Hey, hey, hey! It’s 2021, hurrah!
Christmas came and went, and it was a weird combination of wonderful and horrible. That seems a match for 2020, right? Here we are in a new year, and so far, it’s … well it’s more like 2020.1.
I’ve got high hopes for this year though. To be honest, I had high hopes for 2020 as well, so maybe don’t take any stock tips from me.
I hope you’ve watched some of the videos I’ve released in the new year. I’m trying to shake it up and do a mix of sacred and pop piano, sacred and [light] classical organ, and some fun duets/trios. I’ve got plans for me, and the response so far has been delightfully positive. I really hope you’ve enjoyed the music so far and will keep listening. I’ve found new joy in playing with these projects, and it’s now been 24 years since I started playing piano. That’s crazy to me.
So, what have I been up to? Glad you asked! This month, I spent some time defining exactly where I want this project to go. That resulted in three distinct areas under one venture: Stephen Aber Music. I updated my music page to reflect these, but I’ll explain it here less formally.
STEPHEN ABER MUSIC
If this entire venture were a tree, Stephen Aber Music would be the trunk. Not only do all of the videos I do fall under the banner of SA Music, but videos that, specifically, don’t fit into any of the three categories below will be branded SA Music.
Episode 6 of Sacred Sounds went up this past weekend, entitled Songs and Hymns for the New Year. I was thrilled to film parts of this episode at Saint Patrick Catholic Church in Fayetteville, NC. If you’re curious why, well, you’ll have to watch the episode! These episodes will continue throughout 2021, though I’m going to have to cut from every two weeks to one per month. I haven’t been able to put any energy into fundraising yet, and I just can’t afford to take the time necessary to do it bi-weekly. Each episode will have a theme and feature selections based on that theme. I hope to be able to travel more as COVID restrictions let up.
ORGANO DA VIAGGO
That last part leads into this branch! Organo da viaggo means “travelling organ” (CUTE, right?!) (also, I prefer the double L spelling of travelling, fight me). This is [obviously] based on The Joy of Music, to which I basically owe my entire interest in and knowledge of the organ. The plan will be to travel and record a few songs for each (or every other, we’ll see) episode of Sacred Sounds. Then, I’ll take portions of each episode and post them individually. From an audience engagement standpoint, the shorter videos definitely perform better on Facebook and Instagram, but the Sacred Sounds episodes are really where my heart is at this point, so I’ll do my best to gently graze as many birds as I can with one stone (it’s past time we stopped killing all the little birdies with our stones).
TRIANGLE COLLABORATIVE ARTISTS
My vision for this branch is to have a specific channel and brand for when I perform with others. I love to collaborate with other instrumentalists and vocalists, though I’m very picky (about SO many things, clearly). This branch is the one that must wait the longest, for two reasons. First, it’s difficult to perform with groups given the whole deadly virus sitch. The other reason is that artists deserve to be paid, and I can’t afford that at the moment. I’m not playing for exposure, and I don’t expect other people to do it either. *Hopefully* after COVID and with some financial backing, I can start hiring some of the AMAZING local musicians we have in the Triangle to come record with me, so stay tuned for that!
Alright, there’s a recap of January’s tasks. If you made it reading this far, WOW, that’s some dedication, I’m quite flattered. I’ve got more stuff in the works, and I look forward to sharing it with you! Y’all stay safe out there!