I take in and respond to all sounds and styles of music that have the qualities of strength, depth, spirit, structure, beauty and intelligence. Examples include the works of J.S. Bach, Stravinsky, Mississippi delta blues, John and Alice Coltrane, the exquisite music of Bali, Balkan brass bands, and I can't forget to mention my namesake Ludwig van Beethoven!
I still remember when I was two years old, and my mother took me to a music store on 39th Street in St. Louis. Playing the piano there was sublime! I played for quite a while, listening to the combinations of tones, colors and textures; it is still that way for me— whether composing, playing the trombone or didjeridu, singing a ballad, or working out a new piano voicing.