a gutter.  And now, in the midst of life’s trials and setbacks,  I am nonetheless happier than I have ever been in my life.

(8) Been walking about seven miles a day lately, briskly.  I even did fifteen push-ups in a single set the other day.  I’m thinking I can get by on running just twice a week, and still do the Eugene Half Marathon in April.  It will be a rush to run at sea level again after training at such a high altitude here in North Idaho.

(9) Very grateful for the community of artists, writers, and musicians that I prayed for so desperately for so many years, when I had found myself instead surrounded by hustlers, hookers, and thieves.   The community has come together even more in the wake of the death of a dear friend — a musician named Paul — one of the most vibrant and magnanimous people I have ever met.   He will be remembered in his glaring absence at the Open Mike on Friday.   May Paul Anders rest in the same joy and peace he brought to us all.

(10) God is Love.  

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A little bit goes a long, long way. 

 

Categories
Artist Creative process Musical Piano

Troubled Water

My improvisations toward — and away from — the classic themes of “Bridge Over Troubled Water” by Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel.   Unlike recent recordings done with an iPhone 10, this one was made using my pastor Norman’s old Motorola.   It gives it a nice effect — I hope you like it.   

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A little bit goes a long, long way. 

 

Categories
Artist Musical Piano

Hallelujah

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Categories
Artist Musical Piano

Oracle

Spontaneous improvisations leading up to themes from “Oracle” —
the closing number of Act One of the new musical Eden in Babylon,
Copyright
© 2019 by Andrew Michael Pope.   

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A little bit goes a long, long way.