Summer At Last! June 2019

Temperatures have soared today in the UK after months of bland weather. Summer has arrived, hopefully.

I have little to report. I continue practising classical piano works, writing poetry, and brushing up my foreign language skills (French, German, Russian).

I’ll close with a poem I wrote about a year ago and published on the sister blog site. Since then, I’ve taken advice on the construction of poetry and I know now that the poem should be set in single spacing, preferably with little or no punctuation. Today, though, I will repost the poem in it’s original layout:

The Month Of June

Humidity in the midst of June.

A hint of thunder.

The patter of rain.

Silence then, and chirping birds.

The scent of pollen and damp grass.

The residues of a summer day,

Lingering on into evening.

© Lawrence Estrey 2018


Till next time!

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My Story In Pictures

I found some old docs and photos recently while dusting and tidying and thought I would make digital copies to share online. After all, everyone has a story.

Shortly before I left Devon to study music in London:

A few years after arriving in London, just before playing the piano for a Supper Club in Golders Green, north London:

Shortly after arriving in London, I won the Fritz Gottlieb Memorial Scholarship for Piano (patrons Vladimir Ashkenazy, Richard Baker, Daniel Prenn), and I studied with Vera Yelverton for two years:

I gave regular piano recitals, including a recital made up entirely of solo Chopin at the venue below:

Fast forward a few years, and I made a CD and published my autobiography, My Musical Journey

You can access the abridged version of My Musical Journey at http://mypianobio.wordpress.com


Thanks for reading

An Indie Music Career – New Directions?

I haven’t posted a great deal recently. A lot of behind the scene stuff happened during March and April, and I had to deal with those matters.

At the moment, I’m relying more and more on the Internet to further my music career. I’ve swapped musical scores for digital ones and practise new piano works using a Tablet instead of the printed music.

Currently, I’m reworking the sonata in A-flat op 110 by Beethoven, The Pathetique by Beethoven and Chopin’s second Scherzo in B-flat minor, along with a selection of Hungarian Dances by Brahms. Obviously, I hope to perform these works at some point.

In 2016 I released a CD of piano music and I am now placing many of these tracks on streaming sites, to get more exposure.

My CD Cover

The sites include SoundCloud, Audiomack, ReverbNation, Veto, MusicWeMake, and YourListen.

The joy of the Indie voyage.


Meanwhile, I continue to write poetry and publish online, and I maintain my foreign language studies in French, German and Russian.

Till next time.

A Live Recording, Lawrence Estrey, Piano

A few months ago, I posted the following article. Today, I recorded a live performance and converted the tracks to YouTube videos. For once, readers will get to hear my voice and an English accent.


A Stand Up Musician – Sort Of

We’ve all seen or heard stand up comedians. They get up and do a slot in venues, gaining valuable experience and exposure.

In the past few months, I’ve been working on an equivalent in small settings in suburban north London, UK. Generally, I do a mixture of classical piano and ragtime, lasting between seven and thirteen minutes.

If the mood is right, I’ll start with the third movement from Beethoven’s fourth Sonata in E-flat, then follow with the Maple Leaf Rag by Scott Joplin. I might end with a popular like I Love Paris by Cole Porter or add another short classical piece (time permitting). Chopin works sometimes, but not always. Each audience is different.

I enjoy these opportunities to share my piano playing with others and I value the chance to begin with a technically challenging Beethoven movement, which people always seem to appreciate.

Till next time.

Coming Soon!

My Musical Journey, an autobiography, tells of my attempts to throw off the past and settle for a career in music.

The paperback should be available on Amazon in about two weeks.

The Difference Between Music And Sound 

“Music is sound that lives,” Lawrence Estrey, Pianist and Writer.

I’m about to combine my two great passions (music and writing) with web layout and Content Management Systems to create an exciting new project, My Musical Journey, detailing my own experiences, highs and lows.

Watch this space. 

The Joys Of Recording – Indie

As a classically trained musician and past scholarship holder in piano performance, I, like many other classically trained performers, looked forward to the day I would sign a recording contract. Who wouldn’t, given the years of training and aspirations?

A couple of hundred concerts on, along with experience at several smaller concert halls and an appearance at Edinburgh Fringe, and I began to understand that the recording deal would probably not materialise, especially as I did not have agent representation.

For a while, I continued performing whenever possible and polished my repertoire, tackling a number of the Liszt studies and getting a reasonable technical grasp on the second and third scherzos by Chopin. I also loved to play Beethoven’s Waldstein, which I knew from memory.

Web 2 came along – and with it, file sharing.

YouTube followed.

Over a ten-year period, three technically minded friends recorded me on separate occasions. Eventually I put the best tracks together to form my own CD, titled Classical Piano – Lawrence Estrey. I marketed the project myself and made a modest amount on the CD’s, but I never did it for the money. Only the exposure and experience.

Since then, I’ve got a better phone and downloaded Titanium Recorder, a simple app that lets users record live performances. The user can select the level of quality. MP3 BitRate works fine for a basic “live” semi-professional recording. No distortion, but not quite up to record label quality. This year, I’ve recorded eleven tracks, converted the tracks to still image videos and uploaded them to YouTube.

Early days, but my discography is growing steadily now, thanks to the internet. On a positive note, aiming high encourages me to practise more.

Just a few of my thoughts.