BU Jazz Associate Professor Releases Solo Disc

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posted December 14, 2011

Brandon, MB — The Brandon flood of 2011 will be remembered by many in different ways. For pianist/bassist/composer Michael Cain, it was a time to focus on the creation of his latest disc entitled “Solo”. For this endeavour, he not only wrote the five cuts — Kammotion, Prayer, Gerald, The Question and Last Waltz — but also performed the piano and the electronics as well as produced the album.

“A lot of it was recorded during the flood and I was one of the evacuees. I was living in (colleagues) Eric (Platz) and Sarah (Hall’s) basement for most of the recording. The flood didn’t inspire me. It was a challenge because I was concerned about losing my stuff in the apartment. I didn’t get my piano out. The water didn’t reach my place, but it was touch and go for quite a while,” said Cain, who has been a School of Music faculty member since 2008. “The thing that the flood did was force me to focus: ‘It didn’t matter what comes, I’m making this recording.’ Without the flood, it would have been a different project. The flood made it ten times harder.”

After recording material in either his BU office, the Lorne Watson Recital Hall or in the Kinsmen Rehearsal Hall, Cain would bring home the material and edit in the evenings. Though this project was brought to fruition in about six months, it was something Cain had been dreaming about since his childhood.

“One of my biggest heroes would be Thomas Dolby — British/techno-keyboardist/singer/songwriter/composer. He does everything himself. Keyboard players can think like that because we can cover all the parts,” said Cain. “We can think about orchestrating in the way we would like it.”

A cohesive whole, the disc’s five compositions can be compared to the aural aspect of a walk in the forest. The idea of sound, juxtaposed with the piano line , is the main thread.

“It’s its own world of sounds. To me, it’s very nature-like. As I was mixing, I was thinking of creatures, little sounds that want to chirp up and go away, like if you’re in the woods. There are sounds that are very close and some in the distance,” said Cain. “It’s a way of taking electronic sounds and all those colours, textures and everything that’s available to use and have that seamlessly and organically encompassing an acoustic piano and all the vastness that the piano is. The piano is so big, with such rich tones and sounds that come out of every which way. The electronics morph in and around the piano.”

Michael Cain’s newest disc “Solo” is available through cdbaby.com, while the digital version is available on cduniverse.com, amazon.ca and iTunes.

For more information &/or photo/cover art, please contact:

Joanne F. Villeneuve
Brandon University
270 – 18th Street
Brandon, MB R7A 6A9
Tel. 204-727-9762



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