IT'S OUT! SMALL ACTS 20th ANNIVERSARY EDITION
"Small Acts - 20th Anniversary Edition" was released on November 1, 2021 and is available on your favorite streaming service!
Twenty years ago I released a CD (remember those?) of solo piano music called “Small Acts”, so named because each song represented a small act that I can do to make myself and hopefully a small part of the world, better.
I played these eleven spontaneously improvised songs with specific intent. Before I pressed the record button, I fasted. I meditated. I sought to just let go and allow creativity to flow, my contribution being only yearning and desire - a desire to BE.
The result was music with a wide range of feelings and styles - from what I came to call “alt-Niggun”- simple, almost prayer-like melodies with a sense of urgency, to solos and ‘jams’ that sound like reflections of Ian Anderson’s (of Jethro Tull) flute solos connected by flowing melodic progressive piano segments.
The common denominator of the music is desire and yearning expressed in a direct, urgent and spontaneous way. Over the years, people have told me that they’ve experienced a broad range of emotions listening to this music doing yoga, meditation, spirit quests, guided imagery, and even as pre-sabbath mood music. I’m happy that it has helped people relax and become centered. It’s not “mantra music”. The undercurrent of yearning makes it more suited for “active meditation” (questing), and inner exploration.
After 20 years, I have learned a few things, along with getting a bit older. I’ve added three new “small acts” to the collection, recorded much more recently (as recently as 2021), in a style similar to the original songs. “Remembering”, “Listening Well”, and “Fixing It” are performed with the same spontaneous intention of desire. Each one has a video of the recorded performance. Each one hopefully shows some musical growth in this particular style after 20 years. Each one may be a simple, small act but can be very important.
Here is a video of "Fixing It" - one of the new Small acts. The last 20 years spanned many of the young family years. It seemed like I was constantly fixing something that was broken, whether physical or then virtual (what’s the password?). Add to that a job where I spent much of my time understanding and then fixing problems. Top it off with a dose of personal growth and internal fixing, and “Fixing It” takes a proper place in the set of Small Acts.
2001 wasn’t a great year for the world, or for me personally. The 20th anniversary of “Small Acts” has given me the opportunity for an experience close to what I think a person who restores antiques and relics must feel - revealing and reviving what was hidden underneath long ago. The remix and remaster has brought a clear, clean sound to the MIDI recordings using new digital piano technology and modern engineering tools. I can hear things I haven’t heard in years or may never have really heard clearly. My heartfelt thanks to Francois Michaud of Wild Horse Studio, France, for bringing a warmth to the music with his mixing and mastering talents.
There’s a lot more to this story that is fun to capture and share, as well as the music!. Stay tuned.
"Alan Goldberg is an artist with a creative and passionate taste for making cinematic musical pieces."
“Alan Goldberg places a tremendous amount of passion and integrity into his music, and any fan of authentic jazz fusion will definitely connect with his mastery of composition and vibrant personality.”
JazzCorner interview on my "origin story". Everyone has one, and this summarizes mine.
In my latest interview in Facets of Art I get to discuss growing pains 4/1/21