LOST IN REVERIE (with Kirk Hale at the piano)
Reverie may be defined as a state of dreamy meditation or fanciful musing, and a musical reverie as an instrumental composition of a dreamy character. How long has it been since you were transported via the strains of music to such a place? Here’s your chance to rekindle memories only a familiar melody can evoke. Kirk Hale’s collection of time-honored melodies don’t overpower the emotions and memory with lyrics and layers of instrumentation—they are powerful in the simplicity of a melody beautifully expressed on the keys of a piano. His technique is powerful yet gentle, soothing, and wooing—much like an evening of reminiscing with a long-time best friend. Put on Kirk’s music, kick back and allow yourself to be lost in reverie. It’s a journey worth taking. – Sarah Clayton
A note from Kirk —
I was born in Dallas, Texas, on September 15, 1957. My mother was an accomplished classical pianist, providing music at Osgood’s School of Fine Arts while also teaching piano lessons in our home in the evenings. She exposed my sister and me to classical music only, and my first lessons began at age 4. I learned one song, My First Waltz, for the upcoming recital featuring her students. Having listened to their more advanced pieces of music, during one practice session I decided to repeat the melody several times to create a “sound” similar to the other students. I was interrupted by a shout from my mother, “You’re playing it by ear!” Although I didn’t know what that meant, I could discern from her tone of voice that it was not something desirable. That recital was the end of my lessons and piano interest until age 13, when Carole King’s Tapestry album was released and the whole world changed for me musically. I had an intense desire to reproduce her music myself on the piano. After all, I could play Chopsticks and Heart and Soul duets with my sister. What more ability did I need?!
For the next few years, I spent most days figuring out chords and patterns by ear—listening to the music countless times for seemingly endless hours. That’s how I learned my favorite tunes. As a sophomore in high school, I decided to increase my skill by learning to play Debussy’s Clair de Lune, a daunting task requiring that I decipher the six pages of music using the old “All Cows Eat Grass” method of sight reading music. It was a 1½ year mission, but the payoff was two 1st Place Performances my senior year—defeating competitors who had studied music for years.
In college, I discovered Joni Mitchell and Laura Nyro and for the next several years decided to explore these artists fully instead of branching out musically. I landed my first full-time gig in Galveston, Texas, and realized that my learning curve for playing professionally was going to be all uphill! “Can you play Stardust, Georgia, Satin Doll, Smoke Gets in Your Eyes,” etc., the requesters would ask, and I’d answer with, “No, but I can play Natalie Cole, Fleetwood Mac, Electric Light Orchestra, Supertramp, Joni Mitchell, Elton John,” etc.
Even though I can still only find middle “C” on a sheet of music, I must have done something right because here I am today, having appeared at some of the finest establishments in Texas, including the Gleneagles Country Club, The Mansion on Turtle Creek, Wendy Krispin’s Restaurant (Dallas Design Center), the Tremont House, Nordstrom, The Wentletrap, the Wortham Center, and the Driskill Hotel.
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