"Watercolors" is a marvelous collection of freely composed piano solos, each spontaneously inspired and created in the moment. Free composition is Ms. Gillan’s method in which the harmonies are created in the moment along with the melodies. Her style is one of classical melodies floating atop jazz harmonies, open 4th voicings, major 7ths that never resolve, and constantly changing key centers. These pieces all have a harmonic structure that constantly changes modality, never feeling a need to return to the original key.
Each piece from "Watercolors" has its inspiration from her travels near a body of water: "Seascapes" reflects a stay in Encinitas, California on the Pacific Ocean;"Moontides" is from a weeklong vacation on Anna Maria Island in Florida;"Cliffside Coves" brings up memories of the Ionian Sea along Isola Bella, Sicily. "Harbor Mist" reminds her of the farthest point in Western Europe, Cabo da Roca, Portugal, where Christopher Columbus set sail so long ago from the tallest cliffs overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. "Sailboat Serenade" is a gentle reminder of a summer at Interlochen Music Academy and sailing on Grand Traverse Bay, Michigan. Another favorite vacation spot was Yosemite Falls in Yosemite National Park, California—which inspired the wandering "Water Ballet".
"Lighthouse Brigade" brings back memories of being a lighthouse keeper with her husband & two daughters, one summer at Big Sable Point Lighthouse on the dunes of Lake Michigan. "Seafoam", in its 5-4 meter, is reminiscent of the undulating waves near the shore at lowtide during an east-coast family reunion at St. Augustine Beach, Florida. And finally, living so near to the Gulf Coast and its Katrina tragedy of 2005, a bittersweet memory of Bay St. Louis, Mississippi – "Gulf Coast Reflections".
Rebecca Gillan has embraced music from many different directions throughout her career. Performing classical & jazz, musical theater, and organ music for churches, has provided a diverse background from which to begin her own style. Teaching talented music students improvisation & composition also provided another chance to develop originality.
Ms. Gillan is also deeply interested in healing power of music, and shares her music with hospitals, music therapists, massage therapist and centers of healing.
https://www.tradebit.comlan has a Master’s in Composition/Music Theory from Southeastern Louisiana University, Hammond, Louisiana; Jazz Keyboard from Grove School of Music in Southern California and piano performance and music education degrees from Hope College in Holland, Michigan. Her background as a classical pianist won her a music scholarship and a concerto competition while at Hope College.
Classical influences include: Claude Debussey, Frederic Chopin, while jazz influences have been Oscar Petersen, Bill Evans, Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea, Joe Sample and pianists George Winston along with Ms. Gillan’s Dick Grove’s Music Workshop classmate, Liz Story.
Currently, she is a composer, professional musician and is an Assistant Professor of Music at Baton Rouge Community College in Louisiana, with professional memberships in ASCAP as an author and a publisher, and is a member of the American Federation of Musician’s Local 174-496 in New Orleans.
https://www.tradebit.comlan has written and produced a number of original compositions and recordings and has performed from the Pacific Ocean to the Mediterranean. Her compositions find their inspiration in the beauty and seasons of nature, reflecting sounds of the wind, water and wood life in rhythms and flowing ambience ("American Landscapes: Suite for Piano & Strings", 1998).
Her collection of original piano compositions, Impressions, Piano Solos for the Reflective Mood (2004- compact disc) created a new form of composition, improvising melodies and harmonies in the same moment, thus creating an original work of art each time---imitating how nature continuously creates itself anew. “I continue with this approach in my recent work and enjoy collaborating with other artists in the process of creating in the moment.”
Other Compositions Available upon request:
"Time Will Tell" – for solo cello, French horn or trombone with piano accompaniment
"The Mouse Poem" – for 3 – part youth choir & piano
"Weeping Gently" – for high voice with piano accompaniment
"Miracles: A Message of Hope" – a 90 minute musical for teens (14 songs with jazz quintet)
Music is medicine for the Soul.
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