"The Idea Of You" is the first of a trio of neoclassical solo piano albums composed, performed, and produced by Andrew Souter. These projects have been two decades in the making and represent a return to traditional music composition, engaging song-writing, and the pure passion of emotional story-telling. This Andrew's most personal and intimate music. It is quite literally a love project. We hope it may it help you on your journey, as it has us...
"The Idea Of You" is music inspired by the spirit of Eros and all of its blessings as well as its tribulations. It explores the vicissitudes of romantic love, the delicate seasons and contour of life, and all the lessons learned along the way. Themes of desire, passion, limerence, romantic love, idolatry, jealousy, envy, loss, regret, forgiveness, acknowledgment, appreciation, acceptance, and eventually glimpses of true understanding permeate the work. It attempts to communicate that which so many of us can never quite communicate properly with words. It is an open apology for the clumsy mistakes we all make when coming to maturity in learning how to care selflessly for another human being. It is a gentle reminder as to what is most important in life, as well as an invocation to continuously seek self-improvement regarding our understanding of such matters.
Stylistically "The Idea of You" seats itself firmly between modernist minimalism and lyrical romanticism and credits influences such as Einaudi, Tiersen, Mertens, Nyman, Winston, Sakamoto, Hearts of Space and many others. It intentionally uses a very limited set of production tools in effort to purposefully focus the attention on the human element of the story. Solo piano, 2CAudio reverbs, and a gentle mastering process consisting of light EQ and compression are the only tools used in the vast majority of the project. This is deceptively simple music which intends to have a complex emotional effect on the listener by focussing all of its effort on the intuitive use of harmonic, melodic, and rhythmic theme and variation.
If You Would Only Let Me
I would put you first; I would never be too busy. I would tell you daily how important you are to me. I would hold you every night and kiss you every morning. I would explore every inch of your soul and still long to know more. I would hold your hand on long walks. I would break patterns of ineffective communication, admit my own weaknesses, and let go of male pride which deludes me into mistakingly believing I need to know everything about everything. I would listen more actively to any frustrations you may be experiencing and avoid feeling blamed for them. I would avoid offering solutions when all you really need is empathy and friendship, not a super-hero who thinks he has to fix everything. I would learn to work together effectively as a team and value deeply your strengths without feeling threatened by our differences. I would learn to forgo power and choose grace. I would forgive us both for all of the clumsy mistakes we made along the way. I would learn to value what is important. I would give thanks to the universe for the gift of your presence in my life. I would help you become all you are destined to be. I would learn how to love selflessly, and be of service, both to you, as well as to whatever higher power wished to use our example. (VIDEO)
Still Raining There
As the saying goes: nothing ever ends well, otherwise it would not end. And yet large parts of us still wish things would not end, even after we convince ourselves it is for the best. Is it an act of grace to accept fate and slowly fade away without a fight, or does the universe want to test our resolve and see just how far we are willing to go to obtain, and more importantly perhaps to keep, the object of our desires? It is human not to know; it is human to exist in bewilderment regarding such matters. Being aware of this, however, never makes it any easier. Endings always bring an emptiness in a person's heart and soul. No one ever wants to fail, but sometimes we wait too long to really try in the right ways to truly succeed. The eleventh hour concession is always the hardest case to handle. It leaves one with many doubts. It leaves a person with the hope that things would be, could be, should be, better if only... In such cases the weather can be forever raining in one's heart. (VIDEO)
The Idea Of You
This is your song. I wrote the main parts of it in the first month of our relationship as we were falling in love. I've played parts of it for you before many times, but I had never finished it. I have now evolved it into its complete form. This is how I choose to remember you. I focus on the positives; I idealize and romanticize you. My idea of you remains loving and longing even if we are not meant to be. My idea of you persists and looks past challenges despite how difficult they may seem. I believe our ideas and our ideals create our own reality and therefore it is always best to imagine perfection however we may desire it to be. This song is reflection of all the love and gentleness we shared during good times. Ultimately it is a song of optimism even in the face of adversity. Its verses and chapters moves sideways like the astrological crab that you are, but there is deep beauty in it, and in the end it gets to were it wants to go and finds happiness and peace. Thank you for this song. I hope it may comfort you.
A Dancer Remembered
Her pain was overwhelming--to her as well as me. The loss of a dear friend, was too much for her to bare. She felt an empty, helpless despair. She felt powerless. She felt alone.
She came to me, her partner, her lover, and her best friend, for comfort, support, and empathy. I was ill-equipped to provide it and misguided in my approach as was typical of my foolishness at the time. My usual male approach of attempting to fix things and power through difficult situations was completely impotent to solve such things. There is no fixing suicide. There is a finality to death. There is an immutable permanence to it. The path of nature has no power over it. You cannot over power or out think it.
Seeing your loved one in pain and despair is a hard thing. Feeling powerless to make it better for them is even worse. I held her for a short while. I wiped her tears away, half expecting them to disappear as if I had waved a magic wand, but they persisted. They felt cold on her cheek as if giving representation of the emptiness she felt inside. She could light up a small country with a smile over the simplest of pleasures, but her sadness was equally potent and could rip your soul out in an instant. All I wanted to do was to make it better, but I had no idea how to do it. There was no solution.
I was terrified. I felt incompetent. I was too foolish then to realize that she had not come to me for a solution, but rather simply for empathy and acknowledgement of her pain. She wanted to share it with me, just as she always did with her joy. She just wanted me to be there with her. She wanted me to participate in the present moment with her. A tragedy is always better shared, as she later told me when I myself needed comforting -- a painful case of situational irony for me to recall now given my failure to afford her the same luxury. She had always been the wiser one of the two of us, and much faster to choose grace--a skill I had hoped one day she may teach our children.
My own pride left me feeling helpless. I removed myself from the situation. She needed space, I somehow managed to delude myself into believing. So I left her feeling abandoned. I came to the studio and channeled her pain. I did the only thing I was good at, as god knows I was not good at face-to-face emotional support when she needed it. I scored her experience as if it were my own, and remembered for her a person whom I had never met. It came to me effectively in one pass. I did not compose it so much as I simply discovered it, or allowed it to come out of me from somewhere else. She sat upstairs alone crying as I worked. I imagined I felt all of the precarious twists and turns of this poignant emotional roller-coaster that was forced upon her. Indeed I did not have to imagine, for I felt them myself despite being unable to adequately share this with her at the time. I hoped that one day I could fix things by having used her pain to create a thing of pure beauty that could perhaps help her as well as others.
I knew what I was hearing was something special so I quickly recorded the improvisational composition while the moment was still happening. It took only seven or eight minutes to record, despite the composition not existing in any form prior to that night, nor having ever played anything similar to it myself. It took years after that night for my analytical brain to understand what my intuition channeled effortlessly in an instant while under emotional duress -- both my own as well as my loved one's.
It is taking even longer for me to forgo power and simply accept the path of grace over the path of nature. I have since lost the privilege of having her in my life for failing in these lessons. And yet the composition remains. A blessing and a curse... I hope that it may be a blessing for those who hear it. May it implore you, as well as me, to be more introspective, and augment our sense of empathy for our loved ones. May it remind us that there are problems out there that are beyond our capacity to fix, and that sometimes people simply need to be held instead of offered solutions. May the pain contained in this work help others learn these lessons and do better with them than I have. May something beautiful come of it for someone I will never meet...
Andrew Souter: composition, performance, mixing, mastering, words, and general obsessing
Nicolas Laget: additional composition and orchestration on Solstice
Loredana Maria Pricopie: visual concepts, model, actress, female dancer
Andrei Zdetovetchi: photography
Timo Lutencu: video director and cinematographer
Christian Sirk: video editor
Stoian Razvan: male dancer
Irina Stefan: choreographer
2CAudio: reverb and signal processing
Rich, beautiful touch... emotional, connects, a rare gift...
Absolutely beautiful... I'm crying.
Very beautiful composition and very well played. Compliments my friend.
I love this so incredibly much, you are amazing.
Your music has this charm.. it feels like a dream.. i just love to hear your music on loop.. <3
Sweet, sweet music, man! Love it!
This is such a towering piece of music. Excellent playing and composition!
Magnificent song...great talent
This is a wonderful piano piece Andrew. Thank you.
Listening to it again.. I forgot how much I like it!
I'm going to cry - this is awesome.
Your music is captivating :) So Beautiful!
Just hauntingly beautiful! Love your work Andrew!!!!
Magical piece of music.
wow wow wow *amazing*
So dreamy. Just beautiful.
Very nice, you sound very engaged with the music becoming one with it. meditative piano. mahalo :-)
What can i say, words dont speak , the music does:)
This is a seriously gorgeous melody dude, what a lovely sounding piano you have.
Wow.. This is just amazing! Awesome skills!
I am absolutely enthusiastic because of this beautiful music...
Thank you for the journey
Wow...spectacular! ...so intricate, love the light hearted delicacy ...very nice
Can't get enough of your tracks especially this one ahhhh! soooo beautiful!
Loved the underlying melancholy in this music, thanks mate :)
Thank you for a truly enoyable few minutes - your music is so wonderfully relaxing!
Your tracks tranport a deep and beautiful sadness... I love this!
Fantastic piece of music you have created
Love the piano! So sensual!
You are a brilliant pianist.
You are losing me in thought as the fog rolls in. I love those places and rain is a lifelong love for me. Beautifully conceived Andrew.
incredibily beautiful, sensitive, and reflective. I find there's a wonderful peacefulness within this.
Sometimes when the rain won't stop we just have to make the best of the condition. Seems like playing this could cheer up someone near (or far).
Love the harmonic progression :)
This is a phenomenal track...ah, such a beauty and I have heard some great artists lately but this is beyond description and I feel the talk between two people and then also the ups and downs... favored... thank you! Smiling at ya~
This theme is just amazing! minimalistic and repetitive, caught me!
Nice melody, i'm on the train :)
evocative... I can easily place this with any early morning trip I've ever taken into NYC
great composition & performance
OMG! Amazing, Love The Melody!
Walking uphill from Florence till Fiesole....i just did, but this morning also now in your music. thank you. thank you:)
i like that you keep things simple - very effective.
one more magic in the world
Enjoyed listening to this piece. Soothing and beautiful
lovely and anxious and the feeling of something pending
I like how the piece becomes always more lighthearted and cheerful
so pure and beautiful...great one..
Unbelievable beauty and talent
The music takes me there..Where I was full of hopes & so in love...As a veridic dreamer!;)
some great unexpected moments in this piece!
Great sense of space between & within phrases , playing with silence is real musicianship.
so gentle and elegant
wwwwonderful absolute beauty.. gentle calm pure fantastic sound world i love
Green And Blue
Train To New York
The repetitive rhythmic structure of the motif invokes the mechanical rhythm of an idealized train engine. There is a constant rhythmic motion to the train, but as we travel we see various shades of colors and textures out of the window and occasionally slip into day-dreaming, reflecting on the past, and imagining the future. At one point the daydream takes over and the rhythm is lost for a short while. A bridge, unrelated to the main theme, takes over for a moment of pure reflection. We are awakened from our daydream by the activity and excitement of the next stop, and the anticipation that this may be our destination. Alas it is not, and as we continue our journey, the rhythm guides us onwards towards the next stop. The stops, which function musically like choruses, focus consciousness on the present and hint at being another step closer to the final destination, until finally we do reach it: the metaphorical New York.
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, King James Version
I’m all out of love
I'm not sure what I’m saying?
When nothing can help us now
And I’m in no mood for praying
I’m all out of tears
Can’t you see that I’m crying?
When no one cares, they take your side
They’re tired of listening to my cries
I can’t even look at your face anymore
Without remembering what we had before
I’m all out of love.
All out of love.
I’m all out of hope
And I see this going no where
When I checked out a long time ago
But it seems like you’re still here
I’m all, out of faith
I'm not sure what I believe in
But I, I have to find it myself
And now I’m looking for a reason
I can’t look to you for the answers anymore,
I need to find what I’ve been searching for
I’m all out of love.
All out of love…
Lift this weight upon my shoulders, I’ve carried it too far and long
Now the time has come to walk away
We can’t listen to what other people say
Just embrace your destiny
You know your home’s not here with me
Don’t be afraid to be alone
You know someone else will love you more than me…
Athanasia Agnostoua, vocal version lyrics from the female perspective
Unless You Love
Unless you love, your life will flash before you.