'Expectations' was recorded as the result of a German-Irish collaboration of four musicians featuring seven of my original compositions by telling the story of how I explored many different dialects of
Stylistically my compositions include a mixture of Blues, Hardbop, Modal, Ballad, Latin, Broadway Standard and Thelonius Monk influenced tunes.
In essence, Expectations brings together different cultures through the language of music. The album was released in November 2015.
Mathias Baumann Quartet - Expectations (Official Music Video)
In early 2015 I asked visual artist Jackie Hudson Lalor if she would be interested in a collaboration responding with an artwork to music I had written for my album 'Expectations'.
Jackie: 'I listened to a selection of tracks to decide which I would respond to.
Although I liked them all, the title 'Expectations' really appealed to me. I had had an idea to do a painting featuring a maze for a while & knew this would be an ideal topic to base it on.
I thought about expectations from my own point of view & what it meant to me, how some are good, some are bad (worries & anxieties) & how we all bring our own baggage & histories to what we expect from life and situations. Sometimes we have a clear idea of what to expect & sometimes we have no clue!
As I always work with good references, I needed to build the model of the maze first & I started making boxes or rooms from foam-board. One by one these were populated by personal & universal expectations and some were left blank to symbolise our not knowing what to expect. The wasps in particular are indicative of worry & anxiety. For the most part the rooms are closed off and compartmentalised & some have a direct route to them.
Once the model was complete & lit in a way I was happy with, I photographed it, found a good angle and proceeded to draw it up & begin painting. Mathias filmed this initial work, he obviously has great patience!
Very soon after starting to draw up the maze I realised I was lost ( how appropriate!) but the camera was rolling so I ploughed on & later readjusted! You can see these adjustments in the subsequent photographs. Other bits and pieces were added later, stairs up & down to different levels, the baggage & the wasps. Most enjoyable part to paint? the red sofa, biggest pain in the arse?, the wallpaper!
I listened to the title track a lot while painting as I really feel the music can influence what you are doing as you work and now I can't look at the painting without hearing the music! It was a really enjoyable experience, one which took me out of my comfort zone and added greatly to my own personal practice.
There were two months of painting which followed, photographing each layer as I went along & Mathias came back to film & photograph the final stages.'
Jackie and I have also been interviewed by Irish TV about our music-art collaboration for 'Expectations'.
You can watch this interview here...
Mathias Baumann Quartet - Friday Night (Official Music Video)
The video for my composition 'Friday Night' features photographs of Dublin city during a typical Friday night. I actually spent two Friday nights in the city taking pictures.
Mathias Baumann Quartet - Take It Or Leave It (Official Music Video)
The sunset scene for 'Take It Or Leave It' was shot during my summer holidays in 2015. I was watching the sunset together with my wife and my two daughters in a small harbour in Sweden. Pure tranquility.
Listen to the album on spotify:
Track List and credits
01 Friday Night
02 Julia's Song
03 Ode To Thelonius
04 Take It Or Leave It
05 The BumbleBeeBopBip DeeDoodleDeeDooDa
06 Mr. M.D.
I am passionate about music and enjoy composing and playing. I always intend to create something meaningful and from the heart.
My sources of inspiration are the things that surround me.
From my early childhood I have been surrounded by, and deeply connected with music and gathered a lot of experience by playing various styles of music with musicians from many different countries.
In recent years I have been exploring intercultural and multidisciplinary approaches of writing, playing recording and performing music. I therefore made it my
mission to explore life and our connection with one another and the world through meaningful music and creative, multidisciplinary art projects.
Everybody involved in this album has poured their heart and soul into recording the music and creating the artwork which represents it. Every second of my time, every ounce of my individual passion has been
invested in realising the dream of sharing my music with you, and with the entire world.
I seek neither fame nor commercial success. My love of jazz has always been driven by the contentment and enjoyment of really playing, composing and recording my own music.
I would like to thank Satya, Baz and Darragh for their commitment and great playing on the album, Sarah for the superb artwork, Jackie for her painting which became the music video of the title track and my wife and children for their love and patience.