Tag Archives: musician

Nature Inspired Talent

The Australia Day will be next Monday, January 26, and I would like share a few Australians that have extraordinary stories and make me and the country proud. There many Australians I am proud of. It would even be impossible to fit them all into my blog in the 1000 posts I had promised in September. However, given the limited time between now and the actual day, I will share only a few stories. I would like to start with someone my sons and I admire for his musical talent, his love for his culture and nature. It is a little like me, except, my musical talent appears when there is no audience and I have had a few wines.

On a serious note, please ask Abung (Google) to help find Xavier Rudd and listen to many of his beautiful songs. I am sure many of you will know him. He is a one-man band and plays most of the instruments himself. His life as a nature activist makes me particularly proud and this is his story from The Nature Conservancy

Xavier Rudd
Hometown: Bells Beach, Australia
Day Gig: Environmental Activist, Surfer
Night Gig: Internationally Acclaimed Singer Songwriter and Didgeredoo Master
Environmental Concern: Oceans

Singer-songwriter, musician, activist and surfer Xavier Rudd is considered to be an iconic voice in Australian music. Using a range of instruments, including guitars, yidakis (also known as didgeridoos), stomp box and percussion, Rudd has become known for marrying uplifting music with thought-provoking lyrics.

Since his first studio album, To Let, debuted in 2002, Rudd has earned a reputation as a strong mult-instrumentalist who writes, sings and plays from the heart. Solace, his second album, was recorded in Vancouver with friend and producer Todd Simko. It debuted in 2004 in the top 20 of the ARIA charts and three of its songs were voted into triple j’s annual Hottest 100. It was followed with the ARIA-nominated albums, Food In The Belly and White Moth. In 2008, the gritty, dark and dynamic Dark Shades Of Blue redefined Rudd as a lapsteel player and lyricist. His sixth album, Koonyum Sun, was recorded as “Xavier Rudd And Izintaba,” and featured a collaboration with bassist Tio Moloantoa and percussionist Andile Nqubezelo.

In 2012, Rudd released Spirit Bird. His seventh studio-recorded album, Spirit Bird debuted at #2 on the ARIA album chart, and has earned critical acclaim as well as a 2012 Australian Independent Record Labels Association Awards nomination for Best Independent Blues And Roots Album.

As a review in the Seattle Post Intelligencer notes: “over the course of his career [Rudd] has evolved from being the accompaniment for surfers and late night beach parties (not only were some of his songs featured in the movie Surfer Dude, he wrote parts of the movie’s score) with an environmental conscience to singing about having a spiritual bond with the planet and the compassion required to create it… he gives us his vision of the potential for a better world.”



The Melody That Stole Me

Anhang 2

“The music of the “2 Days and a Year” album tells stories of the world of daydreaming, falling snow, sunlight glimmering on the water, night skies, and not least, the value of the fragile moment,” said Jens Felder.

Imagine taking all those complexities and depths of nature, seasons, feelings and thoughts then combining it all into music. No wonder the music sounded so good. I guess that is what all artists strive for when creating something wonderful.

When I first heard Jens Felder play 2 Days and a Year,  a few weeks ago, I let this melody steal me. I wanted it to. It was a piece of music that I could go places with.  I love music and I have a large collection. hen’s is a combination of many types of music from many parts of the world. I played Jen’s music over several times, just to see if I could get tired of it. I didn’t. I don’t mean this in a negative way. Part of me wanted to play it again, but the other part kept wondering why I wanted more. I do not know how to explain it in words. I am sure every once in a while, we find something beautiful and it affects us. Life is beautiful and mysterious. I could not imagine life without music. 

Like everything we do in life, there is a story. In Jen’s story, his music is his life story.  I could not write his story better, therefore, I left my interview follow in Jen’s own words:

I am playing guitar for over 30 years now. I can’t remember the first time I had a guitar under my fingers. The feeling is still very present. When I held the guitar, I knew immediately that it was exactly what I was missing in my life. Playing music feels like a meditative experience, like “being in the moment“. The silence is expectation and excitement, and gets filled with sound. The silence returns images and echoes back, what gives me great joy and peace. My goal was and is, to communicate the emotions I experience in the music through my instrument.
My heroes were the old masters and so I studied classical music for many years.  I completed a postgraduate study with Andreas Higi at the music college in Trossingen and attended various master-classes by i.e. Frank Bungarten, Carlo Marcione and the amazing Aniello Desiderio.
The learning was followed by many solo concerts with classical programs. I was fortunate to play in chamber music ensembles with violin and vocals and also worked as a soloist with orchestras.
I now live with my family in southern Germany and work as a freelance artist and music teacher. The old masters are still my good friends, but now I play my own music. In my pieces melds classical music with elements of world music. You can hear African or Asian modes and even some nods to rock music all within the context of solo classical guitar playing. It feels like a trip around the world with the language of classical music.
As a composer, I have worked with various artists from different regions of the world, including also music for short films.
In early December, I published my first solo guitar album “2 days and a year”, available on iTunes and Amazon as a download.
The title piece “2 Days and a Year” is a story about time perception in music. I have written this piece in 2 days, but the emotional experiences have accompanied and influenced my music all year thereafter. So this piece has become the title track of my album. I’ve written a text, which describes the emotions of this time (also in the booklet of my album):

“Time is different in music. Close and friendly it is
drifting by – sometimes flying, sometimes even
standing still, but never passing. Nothing gets lost –
the first tone is not older than the last one.

All music is a child of its time, but not bound by time.
It arises from moments and lives in people. Musicians
capture that moment in time and listeners make
the music their own. These moments are present, and alive.

iTunes link to “2 days and a year” album: https://itunes.apple.com/de/album/2-days-and-a-year/id946450529?uo=4

Soundcloud link to the “2 days and a year” piece: https://soundcloud.com/jens-felger/2-days-and-a-year