Jennifer Haines is a melodic solo piano player
whose music is both peaceful and moving. Although she hasn't had a
formal musical education, Jennifer has been a musician and composer
from the start. More info below.
Edward: How Did You Get
Started Playing New Age Piano?
I first had the
desire to play piano when I was a child. My parents got me
lessons, but I quickly lost interest. I wanted to play
only the songs that moved me and the pieces I was learning just
didn't suit me. I quit the lessons after only 9 months. I
never lost the desire to play, though, and after a while
I realized I could play certain pieces by ear. My
favorite songs to play were the piano pieces "Watermark"
and "Miss Clare Remembers" by Enya. They were beautiful and
full of emotion and in them I found joy at the piano.
wasn't enough to really keep me in love with the piano and I
ended up selling my piano so I could buy a car. I spent the
next ew years feeling like I would never play a piano again -
and I was o.k. with that. After all, I didn't really know
how to play, right?
Then I got married and my new husband
decided I needed a piano again (despite my protests). I would sit at
that piano and attempt to play a nocturne by Chopin or perhaps the
"Moonlight Sonata", but it wasn't enjoyable to
One day I was sitting at the piano with my,
then, two year old daughter Naomi. Naomi was patting at the
keys and stumbled across a succession of notes that I really
liked. I wrote a song around those notes right then and
there. It was amazing and emotional and a song that I have now
completely forgotten, but it was mine and I loved it! I couldn't get
enough piano from that point on.
Edward: What Inspires and
Informs Your Music?
Jennifer: Whenever I
write a song, I always have a place or picture or memory in my
head that goes with that song. It's the beauty of an
aspen tree swaying in the breeze or my daughter's dancing or
the heartbreak of a forest fire that claimed my parents home
and belongings. Other pianists such as George Winston and David
Lanz are also inspirational to listen to, but I have no
interest in writing a song that sounds like their
music. Writing music is so deeply personal that I
have to speak with my own voice.
Edward: What Is Your Method
for Composing a Piano Piece?
Jennifer: I sit
at the piano and pick out a pattern with my left hand
that almost becomes a song itself and then I add melody and
chords with my right hand as an accompaniment. It starts
out somewhat basic and then, with time and repetition, transforms
itself into the finished song.
Edward: Do You Get
Blocked Creatively, and If So, How Do You Get Past
Jennifer: Yes I do. There are times when
I am meant to sit at the piano and write and times when I'm
not. Whenever I begin to feel "blocked creatively", I give
myself a total break from the piano. Sometimes it takes a
day, sometimes a month, but when I'm ready to write again, the
music just flows.
Edward: What Advice Would
You Give To Aspiring New Age
Jennifer: Have fun and write what
you are feeling! Listen to other pianists for inspiration,
but never try to make your music sound like theirs. Each
pianistís music should be unique to them.