Peter Michael Hamel is a German composer (b. 1947) who played (and still plays) an important part in contemporary music. He could be labelled as a minimalist composer, close to Terry Riley, mixing together improvisation, repetitive patterns, Indian influences. His music is both ambient and avant-garde, developping rich harmonic atmospheres and mysterious soundscapes where his piano sounds sometimes like a Balinese gamelan.
Peter Michael Hamel studied music with Karlheinz Stockhausen, John Cage, Morton Feldman and Terry Riley, among others.
Since 1997, he is the successor of György Ligeti as professor of composition at the Music Academy of Hamburg.
His recent work includes four operas, many pieces for orchestra, chamber music as well as solo compositions.
In 1970, he founded the band Between and released several albums where West met East, mixing musical traditions and instruments though fascinating improvised ambient pieces.
As a solo artist, he released many albums in the 70's and 80s, such as:
Aura (1972, Wergo)
The Voice of Silence (1973, Wergo)
Buddhist Meditation East-West (1975, Harmonia Mundi)
Colours Of Time (1980, Kuckuck)
Nada (1980, Kuckuck)
Bardo (1981, Kuckuck)
Transition (1983, Kuckuck)
Organum (1986, Kuckuck)
Let It Play 1979-83 (1987, Kuckuck)
Arrow Of Time/ Cycle Of Time (1991, Kuckuck)
As an introduction to his musical universe, I chose Transition, a 1983 double CD with five compositions for piano, prepared piano, pipe organ and PPG wave computer synthesizer: perfect music for walking on the paths of memory and dream....