the story of your strength


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i used to say that if you need to leave me alone in this world with only one instrument to play on, i would choose to have a GOOD piano with me. it needs to be good. if it speaks well to me, i can speak well through it. that is why i have returned to a small studio in Belgium to record for a second time (the first was 2007 "Jy het my laat sing"). the blind sound engineer (Pino Guarrac) and i have a good understanding. he locks me up and let it roll for the hour and odd that i need to be with this GOOD piano. this improvisational journey resembles the recitals i gave during the nineties before i decided to make technology a partner on stage. the journey regularly presents surprises, familiarities, peaks and low points (the latter usually where a certain focus starts to fail me. but in order to regain it, i need to go through it. the journey loses its imperfect soul without it). when i entered the studio for this embarkment, i had Joke in mind, or rather, in heart. the title refers to her. it is dedicated to her, even though the link is mostly not too obvious. perhaps i should truly lock myself up in such a studio and its GOOD piano, like a Glen Gould, stepping away from audiences, like a writer, a painter, more wholly committed to the moment, the flow, the whole wide world out there.. perhaps this is what my retirement will look like? the song towards the end refers to Joke who had a terrible tooth ache at the time. having come into my life in a way i knew would be permanent, this is my song to her: you are the strongest that I in my life would have. to you, Joke!

track nr Title description Duration
01 through the window pane a spacious meditation with non-defined harmonies 04:02
02 the walk of melancholy a slow and wandering melody line on a sustained bass , swelling into broader chords before closing in again 05:05
03 supplication to a dream an quasi atonal fugality builds before it transforms into a late romantic lyrical line 07:43
04 dance against the rush of madness a fully atonal hop, jump and skip rushing all over the breadth of the piano keybaord, chasing its own tail 02:51
05 windswept memories of childhood simple motives in classical style are later joined by sustained whistling sounds before it slows down into melancholy 05:55
06 twin soul calling the voice joins the piano in a hymn like procession of emotive harmonies 05:56
07 fugal morning repeating motives play off against each other while staying mostly in the key of A minor 03:40
08 the arrival of two apples and a pear energies are lifted in this shifting journey where the voice happily la-la along 04:12
09 all my rhythms interrupted the view is opening up allowing for sudden bursts of viruosity and child-like vocal joy 03:31
10 shall we take a walk and then some a cantral meloday emerges and repeats otself in playful variations. the voice brings it to a heartfelt unfolding 10:25
11 the story of your strength the piano provides a prelude to a song that speaks to the title of the album: celebrating the strength of the love of my life 05:01
12 we have laughed in Africa! a bravura rendition of an african groove, picking up speed towards a climactic ending 03:27