Sunday, December 31, 2017

Sanity Sunday- Street Piano Medleys from AJ Hickling

by Nomad

For a lot of us, the last day of the year brings reflection before we march forward into the fog. For that reason, for this special Sanity Sunday, I searched for the appropriate kind of meditative music.

Enter a street musician named AJ Hickling from Queenstown, New Zealand. He has been playing the piano since he was two years old, and, while growing up in Christchurch, he took lesson until he was a teenager.
According to his bio, Hickling was offered a scholarship to study classical music at the University of Otago. He did the prestige thing, playing before audiences. However, it seems at one point, he turned his back on all this and choose a different path.
From Marahau, in the Tasman District, Hickling plays Queenstown through the winter months preferring it to the busker-soaked streets of a Queenstown summer. The rest of the year he treks around in his van, playing at different spots around the country.
Without any further ado, here's AJ Hickling playing on the street.

Here are two more videos of him playing "in the wild."

He tells about his adoption of the orphaned piano.
These tracks were all composed and recorded on my busking piano, which I found out in the rain at the dump shop one fateful day several years ago. I saw its potential immediately and promptly purchased it for $20. Its restoration has been a highly rewarding ongoing journey into the history, culture and the mechanics of the 18th century. It has occurred to me many times that we don't seem to go to as much trouble for art and music these days, as the musical pioneers of the early 1800's.

So many kids I see when I'm playing the piano on the street, have clearly never seen the inner workings of a piano before, and are completely mesmerized. While we walk in the age of electronics, the piano offers a window into the values of the past.
Below is an album collection of Hickling's work.

This should bring us to the last few hours of a year that has held little charm for most of us at Nomadic Politics. We can only hope that the coming year will be less taxing on our nerves.

Happy New Year, nomads!