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Album Review: Spiritual Piano: Message Music
Steven C.
Cover image of the album Spiritual Piano: Message Music by Steven C.
Spiritual Piano: Message Music
Steven C.
2010 / Steven C. Music
40 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
After producing a series of highly regarded and well-loved recordings of original and arranged piano music, Steven C found himself with something of a writer’s block. He started to explore his own life and spirituality by reading and “going deeper.” This period of introspection brought new inspiration from simple everyday life, and the music again started to flow. These efforts resulted in a gorgeous collection of fourteen original pieces called Spiritual Piano: Message Music. The album was recorded live in front of an audience (they were very quiet because there is no evidence of an audience in the recording!) and with four other musicians. Steven calls this group “the intenders circle.” Prior to recording, Steven explained the inspiration for each piece, and then the “intenders” focused on that message, contributing emotion and energy. The piano is front and center on all of the pieces, supported by mandolin, violin, bass, percussion, and guitars. This is Steven C’s most personal release to date. Further, he states that this is music with a purpose for a higher good. “It is music that seeks to inspire, heal, relax, motivate, and inspire insightful conversations about life and spirituality.” It is a personal expression of life and its varying emotions, communicated from the heart of the composer to the hearts of his listeners.

Spiritual Piano begins with “Be Here Now,” a celebration of the present moment and a reminder to fully appreciate the significance of “now.” Violin and mandolin add soft washes of color to the piano. “Knowing” is a bit more rhythmic and upbeat, with percussion, guitar, and bass. “pp-Pianissimo” is one of my favorite tracks. A soft, reflective piano solo intended to quiet the mind and relax the soul, its simple grace and beauty are incredible. I also really like “Temporary Space Suits,” which refers to our mortality and temporary time on earth. “Ripples in a Parallel Universe” has a catchy rhythm and just a hint of gospel here and there. A little bit darker and more mysterious, the piano asks a lot of questions. “10,000 Hours” refers to the idea that in order to be successful, you need to put in at least 10,000 hours of study and practice. Overflowing with positive thought and reassurance that “you can do it,” this provides and warm and gentle pep talk. Beginning with a very low B on the piano, “Inter-connected” ponders the wonders of our uniqueness along with our common makeup. That low B carries through the piece, giving it an intriguing rhythm and depth. “Borrowed Time 18-59” tells of a family experience where a young man was critically injured in a car crash at the age of 18 but survived to the age of 59 - on “borrowed” time - until he could no longer endure the mental and physical pain of the crash. Very sad and reflective, the violin makes the emotional impact of the piece even stronger. “Mystery In the Moment” blends two improvised recordings and focuses on happiness, peace, compassion, and love. It is a sweet and soothing end to an outstanding album.

Steven C’s breakthrough is an amazing gift to all who take the time to listen with an open heart. Longtime fans will be delighted, and if you are new to Steven C’s music, be sure to give this one a try. Whether or not you have your own spiritual breakthrough, the music is excellent and very likely to give you a lift. Check it out at www.stevencmusic.com, Amazon, iTunes, and CD Baby. Very highly recommended!
May 26, 2011