Ballad for intermed solo piano

Hello colleagues,

I wrote this piece about 25 years ago and as part of a recent sweep through my older compositions have made some revisions, though it is largely the same as the original. Ballad is an attempt to write a slow romance kind of piece. I find writing slower pieces much harder to write than faster ones, because the audience can hear every note, so any missteps on the part of the composer stick out like a sore thumb. Also, there tends to be more “space” in slow music, which is particularly hard to do well.

25 years ago, I was writing almost exclusively for solo piano (my instrument) with heavy influences from the progressive rock field. I wouldn’t say this is purely in that vein, although if you are familiar with that style of music, you may hear some echos of it. Score in the video and as always, comments invited >


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  • Hi Gavin,

    I have the exact opposite problem, fast music throws me. Almost everything I write is under 100 BPM.

    It certainly has a unique voice. It's tonal song-like, popular, and theatrical. It has some lovely transitions in tempo and pitch, which all blend well. It's well thought out. Love to hear it live, it stands out. Many solo piano works do not today, and that's why I say it's unique. Wish I could write this well.



    • Thanks kindly Rob, isn't it interesting that we have opposite challenges! the reason I am going through this and other scores is that I am preparing to do a CD/Streaming release, sometime in the next year or so -


  • It's not specifically my kind of music but this is well written and beautifully varied and is well deserving of praise. The passage from 7'19" is particularly fine.

    • Thanks David! I have been told by others the section at 7'19" is their favorite part -

  • Very nice, I liked it very much! The fact that it was written in 1998 made me smile and felt nostalgic. I like the harmony and the melody, the form is good too, it's a very long piece but I digested it well, it doesn't have boring parts

    • Thanks Javier, avoiding being boring in a longer piece is a prime consideration when composing. So it begs the question: how do you not be boring? 

  • I my head I hear an orchestral translation of this piece, which sounds epic! Perhaps it is only me, but certain pieces beg for an orchestration and by that I don't exclude solo piano part, but by adding other instruments the "movement" of the piece becomes more intens. But, the way it is now, it is already a niece piece of music!

    • Thanks Dirk, I've always written in an orchestral way and am now in the last couple of years for an actual orchestra-


  • Hi Gavin,

    Thanks for sharing this. I enjoyed the piece. It has some kind of story telling in it where the melody goes on a couple of journeys. I can somehow imagine how this was influenced by rock music you mentioned, it has that kind of vibe.


    • Thanks Sam, although it has a recent publish date, this is mostly composed over 30 years ago, when I was heavily in my progressive rock phase -


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