It appears that our Sologonzales contest to celebrate the Release of Chambers was a success – thanks so much to all who visited the site and entered the contest. The questions must have been pretty tricky – of all the entries, there were only 4 with all 10 answers correct. A quick random number generator later, and we have a winner: Joanne (@joannewklam) from Vancouver, British Columbia. Joanne was happy to have won the contest, and had the following to say about winning the prize:
I took piano lessons for many years with a rigorous teacher who measured success in terms of technical prowess and accolades. Solo Piano was released right after I gave up playing altogether (fuelled by teenage resentment) – thanks to that album, however, my appreciation for the piano was salvaged and actually began to grow again. One could say that Chilly saved my musical life.
It sounds like Joanne will put Re-Introduction Etudes and the CDs to good use – a huge congrats for winning and being a super-Gonzales fan!
Seeing as the questions were tricky, here are the questions and answers from the contest:
1. On Chambers, Gonzales dedicates “Advantage Points” to which famous athlete?
- Bruce Jenner
- Maurice Richard
- Martina Navratolova
- John McEnroe
You can watch the ARTE special and hear Gonzales speak about John McEnroe’s influence on his music – including the ‘chamerlogical’ Advantage Points composition from Chambers.
2. Which of the following artists has Gonzales NOT worked with?
- Daft Punk
- Lionel Richie
All but two people answered this question correctly. Although Lionel Richie seems to have influenced a young Gonzales, they have never worked directly together (maybe one day?).
3. What is the bonus track that comes with the iTunes version of Chambers?
- Armellodie (With the Kaiser Quartett)
- Shake it off (Gonzales pianostrumental version)
- Freudian Slippers (Feist percussive remix)
- Salieri Serenade (With the Kaiser Quartett)
There may have been some wishful thinking at play here – all of the tracks sound amazing, but only the sublime Armellodie is included on the iTunes album.
4. Gonzales likens Chamber music to which concept?
In several interviews Gonzales likens Chamber music to democracy – more accessible and humanistic than an ‘army’ of musicians found in a full orchestra.
5. What is the time signature for Chambers’ Sweet Burden?
Gonzales posed this question on Twitter, where @leerosevere was the first to chime in with the correct answer: 6/4. Most people answered this one correctly.
@LeeRosevere nice one
— chilly gonzales (@chillygonzales) February 24, 2015
6. Which of the following instruments does Gonzales claim not to be able to play?
The answers here were all over the map. After playing most instruments on Feist’s Let it Die, we can cross Drums and Guitar off the list. Gonzales specialized in vibraphone for some time (before realizing that it was even more limiting than the piano), which leaves violin. Gonzales has said that he has a great deal of respect for string and brass instruments, which he’d like to be able to just pick up and play.
7. In “Re-Introduction Etudes”, which lesson covers “appoggiatura”?
- Les Accords
- White Litany
- Climbing and Falling
Another one where most people answered correctly. Appoggiatura (or grace notes) are covered in Odessa, which is also included in expanded form on Chambers.
8. The instruments Gonzales uses primarily on Chambers are:
- Piano, Violin #1, Violin #2, Cello #1, Cello #2
- Piano, Violin, French Horn, Viola, Cello
- Piano, Violin #1, Violin #2, Viola, Cello
- Piano, Violin, French Horn, Cello #1, Cello #2
This one was tricky. While flute and French horn make an appearance on Chambers’ powerful Switchcraft, ultimately, the most common configuration on Chambers is the pleasing quintet of “Piano, Violin #1, Violin #2, Viola, Cello”.
9. What song off Chambers does the new music box in Gonzales’ store play?
- Sweet Burden
- Green’s Leaves
This one was easy as well: Gonzales’ latest music box plays Solitaire – the only solo piano composition on Chambers.
10. How does Gonzales produce the ‘thump’ sound on Chamber’s Freudian Slippers?
- Whacking the fallboard
- Hitting the side of the cabinet
- Recorded thump on an iPad
- Snapping the sustain pedal
This one was probably the most difficult question. It turns out that Gonzales’ Bechstein (which was used to record Chambers) has an incredibly powerful sustain pedal “snap”. Many journalists and sites end up guessing incorrectly, probably since it’s so unusual to find a piano where the sustain pedal can act as a bass drum.
Based on the success of our first contest, we’ll pick up some extra merchandise at one of Gonzales’ upcoming concerts, and when we’ve compiled a decent amount, we’ll hold another giveaway. In the meantime, we’d love to hear your opinion of Chambers and are busily working on a thorough review.