‘Played Once: 16 Impromptus Pondering Empire’ Out Now

The compositions on this recording are all spontaneous. My score is the world we live in. The result is my emotional and musical interpretation of the forces that course through the planet: war and violence, greed and poverty, arrogance and colonialism, consumerism and vapidity, racism and genocide, patriotism and scoundrelism, as well as the obscured inner layers of beauty and fortitude, hope and goodwill, and increasing solidarity among the oppressed.

Each of the sixteen compositions took on its shape as I played; as it sounded the music informed my fingers and led the way through a narrative until a conclusion presented itself.

“Never Again?” is the opening song in the Gaza Suite. “Never again” is a statement of determination and intent that has become the universal reaction to the holocaust perpetrated by Nazi Germany on the Jews, Roma, homosexuals, communists and other perceived enemies of the Reich in the mid 20th century.

How tragic is it that the main victims of that violence and murder are themselves now perpetuating the same crimes of violence and extermination against the civilian population of Gaza, who have had the temerity to resist the taking of their homeland and culture by the Israeli state, backed by the U.S. and its western allies?

As generational trauma can be passed down from the parent to the child, so too can the people of entire nations, as generations are bombarded with indoctrination and compulsory military service, find themselves traumatized into a state of fear and intolerance. As Zionist leaders have worked to achieve their goal or ridding Palestine of the Palestinians in order to create a wholly Jewish state, they have had to take away their population’s capacity for empathy; they have had to convince Israelis that not only must the Palestinians be replaced, but they must also no longer be seen as valid human beings, in order to deserve the punishment that the Israeli state has decided to mete out to them.

“Never Again?” and the other compositions on this recording are dedicated to finding the strength through love and empathy to be able to defy the dominant paradigm; to resist the greed, selfishness and misplaced pride that drives the daily destruction of the planet and of too many of those who are simply trying to live in peace upon it.