WELCOME TO THE PLEASURE ZONE
Once while I was lamenting this music’s lack of commercial success, my artist friend Clay cited the fact that this music was "more impressionism then illustration, and shouldn't be expected to please a large segment of the population". Quite true, I suppose, but one does want to share with as many as possible.
This collection was composed and compiled over the last eight years and was not written with an ear for stand-alone commercial success. Each piece has its self-contained emotionally charged elements, whether they be ambient or chaotic, neo-funk or some mutation of a supernatural nether- world. Once the composition commenced , ideas poured in through the doors and windows, I just went around making sure they all stayed open. I have been convinced since I was a child that if I could just be quiet enough, I would hear the music that was constantly being played in the universe; out there, inside my head. Whether or not this music can be attributed to that, I couldn’t say. It was a process of construction and improvised response. In each case I put on a different musical persona, and responded to the other persona I had already “played”. My dear friend and visionary talent Linda Davis appears herein gracing “Love, Always” with her beautifully enchanting voice and African dialect. All other musical parts were a result of the process of “spontaneous composition” already mentioned.
“Pleasure Zone” is a collection of music that has been described by some as “Themes without Movies”, or as one person said, “sightless visions”. I always liked closing my eyes while listening to music, I have to admit a big part of me rejected music videos when they first came along, preferring to watch the images the music created in my head. Having said that, there is nothing quite so compelling as a soundtrack perfectly matched to a movie; Gato Barbieri’s sound track to Last Tango In Paris comes to mind.
I am asked with alarming regularity, “What have I been smoking?” The short answer is “nothing”..I must admit though it has crossed my mind to roll a fatty and give this a listen. Just for a different perspective, you know…. I think I will just call this a mandatory labor of love. Some of the pieces issue from a place of infinite beauty and timelessness, and some from a chaotic and dark place. They speak of different themes: war, hope, pain, love, enlightenment, illusion, beauty and life. I hope that the joy and happiness I felt in creating them are transcribed to the listener. After all, the whole point of this is to share and to empower the listener with an opportunity to explore their own part of the galaxy. Hey, you either get it or you don't.
I sincerely hope that everyone enjoys it.
This December, 2014, I mark fifty years as a professional composer and musician. Its one of the reasons I wanted to put this together, as sort of a celebration of the transcendental voyage these fifty years have been. I am making this available to artists, choreographers, and film makers with high hopes that it it speaks to their need to create a special and unique atmosphere.
Roger Hatfield July, 2014.