Friday, February 26, 2010

Farewell to a Friend

Gary Robertson

I will be in St. Louis this weekend to pay tribute to my friend Gary Robertson, who died on February 12th, of Multiple Myeloma. He was 62. I am going to play the piano at his memorial service, which will be Sunday, February 28th. I am going to play my compositions The Way Home and Letter From Home, respectively symbolizing his continuing journey and our song of gratitude for his years on this earth. He also requested that I play the John Williams' Hymn to the Fallen from the film Saving Private Ryan.

Gary was a gifted director and playwright. Writing the musical scores for his productions of Equus, Summer and Smoke, and A Streetcar Named Desire will remain highlights of my creative life. I remember so many details from our collaborations: moving sets around at 1 AM in an empty theater: me yelling, tearing my shirt off and kicking the wall because I accidentally erased a wonderful cue, while Gary laughed at my outburst. To see Gary's production of Sunday in the Park with George was an indescribable pleasure.

In addition to his talents, Gary was a wonderful human being, and I was proud to call him my friend. This weekend I will say goodbye to Gary for the last time.

Please pray for his wife Jeanie, their children Jennifer and Sean, and the host of friends Gary had around the world. He will be missed.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Snow Business

My buddy and me


We had three inches of snow in Birmingham over the weekend. Jan, Riley and I took a walk on the golf course. Enjoy the pictures......

Got it!!

It's mine!!

Heading home

Friday, February 12, 2010

Veni, Vidi, Video

I came, I saw, I finally got something up on YouTube.

Production value isn't great, but this is what I sound and look like. Sorry about the microphone in the face.

Several more original songs will be on YouTube soon, as well as a few classical pieces.

Oh, and I'll be performing in St. Louis again in May, this time with my friends Joseph Akins and Philip Wesley. Thad Fiscella, whom I have not met, will also be on the bill.

You can see the dates and details of concerts on Eventful.

I have most of the piano recorded for Timeless II, and I am working on the orchestration now. I recently bought a new library of orchestral samples, and it is incredible! Can't wait for you to hear it.

Mike playing the violins for Timeless II

So far, the lineup for Timeless II is:

Rachmaninoff: Vocalise and D Major Prelude
Bach: Siciliano (and maybe the B-flat Partita)
Beethoven: Moonlight Sonata
Chopin: E minor Prelude, 2 nocturnes, and the E major Etude
Also the beautiful 2nd mvt. of E minor concerto
Saint-Saens: The Swan

I haven't selected a lullaby yet. Any suggestions?

If I only had my own orchestra I could finish this album in no time. Problem is, I have to play every note of every instrument myself, and every note has to be just right before I can let it go.
I endlessly repeat things that nobody but me will ever notice, so it takes a while. But the upside to it is that this is all music that I love, so it is still a lot of fun.

We're expecting snow for Valentine's Day. That's global warming for you...

Friday, February 5, 2010

Inner Life

Have you ever noticed that the more you get done, the more boring you become? For you non-southerns, "get done" = accomplish.

I'm totally engrossed in the new album now, and when I'm involved in a musical project I tend to block our everything and everybody. I don't mean to, it just happens.

So I really don't have any new, except to tell you that I'm having a wonderful time practicing, arranging and recording music that I love.

Timeless II is taking shape, and I am also practicing hard for some classical performances that are in the works. I'm working on the Prokofiev 7th Sonata- (driving the neighbors crazy with that one), a set of Mendelssohn variations, Mozart Sonata K. 330, couple of Bach transcriptions, a Beethoven sonata, and a nice Rhapsody by the British composer John Ireland, also the Chopin E minor and Beethoven G major concertos.

The rest of my day is spent studying German and Italian, and the Bible of course. No more of this. I can hear you yawning......
Welcome to my News Page. This is where you will find up to the minute information about recording projects, new releases, upcoming performances and more. You will want to visit every week because each FridayI will be offering a new original song for you to! In addition, from time to time I will be sharing studio happenings, what I am listening to, favorite books, and glimpses into my personal life. Please feel free to leave comments and suggestions on what you would like to know about me and my music.


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