Lisa Pressman is a composer and pianist as well as a vocalist. Her album, “Quiet Goodbye,” is a ten-track, calming, solo piano “dreamscape,” with an effortless, flowing quality to every piece. Performed on Lisa’s Bösendorfer Concert Grand piano, each composition here is adapted from original recordings on her other albums that included expansive orchestrations and layered vocals, distilled here into wonderfully intimate solo piano pieces.
The album opens aptly with the lovely, “Painting Water.” Now, imagine that, if you will. This is gently flowing water captured perfectly by Lisa’s soft touch on the keys and the melodic movement of the composition. Very nicely done, and it’s 5 minutes of pure peace and quietude for the soul, setting a perfect tone for the album.
Following is the dreamy, “A Drink from a Waterfall,” which is equally as serene and flowing. There is something so tranquil here, you’ll find yourself listening again and again.
Expressive and soothing, “Forever and a Day,” takes you even deeper into the relaxation. There is a soft sensuality here that perfectly expresses the timelessness of love.
The title track is certainly a favorite, with its signature “quietude,” painting a poignant soundscape of the many quiet goodbyes we all had to make in various ways during the pandemic. This is just beautiful from start to finish.
Another to completely love here is the tender, introspective, and spacious, “One Inch = A Thousand Miles.” This is music written by Tim Ponzek and is from the EP, “Hillbilly Zen.” Lisa was the pianist as well as the background vocalist on that version, and although this version is not a vocal, I was touched by this lyric that was included in the liner notes for the song:
“Am I on the map of your heart?
Is that why it’s true?
One Inch = A Thousand Miles
Am I that far away from you…?”
Have you ever just laid down in green grass gazing up at clouds slowly passing by and wondering what it would be like to be up there floating in all that supreme fluffiness? “Lighter Than Air” is originally from Tim and Lisa’s album, “If The Sky Was Home.” The piece was created to express their feelings of floating in the clouds. This solo piano version succeeds in this and every way. With its quiet, soft, sophistication, this is one of the most calming and soul-soothing songs you’ll ever hear. Definitely one for the relaxation playlist.
Did you know that a willow branch can be planted in the ground and from it a new tree will grow? The willow is symbol of new life. Its ability to grow and survive is symbolic of how we can grow and thrive even in the most challenging conditions. The piece, “Willow,” from Lisa’s album, “Expecting Miracles,” was inspired by a prayerful daydream and is simply designed to help us remember the presence of God.
On that album, it is a New Age contemporary vocal piece: “And when the sky is gray and when the wind is still, I am there to hear your prayers.” Here, as a solo piano piece, it is equally as beautiful and so wonderfully serene.
“Seven Days of Winter” was created during seven days of inspired, prolific songwriting with Tim Ponzek. This is flowing and melodic, and just gorgeous. What really strikes you throughout the entire album, by the way, is the peace, calmness, and restorative feeling of every composition. One can literally feel all stress melting away.
A dreamy lullaby, originally created to celebrate the birth of one of her favorite nieces, “So Long Ago,” is from Lisa’s album, “Angel Dreaming: A New Dream.” Equally lovely here, this is sweet, gentle, and flowing, sure to bring peace to your heart.
The album closes out with the tender, melodic, “Awaken To a Dream,” which is the perfect close in that the music takes us easily from one dream to another. It’s definitely not the end and we can expect a new beginning in all. Exquisite in every regard.