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Patrick Godfrey was born in Toronto in 1948 and began playing piano at age 10. Initially self-taught, from the beginning he was interested in many styles of music, and his early influences included Fats Domino, Henry Mancini, Leonard Bernstein and JS Bach.Read More...
He started playing at church dances when he was 12, and went on to play and sing in a number of Toronto rock bands, including the Omegas, The Diplomats, and RCA recording artists Simon Caine.
By 1970 he had become a first call session pianist and worked with many well known Canadian musicians including Bruce Cockburn, Murray McLaughlan, Raffi, Marc Jordan, Shirley Eikhard, Ben Mink, Daniel Lanois, Ken Whitely, David Essig, Fraser and Debolt and Mendelson Joe.
During the early 1970's, Patrick studied piano and composition at the RCM with Canadian composer and educator Dr. Samuel Dolin, mentor to many well known Canadian musicians.
His work with singer Len Udow took him to Winnipeg one Summer, where he met animator Richard Condie and wrote the music for Richard's first animation, "Oh Sure". So began a friendship which continues today; Patrick has scored all of Richard's animations including the Academy Award nominated classics The Big Snit and La Salla.
More recently Richard and Patrick completed an internet project for the NFB entitle Etudes and Impromptus and they are currently planning a new project for the WWW.
Patrick has worked on numerous other animations, including the Academy award nominated short George and Rosemary, and the Oscar winning animation Bob's Birthday. He also scored all 52 episodes of Canada's most successful animated TV series, Nelvana's acclaimed Bob and Margaret, seen around the world.
Patrick has been in demand as a producer; his credits include the million-selling Classical Kids productions Mr. Bach Comes To Call, Mozart's Magic Fantasy, and Beethoven Lives Upstairs, and he has produced albums featuring artists such as Holly Cole, The Flying Bulgar Klezmer Band, The Lafayette String Quartet, and Michael Jones.
Active in the children's music market, he is the co-writer of Joshua Giraffe, made famous by Raffi on his million-selling classic Baby Beluga. Patrick is featured on Raffi's new CD entitled Communion.
Patrick's company Apparition Music is in the development stages of a children's TV series based on Joshua Giraffe.
Throughout his long career as animation composer, session pianist, accompanist and producer, Patrick has stayed hard at work on his own creative projects.
Critics greeted his first solo album, 1980's Ancient Ships...as "the surfacing of a major talent", possessing "an enormous sense of calm and joy". Keyboard Magazine noted the music's "clarity and grace".
Downbeat gave Bells of Earth (1982) four stars, Cadence called it "the most distinctive solo piano LP of the previous two years" and The Montreal Gazette described it as..." a refuge in troubled times"
Describing 1985's Small Circus, The Globe and Mail said "The harpsichord pieces team with ideas and roll along with a wonderful kinetic sort of energy; the instrument has never been as funky....".
In all, Patrick has released 10 solo albums, the most recent being 2009's That's Why, his first vocal album and Amos and The House Of Stones (2010), a new collection of instrumentals, hearkening back to his first recording Ancient Ships.
November, a live recording, features a selection of Patrick's songs and instrumentals as well as his original take on Bruce Cockburn's classic Mama Just Wants To Barrelhouse All Night Long. Patrick played on the original Barrelhouse featured on Cockburn's Night Vision album back in 1970.
Patrick's other recordings include Still Life Still, 8 solo piano improvisations recorded in August of 2006 and released in 2007. Each piece is created in the moment, shapes and patterns emerging and evolving with flowing energy and meditative calm.
These Blues, a mix of standards and originals, both vocal and instrumental was released in 2006.
Blue Night, described by Heartsong Review as ..."electronic music at it's best...captivating! " and Strange Rain were released in 1995 and 1996.
Of his solo piano concert at The Montreal International Jazz Festival, The Montreal Gazette wrote...."the stunning material he played to an awe-struck crowd ranged freely from Bach to boogie, with flat-out jazz, romance and the hypnotic music of the East filling in the spaces in between...he kept the audience in mute wonder with the delicate beauty of his melodies, superhuman left hand patterns, and a right that moved with the delicacy of a butterfly in flight."
Patrick continues to perform in concert and teaches improvisation, composition and song writing at the Victoria Conservatory of Music, Victoria BC.
In concert he plays a mix of piano music both composed and improvised, and songs, mostly originals, with some favorites ranging from George Gershwin and Harold Arlen to Bruce Cockburn and the Beatles.
Patrick's music is available from www.apparitionmusic.com, CDBaby, and Apple iTunes.
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