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Some remarks about the recording SOLACE from Michael Hoppé...

"SOLACE came about through a combination of what I consider to be miracles: the manifestation of a wizard (in the form of a benefactor) allowing me to create a much more complex rendition of my work, and the availability of today's extraordinary technology resulting in some unusual recording procedures.

About a year ago, quite out of the blue, I received a phone call from a fan in Florida whom I had never met. It turned out that he was very taken with my music, and wondered how he could help me further my vision in some way.

"Well", I said after I recovered from his generous offer, "I have always wanted to have my music performed by a full symphony orchestra but the cost has been prohibitive..." The Wizard waved his magic wand, and the impossible became possible.

As I was pondering where to record, I received a card in the mail announcing an exciting possibility - to record the respected Prague Symphony without having to travel to Czechoslovakia. Instead, the recording sessions would take place over the internet.

First of all, the musical arrangements of the compositions I had decided to record were sent to Prague (via the internet). The individual musician's parts were then copied there and given to the appropriate sections and individuals.

For the actual recording, the engineers created a live internet link from a very large studio in Prague to another studio in my home city of Los Angeles, where I could see on a video monitor the entire orchestra waiting to record. The conductor in Prague could also see us on his monitor and speak with us...it was like video conferencing only with music as the final product. We were even able to remotely activate a small video camera for close-ups of the soloist! A technological marval and a miracle indeed! (A short video appears on Michael's website - www.michaelhoppe.com - illustrating this).

As if this was not enough, soon another miracle occurred...

When visiting one of my musical hereos, Vangelis, several years ago in New York, I played him a recent composition entitled "The Parting". Much to my delight, Vangelis immediately sat down at his keyboards and performed "The Parting" direct to a cassette recorded, with no "edits" and no additional recording or "overdubs" as they are called in the music business. It was a vintage spontaneous Vangelis performance without any studio manipulation and I was thrilled to have captured it.

Many years later, a friend of mine who owns a prominent mastering facility transferred this recording, removing the unwanted background noise while at the same time expanding the dynamic range, which was restricted due to the limitations of the original recording medium...another technological advance which would have been quite impossible a few years ago.

I sent this new recording off to my old friend Vangelis who now lives in Athens, and as a gift, he granted me permission to include this beautiful recording on Solace.

As the title Solace suggests, I hope the music gives a sense of much needed peace in an increasingly troubled world...and a continued belief in small miracles.

Michael Hoppé, 2003


Solace - Michael Hoppé (with the Prague Symphony and Vangelis)

Quite simply, Solace is one of the most beautiful CDs I have ever heard. - Lloyd Barde, Backroads Music

The latest album from award-winning composer and pianist Michael Hoppé takes his romantic, classically inspired compositions to an entirely new level by adding full symphonic accompaniment from the PRAGUE SYMPHONY, and a bonus of a vintage Hoppé composition performed by the legendary VANGELIS.

Recorded with the support of an initially anonymous fan, and utilizing state of the art technology, Solace is a gift both to the artist and to his many fans who have enjoyed over a dozen solo and collaborative albums released since 1985. Known for albums inspired by a variety of unique and powerful themes, including photographs taken by his grandfather, famed turn of the century portraitist E. O. Hoppé, the poetry of Longfellow, love poems from Carl Sandburg, and a celebration of H.M. Queen Elizabeth, on SOLACE Hoppé recognizes the themes of a new, post 9.11 world, offering hope and peace in these more diffcult times.

SOLACE showcases 12 of Hoppé's signature compositions, over 51 minutes of music in settings ranging from solo performances, to full orchestral arrangements. The celebratory themes of track one, This Majestic Land, led to its already being chosen as theme music by The GLOBAL VISION FOR PEACE (globalvisionforpeace.org), whose honorary committee includes the Dalai Lama and seven Nobel Peace Prize Laureates and whose peace pin was spotted on numerous winners and presenters at the recent Academy Awards.

Known for personalizing his album packaging by incorporating the artworks of both himself and family members, this time Hoppé includes his own photo of awe inspiring Clayoquot Sound, British Columbia, on the cover, and artist portraits taken by his daughter, Rebecca Hoppé, who follows the inspiration of her celebrated great grandfather as a professional photographer.

The culmination of a long and distinquished career and an impressive body of soulful and powerful work, SOLACE is a reflective, healing journey perfectly suited to our times.

BIOGRAPHY - Michael Hoppé

A composer of exceptional and varied melodic talents, Michael Hoppé has an extensive and eclectic musical background. Since 1985, he has released more than a dozen albums including his latest on Spring Hill Music, Solace. Michael has gather numerous accolades over the course of his career, including CD Review Editor's Choice "CD of the Year" and the Association for Independent Music INDIE award for "Best New Age Album". He has also been heard internationally on numerous TV programs and feature films, and his songs have been recorded by a variety of singers and instrumentalists including Tim Wheater, Martin Tillman, Zamfir, Frank Mills, Eliza Gilkyson, Cecilla, Lousie Di Tuillo, Lou Ann Neill, Eugene Fodor, Lily Hayd and, on Solace, the Prague Symphony and Vangelis. He has also scored feature films including Misunderstood, and the short film Eyes of the World which reached the Oscar nomination short list.

For 15 years, Hoppé was a senior executive at PolyGram Records, then one of the world's largest record companies. He was responsible for bringing such diverse talent as Vangelis, Kitaro, The Who, Jean-Michael Jarre, and ABBA to PolyGram. His endeavors in the music industry have earned him 15 gold and 4 platinum records.

English by birth, Michael has for many years resided in Los Angeles with his wife Monica.

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