Icestorm Network newsletter – Member Spotlight – Joe Curry
August 4, 2005
By Adrian Gonzalez

Adrian ( Tell us a little bit about yourself and your life goals.

Joe Curry ( I grew up on a family farm in South Dakota, so I know the effort required to put in a hard day’s work. I am an avid pianist, beginning lessons when I was six years old and cutting my first CD when I was a senior in high school. In 2003, I earned a marketing degree from the University of Minnesota and worked in the public relations field for two years, writing articles for agriculture and manufacturing trade magazines. I enjoy traveling, meeting new people and refining my Spanish skills.

My goal is to someday operate my own company full-time, perhaps expanding upon my current music hobby business. This fall, I will begin my next career adventure, a two-year MBA program at the University of Notre Dame, to further sharpen my business skills.

As a pianist, what specifically about playing the piano do you enjoy the most?
I enjoy playing the piano because it’s a great way to relax and unwind at the end of the day. And, I like being able to share my musical talents with others, whether it’s at church, community events, or in the living room of someone’s home. Lastly, I’m still learning new piano techniques and styles of music.

Where do you get your inspiration to create your music?
Much of my musical inspiration comes from reflecting on life experiences, as well as the elements of Mother Nature. For example, the magic beauty of a colorful flower garden, floating butterflies and soft wind chimes on a warm, sunny day. Or a gentle April rain, or the sound of combines harvesting grain on a moonlit, autumn night.

What type of advice would you give someone who is starting to learn the piano?
Besides the obvious advice to practice, it’s important that learning to play piano is fun. Every practice session should include one music piece that is just for fun, like a familiar radio hit or a favorite movie/TV theme song. Learning should be exciting, not a chore.

How important is it for people to learn music? In other words, should music be taught in school along with regular subjects like math, literature, and science?
As a musician, I may be a little biased, but I think music is an important subject that every student should learn. Music teaches a little bit of everything: math (rhythmic divisions of time), science (acoustics), history (era of a musical piece), physical education (coordination of fingers/hands/muscles and breathing control), foreign language (reading and interpreting musical notation and Italian music terms) and art (transforming ideas into emotion).

What are some of the advantages of having a web site for yourself?
The primary advantage of my Web site is eliminating geographical barriers and being able to share my music with more people. It’s fun to get emails from people across the world that have downloaded my free sheet music or have sampled a song. On a random note, my website was also my nickname during my rookie year in the Minnesota Marching Band—the alto saxes referred to me as “!”. The web site is another means of communication with my fans, and it provides a timely way of keeping people up-to-date on my musical happenings.

Who are some of your personal heroes or role models in life?
My family has largely shaped the person I am today. In particular, my Grandpa Curry imparted many nuggets of wisdom, of which two of my favorites are “Nothing is automatic” and “If God gave you any talents, you need to use them.”

As far as musical role models, I highly respect Jim Brickman and how he has developed his talents and dreams into a successful business.

Any final comments you would like to say to the members of The IceStorm Network?
Thanks for reading, and may you too pursue your passion and keep it in focus.