Music has played an important role in all my life. During my childhood in Germany I began my music career very modestly: in elementary school I joined the school choir, as anyone with any voice was "requested" to do. From age 8 I got lessons in playing the "Melodica", a kind of flute with a piano keyboard. When I was 10, I decided to learn playing Cello. My grandfather bought me a Cello, and I was then a cellist in the high-school string orchestra for several years. At age 11 I began taking piano lessons. Very interesting: my piano teacher regularly gave me 4 different pieces to work on: one from each major musical epoch (baroque, classic, romantic, modern), and I could observe how my personal taste migrated from the baroque times towards the modern in a very chronological way. I became also somewhat interested in writing my own composition, and I wrote a brief piano piece at age 13 in a very 18th century classical style. But I was quite impatient: the process of writing notes on paper, playing them on the piano, then revising them on paper again seemed like a very tedious process, and I gave this up soon, only to resume it later when computer sequencers became available. I did NOT study music but instead decided on a career as scientist: studied physics, then switched to computer engineering. I worked on a system for autonomous driving (a road vehicle driving by itself with cameras a sensors) and developed Augmented Reality prototypes, and in 1996 I moved to the US for working in a research center.
My work with computer systems had introduced me to the possibilities of computers for the music production process: very first attempts with an Atari 600XL (1984) led to a few 4-voice recordings of Christmas Carols. In 1993 I bought a stand-alone Yamaha SQ16 synthesizer work station for sequencing, and I created my first MIDI versions of classical orchestral music: The first movement of Borodin's "Polovtsian Dances", and Smetana's "Moldau". I was very intrigued by the full control over the music creation process through many control variables, and I began to use a MIDI sequencer on a proper Windows PC for creating more MIDI files. Since these were "General MIDI" compatible, the could be shared with others. in 1994 the ban of MIDI sharing by Compuserve put a slight damper on these distribution activities, but the evolving internet allowed me to share my recordings with the world. For a while my MIDI version of "The Moldau" was used by the web site of the Czech foreign ministry. The establishment of MP3.COM finally created a platform for sharing music recordings, and I created several renditions of classical orchestral music from the late-romantic period. In 1996 I also began to write a few compositions of my own. In 2003 a creative break set in, lasting for several years, as my energy was consumed by participating in the US DARPA Grand Challenge, and by a subsequent move from the US to the UK where I accepted a professorship in Creative Technology.
At the end of 2009 I updated my music hardware and software setup and began to revisit some of my earlier music recordings with new realistic sounds from the "Garritan Personal Orchestra" library. Since then I have recorded several albums of classical music with this system, some of them as re-releases of earlier recordings, now with the new sounds, but also others as completely new recordings.