Swoop And Cross
Swoop and Cross (S&C) is the musical alias of Ruben Vale, a multi-instrumentalist and composer who was born in Portugal and currently resides in London. This project, which started in 2015, blends ambient and electronic music, focusing on building melodic drones and soundscapes. Featured below are his recent compositions “A Whimper” and his submission for Piano Day 2017 “Sykkel”.
Gary Ames spends every spare minute writing music. While his music is usually piano based he has recently begun exploring orchestral sounds for a cinematic feel. He began playing the violin at the age of eight and later taught himself to play piano. He started his musical career in the Royal Marines Band Service which he describes as a fantastic experience. Later he became a violin and piano teacher.
Of his music he says: “Music technology has developed well beyond my expectations throughout my life and I try to keep up! I enjoy writing in a minimalist style and creating thought evoking music and am inspired by composers such as Ludovico Einaudi and Karl Jenkins. Composing is a great emotional outlet for me, without it I would be lost. It has been a great pleasure for me to begin sharing my music last year, steadily gaining listeners on Soundcloud and YouTube. I am very pleased to be supported by BBC Introducing in my home county of Norfolk, England. I really appreciate the support and encouragement I have been given and have made some great friends along the way.”
Featured below are his compositions “The Mystical Piano” and “The Journey”.
Chris Way is a New York City based musician and composer. Chris’s work encompasses sparse, melodic folk songs, folk-pop, classical guitar works and longer-form ambient material such as is featured in his 2012 album The Body Begins. He draws influence from sources as diverse as punk rock, chant, improvisatory music, noise, drone, classical chamber music, lieder, chanson, latin-american boleros, and much more, from all eras and parts of the world. He especially draws from the time he spent formally learning classical guitar under Brazilian composer and guitarist Alison Carvalho. His album The Body Begins, available from Bandcamp is featured below.
Based in Riga, Lativa composer, guitarist and music producer Davids Bejers specializes in different kinds of music. His music is influenced by Latvian folk music, European classical music, jazz, electronic music, metal, and popular music. He attended Ventspils Music College’s pop and jazz guitar program (2013-2016) in addition to taking private guitar lessons. He also studied music production and sound engineering at Dynamic Records Music School. Brasa, an experimental seven track indie mini-album is his most recent musical project released November 2016 through Bandcamp.
Featured below are his compositions” Ozols” and “Misa” which he describes as follows:
“Ozols (The Oak)”: This composition is dedicated to the oak, the symbol of my country. In Latvia, the oak is seen as a symbol of strength and stamina. This composition is inspired by Latvian folk songs as well as local folklore (fairy tales, traditions and ancient festivals). The composition is based on a feeling of longing for my native village, where there is river with a large oak tree beside it. This is an image that is dear to me. If I was asked to choose the most beautiful place on this planet, I would show them a picture of the river and the oak. I tried to portray nature and feeling of nostalgia for my childhood and the carefree summers I have spent in the village.
“Misa”: The main sources of inspiration for this miniature were the sounds of the river Misa, the atmosphere of the novels of Haruki Murakami, and the music of Nicolas Jaar. Haruki Murakami is one of my most favorite writers. In this piece, I wanted to convey the atmosphere of his latest novel, “Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Year of Pilgrimage”. Likewise, I was deeply influenced by a concept introduced in this novel – the idea that every person can have a place they can always return to. When I thought about a place like that for myself, I immediately thought of the river Misa. The miniature is named after Misa, a small river situated in the Zemgale region of Latvia. It is a peaceful place that I often return to find peace when life gets overwhelming. I wanted to share with the listener the tranquil, unhurried sounds of the river and the many birds that can be seen around it.
Born in Mexico City November 1955, Carlos Vivanco started playing music at an early age. He has played in many bands such as Atras del Cosmos, Queso Sagrado, Syntoma , Broken Heart, Volti, In The Service Of Kings East, Fist of Facts, Desire, Dense Undergrowth , Devils Breakfast, Matahari , Like Wow, Muse Mob , and Zenith. He has recorded with Hector Zazou and Harold Bud , Monster, Andromeda Crash, Night Shade , Como Mexico No Hay Dos , Bardo Thodol, Decible and Kathmandu Ensemble. Carlos also composes music for American and German television including MTV, Cartoon Network , Bravo Network, Fax TV , Chanel 1 , and Viacom. He has also written many “jingles” for products like “Coca-Cola”, “Pepsi”, Liberty Science Center, Mc Donalds , etc.
Featured below are his compositions “Global Warming”, “Waterfall”, and “Viola Remedy”.
Jeff Chipman is a pianist and composer based in Maine, USA. He studied music at the University of Southern Maine and has performed on the New England music scene for a many years. As part of the Scott Folsom Band he opened for many Eighties acts such as Eddie Money and The Fixx.
In March 2016 his composition “The Commonplace” was chosen to be part of Nils Frahms Piano Day playlist which was followed by the release of his album The Bleak Midwinter October 2016. His musical influences include Keith Jarrett; Bill Evans; Arvo Part and Nils Frahm.
Jeff describes his thoughts on his album The Bleak Midwinter as follows: “The Bleak Midwinter is a collection of eight introspective pieces for solo piano written during the winter months of 2016.The songs begin as improvisations. Some are left as such and some are reworked into more formal compositions. In exploring the connection between music and the natural world I tried to invoke the pastoral and melancholic mood of the season but maintain an optimistic tone. I think of the pieces as stories; I invite each listener to create their own story as they listen. “
Laura Collier became interested in music composition after taking a course called “Music and Computer Technology” at Fairfax Academy for Communication and the Arts. She completed her bachelor’s degree in music composition and theory at Christopher Newport University located in Newport News, Virginia. In 2015, Laura graduated with a master’s degree in music composition from George Mason University where she studied under Mark Camphouse and Jesse Guessford. Now living in Charlottesville, Virginia she composes and teaches piano.
Featured below is her composition “Two Melodies for Flute and Piano”.
Austin Kleyn is an independent composer and producer for crossover, film and chamber music. The defining characteristics of Austin’s music is an emphasis on melody and a straightforward harmonic language. With piano as his primary instrument, Austin is very involved in digital music production and is well versed in VST, AU and DAW work flow. He is always looking for new ideas, projects and collaborations.
Featured below are his compositions “Morning” and “Melting Snow”.
Official Website: http://dolivian.wixsite.com/austinkleyn
João Victor R. Barroso
João Victor R. Barroso is a Brazilian musician who graduated in music from the University of State of Ceara (UECE). Singer and multi instrumentalist he is a popular, classical, and experimental music composer. He is also a soundtrack composer, scoring music for short and feature films, games, theater, modern dance and ballet shows.
Shaun Allaway is a composer whose music captures the imagination. He describes his musical experience as follows: “As I entered through this storm of enchanting melodies and gifted abilities, I then saw a piano that was too big for me to play when I was only three. My first impression was just to play to see what it would sound like. When I grew up to eight years old, my father taught me chords but only that alone. I followed it through since I had no friends growing up as a child and the piano was the only one and only. I started to listen to Mozart, picked up his rotation, his habits, and his progression. I duplicated, I corrected it and took then took it deeper to sound like my own Amadues. Now I have composed over 10,000 songs since then as I mix myself with Mozart’s Techniques and Vivaldi’s Symphonies combined.”
Featured below is his latest composition Barcarolle In G Minor
Official Website: http://www.numberonemusic.com/shaunallaway
Samantha Wolf is an Australian composer and sound artist. She completed a Bachelor of Music at the Queensland Conservatorium in 2011, winning the Silver Harris and Jeff Peck Composition Prize. In 2016, she completed her Honours degree in Composition at the University of Melbourne, studying with Stuart Greenbaum and Brenton Broadstock. The recipient of numerous awards, Samantha’s practice encompasses solo, chamber and orchestral works, collaborations, noise and speech-based works, and music for live performance, digital media and tape.
She takes inspiration from diverse sources, including philosophy, scientific and physical phenomena, natural and manmade worlds, sociology, politics and feminism. She is fascinated with giving voice to the intangible, finding the beauty in chaos, and making sense of the illogical or contradictory. Samantha’s music has been performed and broadcast around Australia, the United States and Europe. Current and future projects include new works for the Melbourne Recital Centre’s Local Heroes series, the Arts Centre Melbourne’s 5x5x5 program, and the 2017 Impuls Academy in Graz, Austria.
Featured below are her compositions Scintillation, Shiver, and All That Could Have Been. She describes her compositions as follows:
Scintillation: I have recently become interested in exploring the relationship between music and the body. This includes exploring how physical phenomena can be expressed and understood sonically. Scintillation is inspired by my experience of scintillating scotomas, which almost always follow the same trajectory: a small shimmering light in my outer field of vision, which gradually spreads from left to right, forming dazzlingly detailed patterns before disintegrating into a thick haze of light and colour. The materials in Scintillation utilise the unique timbral and expressive qualities of the flute and harp to evoke these patterns, and the overall form of the piece vaguely follows the onset and progression of symptoms. Like other pieces inspired by the corporeal, the aim of this piece is to create something positive out of a painful, albeit fascinating personal experience.
Shiver: ‘Shiver’ was commissioned by the Queensland Conservatorium as a part of the 2011 Jeff Peck Silver Harris Composition Prize. The materials for the work are derived entirely from one three-note phrase, first played by the solo trumpet at the beginning. The piece builds up gradually from there, superimposing small cells onto each other, reaching a commanding climax before collapsing in on itself and disintegrating. This recording is from the premiere performance in March 2013 by the Queensland Conservatorium Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Peter Luff.
And All That Could Have Been: I was lost in thought one day, thinking about people I know who have died very young, and wondering what their lives would have been like. It wasn’t this thought in itself, but rather the feeling that the thought created, that struck me as inherently musical: that sort of lump-in-your-throat, empty feeling that makes you stop whatever you’re doing and just stay still, suspended in time. The overriding idea is to gradually move from nothing to something, and then back to nothing. This dictates everything, from individual phrases, the way the phrases interact, and the overall form of the piece.
Raised with love for music and a nomad’s life, Sound Traveler has journeyed to fifty countries and six continents. Not only does he share his music stories at festivals, radio shows, events and workshops he is constantly learning form his travels as well. In addition to his travels, shamanic ceremonies, art events, and other practices help him develop his mind, heart, and spirit. His music is always a journey whether it be a dance party, a down tempo session or his own songs produced with live musicians. He says, “It’s a mix of the amazing technology we have today with organic influences from various cultures and artists. You can call it “world electronic music” but, in fact, you won’t know until you taste it.”
Today, Sound Traveler is a mature DJ, music producer and traveler who loves sharing his stories and inspirations. You can travel with him by joining his music gigs, listening to his sounds online or following his travel stories and photos. He’s living a conscious life based on spontaneous decisions and leaving the comfort zone.
Featured below is Sound Traveler’s 2016 album Goodbye Malecon available from Bandcamp
Official Website: http://www.sound-traveler.com/
After producing EDM for a few years Michael Harris decided to switch over to ambient and piano music in mid 2014. Initially under the alias ‘Air Scape’ Michael began to quickly build a solid follower base for his work and decided to do away with the Air Scape alias. From there he has continued to attract many people to his work including some notable names such as Tom Day and Dario Lupo (AKA Chasing Dreams). Michael’s main style at the moment is to write calming piano pieces, however he hopes to branch out in the future to do more cinematic work involving strings and other orchestral instruments.
Featured below are his compositions Purpose, Night Walk, Absent Minded Keys, and Growth. The last featured composition Birth is a collaboration involving Michael Harris, Amann, Michael Ottosson, and Johnbusymusic.
Christopher Larkins (CPJL on soundcloud) refused to have piano lessons; as a young boy the thought of practicing scales was tantamount to torture. But, with time, the lure of music enticed him to start playing. He simultaneously learned to read music and compose, enthralled by the freedom to make up and play any combination and progression of notes.
While studying Engineering and Economics at Birmingham University in the late 80’s, a friend fortuitously persuaded him to see the City of Birmingham Symphony orchestra conducted by Simon Rattle. He immediately connected with classical orchestral music, particularly Mahler. He’d sit in the student seats behind the orchestra and watch time after time the expressions of Rattle uncover layer upon layer of the music. Christopher was overwhelmed by the emotional force music had upon him and would dream of a symphony orchestra playing his compositions. Christopher continued to compose short piano pieces until, many years later, a friend gave him a music writing software program. He began orchestrating music with a passion, coming closer to realizing his dream of 30 years ago than he ever thought was possible!
Christopher is still enthralled with the freedom to compose music. He has a strong desire to connect emotionally to the listener by trying to take them on an emotional journey. Regardless of where the journey travels, and the struggle it may have to move forward, he believes his and all music is a celebration of life; for all the pain and suffering we endure, it is a gift to be alive and have the freedom to create.
Indispiration – Worldjazz, his second album was inspired by India and his long time study of the Indian rhythm system Konnakol combined with his Nordic Jazz roots. The album features his favorite musicians from five different countries such as French Blue Note trumpeter Erik Truffaz, Pete/Jim from Get the Blessing/Portishead, Marylin Mazur`s bassplayer Klavs Hovman, trumpeters Thomas Siffling, and Gunnar Halle a.o.
Carsten’s music is about time for reflection. Because of the minimal approach, there is time for nearness and it allows the listener to get away from our sometimes hectic everyday life. Featured below are his tracks Konnakol Drumsolo, Spaces feat Rene Damsbak, and Angeldust feat Rene Damsbak (Trp) and Kristor Brødsgaard (Bass). Carsten has also just released his Ballads EP which is available on ITUNES, the trailer is featured below!
Composer and producer Raubecon scores music for film and television, concert stage, and spoken word performances. He is influenced by tonal and post-tonal serialism, minimalism, jazz, and electronica. Acoustic, electronic, and digital instruments are used to create his scores. November 2016 he collaborated with UK spoken word artist Dano in the release of Dano Spoken Word Volume 1 which is available on Bandcamp.
Featured below are his compositions Influence, Elegy One, and Prevail