Into the Wind
2011 / Piano Haven
Review by Kathy Parsons
Into the Wind is pianist/composer Joe Bongiorno’s sixth solo piano album to date and could be his best work yet. Smooth and melodic with an undercurrent of passion, Bongiorno’s music conveys an array of emotions and experiences in a musical language that anyone should be able to relate to and understand. The theme of the album comes from a request that Joe made of life when he was seventeen to simply “bring it on.” “I wanted every challenge, every adventure and every lesson, with no mercy spared and no stagnant periods. .... I got exactly what I asked for and a whole lot more... Since that day I have been riding into the wind of life, and it feels as though the ride has only just begun. I’m hanging on, with a smile!”
Joe Bongiorno is the owner of Piano Haven Studio in Seattle, which is getting a great deal of recognition for the wonderful piano sound of the recordings that are made there, and this album is no exception. Even the most discerning ears will be delighted with the quality of the recording.
Into the Wind begins with “Inspired,” a lighthearted dance of joy and celebration that conveys the rush an artist gets when truly inspired - a great start! I really like “Trance,” which slows down the tempo a bit and becomes more introspective. Very fluid and expressive, it’s a real beauty! The title track steps up the energy level, expressing a variety of emotions, but remaining optimistic throughout. “Mystical” spins a magical dream that sparkles as it gently flows, pausing here and there, never in a hurry - also a favorite. “A Candlelight Waltz” first appeared on Bongiorno’s A Candlelight Christmas last year, and is sure to become one of his signature pieces. It’s a romantic slow dance played with grace and tenderness. “I Hear Your Cry” is love and reassurance set to music. Gentle warmth overflows from each note, soothing the heart and making things right again. “Sailing the Sky” is energetic and playful, conveying freedom and happiness. “Rise and Shine” greets the new day with renewed optimism and anticipation. “Your Healing Touch” is a love song, pure and simple with healing power of its own. “Feels Like Goodbye” is the last track. It also closes A Candlelight Christmas, but is just too beautiful to be restricted to one season of the year. It’s a wonderful closing that leaves the listener with a feeling of longing.
Into the Wind will thrill Joe Bongiorno’s fans and is a great introduction if you are new to his music. Even the cover artwork by Matt Strieby is exceptional! It is available from www.solopianomusic.com, Amazon, and iTunes. Recommended!
October 5, 2011