CD Recording

(a full description of each of the songs chosen for the recording and what connection / reason they have for the inclusion.)  The August 2011 recording is a personal collection of favorite songs played over the years, realized here on a Yahmaha grand piano for the "first time" in a recording studio, thanks to Peter Kontrimas.  

For a copy of this CD, please contact me via my email -
higgsgigs@yahoo.com  and I'll be happy to send a CD!
1. She's Always a Woman   (Billy Joel)
   This song I've always played practically in the same arrangement/style since college. A
   beautiful piece, with one of the most creative and lyrical bridges of any pop song.

2. Fields of Gold   (Sting)
   I learned this song practically right off the bat after purchasing Sting's "Ten Summoner's
   Tales" CD in March of '93, before the song hit the radio.. knowing it was an instant classic.
   During the solo section here, I change up the harmony for just a moment.


3. Elite Syncopations   (Scott Joplin)
   Of the 6-7 rags that I play by Joplin, this seemed to be (of 3 that I attempted, for this session)
   the one I got through the most smooth...and is even a mesh of two takes, edited seamlessly
   here.  Next CD, will try another attempt at a few more.

4. Theme from "Sabrina"   (John Williams)
   John Williams' music has been in my collection (and soul and repertoire) since hearing the
   music for the original Star Wars and Close Encounters, both in 1977.  Here, I play a romantic
   piano piece from the 1995 film/remake of "Sabrina" - combined from charting out the chords
   in 1997 and playing by ear, from the soundtrack.  One of my favorite time signiatures
   Williams uses (3/4)

5. Here, There and Everywhere   (The Beatles)
   A huge Beatles fan, it's hard to choose even just 2 of their songs for the initial recording
   (the session included 3, "The Long and Winding Road" omitted..but on a few 'bonus track'
   CD's I distributed)  Gorgeous, simple and perfect song.

6. The Shadow of Your Smile  (Johnny Mandel)
   This was the final recording/take of the entire session, thrown in 'on a whim' simply because
   it's a lovely song -- and nice to solo over.  Great changes.

7. Rainbow Connection  (P. Williams & K. Ascher)
   I learned that this LOST to a song from "Norma Rae" (???) for Best Song at the 1980 Oscars.
   Gotta be kidding me.  Makes people smile everytime I play at jobs.

8. Honesty  (Billy Joel)
   Another classic Billy song, this one's chord structure go all over the place.. for a while, I had
   wanted to learn this song, and FIRST played it accompanying someone who re-introduced it
   to me-- at some of my very first paying jobs in 1987, before joining any band in New Orleans.              Thankfully, I remember the tune.

9. Send in the Clowns  (Stephen Sondheim)
    I performed this in college with a couple of singers in recital, and have never stopped
    enjoying playing this.. very emotional and moving song, thanks to the melody and chord                     sequences. Classic. (And hits home, as I'm a 'clown,' myself)

10. Solace  (Scott Joplin)
     Probably my favorite and most 'accurate' cue on the CD here, this made famous in the
     1973 movie "The Sting."  (Only the 2nd 1/2 of the piece, here.)

11. I Can't Make You Love Me  (Bonnie Raitt)
     One of my top 10 songs to play of all time, first hearing this back in the early 90's and
     performing it in New Orleans...and continue with singers in Boston. Thoroughly enjoying
     to play, am 'one with the piano' during this.


12. Moon River  (Henry Mancini)
     Likely in my top 5 most favorite songs of all time, and to play.  I alter some of  the chord
     harmonies here, but the melody stays the same... can't NOT love this song, if you have
     any ounce of Romanticism in you. 

13. Overjoyed  (Stevie Wonder)
     From the genius himself, Stevie's song here is masterful, and weaves about the piano. 
     Always love performing this, and had to include it here, solo.  Too many Stevie Wonder
     songs to choose from (like several modern-day songsmiths I appreciate) I will have to
     include more on the next recording. 

14. She's Leaving Home  (The Beatles)
     I chose this (2nd of 2) Beatles song simply because of the harmonies and melody, song
     topic, tenderness... I'm from the "Sgt. Pepper" era (born a few months before the release
     of the 1967 album) and have to go back that far to 'pay homage' to that innocent era.
     And it's just a great Beatles song, too.  ha!

15. Smile  (Charlie Chaplin)
     My all-time favorite song - simple, to the point, speaks volumes .. and written by a comic
     genius, makes one smile in the heart. Let the song speak for itself.


16. Last Train Home  (Pat Metheny & Lyle Mays)
     Why this song to close out the CD? The piece is beautiful, harkens to travelling (on a train
     no less) and heavily influenced by Metheny AND Mays as songwriters/musicians.
     First heard this song in 1987 on "...still life, talking"  I try to emulate Metheny's guitar
     solo/style, here, in the melody and partly-borrowed solo.

   
     BONUS TRACKS   (recorded in-session, but not included on MOST CD copies distributed...
     but, some may be included on the next CD recording;  songs *chosen* - for quality - but
     decided to keep the CD under 60 minutes in length.)

                                         
                                           Don't Give Up  (Peter Gabriel)
                                           I Will Wait For You  (Michel Legrand)
                                           The Greatest Discovery  (Elton John)
                                           Why Can't It Wait 'Til Morning?  (Phil Collins)
                                           I Won't Hold You Back  (Toto)
                                           The Long and Winding Road  (The Beatles)