Grateful for a Splendid 2017!

Fast…

If it wasn’t for the Christmas Tree that is blinking here next to me and the wonderful Christmas even and Christmas day I spent with my family, I wouldn’t believe 2017 indeed was almost gone. It flew by in one snap of my fingers. At least, so it feels.

But looking back over that speedy year, there are many reasons to be thankful and many persons to be thankful to. Two, groups if you will, especially.

First off, you might have noticed that Authentic Sound is slowly moving to something that we might call in the future a company –more on that in a minute- with this YouTube channel as a motor that drives the passion and the energy forward in a way that surprises even me every day.

My Family and…

All of this wouldn’t be possible without my family, who is always so incredible supportive in the dreams and the passion I follow every day, no matter what the outcome is. Anja, my wife, as well as my two beautiful girls Sofie and Evelien. You have noticed Sofie discovered the YouTube comment box on her phone. Don’t think I’m telling her what to do or to write, she’s, well… kind of proud of what I do, even giving advice by times and that is a totally new feeling for me. Evelien is way to young to handle the zillions traps a mobile phone has today, but takes her time to pose for a Christmas thumbnail, throwing kisses, actually at you.

You!

And secondly, I am so thankful to all of you. What I’m doing today, would not be possible without you. All of you: regular or occasional viewer, yearlong or recent subscriber of which many feel as close friends, sometimes surprisingly fast, the patrons for Authentic Sound who fuels our work with smaller and bigger monthly donations, no matter what your personal ‘relationship’ is with Authentic Sound , each view means to me one person that I can share the beauty that I see in a composition with, or the thing I’d like to talk about.

Authentic Sound had a crazy year by the way. We just surpassed the magic number of 5000 subscribers (thank you!!). Remember still how we started in January with lifestreams only, recording the 6 big Bach partitas. The plan was to have those released in 2017 both on CD and vinyl, which, looking back on how many things still need to be taken care of, was far from realistic. We’re still working on that project and I promise you, it’ll be special!

The monthly projects

Then came the Mozart months, with the six München sonatas, and a lot of videos around Mozart, the context of the time and my take on the performance practice of this music. The monthly projects were introduced as a constant factor with two major Beethoven sonatas in May and June, again with lot’s of videos around this topic. And so we moved into the summer months with focus on Bach’s Well-Tempered Keyboard, recording the first 8 preludes and fugues, had daily videos for the entire two months, culminating in a concert, here at our ‘hoksent’ chappel, in front of over 70 people, all broadcasted live through YouTube. For sure that was one of the major events of this year, and we’re happy to have done that. The livestream reached almost 300 people during the concert.

The “new” Authentic Sound

September onwards, we left the daily video as well of the concept of the monthly projects. Soon came to three videos a week, Music Monday, Thoughts on Wednesday and Inspiration on Friday, which meant mostly a recording that I own or a documentary that I believe is worth sharing. Adding an introduction to each of those recordings, the same thing happens as always on YouTube: what effort you put in, you get back. It is remarkable how much I personally have learned just by preparing those introductions for you.

Flying back again for a moment to January, Anja & I took part in an intense course with Tim Schmoyer. Tim Schmoyer is one of the most experienced YouTube experts out there (Videocreators) and a 10 week intense meeting with 20 other YouTube creators completely changed our view on YouTube. In fact the plans we develop currently are born there. You might have noticed the very first difference by the introduction of my online course on “Basic Keyboard Techniques”. Over a 40 people have tested that and I cannot complain at all on how this course performed afterwards.

Tempo Research introduced

And then, also in January, we got a visit of Lorenz Gadient. I know Lorenz for almost 10 years now and as he is for sure the most experienced (and honest) researcher on pendula notations and metronome markings, you can imagine we talked regularly in the past on issues you’ll know I believe are important. His magnificent book ‘Takt und Pendelsschlag’, bringing for the first time in history an objective, consistent theory from within the context of the pendulum and metronome notations, deserves way more attention than it does today.

So in the time span of one hour last January, Lorenz and I decided a) to start a project rewriting and reshaping his book, a project that is formed slowly but steadily. And b) to make an interview on the topic.

So we did. It is the pingpong video that at the beginning had a rather strong impact. No surprise it was rejected to the bottom on certain facebook groups that talk on historical performance practice, but here comes the magic of social media: for a reason I don’t understand or know, YouTube started suggesting that video from October again, to many people, not dozens, not hundreds, but thousands. In one month, that interview became by far the most popular video of my entire channel, outperforming longtime ‘hits’ as the Beethoven pathetique or the Mozart a la Turca. It spikes in a way is kind of remarkable. Brings in a lot of new subscribers, and, more importantly, the overwhelming number of thumbs up on that video only gives a strong message. I do hear you, and honestly, your support in what sometimes feels as a lonely “battle” in the warp speed driven ‘HIP’ world of anno 2017, is very welcome. There is so much more to be researched here and share with you, and so I will!

That brings us to the overall performance of our channel that the last two months kind of exploded, again without a clear reason that stands out to me. We doubled in views, watchtime and subscriber growth. Suddenly, overnight. And that trend is steady now for two months.

So I guess all of that is a strong signal from you to continue. And with you at the other side of the camera, there is nothing I’d love to do more than that. I’m really looking forward to interact with you in the comment sections here on YouTube or in the chat during the lifestreams that will come back soon.

I wish you a splendid 2018, a year full of health and music.