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.
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.