Watch out, Wolfgang!

When I witnessed Cameron Carpenter mastering his International Touring Organ and making this incredible machine come alive in Zurich last Sunday night, I instantly had Chilly Gonzales’ words in mind, when he called The BBC Symphony Orchestra he played with in London 2012 “the world’s most expensive synthesizer”. It was apparently another fulfilled longing to have one of those “synthesizers” all to himself. Carpenter’s digital organ might be even more expensive, the inner urge to create such an instrument, find sponsors and then actually use it, is the same. The obvious connection between the two musicians – apart from their dedication to key instruments – as Chilly Gonzales would put it: They are men of their (and our) time. They have a vision – the vision to take music to the next level. To keep the roots, but cut the weed. To not see music as something written in stone, but something versatile, adaptable and re-inventable as well as re-interpretative.So in an ideal world, these two should work together and as we sometimes like to daydream at SoloGonzales, we already have an idea how: with harpsichordist Christopher Lewis on board in a concert dedicated to “The Evolution of the Keys”. Lire la suite

Chilly “Grammy” Gonzales!

After being nominated in 2008 with Feist for “The Reminder”, Chilly Gonzales’ name finally echoed through the holy halls of the Staples Center in Los Angeles last night, when he received a Grammy for his contribution to Daft Punk’s RAM. Lire la suite

Rolling Stone Covers Chilly Gonzales

Record labels have been dressing up musicians in magical and sometimes ridiculous clothes for many years, while audiences have basked in the glory of the latest disposable brain tickler. But there is a growing chorus of people who have taken to the internet to “undress” mindless pop stars exposing what’s left: shallowness and vanity, and at the same time, revealing the music industry’s greed and ostentatiousness. These individuals recognize that musicians have been swindled and are merely pawns in the big-money world of music. Gonzales has openly identified all of this for years, and his voice is finally being heard. The people are shouting that there is a new Emperor in town. And the Emperor doesn’t show up naked. He wears a robe. “Der neue Kaiser” – that’s what the German issue of Rolling Stone recently called Chilly Gonzales in a four pager about his rising fame and the future of music. Lire la suite

The World Is a Record And Chilly Gonzales Holds It

Guinness World RecordThis month we celebrate Chilly Gonzales’ World Record breaking performance 4 years ago, when he beat his inner self, played the piano for 27 hours, 3 minutes and 44 seconds and entered the Guinness Book of World Records. In honour of this occasion, we give you an insight into our archives and show you a collection of photos that I took during the event. They may not be examples of great photographic art, but they visualise the special atmosphere and eternalise a concert that wasn’t only legendary because of its length, but because of the inspiration and tacit message it spread.

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Two Sold-Out Shows: London Celebrates The Pianobull and His Best Pieces

Chilly Gonzales is on everyone’s and especially the cyberpeople’s lips at the moment – thanks to two guys in robot costumes. So it didn’t come as a surprise that prior to his two London concerts last week, Cadogan Hall was filled with whisperings, if he would at least partly play his song from the forthcoming Daft Punk album. He did. And everyone with a Beethoven-esque brain could actually even hear it – with their mind’s ear. Since he only let his fingers silently touch the keys, which was visible for everyone via the giant screens under the rededicated church’s ceiling and stretching from one side of the stage to the other. Lire la suite

The Master Remastered

Today is International Chilly Gonzales Day aka Chilly Gonzales’ birthday. We honor His Musical Geniusness by letting others serenade him. Therefore, we compiled a selection of Gonzales fans playing his songs on YouTube. Actually, once you’ve dived deep into the waters of moving Gonzales appreciation images, you are most likely to drown or you decide to just catch some pearls and resurface. So here is a collection of people going all Gonzo and proof of what an inspiration Chilly Gonzales is to many. We tried to categorize them as good as we could. Lire la suite

Working Holidays

Once passion met profession, the way you earn money doesn’t feel like work in a classical sense anymore and the term “holidays” becomes superfluous. So it is only logical that Chilly Gonzales, between two tours*, doesn’t relax on a Southeast Asian beach getting a well-deserved massage or manicure of his precious hands, but seems to plot new collaborations and masterpieces. So there has been quite some news during the past week. What has made the internet community turn crazy – and above all the Daft Punk disciples – is the fact that Chilly Gonzales’ piano contribution to the electrorobot-duo’s forthcoming album has been confirmed. Lire la suite

New York, New York

His first October-scheduled Lincoln Center show in New York was gone with the wind, or better: blown away by superstorm Sandy. Last Friday, it seemed the Weather God still hasn’t turned into a Chilly Gonzales fan. According to numerous tweets, people queued along the street for hours to see his two substitutional shows – in the pouring rain. It was an outpour of praise in the end which proves that it was obviously worth it. Lire la suite

Chilly Gonzales in Cologne

Cologne Venue Just imagine you were coeval with Händel or Mozart and wanted to listen to some music. You would only be able to choose from a selection of three possibilities at the most: go to a concert hall, make music yourself or in case you had the privilege of noble birth, enjoy it as part of the courtly cultural life. Fortunately, nowadays music is always available and repeatable. Still, it felt as if storage data devices haven’t been invented yet, when Chilly Gonzales played the Kölner Philharmonie on December 29th. He introduced so many new, yet unfortunately unpublished pieces that it was a real treat and indulgence, but at the same time evanescence and the knowledge of singularity were omnipresent. The Faustian verse “If to the moment I shall ever say: ’Ah, linger on, thou art so fair!’” could have been the epigraph to this final concert in 2012. Or was it a pointer to the future and into the direction of “more orchestra”? Lire la suite

Dressing gowns: The ‘Sweat Pants’ of Fine Gentlemen

BathrobeWhenever a leading actor wears a dressing gown in a movie, one thing is certain: In real life, the following scene would certainly take place without an audience. Chilly Gonzales’ trademark is a dressing gown; he even wears it when sharing the stage with a huge and honorable orchestra. And although it is a costume, much like in a movie, it makes him appear undisguised and approachable. Lire la suite