Erik Gustafson | Beyond Words

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United States - Mass. - Boston

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Jazz: Crossover Jazz New Age: Contemporary Instrumental Moods: Featuring Saxophone
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Beyond Words

by Erik Gustafson

Beyond "easy listening" and "new age", this track was written in jazz style and in homage to the passing of an eclectic musician.
Genre: Jazz: Crossover Jazz
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  Song Share Time Download
1. Beyond Words (feat. Willie Sordillo (Saxophone)]
8:25 $1.50
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Beyond Words is a musical work at the crossroads of different styles, as it combines elements of jazz, new age, and classical music: classical formal practices and contemporary, jazz-style harmonies, syncopation, and improvisatory-like passages. Given the mellow nature of the music, this piece may also be considered as ‘easy listening,’ as it lends itself to moments of relaxation and respite. However, this work does not fit usual connotations of this musical genre.

For the composer, the music has continued to provide solace and consolation, as it came to be after the passing of a mentor and friend, Harry L. Huff. Among his many and prestigious professional engagements and appointments, ‘Prince Harry’ served as Minister of Music at Old South Church in Boston ( Beloved, prodigiously talented and embracing of varying musical styles and people, Harry was also very expressive and forthright. In this sense, the music pays tribute to Harry and perhaps echoes these facets of his personality. In addition, when Harry died unexpectedly and prematurely, several members of the Old South Church choir and congregation commented, “there are no words.” Hence, the title of this work: Beyond Words, lifts up this collective sentiment.

If unfamiliar with Old South Church in Boston, the listener may not know that annual services on Maundy Thursday often include jazz works and have also featured the talents of Harry on piano and in duet with gifted saxophonist, Willie Sordillo. Perhaps, Beyond Words draws inspiration from Harry and Willie’s performing at these services. For this recording of Beyond Words, Willie Sordillo performs with Erik Gustafson on piano. More information about Willie and his professional activities, including his serving as musical leader of Jazz Worship at Old South Church, can be found on his website: More information about Erik and his professional activities, including his serving as Composer-in-Residence for Old South Church, can be found on his website:

While this recording of Beyond Words exists as a stand-alone piece, eventually it may appear on a full-length CD of jazz-style works performed by small ensembles. The CD recording has the working title: Good Evening, Friends. Proceeds from this single recording will go in part towards making this full-length CD a reality; and a percentage of these proceeds will also get donated to the Music Ministry of Old South Church in Boston, which Harry Huff worked to expand and serve.

Perhaps the best way to describe Beyond Words is to have the music speak for itself – enjoy!

Please note: for cover art: Faceted, mixed media on canvas, (C) Allison Coelho Picone. All rights reserved.



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