The Music of David Salminen

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photo by Christopher Vardas

An ancient idea occurring across many cultures is the notion that being in harmony with oneself is related to being in harmony with the world at large. Whether or not the brain waves, of a relaxed human being, vibrate at the same frequency as the earth (said to be 8 cycles per second and known as the Schumann Resonance) – composers such as myself aspire to intuitively find a music that helps people get back into a harmonic balance… this has been noted by many people. Please join us if you can, for this free concert at the Portland Piano Company on July 10, 2016, 3 to 4:30 p.m. – There is a comprehensive announcement in the Portland Mercury: http://www.portlandmercury.com/events/18292535/earth-you-are-here
If you can’t make it to the concert, or just want to hear an example of David’s music, there’s a concert excerpt on YouTube from this past January, recorded by John-Henry Dale, using a special 360 degree camera (interactive) and a new kind of microphone: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_xBxrRAsgPE

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bluemarbleearth_npp_8000-NASA imageNASA image – public domain

David Salminen’s concerts over the past few years start from an idea or a feeling generated by a Cosmic perspective about our place in the Universe, or our understanding of some aspect of the Universe. The July 10, 2016 “EARTH – YOU ARE HERE” concert comes more from a feeling than an idea – a feeling for our home planet, a place so rare – unique really, to the best of our certain knowledge – that we cannot overemphasize its importance to us, in terms of place and time.While I am not closed to the idea of life on other worlds – even on many planets throughout the Universe, what we know for sure at this point is that our home planet, Earth, is the place, in the whole of the Universe, that we know is hospitable to life forms such as us. In this sense, the oneness of life here on Earth, as well as our individual lives as we each experience life, is central – the very center – of the Universe.  “Each of us – whoever and wherever he may be – is then the center, and within him, whether he knows it or not, is that Mind at Large, the laws of which are the laws not only of all minds but of all space as well. For as I have already pointed out, we are the children of this beautiful planet that we have lately seen photographed from the moon. We were not delivered into it by some god. but have come forth from it.” page 274 of Joseph Campbell’s book “Myths to Live By”. http://www.portlandmercury.com/events/18292535/earth-you-are-here

earth by NASA

(photo credit – NASA image – public domain)

“Earth – You Are Here” 

David Salminen, piano improvisations

July 10, 2016, 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Portland Piano Company, 711 SW 14th Ave, Portland, OR 97205 – phone 503.775.2480

free admission and open to the public – donations welcome

The idea behind this “Earth – You Are Here” concert is suggested by the NASA images of Earth from space, beginning from the time of the Apollo missions of the late 1960’s and continuing. These images remind us of the unity of humanity and the wholeness of life as we know it – from a cosmic perspective. David’s improvisations build intuitively and spontaneously on the extraordinary resonances that are possible with the modern grand piano, via the 88 keys as entry points, in activating the sounding board as a vehicle for a holistic experience of endlessly evolving complexes of harmony and harmonics.

BY THE WAY – If you can’t attend in person – please check this out, for the fun of it:

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When I can remember myself a little more consistently, it is music that I believe in… along the lines of the famous Leonard Bernstein remark – to the effect that his response to violence would be to pursue music more passionately than ever, or Albert Schweitzer’s famous footnote to all his philosophizing about “reverence for life” – something to the effect that his life was his argument. Many good and generous people have made possible my development as a musician, by showing up and giving attention to my spontaneous aspiration toward harmony via mellifluous string plucking at the piano, and this has helped make my life meaningful. Remarkably, the making happen & the taking in of music & art, and any effort toward value realization, gives one courage – courage from the inside – a courage not dependent on external recognition. This kind of courage is linked to maturity and self-realization – not as a claim, but as an aim.

deep space-full_tif

“Know your strengths and own them and don’t apologize for them.” attributed to Annabel Acton (seen on the Forbes.com website, 5/11/16) – As a kind of example… I have been able to improvise at the piano, quite amiably, since the beginning of my own memories, from around the age of 5. More importantly, as I discovered in the fall of 1980, it is possible to improvise with great purpose and result, given special circumstances. Describing such “circumstances” could result in a very long story – and one that I hope to be able to share someday. Meanwhile – let me just say that I am very, very grateful to all the people who have attended my musical meditations over the past 30-odd years, with the kind of openness and attitude that facilitates a methodology driven by spontaneity.

… While doing a little home re-organization, I re-discovered in one of my old boxes of notebooks the following quotation… “Music is a sacred art, a pathway of life through a living universe, merging East & West, heaven & earth, addressed not to the snobbish few but to all people as an inspiration in their journey through the universe.” I’d attributed the quote to the American composer Alan Hovhaness (1911-2000)  – but without a citation as to where it came from. And it is so parallel to my own philosophy of music that I must wonder if I simply dreamed it up one night, rather than read it somewhere. Or maybe Hovhaness has been more of an influence on me & my own musical work than I have consciously remembered, before now. His music is really wonderful: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ufbOIe1GuhI

black hat photo by C Vardas

David Salminen in concert – solo piano

3 p.m. Sunday, January 31, 2016 – open to the public – no tickets necessary – donations to support the artist and the work are welcome.

Portland Piano Company

711 SW 14th Avenue, Portland Oregon

http://portlandpianocompany.com

There’s something special about the sun and the air at this time of year, different from the warmer seasons. Whether the day is gray or rainy or sunny, it is… winter… nature is resting, somewhat. While many of us are looking forward toward Spring, and the return of longer days, and the rush of greenery as it comes out of hiding, the special quality of winter days and nights is not something to be taken for granted. Contemplating any particular season is an avenue into a deeper relationship with all the seasons – and life in general.

Salminen’s concerts are a kind of guided tour toward finding wholeness and oneness for the individual, in larger and larger contexts – thus the tag “cosmic”. The poetic themes, images, and ideas of any one concert represent particular facets of a deepening human awareness, and the healing of any sense of isolation or alienation from life & nature, the solar system & the galaxy, oneself, and other people. Music, being a time-based art form, offers the opportunity to play with transformational impulses in process, as on-going moments that have both continuity and non-continuity. Non-continuity is when something new breaks into the stream of consciousness that is of a different kind, even while being an integral part of the whole “piece”. It is that dynamic quality of music which gives us a different way of understanding our lives – different from things like  philosophy (words) or imagery (pictures). Of course, philosophy and imagery and all the arts each have their place, but music is something else, and David, in his concerts, strives to realize that “something else” explicitly.

“Music is the only language that can give voice to the ineffable. The feelings that arise listening to David’s work share a kinship with the witness and awe many of us feel when seeing the interstellar wonders scoped by Hubble. But the greater gift in his music is the invitation to explore those inner worlds that saints and sages have been messaging us about for ages. This is the music of the spheres of the highest order, a taste of the wine-dark endlessness that embraces our origins and our destiny.” James Farrelly, Caretaker of Sheep at Asteroid B-612

Examples of David’s concert music are available on his website – things like “The Efficiency of Black Holes” and “Andromeda”, and more.

 

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