Interview with John Erickson

John playing the piano
John having fun playing the piano.

A word from the Director:

We met John Erickson several years ago at a neighborhood church where he’s the pianist. We were instantly enamored with his soulful sound. 

Described as a jazz player with a love for pop music, John is known for his lyrical, understated style.

When John agreed to help us score the Calvin Can’t Fly ASL Video, we were thrilled.  John’s musical skills and sensitivity brought the Calvin story to life.  We are so honored to bring his beautiful sound to Calvin fans across the country.

— Sarah

Here’s what John had to say about the experience:

What was fun about this project?

It was a fun challenge to compose music FOR something.  I’ve composed and arranged lots of music over the years, but this was one of the rare instances for me in which the music needed to underscore and illuminate an actual story.  

What was your favorite scene?

My favorite is probably the short scene at the very end, “and they all flew south …”.  I recall a lot of discussion and a fair amount of trial and error in search of just the right mood to wrap up the story.  It took a while, but I’m very pleased with what we found.  It’s only 10-15 seconds, but I love the way the music, text, and images work together there and it makes me smile every time.  

Why is the story important today?

For me the story is a reminder that we all have our own unique gifts and that although it may not always seem immediately apparent, we each have an important role to play.