Pianist & Composer Roger Davidson’s new album has now been released, entitled Temple of the Soul. It marks a new direction for Davidson, an eclectic artist who is also known for founding the non-profit Society for Universal Sacred Music.
Eventually, every serious musician wants to lay down music from the soul, music full of heart and spirit, without technical restraint or genre boundaries. For composer and pianist Roger Davidson, Temple of the Soul: Rhapsodies and Meditations is that album. Produced in New York by Adam Abeshouse and Roger Davidson and executive produced by Pablo Aslan, it was recorded on an impeccably restored Steinway piano from 1876. This, Davidson’s first solo piano album, shares a musical and spiritual journey in 12 adventurous and genre-defying musical improvisations.
Soundbrush Records releases the album today, and is planning concerts to support the album, including live performances at New York’s Caffe’ Vivaldi on October 9, 2014, and another on December 5, 2014 at St. Ignatius of Antioch Episcopal Church on NYC’s Upper West Side; exact details of these concerts and more to be announced on the artist’s website closer to the dates.
As Davidson says, music is for the world. At just four-years old, he found sanctuary and joy at the piano, experimenting and improvising with music. As his musicality grew, he discovered the internal and external power of music, and went on to study music with masters around the world.
Though commonly thought of as a classical or jazz artist, Davidson has a fearlessly eclectic reach, both as a composer and pianist, and as founder of the esteemed Society for Universal Sacred Music. It is possible that with the deep spiritual intention behind Temple of the Soul, he will add New Age/Solo Piano to his list of suitable genres, which already include Chamber, Symphonic, Choral, Jazz, Tango, Klezmer, Children’s music, Latin and Brazilian.
Commenting on the album, Davidson says that his new solo piano music is not a diversion from his other genres, but rather a forward-moving culmination of his inspirations, lifelong studies, world-wide collaborations, and interest in Sacred Music. The album, he says, is “not just a journey of the spirit; it’s an intuitive journey around the world. When you have the right color and the right kind of brush to express a feeling or a quality of life, it instinctively comes up and becomes part of the fabric of each piece.”
Seemingly effortlessly, Davidson channels and shares global music influences throughout the album. His love of the French Impressionist composers informs “Fountains of Life” while the Spanish-style grandeur in “Blessing” may remind some listeners of Enrique Granados; “Freedom for All” has a tinge of early African-American spirituals and hymns, while “From the Rising Sun” is based on the scale played on Japan’s national instrument, the Koto, a 13-string zither. The chromatic slides and jazz chords of “In the Eye of the Storm” point up its basic serenity, and hints of Casbah infuse the exotic “Journey of Wisdom.” The final piece “Waves of Reflection” offers Davidson’s reflection on life, on the spirit, on communing with the divine in all creation.
Play the album on: