John Paris | The Long Goodbye

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New Age: Solo Instrumental New Age: Neo-Classical Moods: Instrumental
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The Long Goodbye

by John Paris

Genre: New Age: Solo Instrumental
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
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1. The Long Goodbye
4:41 $0.99
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2. Heart of Gold
4:09 $0.99
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3. Eternal Night
5:06 $0.99
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4. There Was a Time
3:55 $0.99
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5. Everywhere That I Look
4:09 $0.99
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6. Wounded Angel
2:38 $0.99
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7. Wings of Love
4:16 $0.99
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8. Surrender
4:32 $0.99
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9. Sweet Love
4:21 $0.99
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10. Portending
4:46 $0.99
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11. River of Life
4:48 $0.99
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12. Long Ago and Far Away
7:02 $0.99
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13. Valze d'amour
2:46 $0.99
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14. Going Home
4:22 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


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Kathy Parsons

From MainlyPiano
"The Long Goodbye" is very different from John Paris’ previous releases. Known primarily as a jazz pianist/composer, this album defies specific categorization and is likely John’s most personal recorded music to date. The album is “dedicated to caregivers everywhere!” and the music was inspired by John’s experiences as the caretaker for his wife who has been slowly slipping away over the past ten years or so due to the devastating effects of dementia. Quoting the liner notes: “Watching your loved one regress is a painful experience. Yet there is an exquisite beauty in the pain born from the deep abiding love for this wounded angel that fills one’s heart.” The fourteen original piano solos are sometimes dark and intense, while others are more reflective and even playful, but it is that “abiding love” that flows from every note that makes this album a very special tribute to a beloved “wounded angel.”

"The Long Goodbye" begins with the title track, a haunting piece that starts with a simple but poignant, mournful melody. The left hand keeps a very steady rhythm throughout that feels like the movement of time. In the middle of the piece, the mood shifts to a more upbeat tone before turning dark and intense and then returning to the opening theme - heartbreaking. “Heart of Gold” could easily support lyrics, but communicates its own special love story directly from one heart to another. “Eternal Night” really feels like the jangled stream of thoughts and emotions that run like an electric wire through your head and body on a night when sleep just won’t come - an amazing piece! “There Was a Time” is a beautiful reflection on happier times - gentle, sweet and very tender. “Everywhere I Look” begins quietly, gradually building to become a spirited dance of joy. It slows near the end and seems to be trying to regain the happy spirit of the middle of the piece. “Wounded Angel” sadly conveys loss and a quiet despair. “Surrender” can mean a variety of things, but in the case of this piece, I think it means accepting that something is completely out of your control. Deep sadness is conveyed, tinged with frustration and resignation. My favorite piece on the album is “Sweet Love,” an intensely passionate expression of a love that can be stretched to its limit but will never break. I also really like “Portending,” probably the closest to a jazz piece on the album. It seems to be seeing the signs of what is coming while trying to accept and deal with it. The varied themes express the mix of emotions that come at uncertain times like this. “River of Life” also goes through many thematic changes - much like life itself. Sometimes bubbly and effervescent, sometimes rocky, sometimes deep and sometimes shallow, sometimes calm and other times turbulent, it’s a beautiful look at the flow of life. “Long Ago and Far Away” is by far the longest track (a little more than 7 minutes), taking an unhurried look back at better times and remembering the person who gradually became a wounded angel - powerful! “Going Home” looks optimistically to the time when the painful burden of suffering will be gone - a bittersweet ending to a remarkable album.
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Pam Asberry

A stirring blend of love and longing, despair and hope, regret and joy!
Inspired by his own personal experiences as a caretaker for his wife, who suffers from dementia, “The Long Goodbye” is composer and pianist John Paris’s intensely personal and excruciatingly beautiful musical tribute to caregivers everywhere. As he searched for ways to keep his beloved companion’s life as peaceful as possible, melodies occurred to him; these were eventually turned into the fourteen pieces on this album. Sensitively and artistically performed, the music is varied and interesting, emotional and heartfelt, rich and rewarding.

The title track, “The Long Goodbye” opens with somber, unpredictable bass that is joined first by an ostinato broken chord accompaniment and then a solemn melody punctuated throughout by flashing right hand arpeggios. There is a contrasting middle section in which the melody becomes more upbeat but then the darkness returns. “Heart of Gold” features pulsing left hand chords topped by a gorgeous melody and put me in mind of a wedding processional. “Eternal Night,” a sound painting of the night sky, its background splashed with melodic bits of shooting stars and constellations, is a favorite. “There Was a Time” is a moving, lyrical ballad; I could imagine words sung along to this tune, a poignant musing on better days. “Everywhere That I Look“ begins as a tender waltz, becomes downright festive in the syncopated section middle section, but ends quietly.

As Paris says in the liner notes for the album, “There is an exquisite beauty in the pain born from the deep abiding love for this wounded angel” and the next piece, “Wounded Angel,” reflects both deep affection and profound melancholy. “Wings of Love” opens with fluttering chords and seemed like a companion piece to “Wounded Angel,” ending with an anguished resignation. “Surrender” is a solemn expression of the inner peace experienced when one chooses to stop raging against circumstances beyond his control. The flowing and expansive “Sweet Love” is a musical depiction of a great love that transcends emotion and survives even the most horrific of challenges and is another favorite.

“Portending” has a jazzy feel, snippets of sound perhaps representing early signs of the onset of an illness and the complex and varied emotional responses to that evidence. The flowing “River of Life” brought to mind a favorite quote from Marcus Aurelius that seems to fit with the theme of the album: “Repeatedly dwell on the swiftness of the passage and departure of things that are and of things that come to be. For substance is like a river in perpetual flux, its activities are in continuous changes, and its causes in myriad varieties, and there is scarce anything which stands still, even what is near at hand; dwell, too, on the infinite gulf of the past and the future, in which all things vanish away.” Similarly, “Long Ago and Far Away” ebbs and flows in a vivid reflection on bitter-sweet memories of a life together that is gone forever and is followed by the tenderhearted “Vaize D’Amour.” The final track, “Going Home,” is buoyant and hope-filled, perhaps in anticipation of the time when illness and suffering will end and lovers will be reunited.
In “The Long Goodbye,” John Paris has created a stirring blend of love and longing, despair and hope, regret and joy. Very highly recommended!
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