Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Picking Sides

I played the piano for seven or eight years. Every piano lesson I went to was like pulling teeth. My mother sacrificed a lot and tried to convince me these lessons would pay off and make me a well-rounded person. To this day all I can play on the piano is Mary Had a Little Lamb. Like many people my age that I know, our instruments just didn’t seem hip and cool. Little did I know how responsible these instruments were for the music I listened to.

While rummaging through You-Tube.com I found David Sides. He made me wish I didn’t waste those countless amounts of lessons and countless amount of dollars.
Sides plays the piano. The twenty three year old from California has been playing the piano for ten years. Sides says he taught himself how to play the piano, and says he first started playing pop-culture songs after listening to the Lion King soundtrack.

The University of California-Riverside grad, plays songs that a young audience likes and can appreciate, from Coldplays The Scientist (which is played on piano, he plays the bass line and melody) to T-Pains Buy You a Drink. I always heard the piano played in plays and classical music. Until I heard recent artist like John Legend and Alicia Keys, I never really saw the piano in the forefront of popular music.
Sides plays his own music, but the biggest difference between what he does and what Keys and Legend does is he plays songs that already on the radar. What this does is take the raw emotion you feel from a song and embodies the whole thing into the keys of a piano.
I am not saying Sides is the next Schubert, Haydn or Stravinsky. He is David Sides, a breath of fresh air. That in itself is good for a young generation, who like current and not the past.

Sides just released his first album Mr. Sides the Collection Volume 1. This album features top twenty hits. It was all piano and no vocals.He says the inspiration for his music is everything from hip-hop to Frank Sinatra. I thought it would have a hard time keeping my attention for all eighteen tracks. It did not. I played the album a few times.

David Sides is not signed to a record label yet. Who knows how long that will last? He is in talks with different record companies. Sides is currently on tour doing shows at different universities. He has recently finished at Columbia University. He has done countless radio shows, and has been featured in various magazines like Cove.

In an interview Sides said he started entering competitions when he started college. He competed in seven competitions. He won four, place in the top three at two others, and was booed off stage at another.

Sides says he plays all of his songs by ear, but is working on making sheet music for it all. He says Ciara's Like A boy is the hardest story he has transcribed, because that is the first song he put octaves and melody in. One of the more interesting things that I noticed about Sides' music is his detail to each individual piece of the music that he plays. Sides says in addition to dropping an album, he will be putting together a compilation of sheet music that will soon go on sale.

His work will soon get a chance to be on music's forefront, but before it does just know you are one of the first people to get a glimpse at this side of David. Photography provided by misdirkted photography.

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