I Feel Like I’m Conducting an Orchestra!

Why do I feel I should don a black tuxedo, complete with tails?  Maybe it’s because I’m feeling quite masterful when setting the instrumentation for my next conquest….the Spellbound Concerto by Miklos Rozsa.  You may remember a movie from the 40’s by that name.  It was a classic collaboration of David O. Selznick (producer) and Alfred Hitchcock (director) starring Ingrid Bergman and Gregory Peck.  A thriller, to say the least!  The plot hinges around the psychosis of a murderer.  Except, in true Hitchcock fashion, the guilty party turns out to be an entirely different person than the one the viewer has been led to believe throughout the film.  Confused yet?  Anyway, the musical score reflects this aura of danger, apprehension and mystery.  My challenge is to transcribe this Academy Award Winning score to suit the Atelier organ while preserving the realism created by the composer.  A bit tricky, but also a fun task.

So I set out this weekend to accomplish just that.  How?  Well, the music itself supplies the dissonance to make the harmonies seem a bit edgy.  Funny, if one were to take the idea a little further, the result would be offensive to the ear.  But this work stops just short of that point.  And, just to make it even more of a challenge, a love interest develops in the plot.  So part of the notation is truly warm and beautiful.  Such a terrific suite to learn and to perform.

And I’ll be doing just that in Palm Springs this May at the annual Desi’s Music Center organ spectacular.  It’s a three-day event where folks from all over the country convene to not only experience professional concert artists in action but also glean practical application of what they’ve heard through daytime music workshops.  Part of the continued success of the festival is the hands-on aspect of the gathering where the pros like me gladly offer playing critiques and suggestions to those who aspire to advance their skills.  We all stay at the same Hilton Hotel, dine together and enjoy the various planned activities.  It’s always great fun as well as educational for the attendees.  If you’re interested, log onto http://www.desismusiccenter.com and click on Music Extravaganza for more details.  I hope to see you there this May.  Come and say “hi”.

So it’s back to preparing for these exciting few days.  Of course, I’ll also be featuring other less dramatic music while there.  The newly-introduced Platinum model Atelier console organ from Roland Corporation provides me with instrumentation ranging from Latin to Dixieland…..and everything in between.  Fortunately, I am able to store my sound registrations on a memory stick making it very convenient to “switch gears” while on stage.  It’s nice to know that the music industry continues to use today’s technology in improving their products.  I’m lucky to be a part of the promotion of these magnificent instruments.  I feel empowered by them!

I enjoy bringing these blogs to you and I hope you enjoy reading.  Please visit http://RosemaryBaileyMusic.com

We’ll talk more later.  Bye for now.

Rosemary Bailey




Making the Most of a Rainy Weekend

Well here we go with what some may categorize as a dull, dreary, wet couple of days.  Sure, the surfing and golfing folks are affected by inclement conditions…but I don’t participate in those kind of hobbies.  I guess the most dangerous part of my use of spare time would involve the possibility of getting struck by lightning while seated on the organ bench.  This actually did happen to me years ago while playing a concert in Arizona.  Fortunately, the strike hit a large tree just outside of the building I was in.  Incredibly loud, but no harm done except for scaring me to death.  Oddly enough I continued performing until the end of the chorus of the song.  The next strike knocked out the electrical power…so that was the end of that.

Then there was the incident in Redlands, CA, when a moderate earthquake hit during my program.  People in this area are somewhat used to them…although I personally think it’s impossible to claim that…and everyone stayed seated, including me.  I didn’t particularly like my stage positioning that was directly under a huge light fixture.  This time I did stop playing until the tremor passed, then resumed at the exact spot where I had left off.  Everyone laughed and applauded.

I think the most remarkable experience I ever had while performing occurred on the east coast of south Florida.  Yes, a giant hurricane was about to come through.  However, Floridians in that area seem to have a handle on the drill necessary for these things.  Everyone had known that the storm system was coming and was apparently prepared for that possibility.  That is, everyone but me.  I was playing at an afternoon event for a Roland Atelier dealer.  Understandably, a relatively small group of listeners attended, maybe 75 or so.  I cut the program short when asked to do so by the store owner.  After all, it was getting progressively more ominous outside and dark, really dark.  But the crowd wanted me to CONTINUE!  They said, “Oh, we have plenty of time…..keep going”.  I then gave them a very short, very fast rendition of 12th Street Rag and left.  It was only later that I realized I had musically escorted in a very powerful lady, hurricane Frances.

So with these fond memories in mind, I choose to sequester myself from the droplets predicted for San Diego today.  The up side is a cozy atmosphere suitable for creating music, sipping wine and hanging out with my Golden.  That is until the next traumatic experience…perhaps involving a swarm of giant locusts?????

Hey be sure to “like” me on Facebook.  First of all, everyone likes to be liked but it will allow you to keep up with what I’m doing and also get you guessing at the Song of the Month next month.  Visit http://RosemaryBaileyMusic.com to get more details.  Until next time.

Rosemary Bailey