In the early autumn of 1976, I had a brief, but very intense affair with a still world famous classical guitarist. A class act, he spirited me away from NYC to Cape Cod for 3 days of hot sex, guitar playing breaks, food & wine, & more hot sex. During our rest periods he would play for me. One of the compositions that really struck me & made me temporarily forget his other gifts, was Erik Satie's Gymnopodie #1. This piece was written for piano & the arrangement for guitar was by my new buddy. I still listen to his recording of it & I can remember the salt air, & the sweat from our extended weekend.
Dadaist, absurdest French composer & pianist Erik Satie, was contemporary of Ravel & Debussy. he collaborated with Jean Cocteau to create the ballet Parade (1917) for the Ballet Russes, with set designs by Pablo Picasso . He knew, worked with or influenced most of the artists, writers & musicians in Paris when it was the cultural capital of the world. He is credited with nearly every avant-garde movement of the 20th century.Satie was influential in the fields of minimalism & ambient music,& the use of piano music-to-film synchronisation.
Satie referred to himself as a "phonometrician" (meaning someone who measures sounds) preferring this designation to that of "musician", after having been called "a clumsy but subtle technician" in a book on contemporary French composers published in 1911.
In addition to his body of music, Satie also left a remarkable set of writings, having contributed work for a range of publications, from the Dada 391 to the American culture chronicle- Vanity Fair.
Satie was an incredibly private & eccentric man. He was known to enter a room & sit without removing his hat, coat or gloves, & always with a brand new umbrella.
After his funeral 1925, his friends entered the tiny room he had occupied for 27 years but had never allowed anyone else to enter. Along with dust & cobwebs, they found huge quantities of umbrellas, many never used, as well as large numbers of unknown compositions hidden all over the room.