Here is some music I
performed with my friends. I play piano or electronic keyboard on all of these recordings except the Torture Chamber Orchestra songs at the bottom.
The files are big so maybe it will be better to download before playing. Some of the
files use the Ogg Vorbis format (Ogg Vorbis is a very efficient music compression
system that is free of any copyright issues). Probably you can already play these files
on your computer; if not there is help (for Windows) at http://www.vorbis.com/setup_windows/.
The first eight pieces are my compositions. The first five are performed with my friends Margaret Bianchetta (flute and vocals) and Mary Dee Brown (guitar and violin). Like most of the tunes on this page, they were recorded for Margaret's annual Christmas benefit so we focused on recording quickly to save money rather than trying to get a perfect product. So, almost everything is a first take. The sixth song is solo piano recorded at home, and the seventh is an organ solo recorded on an organ keyboard at home.
- Zhongqiu Yue: This is a favorite of mine. The melody is supposed to be in a traditional Chinese style and the accompaniment is western. I call it Chinese folk rock, but I think it is consistent with the way a lot of people in China perform traditional music.
- When We Dance: My friend Mary Dee rewrote my words on this one to make it a Christmas song so we could use it for Margaret's annual benefit concert Christmas 2005.
- A Smooth Be Bright: The name of this song is also the instruction to the musician: section A is smooth and section B is bright.
- Delights: This song was written on the plane from China to the US. Probably the song is better than the recording, since we didn't rehearse enough.
- Snow Day: This was written in December, 2010 before I knew there would be so much snow coming. It is supposed to have the feeling of being inside where it is warm and comfortable and not having to go out in the cold because it is a snow day.
- Not Spring Yet: This song was written in
early Spring, 2011, when the weather was still cold and snowy. It has a bleak
feeling because I had enough of winter, but also a hint of hope from the
knowledge that the weather would be warming soon.
- Wind Chill: This song sounds angry
because I was angry when I wrote and recorded it. :-)
- Holiday Gathering This one is
happy and mellow. I performed it
with Willem von Hombracht on bass and Christopher Braig on alto sax. Recorded
on my own piano... :-)
- Holiday Bounce a bouncy little
thang with Willem von Hombracht on bass and Christopher Braig on alto sax.
Here is a tune I recorded with Margaret and Mary Dee.
This is a recording for their CD and this is much more careful and professional than most of the others. I also got to use my own acoustic piano for this, not a terrible electric piano in the studio.
Here is some party music! I am not sure who exactly is playing on the recording, but it is my friend Marty's band with Marty on the drums and vocals, my friend Dave
on the saxaphone, me on the piano, and I am not sure who else.
Here is another one with Marty on vocals and drums. It also features Jay Hutson on
saxaphone and Willem von Hombracht on bass.
Other assorted stuff:
Finally, here are two samples from the Torture Chamber Orchestra, the ensemble in which
I play erhu and hulusi. The basic rule is that you can't play an instrument you really
know how to play. Great fun!
After hearing the Torture Chamber, you will want to switch to my sister's
- Christmastime is Here (well, maybe out there) with Margaret's
son Kaleb on drums and Dave Sertin playing monster bass.
- In the Mood for Christmas ala Andrews sisters
- The Thrill is Gone basic blues, just Marty and me
- That's All smooth jazz, vocals by Margaret and Stacy
Johnson. Rhythm section Steve Martin, Dave Sertin, Kaleb, and me
- Carol of the Bells hard to believe this is a Christmas song, Marty, Jay Hutson, Brian Massey, and me.