Andrei Poliakov Interview on Nagamag


What are the genres that describe better your music style?

Andrei Poliakov:
The foundation of my works is a well-educated neoclassical, romantic soundscape, but as soon as the music begins, it starts looking for cross-over opportunities to develop into an exciting house-party, jazz, pop, or electronic music, all these easily transforming to warm classical follow-ups – hence the eclectic style which I hope helps me tell better stories without words.
Essentially, I treat a musical genre as an additional color for the compositions, like seasoning in food; these colors help me get the emotions across and tell the stories to the listener with better precision and stronger impact:

I do not feel bound by a genre or a style, and instead I use and abuse the variety of styles to paint a deeper and more colorful, meaningful musical picture. Nevertheless, the Piano is always staying as a centerpiece of my compositions as I believe the richness and diversity of sounds of the “king of music” easily trumps any other instrument I know

Few words about your musical background and career?

Andrei Poliakov:
I am a professional musician, composer and producer, received a fundamental classical music master education as a pianist and an oboist in Russia, and then continued with the professional musical career performing with world-renowned orchestras. Later I diversified my musical taste and capacity into jazz, rock, and pop genres, performing and recording with various bands and solo.
Since 2012 I have been living in Switzerland, Geneva, engaging into various professional activities both in artistic and business domains.

Do you remember your first connection of love to music that was the right impact to be a music artist now?

Andrei Poliakov:
I started learning piano at a very early age of 3 or 4 years old: my parents are pianists and music has always been in the center of my life.
When I was in school (yes, seriously underage…) my favorite pastime while cutting lessons was to grab a couple of friends, buy a box of beers, go to a nearest abandoned building (which we had a lot in Russia in the 90s), sit down on a window sill, take a sip of a cold one, and put the 6th symphony by Tchaikovsky, or the 2nd (no, 3rd… any of them!) Rachmaninov’s piano concerto on a Walkman and basically drown in emotions and thoughts… and beer.

Hence, the music that has influenced me the most, comes from the second half of 19th – first half of 20th century – and I must admit, most of it is Russian music or music with Russian roots. Rachmaninov, Tchaikovsky, Skryabin, Mussorgsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Prokofiev, Shostakovich, Stravinsky – but also Mahler, Bruckner, Richard Strauss – these composers influenced my taste the most. Depth of thought, wide array of emotions, unimaginable soundscape and extremely clever and elegant arrangement solutions; beautiful harmonies and melodies…

Being a teenager, I of course dived into the world of rock and pop music, starting with The Beatles - the band that still remains my all time favorite, and all the usual suspects: Queen, Michael Jackson, Metallica... and this journey continues to date.

Is there a story behind your latest release "Moonlight" and would you like to share it?

Andrei Poliakov:
I dedicated this short piano essay to the Moon and to the most beautiful village in the world: Céligny - a tiny little place in Switzerland, where I live.
Céligny is inhabited by incredibly kind, smart, and very warm people, has an unbelievably rich and beautiful nature, and stunning views along with very old historical houses drowning in floral multi-coloredness, and there is #MontBlanc 🏔 on the horizon... and don't get me started on the birds' chirping and singing...

Once it was a home for Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, the latter is buried in the old cemetery of the village.

Céligny is an unfathomably cozy place on this planet, and I feel very blessed to have had a chance to engrave my very intimate memories of this village.

I have actually composed the Moonlight in the heart of a former water mill!

And then one early morning in February I woke up and couldn’t fall asleep again. I decided to go for a walk and took along a video camera, and there was a full Moon in the skies! I was so enchanted and intrigued by mysterious flair of that morning that I couldn’t stop the camera running - and then I decided to use some of that footage for the video of this track.

Is Moonlight going to be a part of a bigger project you are working on right now?

Andrei Poliakov:
Yes, this new solo piano release “MOONLIGHT” is continuing to form my live album “Moonlight & Sunshine”, and it follows the previous releases of 2020: “Declaration of Love”, “Lullaby”, and “La Promenade in Paris”
The “Moonlight & Sunshine” album has an uncommon approach for the neoclassics genre: every next release features 2 different versions of one motive, coming to life as a piano solo piece, interpreting a narrative in the moonlight, and as a fully arranged piece, revealing the same story under the sunshine.

The album has been evolving live on the major streaming platforms as a playlist (Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube and others), thereby gradually forming the full album as new pairs of tracks are released.

The album Moonlight & Sunshine on Spotify:

In a few weeks I am planning to follow up and release the fully arranged track called "Sunshine", which is inspired by the melodics of Moonlight, but features a duet of piano and violin (played by a very talented violinist from Russia) and other instruments.

Most artists have a favorite song from a different music genre than the one they are producing music for... Which is yours?

Andrei Poliakov:
The Beatles "Here comes the Sun"

Of Course Nagamag would love to listen also which track from a similar artist you admire?

Andrei Poliakov:
Ludovico Einaudi Una Mattina

Discover & Listen to Andrei Poliakov

Andrei Poliakov on Spotify

Andrei Poliakov's Signature Track

Andrei Poliakov on Social Media

Andrei Poliakov's Website

Interviewed by Nagamag on
March 18, 2021

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