Written by: André Hazel 4 September 2018
Photo by: André Hazel (Xavier Geerman standing at Scheveningen Pier)
The start of the man behind the scenes
Xavier grew up into a musical family on the island of Aruba.
He recalls spending the holidays and gatherings surrounded by music instruments and family members playing music together.
Every year during the New Year celebration his family plays the traditional music called “Dande.”
As a group of musicians they would go from house to house and perform.
“Dande” is an island tradition meant to bring prosperity and blessing through music for the years ahead.
During their performances they also let the little kids play along.
The kids would mostly play on small percussion instruments such as maracas.
Xavier was between 3 & 5 years old when he was allowed to play along.
At some point he started to get a better understanding on how the rhythms should be played.
As he grew older his interest grew and he wanted to be in the group, so they thought him basic rhythms so he can play along.
Not everyone knew all the songs, so a lot of exchange of instruments took place during performances. It is at this point that he started to see the importance of learning more than one music instrument.
Starting to play the guitar
When he was around 8 years old he started to play Cuarta and Guitar.
One day after talking with friends about music at his school, he got invited by one of his friends to join a band.
At the time they mostly performed Aruban folk music.
Music was at first just a way of connecting, but with friends he started to take music more seriously. His desire to take music more seriously grew when he saw all the opportunities that comes along like recording albums, performing live and the possibility to make a living out of it. His parents also indicated that music can be a serious profession.
Photo by: André Hazel (Xavier during interview at Da Lina's Little Italy in The Hague)
After performing as a guitar player with bands, he learning more about the dynamics of each instrument.
Xavier also has a broad interest in different types of music genres.
The next step was to make a decision to become a professional musician,
so he began advanced guitar lessons in The Netherlands.
He followed his music studies in Arnhem in preparation to get enrolled into the conservatory.
He is also a piano-technician, finishing his studies in Amsterdam.
Soon after he followed courses of masters orchestration for Film & TV at Berklee College of Music in Boston.
It is during a course called “composing for film & TV” that he started to get more into composing.
When he rounded up his studies, still aspired to continue his music studies, he got accepted in the music conservatory at Fonty’s Academy of Music & Performing Arts.
The study was aimed at teaching students how to compose music for different combination of music instruments.
During the conservatory years he started to develop his own style based on the rhythms that he learned from Aruban music.
This new innovative music that Xavier has been working on became more like a creole modern music combined with elements of classical European music.
The next step for him was to seek more the possibilities to start his own music business.
He started off by launching his own website and used it solely as a platform to showcase and to produce professional music for other artists.
XG-Music as a music company
XG is the abbreviation for Xavier Geerman.
Xavier indicated that the father of his friend used to call him XG.
The name caught on and he started to refer himself as such.
For his company he decided to combine XG with music to form XG-Music.
At first he did not know which direction to take his company.
He is a multi-instrumentalist performing on guitar, bass, piano, percussions, trumpet, saxophone and trombone to name a few.
With a website, which was created at the time as a marketing platform for his work and to showcase his compositions, he took the next step and made it an official music company.
Photo by: Christina Fazari (Xavier working on a new composition)
Upcoming years of innovation at XG-Music
XG-Music is still promoting Xavier as a composer, but is currently using his roots from the island especially the rhythms to create an innovative music platform.
The works of Xavier are becoming more like a blend of Aruban creole music mixed with European music.
His mission is to become an ambassador for Aruban music to the world, starting first with performances in Aruba and Western Europe.
He already had his work performed at the Royal Concertgebouw of Amsterdam, National Opera & Ballet of Amsterdam and Willem II Concert Hall in Den Bosch to name a few.
His most recent accomplishment was winning an Atelier prize after being nominated for the Jacques de Leeuw Prize, a prestige prize in The Netherlands.
He sees his future with XG-Music as a way to represent Aruba through his music compositions and explaining it to people through music theory.
He sees that the Aruban music scene is not fully developed and needs to be updated to compete with what is currently happening around the international modern music scene.
While working on this contribution he will be innovating Aruban music and presenting it to the world, so that it can showcase and let people know more about Aruban music.
For more information about XG-Music
go to www.xg-music.com
Written by: André Hazel 4 September 2018
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