Life According to Piano

Getting out of Dodge

I promised myself I’d pack on Monday, and I did it. I’m all set to head out tomorrow morning, 0 dark 30 and all that. 

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I’ll be on the ground in London by noon Thursday, and Keith begins recording Verbs on Sunday. 

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(No, Cosmo does not get to go, even though he looks pretty ready too.)


I arrange music. There, I said it. I compose my own original pieces, and I also arrange music.

Some of my arrangements make me so happy, it’s almost as though the final music is more “my music” than pieces that I created entirely, melody and all.

That’s all I really gain when I create an arrangement, of course: a melody. A melody I already love.

I believe every piece I’ve arranged began as a song, whether a folk song or a liturgical song or hymn. One notable arrangement is a blues song. I believe they are all songs.

That means I have words helping me out, too. In fact, the words are often a better clue to the inner essence of the song than the harmonies are. For me, at least.

So I like to arrange the songs I love for piano solo, and I like to find something in them that is so-far undiscovered. (There is one song whose melody I love so much, I have 4 arrangements of it, 2 of which are recorded. That’s Forest Green from A Handfull of Quietness, which also appears at the end of All Through the Night on Under the Greenwood Tree. And I have 2 other ways that I play it. I expect to have more, before I’m all finished!)


I’m preparing to travel to Bath next week to assist Keith Snell as he records the music I wrote for him: Verbs, 24 Preludes for Piano Left Hand. (You may have heard of them here, just once or twice!)

I spent bunches of time today creating a spreadsheet of everything I need to know for my travels: when to be where, when to check in, what my confirmation numbers are, all the little details that I saved in many places are now all in one document.

It was a research & writing project.

I like writing music better!

(Although, I know I’ll enjoy my travels tremendously, too. And it wouldn’t do to miss connections & get stuck in Bath, or County Clare ... oh .... wait ... hmm ...) 

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