Music is, for both musicians and audiences, an awesome power, with the ability to create feelings of harmony, within oneself, and with others, with the world, and even with the greater cosmos… Music is a way of establishing a position of connection between the outer cosmos and the inner cosmos, or of linking together what Ludwig van Beethoven’s favorite philosopher Immanuel Kant called, “the starry heavens above and the moral universe within”. David Salminen’s concerts aim high… and invite audiences to join in with these adventurous excursions, aspirations, inclinations, investigations, etc.
Posts tagged ‘inspiration’
“My friends have come to me unsought. The great God gave them to me. By oldest right, by the divine affinity of virtue with itself, I find them, or rather, not I, but the Deity in me and in them, both deride and cancel the thick walls of individual character, relation, age, sex, and circumstance, at which he usually connives, and now makes many one.”
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson, in his essay “Friendship”
There is a particular Bach fugue that I like to practice (I am a keyboard artist) to the mental rhythm of “I love you, (wife’s name)”. It works for me, as a kind of meditation. I leave out the exact identifications here, of both the fugue and my wife, as that sort of thing is different for every musician/husband, artist/wife, plumber/partner, et al.
It may well be that Western music’s “major scale” is a musical metaphor: do is the moment of commitment. re is establishing contact with the work you’re doing, the process. mi is when you start to feel the process taking on a life of its own. mi-fa is a crisis point, wherein you suffer some disillusionment with certain presumptions and expectations. sol is when the power returns… you’re more than halfway there! But also here is temptation, the temptation to “coast”. la is when you re-commit, on a deeper level, knowing that in following the process, you have a chance to enter into the truly creative – something unforeseeable. si-do is the transition to letting go of the “push” and just allowing the result to manifest itself! ~ David Salminen’s re-working of a very old tradition, inspired by J.G. Bennett’s explanation of Gurdjieff’s mysterious law of heptaparaparshinokh, found in Bennett’s book: “Talks on Beelzebub’s Tales”.
image: NASA – Hubble telescope – outer space… stars & galaxies
DUE TO PROBLEMATIC CONTINUING WEATHER CONDITIONS IN PORTLAND AND THE SURROUNDING AREAS, THE JANUARY 15, 2017 CONCERT HAS BEEN CANCELLED – IT WILL BE RE-SCHEDULED, BUT WE DON’T HAVE A NEW DATE, AS OF YET.
David Salminen’s improvisational concerts, in addition to being live demonstrations of the pleasures and surprises of the spontaneous moment, are vehicles for communicating ways in which listening to music can foster creativity in anyone, in any area a person has a need for it… these events are not simply about music. Really, so much in our lives could be improved, made better, etc. with a little bit more creativity, and we all possess unlimited potential for it – fresh ideas & new ways of seeing, hearing, and doing things. Dedication: In appreciation of Pauline Oliveros 1932-2016, an American composer and the champion of “deep listening”.
At David’s concerts “We, the listeners, become the music.” Cheryl Kolander – Aurora Silk
For more information: https://davidsalminen.com
(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:
THE NATURE OF WATER – Sunday, August 17, 2014 – 3 pm
Portland Piano Company, 711 SW 14th Ave, Portland Oregon
There is no admission charge for this event, but donations to support more presentations of this kind are gratefully received.
Water itself is the inspiration behind the August 17 set of improvisations. Water is a major symbol running through cultures worldwide; but it is useful as such only when we are able to open up to its signals. Luckily, clues are everywhere! From the I Ching (Wilhelm/Baynes translation, Hexagram #29): “Water… flows on and on, and merely fills up all the places through which it flows; it does not shrink from any dangerous spot nor from any plunge, and nothing can make it lose its own essential nature. It remains true to itself under all conditions.”
For Salminen and many of his fans, it has become axiomatic that the subtle and enjoyable discipline of real listening is what actually makes a musical event come alive. David will introduce this concert with a short talk providing useful hints about listening, and on how new music can be an inspiration toward new forms of understanding. His general philosophy about inspiration is that it is a plural medium – thus the “media” – from which we all draw nourishment. It is not something possessed by individuals.
The “doing” of improvisation has been David’s primary music teacher since he had an “opening” experience in 1979 while working as an accompanist with dozens of dance-teachers-in-training. However, that “opening” as well as Salminen’s ongoing presentations of “cosmic improvisation” was and is grounded in classical training. He took his first piano lessons in 1959 and continued for nine years at the David Hochstein Memorial Music School in Rochester, New York. These years were followed by studies in psychology, music theory, non-Western music, and avant-garde music at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts, 1969-74. The academic years were joyfully interrupted by a year of consciousness studies at the International Academy for Continuous Education at Sherborne, England, with the philosopher John G. Bennett. Subsequently, while living in Alaska in the late 1970’s, David’s development as a pianist was greatly accelerated under the tutelage of the French-born piano virtuoso Jean-Paul Billaud, who connected him with the Leschetitzky and other European traditions of music practice, technique, and interpretation.
Examples of David’s concert music can be found at:
For more information, call 503-762-6387 or email email@example.com
“I constantly have three treasures; Hold onto them and treasure them. The first is compassion; The second is frugality; And the third is not presuming to be at the forefront in the world. Now, it’s because I’m compassionate that I therefore can be courageous; And it’s because I’m frugal that I therefore can be magnanimous; And it’s because I don’t presume to be at the forefront in the world that I therefore can be the head of those with complete talent.”
Te-Tao Ching, Chapter 67. Translated by Robert G. Henricks from the Ma-wang-tui Texts. This is a most excellent translation. It incorporates the 1973 discovery, of early copies of Lao-Tzu’s classic, in the village of Ma-wang-tui in Hunan Province – published by Ballantine Books, 1989.
The free concert at 3 pm, Saturday, October 29, 2011 – “Into the Dark” – at the Sherman Clay Pianos recital hall in Portland feels quite imminent to me now. After all, it’s been coming together as a musical inspiration for about nine months, initiated really by a perhaps offhand comment from my friend Anthony Blake… but it is part of a much longer arc of creativity:
Beyond what I have written elsewhere, let me try to explain… I am on a long-term journey to create musical occasions in which we can get at something deeper than a “spectacle” or an “experience” – both of which are fine, as far as they go. I hold dear the ancient idea of music in various cultures. For instance, I relish the attitudes of the classical Greek culture, which held that “music is a moral law” (Plato) and the ancient Chinese, who expected the Emperor to “set the tone” – as a musical pitch, literally – for the coming year. I am most inspired, however, by a more modern approach as found for instance in Kepler, who was looking for a “harmony of the spheres” corresponding to the actual observational data that was being collected in his time – for the first time, as far as we know, in human history – about the movement of the planets. For much of my life, I myself have been looking at these things as metaphors for new kinds of self-perception for us as individuals and for even the human race as a whole. Years ago I read in a book by a particular musicologist who I greatly respect, about the usefulness of the Ptolemaic point of view (the earth is the center of all things, with various heavens or layers of reality above it) as an aid to meditation, as compared with the post-Copernican model, which is – according to some – less amenable for most of us as a metaphor or picture of spiritual unfolding. This bothered me; why should contemporary meditation or mysticism be dependent on outmoded models of the universe! I suppose that I have always been something of a mystic, but I am also the son of a scientist… and somehow, I have always, also by nature I guess, been looking for progress in mysticism that could be parallel to, and not divorced from, the development of the sciences of our time. These days, due to the immense progress being made “as we speak” in astrophysics and cosmology, much of it having to do with researches into the nature of gravity, and the application of what is called “gravitational lensing” – which has been poetically referred to now as “Einstein’s Telescope” *– there are whole new vistas of understanding and contemplation opening up that are just waiting for us to enter, to appreciate, and to share.
*”Einstein’s Telescope -the hunt for dark matter and dark energy in the universe” is the title of a fine book by Evalyn Gates