Ocean Picture Book
Notes for Ocean Picture Book When I made the CD 'Because There Are No Words...' I didn't use all the tracks I had recorded. I decided to use them for a new project, adding more by booking another session. I needed to find a studio with a good piano. At about the same time, I heard that my father, Dr. Frank Brown, was going to be playing a concert with my brother, Joel Brown, Peter Madcat Ruth, and Chris Brubeck, all members of a fantastic jazz trio known as Triple Play. Chris's father, Dave Brubeck, was the featured guest for this very special concert. Dave Brubeck was and is revered in the Brown household. Being someone who loves chord progressions more than any other musical element, I love the music of Dave Brubeck. It was a once in a lifetime opportunity to hear my father play with Dave, and I made plans to go to Saratoga Springs, NY. The concert was a certified success. It took place on June 10, 2011, at Skidmore College, in the newly built Arthur Zankel Music Center. Helen Filene Ladd Hall was sold out. The audience went wild for Dave, and there were numerous standing ovations. I was really proud of my Dad, and brother. Dave was 90 at the time and played beautifully. The chords he played were unmistakably 'him' and it was a thrill to be there to hear him in person. My father was turning 85 the next week. No one would know that. He looks, acts, and plays like a young jazz star. It was an amazing night. You might wonder what the concert at Skidmore has to do with Ocean Picture Book. I had mentioned to Joel my wish to find a studio, with a good piano, to do a session of solo improvisations. That weekend he said 'I've booked the Hall for Monday afternoon for your session.' Joel is chair of the music department at Skidmore and this was something he could arrange. I was thrilled because it meant I would be playing on a piano the college had just purchased in Germany, called the Hamburg Steinway. It is the piano that Dave played at the concert. It's an amazing instrument. My nephew Jason Brown, Joel's son, is a musician, producer, and recording engineer. He brought the equipment to the Hall, and we recorded several pieces that day. Because I play very minimally, and my intention with the session was to play music to relax to, it was a strange feeling to be playing a truly 'grand' piano. I felt that I was under-utilizing it. Yet, the sound of it is so pretty, I can't imagine the CD without having had that session on that particular piano. I want to say thank you to Joel and Jason. Without the amazing session, I wouldn't have been able to make 'Ocean Picture Book'. .