At times evoking Ryuchi Sakamoto, experimental John Cale, instrumental David Sylvian, or *gasp* George Benson, Harlan Mark Vale’s music summons delicate things in the imagination – a water spider skating across the surface of a lake, a meditative gaze beneath a willow tree. But there is something edgy about his work that keeps it in step with the most contemporary artists, reserving the bright sincerity of it all from the glibness of an easy listening pile. MZ pressed the artist with the following cryptics:
Music Zeitgeist: Who?
Harlan Mark Vale: My name is Harlan Mark Vale. I am originally from the Pacific Northwest where I studied Electronic Music, 20th Century Composition and Audio Engineering at The Evergreen State College. Most of my performance and recording experience was playing drums, piano and synthesizer which included my work using the Buchla Modular Synthesizer in the electronic music labs at TESC. I played in a variety of musical group settings but primarily used free jazz improvisation, progressive fusion and experimental elements to create music.
Over the last three decades I have produced a large body of solo multi track electronic work. Some of which was used in the healing arts and music therapy.
I currently live in Prescott, Arizona.
HMV: Solo piano. Intuitive explorations of the Divine Spirit using free and
extemporaneous improvisational forms of navigation. Automatic writing from the heart into sound.
HMV: Because I love to play the piano, of course.
I believe that there is an apparent need for peaceful music on this planet. People have forgotten who they really are: Spiritual beings having a Human experience.
In the past, by focusing on what we don’t want, we have gotten a lot more of it. It is time to shift our focus to one of unity, expansion and peace. By doing this I believe that we all shall co-create a world that we truly desire. A world that benefits each and everyone of us in order to fulfill the reason we were put here in the first place.
To demonstrate this principal, what I do during a performance is first I connect to the Source within us all and then “I” get out of the way. From this still point issues forth a sound fully formed. I express this sonic image through my technical ability using the piano as a vehicle. As the Sufi poet Rumi once said, “The music IS the prayer”. In a kind of sympathetic vibration, people respond to this by generating creative thoughts within themselves. Quite often with the same mental / visual imagery that I have experienced during the performance. It has been quite fascinating to discover this parallel afterwards.
MZ: Until when?
HMV: The Ascension of the All.
MZ: Bonus Question: Where?
HMV: My intention is to perform live concerts throughout the world and to provide
music for film, television and multi-media art installations of all kinds. My interest also focuses on collaborating with the world’s finest musicians. Especially the ones that promote the positive music ideal for a universal audience who appreciates all forms of musical beauty.
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