La Speranza was an album that came about unexpectedly and also quite gradually.


About 9 years ago I was living in Mantova, a small city in the north of Italy.


I had not played or composed for some time. Not long after I had relocated to this city, I had my first baby and in the days that followed I suffered the very sudden loss of a parent. My father, quite young and healthy had died suddenly, and I was far away from my home with an infant and a huge lack of understanding as to what had happened.


In the weeks and months that followed I purchased a full length Casio keyboard and started to play again. Slowly but surely I began to compose, using only ear, memory and touch. Mantova is the piece that started the whole journey and it embodies everything that weighed down my soul and then lifted it back up again during that first 12 months.


From there on, each instrumental is symbolic of my mind and being during that particular time of composition. In Here is fairly self explanatory as it followed on from Mantova and the raw grief I still carried around. Going Home & La Speranza (The Hope) came about after I moved back to Ireland and I continued to compose and also write songs.


Vincenzo’s Theme originated as a song I wrote for my eldest son, and indeed I found it flowed into being, almost effortlessly and became an instrumental as easily as putting my fingers to the keys.


Over the next couple of years as I struggled to find some stability, Changing Rooms illustrates this, and it actually took a long time to finish as I wrote different parts at different stages. It gives an insight into the lack of consistency I felt I was constantly surrounded by throughout this time in my life.


Leave Me At The Border marks coming towards the end of a journey in my mind, The Border maybe being synonymous with this, an ending as such.


The final track The Drifter came about so easily, yet I stopped and started my way through it as though I were on the roads searching for my own particular route.


Because really, when I sit at the piano I’m always searching for the next melody, and it will always find me first! — Elaine Freeman



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Big Round Records is dedicated to presenting world-class musicians doing what they do best: smash the walls of genre and create groundbreaking new sounds while keeping one foot firmly rooted in tradition. Overdriven bassoons, orchestra-backed swing groups, blues-inflected Zydeco, outlandish arrangements of Disney songs, and modern-protest tunes is just a small slice of what you'll hear on our releases, which feature some of today's most forward-thinking and respected artists such as John Hall (Orleans), Steve Gadd, Andy Jaffe, Eddie Gomez, Tony Oxley, Charlie Barnett, Richard Stoltzman, Tony Clef, Mika Yoshida, and many more. Out of the box? With Big Round, there is no box.

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