When I entered San Francisco Conservatory of Music as a second semester freshman, I had lost my confidence as a musician because of a previous experience. The phone rang one day and it was Conrad Susa. He immediatley understood my condition as a composer and he knew what he had to do to help me find my voice and regain my faith; and he was not about to let me in on "the plan" for one minute. He just guided me, as a friend. He made suggestions. He offered ideas. He became a trusted confidant. Then one day, about three years later, I woke up and realized so much had changed about my musical instincts and desires; about my whole life, in fact. What's more is that during this whle time, I had no idea it was changing. It was just like learning my "Music ABCs" all over again. In fact, because of Conrad, I willingly relearn them every day.
I kow that Jeff Tony and I have all had these types of experiences. It is precisely the amalgamation of these that brought about "Such Beautiful Things". It is a deeply heartfelt love song to musicians of every age, ever sort and every interest. What could be more "Chameleonesque" than that? And what better complement to the piece than to hear the work of one of the greatest teachers I know precede it?
Friends, these "Hymns" are indeed for our amusement, we children. But listen more deeply! In Tony's eloquent words: "If inside your open ear, There's an open heart and mind there, Then you will clearly hear Such Beautiful Things".