Asher Quinn has a new piano album out called Heart and Soul Rhapsodies. About the album Asher says:
Heart and Soul Rhapsodies is my first instrumental album since 1993, inspired by the romance and spirit of Budapest, where my muse lives! These pieces are all played spontaneously and directly from the heart, and are by turns adventurous, fragile, pounding, mysterious, visual, complex, innocent, soulful and Hungarian!!The feeling is like being invited into a story… a magical fairy-tale… and the style alternates between classical, modernist, baroque, lullaby and folk-melody infusion! For reference think Satie, Dvorak, Philip Glass and Einaudi.
Right now it’s only available on my website. It will be available on other services soon.
Asher is not a man of few words. Here are some more fascinating information about the album:
These pieces are all spontaneous piano improvisations, played on the evening of friday, September 5th, at Kerani Music Studios, in Stein, Limburg, Netherlands. My album producer, Arno Op den Camp, had the good sense and kindness to step in and turn on the microphones as I began to play! During the long day we had worked on a new singer-songwriter album of mine, wherein I had included (right at the eleventh hour) my version of the traditional Hungarian folk-song ‘Tavaszi szel,’ and by the evening we were happily exhausted… so this was everybody’s ‘down’ time, with tea, cake, laughter and chat!
But I felt a strong pull to go and play the piano for a bit. In the event I played non-stop for ninety minutes… piece after piece. I came to realise that I was playing my feelings for a unique and extremely complicated connection in my life, triggered that evening by singing ‘Tavaszi szel’ (‘The spring wind’); a connection to my twin-flame and muse, in Budapest; for the spiritual path that she’s on; for her dear friends that have become my friends, and who are on the same path, and for Budapest and Hungary itself.
My own songs and spiritual pieces have always been spiritually inspired, and through this I was invited to give a concert in Budapest in 2012, where I began to forge closer ties with these like-minded souls I speak of. My twin-flame created a website for me, executed all my artwork and began to script and edit my YouTubes… because we found that we, too, shared this same sacred path together. I came to love not only her, but also all of her friends, their sense of spirituality, the beautiful city and the whole Hungarian way. I feel so at home there… so close to source. But I mention that my connection is complicated because Spirit now dictates that she and I must walk separate paths, so these pieces are an outpouring of both my undying love for her and of my sorrow at parting, as well as musical expressions and impressions of the soulful connections I have made in Budapest.
Here are a few descriptive words about the pieces that constitute “Heart and Soul Rhapsodies” and their titles, pieces which I played directly and spontaneously from my heart on that night; pieces I could never play them the same way again!
‘White temple’ is a mythical place in the forest of the soul… a place of spiritual communion that exists in the emotional heart; in the astral realms. ’Metaphysics by moonlight’ refers to visions of creation that are cosmic, poetic, musical, balletic, architectural even… and hewn from nature and spirit. ‘The Wonderdeer’ is a Hungarian legend, a creation myth about the land and its peoples, that I once saw performed in dazzling and mesmerising splendour as a eurythmy play, in Budapest. It was an extraordinary spectacle that I feel moved to describe as ‘visible music’.
‘Enlightenment at the eleventh hour’ describes for me how thrilling it is to immerse myself in esoteric realities from the spiritual traditions my friends explore… the nature of the angelic realms, the healing properties of music, the secrets contained within the gospels, the meaning of relationships… every subject is investigated from an esoteric point of view; education, cuisine, sacred geometry, psychology, mythology… everything pertinent to man and the truth of our existence. I don’t speak Hungarian, but I get an inner transmission even if I don’t get an English translation! I always feel uplifted and elevated when we meet, meditate and talk. The learning is not political or sectarian, it is for the inner heart, and available to all.
‘Dance of the innocents’, ‘Climbing above the clouds’ and ‘The magical child’ are three impressions I have of my twin-flame’s closest friends and their children. They all live next door to each other up in Solymar, a village on the north-western edge of Budapest which has a Divine Mother pilgrimage route running through it… the Via Maria, stretching from Austria to Romania.. And ‘The grace of a spiritual woman’ is inspired by another friend we usually sit next to at spiritual meetings.
The Chain Bridge is my favourite of all of Budapest’s wonderful bridges. There’s just something about it… it’s like a sentinel guarding the whole city, under the governance of archangels. For fun, you can’t beat the sunny Margaret Bridge which takes you to the wonderfully cheerful Margaret Island, but the Chain Bridge has the lions… and in my imaginal realms, the lambs of Christ, too.
My favourite restaurant in the world is in Rozsa utca! A vegan restaurant that is unfailingly welcoming, cheerful and cosy. It constellates the abundant mother for me! My muse used to live in Dohany utca, a fifteen-minute walk away, in the Jewish quarter. I must have done that walk a thousand times, often in the winter rain. There is a beauty and a melancholy to those streets, barely contained by the peeling paint on the crumbling old walls.
The very first weekend I ever came to Hungary, I went to the Pilis Mountains to film a video for a song of mine. It was late October, dry, misty and about 5 degrees in town. Up in these hills it was below zero and the whole forest was covered in ice. The Dalai Lama proclaims that the Pilis is where the heart chakra of the whole planet lies.
I don’t doubt it. I love Hungary… the Christ of Europe… and I love my friends, who dedicate themselves to cultivating spiritual gnosis. These pieces are an outpouring of that love, a kiss to those dear friends, and a grateful acknowledgement for the bridge to the subtle realms I experience in Budapest when I’m with them, so that we can all commute between heaven and earth… and to my twin-flame, who brought me lovingly to this place of divinity in my soul.