(Composed and performed by Reynold D. Phililpsek, copyright 2013 Zino-Rephi Music BMI, All Rights Reserved)

A few years ago, I ran across the tragic story of American pianist William Kapell (1922-1953).

Kapell was considered the best of the young American pianists when his plane, returning from his tour of Australia, crashed just before landing in San Francisco in October 1953.

I became very fascinated with Kapell and ordered the CD box set of his recordings. Up until just a few years ago his recordings were out of print and RCA wisely decided to remaster and reissue them with a very informative booklet in the box set.

I wrote “Gotham” as a sort of homage to Kapell. In the song, I quote a part of the Prokofiev Third Concerto, which Kapell had made an excellent recording of in the late 1940s.

Since Kapell was a native New Yorker, I also tried to evoke the feeling of that city and ergo the title and video images as well.



(Composed and performed by Reynold D. Philipsek 2008,
copyright Zino-Rephi Music BMI, all rights reserved)

If I have a “hit,” it is probably “Butterfly.” In terms of interest, radio airplay, and downloads it is by far the most played song of mine. I came upon the idea for the song while jogging one day in the wildlife preserve near my house. I saw a monarch butterfly and it’s circuitous flight gave me the idea for the circuitous melody which twists and turns in a combination of 3/4 and 4/4 bars.

The entire piece is centered around an E Hungarian “gypsy” minor scale which contains both the raised seven and flatted fifth.

Have a listen: