eric petersen
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eric petersen


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"Neon receives Four Nominations"

Eric Petersen and the Cd Neon in the Black garnered Four nominations in the 2006 Lifestyle Music Awards in the New Age Reporter.
Best New Artist
Album of the year
Best contemporary instrumental album
and, Best cover art - New Age Reporter

"Texture and melody, Grace and beauty"

Peace for Pat is the best track on the album. There is warmth in the melody and yet there is a hesitation, almost a caveat in the flow. The vibraphone sound is soothing and the string background adds to the realism. The title notwithstanding, there is no finality to the tune and we have to ask why. Perhaps this sort of peace is a beginning more than an ending. Listening to Eric Petersen’s music is like going through a exotic fabric shop made of music. There your hands touch smooth and rough, silky and soft and warm. Always warmth. And there are so many unexpected colors, even if the title is Neon in the Black. Rating: Very Good - - reviewed by RJ Lannan on 3/5/2006 - RJ Lannan, New Age Reporter

"So many colors"

Neon in the Black By Eric Petersen Label: Self Released. Neon in the Black tracks 1. Andalusian Summer 2. Bastogne 1944 3. Girl Trapped In House 4. Flying 5. Welcome 6. Along the River Seine 7. Subway Strut 8. Interplanetary Traveler 9. Montauk, Walking With My Father 10. Peace, For Pat
Not the absence of all light Keyboardist and composer Eric Petersen joins the two most common characteristics of light and sound, i.e., waves, and commingles them to make a very appealing ambient/electronic production called Neon in the Black. It appears that Eric had very little choice but to choose a career in music. Apparently, it’s genetic as his entire family is somehow involved in the musical field. His mother is a classical pianist, his dad a rabid music fan and his brothers are both contributors to several decades of rock music. Petersen’s music is light, but elaborate Euroambient pieces with a cascading warmth that allows the listener to relax a bit and dream the dreams of the light hearted. His music is portraits in black and white and everything in between. Somewhere in the south of Spain along the Mediterranean you will hear the strains of Andalusian Summer. It is the land conquered by many, but known by few. You can feel the western breezes and smell the oranges as the music washes over you. The melody is so bright you actually have to squint. It is a very pleasing opening track. A little bit frightening is the tune Girl Trapped in House. The unanswered telephone, the car motor in the distance and the feeling of isolation and fear grips you as the somber music pulses and suddenly ebbs and wanes like an ocean of sound. It is the sonance of breathing and it is real. But whose? It is like glancing at an old snapshot and trying to figure out the whole story from just that one glimpse. There is a vast forest between France and Belgium in an area once called Bastogne. Today it is known as Ardennes. For all of its woodland beauty it was once the scene of some terrible battles during WWII. Although the ghosts of valiant warriors walk along its verdant paths, it is a place of peace and memories. On the track Bastogne 1944 Eric, with a dramatic piano score and ethereal voices captures the tranquility now restored to the hilly and forested lands that stretch to the Rhineland. This is one of my favorite cuts. Interplanetary Traveler not unlike Jan Hammer tune is spacey without being eerie. This is study in movement and distance. The high flying trumpet lead, pulsing electronics and staccato percussion is proof that there is more than one way to get from point A to B without the use of a straight line. I liked this tune for its dissimilarity to the rest of the album. Montauk, Walking With My Father came out to be another favorite on Neon In the Black. You can hear Eric and his dad as they walk along the point and gaze up at the old lighthouse with the Atlantic as their constant companion. A medium tempo, like a cadence and a simple little tune on the keyboard came off light and...well not exactly happy, more like content. - RJ Lannan New Age Reporter

"Peace, For Pat is numbe one"

Peace, For Pat. is Number one again,
on Music Choice on the Soundscapes
channel on Digital Cable. - Music Choice

"4 stars for Neon in the Black !"

Neon in the Black
Self-released (2005)

Neon in the Black is yet another example (in my career, I figure this at the least the tenth) of the maxim “quality, not quantity.” While the CD is only thirty minutes long, the songs contained on this “maxi-EP” are so damn appealing that it’s considerably better than a lot of full-length albums I’ve heard in my time as a reviewer. The recording is almost ridiculously well-engineered – seriously, this sounds like a major label release. The paper sleeve that the album arrived in, while adorned with excellent artwork and graphics, gives no hint of the sophisticated and accomplished music within the cardboard container. I can’t remember the last time I was so surprised by the sheer quality of a recording which came from seemingly out of nowhere and was so modestly packaged.

Since there are almost no liner notes and the artist’s CDBaby page is bereft of anything but sparse details, any attempt at detailed analysis of, e.g. instrumentation, on my part would be fraught with possible errors. I imagine that Petersen is, primarily, a keyboard player (the album features a lot of piano in addition to electronic keyboards). I also assume that some or most of the other instruments I hear on Neon in the Black are sampled, although it’s anyone’s guess about this. However, with music this fantastic, I frankly don’t give a damn.

One of the more interesting aspects to the album is the fact that tracks 3 through 5 are each only one minute long! Other songs range from three-and-a half to five-and-a half minutes in duration. The opening cut, “Andalusian Summer,” starts things off in fine fashion with lush orchestral strings, Spanish-style guitar, and a strong dose of romantic nostalgia, all done up in perfect production. The three short tracks are somewhat abstract in nature, although, rest assured, they’re also entirely accessible. “Girl Trapped in House” is followed by “Flying” and then by “Welcome.” I suspect the artist has a scheme in mind for these three short vignettes and that perhaps they form a kind of musical triptych of sorts.

The CD really hits its real stride with the fifth song, “Along the River Seine” a laid-back yet funky blend of jazz and chill-out with unbelievably catchy beats, a mellow lead synth line, subtle jazzy runs on piano and lush strings underneath it all. This is simply a killer track and one of the best songs of the past year, period. Right after it is another great selection, “Subway Strut,” and it may be even better than “…Seine.” The pulsing electronic rhythms, superb piano, cool Fender Rhodes-like tones, and overall funky nature of the song remind of a blend of Peter Blake and Michael Whalen’s jazzier side. Tasty stuff indeed!

The artist also deftly handles quieter more subdued pieces too, such as the mellow “Montauk, Walking with My Father” which ambles along with its blend of chilled beats and lilting melody. “Interplanetary Traveler” mixes jazz trumpet with spacy synths galore and propulsive trap kit drums and it works like a charm, aglow with starlight and driven with a sense of urgency by the rhythms and synths. “Peace, For Pat” concludes the CD with a sprightly but gentle new age jazz number, with delicious bell tones reverberating among piano and strings.

I’ve written many times that the real joy of being a music reviewer is the discovery of the unexpectedly delightful recording – one that astonishes even the jaded listener and makes one realize that there is still a lot of great music out there to be released. Neon in the Black is one such album and Eric Petersen is a highly talented artist who I can only hope will continue recording music. This CD blew my socks off and if you like highly accessible music that mashes together jazz, electronica and new age music, I can’t believe that you won’t be equally impressed.

Rating: 4

Bill Binkelman
- Bill Binkelman/ New Age Reporter


In 1983, the classic " Mr Euphoria " a fusion, progressive rock album was released.
With Eric on synthesizer. The new album is called.
" Neon in the Black " and is an explosion of electronic, ambient and soundscape styles, with a bit of straight ahead jazz thrown in for good measure, tracks can be sampled at



For the past thirty years, Eric Petersen has been on a mission to combine Classical, Americana, Jazz and Soundscapes into a truly original sound.
As a composer, He combines elements of Jan Hammer, Harold Budd, Igor Stravinsky, Jimmy Smith, Dave Grusin, Joe Zawinul, Bernard Herrmann, Maurice Jarre, Jerry Goldsmith, Keith Jarrett and others to craft music of depth and emotion.
His music was recently licensed to MTV, VH1,Oxygen,Lifetime and may be heard on over twelve different shows including, Keeping up with the Kardashians, Cribs and The Hills.
He has played with musicians such as Lyle Workman,
( Sting, Beck, Todd Rundgren, And the films of Judd Apatow) Joe Palermo, Mako Natsume, Tim Sanz,
Gordon and Richard Rhodes. ( Mr. Euphoria )
He played at Seattle's Benaroya Hall in June of 2005 to rave reviews.
He has composed the music for five short films by producer, writer Nils Osmar and director Gilbert Martinez for the Seattle International Film Festival's 48hr Film Challenge.
And the CD. Neon in the Black was a nominee for Best cover art, Best contemporary instrumental album, Best new artist, and Album of the year in the 2006 New Age Reporter Lifestyle Music Awards, And a nominee for Ambient song of the year at the 2007 Los Angeles Music Awards.
His music has been described as " Musical paintings "
And " Musical Fabrics of many colors "
He is currently working on a new CD, Working title " Wishbone" which should be out later in 2009
He has attended two composers workshops in Los Angeles in 2007 and 2008, learning the craft of writing for film and television from composers, Shawn Clement, John Ottman, Sharon Farber, Lalo Schifrin, Hummie Mann and continues to grow as a composer.