Traditional violin technique joins electric and midi violins in a new release by Scott Laird. "Free Way," a fusion of the jazz, pop, folk and classical idioms features Laird's compositions which utilize electric and midi violins, guitar, bass, drums and keyboards.
The CD includes 12 songs, all written or arranged by Laird. His compositional technique centers around his live solo performances, which utilize technology that allows him to create live "tracks" that highlight his multi-instrumental talents. The focal point, however, is the electric violin.
"The music combines a free-spirited nature with a real sense of structure," Laird said. "I think that it gives an insight into my own feelings about life and music. What makes the music unique is that I have stylistically created my own musical genre in terms of performance. Normally, an artist would need to use pre-recorded or sequenced tracks to perform music on a variety of instruments simultaneously. Through the use of looping technology, I can perform the music featured on the CD in a totally live, solo setting."
Laird is currently the Orchestra Director at The North Carolina School of Science and Math where he directs the Orchestra, Chorale, Recording Technology Program, and Guitar/Piano Program. Prior to moving to North Carolina in 2001, he was Director of Orchestras at Eleanor Roosevelt High School in Greenbelt, MD. Eleanor Roosevelt is home to three orchestras and is the largest high school and music department in Maryland. Laird is noted nationally as an authority on electric string instruments and their applications in the classroom. In addition, he serves as the educational and artistic specialist for D'Addario Strings, ZETA Music Systems, and Coda Bows. ZETA is the world's largest manufacturer of electric and MIDI violins. He is also a well-known orchestral conductor and music educator throughout Maryland and Central Pennsylvania.
Laird previously recorded with the band "Believer" on Roadrunner and REX Records. Believer was noted in the late 80s and early 90s for their fusion of the heavy metal and orchestral idioms. Their 1993 album, "Dimensions," was nominated for a Dove Award by the Gospel Music Association for Best Metal Album of the Year. Believer guitarist, Kurt Bachman, co-wrote and performed the cut, Time's Past, on the latest Laird recording.
A new recording is scheduled for the summer of 2004. It will include 10 new tracks and guest artists L. H. Dickert, guitar, and Stephen Lynerd, drums.
Laird resides in Durham, NC with his wife, Barbra, and sons, Matthew, Joseph, and Cael.
Check out the artist's website:
1. Let It Snow
2. Prelude in C
3. 95 Degrees
4. Time's Past
5. Voyage to Atlanta
7. Moonlight in December
11. Anticipating Life
12. Belair Lullaby
13. Wherever You Are