Rebecca Oswald | Whereas

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"Whereas" coil-bound songbook "Like" Rebecca's FaceBook artist page! PDF sheet music - "The Constantly Pulsing Universe Inside Me" PDF sheet music - "The Gentle Rain of Your Pure Love" Follow Rebecca on Twitter! Enjoy Rebecca's videos on YouTube!

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United States - Oregon

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New Age: Neo-Classical Classical: Piano solo Moods: Solo Instrumental
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Whereas

by Rebecca Oswald

A uniquely thrilling, deeply satisfying solo piano concept album that balances evocative, intriguing classical writing with the accessible appeal of new age music.
Genre: New Age: Neo-Classical
Release Date: 

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Tracks

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1. The Whisper of the Meaning
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3:53 $0.99
2. The Constantly Pulsing Universe Inside Me
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4:11 $0.99
3. My Blue Ocean, Your Eyes
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4:22 $0.99
4. Each Flower Will Sing Your Song
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2:38 $0.99
5. My Solitude Is Entrusted to You
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4:59 $0.99
6. The Gentle Rain of Your Pure Love
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4:08 $0.99
7. The Place Where Dreams Shine and Fade
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3:25 $0.99
8. While Trying to Get Used to Your Absence
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5:05 $0.99
9. To Solace My Heart
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2:51 $0.99
10. I Must Have Revealed You
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3:30 $0.99
11. You Have Never Left
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4:37 $0.99
12. A Complete Life in Our Hands
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4:29 $0.99
13. Ordinary Bliss
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5:12 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
The thirteen Whereas songs are my creative response to a gift of unpublished, beautiful, personal poems. The poetic themes include the joy of unity, the sorrow of separation, the desire to know and be known, the bliss of loving and being loved. Many of the stanzas begin “Whereas, . . .” The songs’ titles are drawn from these poems. The poems were written for me; I wrote this music for you. Thank you for listening! May this music resonate in you and bless your heart, mind, spirit, and life.

I have long admired the exquisite balance of emotive depth and theoretical elegance of the great classical solo piano literature. In the Whereas songs I sought to express these same ideals in my own compositional voice, augmented by the use of musical materials I had not explored before.

Whereas was recorded on a magnificent Steinway D at Oktaven Studios in Yonkers, NY in May 2011, and mastered at Syntharts Studio in Eugene, Oregon. While the individual tracks stand alone, Whereas is a solo piano concept album with an overall pace and flow. Each song was carefully designed and placed in order to create an integrated, satisfying experience. I invite you to set aside an hour, prepare your favorite beverage, turn off the phone, light a candle, get comfy, and enjoy the music!

--- Rebecca Oswald


Reviews


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Lee Armstrong

Delightful Companion
Rebecca Oswald's new CD "Whereas" is gorgeous in its depth and range of emotion. The classically-trained pianist opens with "The Whisper of Meaning" that brings to my mind images of buds bursting from the soil in springtime slow motion. "The Constantly Pulsing Universe Inside Me" is a gorgeous meditation that bubbles with excitement and then explodes at the end like a big bang before starting the cycle of unfolding again, breathtaking! "The Gentle Rain of Your Pure Love" has elegant spiritual nuances as Oswald is at times gentle like a whisper and then contrasts with strong and decisive key strokes. "While Trying to Get Used to Your Absence" could well be my personal theme song with its wistfulness punctuated with joy like a memory and then back to the quieter tones, bittersweet and sorrowful. "To Solace My Heart" is amazingly gentle and serene. "You Have Never Left" is lovely, like a welcome reunion. "A Complete Life in Our Hands" is the most joyful track on the set with Oswald energetically stroking the keys with blissful results. The set concludes with the ironically titled "Ordinary Bliss." "Whereas" is a lovely effort, a delightful companion. Enjoy!

Kathy Parsons

From MainlyPiano
I really love reviewing albums when something like Rebecca Oswald’s "Whereas" comes across my desk! I heard some of these pieces live a few months ago, but even that didn’t prepare me for the soulful beauty of the recording. The thirteen original piano solos are Oswald’s creative response to a gift of unpublished personal poems that express “the joy of unity, the sorrow of separation, the desire to know and be known, the bliss of loving and being loved” (quoted from the liner notes). Many of the stanzas of the poems begin with “Whereas,” inspiring the title. Oswald is an amazing pianist who has worked in a wide range of musical styles and media. In this music, she sought to incorporate the emotional depth and theoretical elegance of the great classical solo piano literature in her own compositional voice, setting parameters for the music she hadn’t used in earlier compositions. The results are stunning in their emotional depth, passion and honesty.

"Whereas" begins with “The Whisper of the Meaning,” a stately piece with with an elegantly flowing melody and frequent changes to the key and time signatures that give it a slight edge. “The Constantly Pulsing Universe Inside Me” never stops moving. It begins slowly and freely and then starts dancing all over the piano - sometimes bright and sparkling, sometimes darker and more intense. “My Blue Ocean, Your Eyes” is one of my favorites. The left hand plays a series of rolling chords that create a hypnotic rhythm to accompany the quietly passionate and exotic melody - gorgeous! “Each Flower Will Sing Your Song” is as light and gentle as a spring breeze. “My Solitude is Entrusted to You” is very slow and very dark, using the sostenuto pedal to great effect. “The Gentle Rain of Your Pure Love” is much lighter and more tender, again expressing deep emotion in a style not unlike Chopin. Very open and honest, the poignance of the piece goes right to the heart. “While Trying to Get Used to Your Absence” is my favorite in this collection. I remember being spellbound when I saw Rebecca play it live, and the recording has the same effect - plus the ability to hit “replay” as often as I want! This incredible piece expresses the profound emptiness of being away from the one you love better than any music I can think of. I’ve probably heard this piece a dozen times, and I’m still in awe of it. “I Must Have Revealed You” is also amazing and my second-favorite. The graceful melody flows over the expressive and mysterious left hand - perhaps another nod to Chopin - just gorgeous! “You Have Never Left” is a warm and tender love song. “A Complete Life In Our Hands” is a happy dance, relishing the joy of love and the prospect of a bright and exciting future together. Try sitting still while this one is playing! “Ordinary Bliss” is quiet and meditative with a repeated figure on the left hand and a graceful melody expressing tranquility and inner peace - a lovely close to an extraordinary album.

"Whereas" is guaranteed a spot on my Favorites of 2011 list, and will also be in my Top 5. It is truly an exceptional album in every way and I cannot recommend it highly enough. You’ve hit this one out of the ballpark, Rebecca! I’m giving you a standing ovation while typing at my computer!

Michael Diamond (www.michaeldiamondmusic.com)

Review excerpt from Music & Media Focus
Sitting down with the CD and reading over the decidedly poetic song names was indeed intriguing and piqued my curiosity as to what the music would be like that interpreted such evocative titles. Knowing that the music was related to specific poems added another dimension to the listening experience and gave context to the project. The album begins with “The Whisper Of The Meaning” – with its gentle melody falling softly on the ears like a whisper, and hinting of deeper understanding to come in the music’s unfolding. One of the most compelling titles belongs to track two, “The Constantly Pulsing Universe Inside Me.” There is a definite sense of constancy in the music as rolling arpeggios sustain throughout its entirety providing a feeling of animation and evolution. I particularly enjoyed a track entitled “Each Flower Will Sing Your Song” which reflected Rebecca’s dynamic sensibilities, opening with a light bucolic air and growing more melodically fragrant as it began to bloom. And speaking of dynamics, the album as a whole has its yin and yang. A song called “The Place Where Dreams Shine And Fade,” exudes an airy lightness of being, while a more introspective and almost wistful feeling is reflected in the composition “To Solace My Heart.”

"Whereas" is a solo piano concept album of thirteen original songs that seamlessly integrate evocative, intriguing classical writing with the accessible, timeless appeal of new age music. I would imagine that fans of solo piano artists like David Lanz, Liz Story, or George Winston would enjoy the music of Rebecca Oswald as well.

For a full length review of this CD, and others, please visit: www.michaeldiamondmusic.com

Raj Manoharan (www.rajmanreviews.blogspot.com)

The RajMan Review
Rebecca Oswald presents thirteen formidable solo piano tunes that conjure vivid stories fueled by the artist’s passion.

This is not your typical solo piano CD. Although Oswald has no accompaniment, she more than makes up for it with a dynamic sound and a masterful technique that give the impression of a full orchestra, thanks to her ambidextrous rendering of melodies, harmonies, and fills.

The compositions and performances themselves are full of drama and nuance. While they are serene and beautiful, they are also very compelling. Just when you think you’re about to drift off into tranquility, Oswald reels you back in with a jarring note here and a thunderous chord there.

If you’re looking for solo piano music that’s a nice blend of quiet and intensity and both relaxing and challenging, this one is worth a spin.