We were just about to start posting a myriad of cool new updates in this blog section, but before we can, we feel it's most honorable to acknowledge the passing of yet another of our big heroes. The great and fairly revolutionary pianist and synthesist Lyle Mays has passed away. We were very saddened at the news. Lyle was the main reason Stratos founder Dean De Benedictis took up improvisational piano playing at an early age. Lyle Mays was most known for his work as Pat Matheny‘s main collaborator and side man, but he performed with others and released his own albums that were just as innovative, sophisticated, deep and bursting with life. He was an influence on music in the western world, beyond many people's consciousness. As a jazz pianist, he was undoubtedly one of the best, and oddly enough, as an electronic music innovator, he left a mark in that world as well, especially for a jazz musician. He was a fairly unsung musical hero, considering his abilities and what he accomplished with them. Perhaps the ages will eventually catch up to that understanding, whether or not Lyle ever cared about such things. Here is a piece of Lyle's that we feel personifies his essence and his abilities fairly well, if you click his photo below. Rest In Piece, Lyle. May your spirit, or your intentions, or anything else about you continue to Ascend.
If you would like to read Dean's far more personal and in-depth take on Lyle Mays, it can currently be found and read on his own Facebook pages. But bear in mind that his written entry is fairly long and also very opinionated. Dean feels strongly about a great many artistically based matters. Approach with caution. And of course, it's important that we mention how Dean's feelings and opinions are still separate from his fellow band members, and do not nessessarily reflect those of the Stratos Ensemble.