About Dream Cloud Orchestra
I’ve always loved the orchestra, and I’ve always loved storytelling. When I was in seventh grade, I was in the musical Oliver, and I was amazed how much life and energy came to our rehearsals when we progressed from piano accompaniment to a live orchestra. When I was in high school, I saw a restoration of The Thief of Baghdad, a silent film starring Douglas Fairbanks, with a live orchestra playing the score. A few years later I saw the amazing organist Dennis James play the music for The Cat and the Canary, another silent film. I loved the way music and storytelling worked together.
Around the same time, I also discovered the moody, evocative soundscapes of ambient electronica artists like Harold Budd, Mark Isham, and Vangelis. I also began listening to classical composers from the impressionists to the modern day, and revelled in the complex chords, orchestral colors, and the great variety of emotional landscapes these pieces could portray.
I decided I wanted to see if I could somehow combine all of these music enthusiasms together. I created the Dream Cloud Orchestra project to give myself a place where I could explore how this might sound.
While the music doesn’t accompany a specific story, each piece strives to evoke a particular mood or setting: the twilight world that lives on the border between day and night, the excitement of a late-night waltz, the calm wonder of a little dog falling asleep next to you. And some pieces do tell a story of sorts. For instance, the first piece I wrote, “A Slumber Journey,” depicts the protagonist’s journey through a night of sleep: first slowly dozing off, then slipping into a dream, then awakening… and perhaps rejoining the waking world a changed person in some way.
I composed, performed, and mixed all of the tracks on Nocturnes. (Special thanks goes to mixing engineer extraordinaire Joël Dollié for his reviews of my mixes, and his expert advice along the way.) I’m amazed and grateful for the technological wonders that allow me to create an entire album from my home. I hope you enjoy these compositions as much as I’ve enjoyed making them.
Santa Cruz, California
September 16, 2022