Seems strange being told or reprimanded for liking something you like, that someone else may not. “What’r ya stupid? They suck!’ I’ve even said it myself with bands I thought sucked. Popular bands too! Just because you’re popular doesn’t mean you’re good. i.e. Justin Beiber, Taylor Swift, One Direction (this last band represents all boy bands. Nothing good about any boy band.) I’m not talking a group of guys, I’m talking about, Simon Cowell making up troupes of awfulness over and over again. Stop it Simon!! See, all personal taste.
One Musician in particular I’m referring too, Yanni. I have so much respect for this dude.
Oooo, I can hear the escaping breaths and whines. He’s just a pianist that loves his hair.
Ok, that may be true, but there’s so much more to this fellow then you may not know.
Born in Greece, Yanni’s family wasn’t rich, but there was a family piano and Yanni had a portable transistor radio. He learned by playing the family piano while listening to his radio . That was the only way he could hear the songs he liked. Learn them and play them. Over time developing perfect pitch. Something every musician wishes they had!
Upon reading his Autobiography I soon learned that these difficult pieces he was writing came to him so fast that Yanni himself had to create a musical shorthand of sorts just to write it down. Traditional black dot notes took to long. Also, upon touring Yanni had to transcript his shorthand for the other instrument players to read. Violins; guitar; flute; horns even drums. And with Charlie Adams as your drummer, look out!
With today’s Digital Keyboards you can play every instrument that has been sampled and the sound input into the piano’s database. But get up on stage and try playing 30 instruments at once. Ha!
Over time Yanni’s shorthand technique of writing grew too slow, so he just memorized the songs, no need to write them down.
When Yanni left Greece for America, he stayed with a brother of his that had left years before to the States. Yanni’s father came to visit one year thinking Yanni was a trade worker. He gave Yanni crap for wasting his time playing that piano. Yanni sat his father down and played an original composition. To which his father replied after the song, “You need to keep playing piano!”
Yanni is no different from Beethoven or Mozart. The pieces aren’t as dry as Classical music but every bit as detailed & structured.
I have a few Facebook Friends that are musicians. And very good at that. Can Attila is a Turkish Musician; Paul Lawler out of the UK; Paul Speer; Paul Haslinger (ex of Tangerine Dream) or Mari Voile (drummer extraordinaire) of the United States, but in the early 80’s liking someone like Yanni was met with comments or jokes (Yawnie) and that was ok. I can take it.
You think Yanni is some long hair loser. Or, you have no clue who he is. Check him out.
*Images: Top; Yanni in concert Lower left; Traditional sheet music Lower right; Yanni shorthand sheet music