Multiple strings over two distinct piano themes inspired by my brother, Richard.


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My older brother has his birthday every year on the same day, the 11th of December - it is the most normal thing about him. He is an amazing human being and I love him. This was written for his 41st birthday - the opening cadence was sung in my head, "Richard my brother," and off it goes.

I experimented a lot with this track. the core piano theme came first and defined the structure. I then laid 4 different string voices on top, one pass after the other without listening to the previous pass. By then removing what didn't work, I arrived at what you hear now; a piece for a string quartet with piano. This is another piece that I look forward to sitting down and developing if I ever get time!

It was Richard who opened a door to this magical musical world in which I now live and adore, I will be eternally grateful for his invitation.

The dramatic change in the piece at around six and half minutes is a variation on one of Richard's creations. We have played music together for most of our lives and he is a terrific singer songwriter guitarist and musician. This is a variation on a song called "This Way Out" from the Stirling Brig years. I always loved his lyrics, they were always - and still are - from his heart - and "This Way Out" spoke volumes to me.

Coming out of that variation back into the core theme at ten minutes or so, I'm trying to create a sense of hope and optimism. Which is of course what I wish for him and his family.

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Richard is part of The Thinker's Playlist.