New Release from Falmouth Pianist
By: JOANNE BRIANA-GARTNER, April 15, 2014
Contemporary pianist and composer Gary Girouard of Falmouth recently released the fifth album in his award-winning “Naked Piano” series. According to the press release, “The Naked Piano–Elements” is targeted at adults seeking relief from workday stress. As stated in the album notes, “Elements” explores “things in this world, but not of this world.”
The songs on the album are all original compositions. “The Naked Piano–Elements” contains 13 tracks that cover a wide range of emotions and themes. The inspiration for the album came from a collection of compositions that all seemed to have deeper meanings than the titles themselves, Mr. Girouard said. “Even the title ‘Elements’ has various meanings— it could be air/water/fire/earth, the table of the elements, or a building block of something else.” The song titles are all simple and straight forward: Water, Love, August, Miracles, Springtime, Footprints and others. Yet Mr. Girouard pointed out that the title “Love” “on one level, it’s beautiful. On deeper inspection, it can be painful. Seemingly, Love pervades the universe.”
Another song is titled “Time.” Time is the vital element which creates music, said Mr. Girouard, “but it’s also something difficult to grasp and understand.”
The final composition is called “Awakening.” Mr. Girouard said he deliberately put the piece last in order to challenge listeners to “wake up.” “We walk around glued to our gadgets,” Mr. Girouard said, adding that he was just as guilty as anyone else. But by doing this we “often miss the life and splendor right in front of us.”
Mr. Girouard began his piano career in 2003 with the release of his first Naked Piano album. The music quickly gained the attention of critics and listeners around the world. The “Naked” title also raised some eyebrows in the contemporary piano genre. “I’ve had some folks who didn’t quite get the reference” Mr. Girouard said. “As a pianist, you really do expose yourself—you’re all alone with this beautiful instrument, sharing your innermost thoughts, beliefs and experiences, it’s intimate, and powerful.”
Previous releases in the series have earned “Album of the Year” awards from the website SoloPiano.com.
While Mr. Girouard will be performing out of state this summer including gigs in Chicago, Nashville, Knoxville, and Birmingham, he regularly performs at the Cape Cod Conservatory and has also played at Falmouth’s Arts Alive Festival.
“The Naked Piano Elements” is available through Amazon, iTunes, Pandora, Spotify and Google Play. It is also available in CD form at Eight Cousins Books in Falmouth.