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Frederick Rousseau (born 1958, Paris) belongs to the generation that witnessed the beginning of New Age music and the explosion of technologic applications to the entertainment world. His musical research is based on electronic sounds that he mixes with ethnic instruments, classical orchestras and to voices of all tones, colours and provenances.Read More...
During his adolescence, after a piano training in classical music, he tried every pop instrument (including bass guitar, drums, electric guitar and percussions) and finally chose the keyboards.
After completing his studies in electronics, he was hired by the Defense Nationale in 1978 to work on the final tests of the neutronic head, the detonator for the French atomic bomb. His playful and undisciplined personality did not fit into this austere and rigid environment. After two years, he quit.
In 1980, he met Francis Mandin, a young enthusiastic electronic music fan, who convinced him to become a partner in Music Land, a music store in Paris and a laboratory for future electronic instruments.
In 1981, after working on the finalization of the first polyphonic sequenser by MDB, he met Jean Michel Jarre, who was looking for a musical programmer capable of manipulating this instrument for his China Tour. With the help of this new technology, Rousseau was able to reproduce on stage all the sequences that had taken months to record, without having to use playback tapes. This unforgettable experience marked a turn in his career. Returning to Paris, his adventure continued with his participation in the recording of the live album Concerts en Chine.
Later, during this memorable year, he met Vangelis who was recording Friends of Mr Cairo at Studio Davout in Paris. Not only did he witness the debut of the mythical duet of Jon and Vangelis, but he also became friends with another young talented musician, Jean-Philippe Rykiel. This was the birth of a long lasting musical partnership.
The following year, Rousseau was called back to London by Vangelis for the recording of the music score of Ridley Scott's Blade Runner. It was the start of a complementary work relation that was to last for over 20 years.
Returning to Paris in 1984, he collaborated in Jean-Michel Jarre's Zoolook album.
In 1987, in association with Thierry Rogen, he created Studio Mega considered to be the last French great recording studio. During the next four years, he record with many of the leading French artists of the time including Mylene Farmer, Jean-Louis Murat, Louis Bertignac, Indochine and Kassav.
In 1990, Jean Michel Jarre used Rousseau again to rewrite all the intros of the music for La Défense Concert. On stage, his job was to synchronize the sequences and to reproduce live, all the special effects characteristic of Jean-Michel's music. This concert made it into the Guinness book of world records as having the largest audience ever (2,500,000 people).
The year after, 1991, Vangelis moved to Paris and recorded the album The City at Studio Mega. This difficult production took more than 6 months. Rousseau followed the Greek composer to Holland for Eureka, the European community project initiated by François Mitterrand on the theme of Industry and Transport. This imposing concert took place on the Rotterdam docks of the industrial port and with 800,000 people in attendance. The Show was transmitted by satellite to all European countries.
In 1992, Vangelis convinced Rousseau to leave Studio Mega in order to create Astron Studio in Neuilly and definitely seal their artistic collaboration. They consecutively record the music scores of La Peste by Luis Puenzo, Lunes de Fiel by Roman Polanski, and 1492: Conquest of Paradise by Ridley Scott.
After Vangelis moved back to Greece, Rousseau traveled back and forth to Athens for the production of the shows : Antigone (1993), La Nuit des Poètes (1994) and Tribute to El Greco (1995).
In spite of a very busy life, Rousseau always found time to work on his own compositions and he released MÖ in 1994, an album marked by its originality and its Asian inspiration. This music opened the way to what will be referred to as Ethno-Lounge music.
Following that was Spirit in the Woods (1995), a CD dedicated to trees, then Abyss (1996), a concept that Rousseau refers to as "no music," an experience realised with neurologists specialised in musicotheraphy. In 1997, he released Woods, an electro-wood fusion with voices from forest people and tribal rhythms.
Again, in 1997, Rousseau joined Vangelis in Athens for the opening ceremony of the world championship of athletics. The show is presented in the antique stadium of Panathanaikos in front of 75,000 people and transmitted by satellite to an audience of 820,000,000 throughout the world. With its originality and its references to antique sports, the show thrilled the Greek public.
Meanwhile, Rousseau composed the soundtracks for 40 ethno-zoological documentary films and released in 1999 the collection of 5 albums Terres de Légendes.
Vangelis' project Mythodea initiated in 1993, was finally completed in 2001. Rousseau coordinated the electro-orchestral show starring Jessye Norman and Kathleen Battle and performed by the London Metropolitan Orchestra, directed by Blake Neely. This music was chosen by NASA for the 2001 mission "Mars Odyssey."
In 2002, Rousseau released Travels a musical Travelog, and in 2003, Recall an exclusive release by Nature et Découvertes.
2004 was marked by Oliver Stone's Alexander in which Vangelis composed the soundtrack and Rousseau added a new string to his bow as musical editor. This massive project lasted over a year and represented an exceptional experience and a monumental work.
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