While I can not play an instrument myself, I have deep admiration for those folks that not only play one but reach a level of mastery far greater than most people around them. It’s wonderful that the internet has made finding these skilled musicians so easy. I don’t remember how I stumbled across Tom Brier exactly: it was most likely while deep diving to find piano renditions of video game related music of some sort. But what I found was truly extraordinary.
Tom is a man that truly geeks out about his ragtime music. Nearly all of the songs, which are recorded and uploaded to his friend’s YouTube channel — with Tom’s permission of course — are of Tom looking at the sheet music for the first time, then sight-read playing the song while also improving it to be ragtime. I can’t even begin to describe the raw skill this guy has! Just watch! If you don’t become a fan, I don’t know how that would even be possible!
Tragically, a few years ago, Tom was in a terrible accident that left him in an unresponsive state. There are a few updates about his health condition uploaded to the same YouTube channel as the video linked above. Things like that are terrible in any situation, but knowing the tremendous musician we’ve (potentially) lost to the fragility of life is heartbreaking. Do yourself a favor and go give his stuff a listen. Within the Zelda realm, in particular, there’s also the Ocarina of Time Horse Race theme, which needs to be heard to be believed. And there’s the shooting Gallery – also from Ocarina of Time.