20th Century Goodbye

I hope you are all well and keeping your distance. Here is a little music to hopefully brighten your day. Stay well. Reyn

(Composed and arranged by Reynold D. Philipsek copyright 1997
Zino-Rephi Music BMI)


“Some war, some peace,

All the happenstance between

Our two eternities in the meantime.

Is this an age of wonder or just Babylon?

A spectacular sunset mistaken 

for a dawn at the same time?

Just where did the time fly?

20th Century Good-bye.

The rise and decline 

of another chapter of mankind

in the meantime.

Is it random or design

that a million dates

All intertwine at the same time?

We all want to go 

to heaven but we don’t want to die,

Like to take the plunge 

but still keep dry in the meantime.”



Back in the late 1990’s as we faced the dawning of a new millennium I got all grandiose and decided to write an “epic” piece. 

I wrote it for an “orchestra” which was comprised of 4 cellos, 4 violins, clarinet, euphonium, cornet,  2 flutes, harp, bass, piano, several vocal tracks, percussion, oboe and harp. 

I started with my vocal and piano part. Very simple. With a click.

I then hired musicians either in groups (strings) and (winds) or individually like harp and oboe etc. In other words, lots of overdubs.

This was a long and arduous process for an autodidact like me but it turned out ok.

A somewhat ambitious project but in retrospect I am glad I did it. I certainly wouldn’t have the patience or energy for this sort of enterprise anymore.

The lyrics (which are always a tortuous task for me) don’t embarrass me and in fact seem rather apt for these days.

Out of necessity (because I was a novice at mounting this sort of effort) I had to keep things relatively simple and uncluttered.

I tried to (in a subtle way) simulate the ticking of a clock with various devices like shaker or pizzicato strings etc.

And, yes, the long chromatic rise and 20 beat pause at the end before the harp flourish is totally inspired by A Day In The Life.


Piano, vocals-Reynold

Cellos-Dianne Temaine

Violins-Carolyn Boulay

Flutes-Kristi Kuhns

Clarinet-Kevin Stuevens

Percussion-Gomez de Riquet

Trombone, cornet, euphonium- Zane Schaefer

Oboe-Merilee Klemp

Harp-Sunita Staneslow

Recording engineer-Brandon Lenz

(Photo from Long Ago, Far Away album cover was taken at Maurice Ravel’s piano in Montfort L’Amaury in France by Mary G. Philipsek)

Link: https://youtu.be/l3GFCk_QQ-8