Tony Lewis

It Snows Here

♦ Racheal Cogan - composer, recorders, harpsichord, mixing

Kung Bass Recorder (designed and built by Geri Bollinger), Treble recorder (by Michael Grinter)

♦ Tony Lewis - tombak

♦ Jay Elfenbein- bass Viola da Gamba

♦ Wendy Rowlands - viola

♦ Jonathan Lewis - violin

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This project could not have existed without the generosity and beautiful playing of the four musicians. They all contributed from different parts of the globe: Wendy and Tony in Australia, Tony in Sydney, and Wendy in rural Newstead (Victoria). Jay recorded his parts in France, and Jonathan (closer to me) in Calgary. I thank them all for so generously giving their time and skills to this project. Tony also for his invaluable mixing advice.

A big thanks goes to Violaine Corradi for the ideas and advice she so generously gave that allowed this piece to develop beyond my expectations and preconceived ideas.

Whilst working on the last parts of It Snows Here, my mind often turned to my dear friend Lucille who passed away late last year as I started sketching this project out. This piece is dedicated to you Lucille who squeezed every last drop of living (and way more) out of life. You taught me  how to make a tomato pasta sauce and how to select the freshest of produce. My stomach thanks you every time I eat.

Last week I worked on the final mix as it snowed for three days outside my window. The trees hadn't even thought about dropping their leaves or changing color, so the weight of the snow on their lush leafed branches caused a lot of destruction to the deciduous trees in Calgary. Many lovely old trees were lost in this time.

In this place I am learning about the cold, the ice, and most of all - the snow that can fall for 8 months of the year.

Midday, midwinter, just outside Canmore.
Midday, midwinter, just outside Canmore.

Two Geese

Photo taken in Banff.

Photo taken in Banff.

This music is beautiful. Tony Lewis has done a superb job mixing this piece and breathing life into the tangled spaghetti I had made creating and recording the recorder parts. He also created and played the perfect and intricate percussion parts that are as much a part of this composition as my original work on recorders.

Sit down quietly with some great speakers and enjoy. I have been.

I have no words able to express how grateful I am to have this time to be working on creative projects again and with such amazing people like Tony, who has given so much time, energy and knowledge to this small piece.

Music by Racheal Cogan and Tony Lewis. Mixing by Tony Lewis, David Hackett, and Dane Charles; MMCCS Studio 1, Macquarie University. Instruments: Tony Lewis - tombak, bass drum, tambourine, handclaps, cymbal and finger cymbal. Racheal Cogan - Paetzold Contra Bass recorder, Bass recorder (Kung), Tenor recorder Takeyama), treble recorder (Michael Grinter), Ganassi in C (Michael Grinter).


Two Geese began in my tiny, but quiet living space with a stunning mountain vista. The snow was beginning to melt and I had no idea that my quiet-ish haven was about to be suddenly transformed by an impressive gaggle of geese returning to their summer quarters. They settled directly outside my window (for months): feasting on the fresh shoots of grass in the newly exposed earth, fluffy goslings in tow and generally making a louder noise than I ever thought possible. Recording was a frustrating exercise - but somehow I found quieter moments and they became the foundation for this short piece. It was named for a couple flying on an unexpectedly quiet day that I managed to do most of the recording in. It was lovely to see them, but I was also afraid that they just might have been the harbinger of the entire skein of geese returning to their home, and that my recording time was about to be cut once again by their raucous honking.