The Spiritual Arts Foundation

David Wright - Spacemusic and Spirituality

November 29, 2022

David Wright

David Wright is the keyboard player and composer of electronic space music who founded the AD Music label in 1989 and who co-founded the avant-garde electronic rock band Code Indigo. His music is melodic, atmospheric and emotive, with a strong emphasis on mood and feel, invoking a deep spiritual connection. 

His gently rhythmic style combines piano, synths and multi layered sounds that often incorporate electric and acoustic guitars, violin, percussion, samples and male & female voice textures. 

His large catalogue of work includes award winning and award nominated albums that cover Romanticism, Space, Ambient, New Age, Relaxation and Electronic Music, all laced with classical, rock, jazz and cultural influences. His music is featured regularly on cable and internet radio playlists worldwide and has featured on Sky Sports, in Music Libraries and TV in numerous countries. 

He has developed his own unique sound and style, that for reference purposes, can been likened to Steve Roach, Kitaro, Vangelis, Tangerine Dream, Jean Michel Jarre and Mike Oldfield.

David’s music has been credited by many fans as being a great source of spiritual comfort during times of stress, and particularly through serious illness.

However, David is at pains to point out that he is not religious. “I don’t equate being spiritual to being religious,” he says. “Just being human with understanding, compassion and empathy is being spiritual,” he continues. “I believe in the power and splendour of the universe, that we are all connected, that the universe binds us.”

The artist has always maintained that the inspiration for his music creation comes from a hitherto unknown and deeply emotional place and that without this ‘unknown spiritual input’, the music wouldn’t flow. 

David Wright on stage

Perhaps it’s the farthest depths of the universe that calls to us when we’re being creative,” David adds with a smile. But whatever that “input”, wherever it comes from, it has propelled David’s success and he has become a popular and respected composer, live performer and promoter of electronic music. He is now regarded as a veteran of the electronic, space music scene with a perennial sales record and an ever growing fan base.

Indeed, whatever the emotional, or spiritual if you prefer, message contained in his music, the actual process of creating the music is what drives David. Surprisingly, once an album is finished, he rarely goes back to it, effectively passing ownership of the music (in the spiritual sense at least) to the listener, to draw their own emotional and spiritual conclusions.

“That is not to say the music is some kind of unfinished soundtrack for the mind,” David explains. “But rather, if the listener connects to the underlying emotional resonance, then they will make the spiritual connection and be at one with the emotional sensibilities of the music.”

Fans will also point to the occasional Oriental influences in David’s music. This fascination stems from his time spent in Asia and the Far East during his younger, formative days (his father was in the Royal Navy). His first journey into playing music came in 1968/69 playing drums in a band while in Singapore. “It was all Creedence Clearwater Revival, Canned Heat and Cream,” he recalls. “But, just soaking in the atmosphere and culture of the Far East had a profound affect on me. I came to love the beauty and delicacy of oriental music,” he says fondly. “The sound of the Erhu, historically known as "Huqin" or barbarian's fiddle, is one of my most favourite instruments, so emotive.”

David Wright - Reflections

Those emotional and oriental influences remained and have been evident from the beginning of his musical career. “Something clearly touched me spiritually,” David reflects with a smile.

His debut release ‘Reflections’ in 1989 was a musical outlet of grief following the death of his first wife ‘Tricia. The music that followed, whether with cosmic excursions like ‘Continuum’ (2006), historically referenced albums like ‘Moments in Time’ (1994) or the seminal album ‘Walking With Ghosts’ (2002), highlighted the ease with which David is able to conjure up deep emotion. As one USA reviewer wrote; “Some music makes me think, David Wright’s music makes me FEEL.”

Something else that has clearly influenced and inspired David is MENCAP, a charity close to his heart and has supported since the late 1990’s. This came out of a close friend’s involvement in an Albanian Children’s home project, out which came the acclaimed and commercially successful album ‘Dissimilar Views’.

“Perhaps that’s where some of my energy and purpose comes from,” he muses. “I have worked hard to get where I am, but consider myself very lucky to make a living from doing what I love, making music. So giving something back to such a wonderful, worthwhile cause is simply a pleasure.”

However, a big part of David’s success can also be attributed to good business sense and his wife Elaine’s input. AD Music became one of the first UK electronic music labels with a website in 1995 and in the same year they signed a publishing deal with Notting Hill Music. Then, in 1997 AD Music embraced the digital/download revolution, registering with ‘The Orchard’, who distribute the label’s output to this day.

David has also flourished when working with other artists. His collaboration with Robert Fox started in 1993 with a BBC radio Soundscapes concert and resulted in formation of the band Code Indigo, referred to by BBC radio DJ Ashley Franklin as “The best instrumental rock band on the planet”

David Wright - The Lost Colony

Code Indigo has the envious distinction of playing its first two major concerts with the legendary Klaus Schulze in the UK and Germany and its two ‘farewell’ concerts in Holland with Tangerine Dream!

Other collaborations include those with close friends Ian Boddy and the late Klaus ‘Cosmic’ Hoffmann-Hoock. He has also worked with many other artists in connection with various music projects ranging from relaxation to his ‘Callisto’ project, creating traditional sequencer style electronic music.

Along the way David has released an impressive body of solo work, including classics like the award winning ‘Dreams and Distant Moonlight’, the NAV nominated ‘Momentum’, the ever popular ‘In Search of Silence’ and the epic Sci Fi collaboration with Matt Howarth, ‘The Lost Colony’. There have also been many, many concerts and festivals… large and small… in the UK, Europe and the USA, including 2 nights at the London Planetarium and Derby Cathedral (twice) amongst them.

Since 2012 he has collaborated regularly with close friend Carys, who has added her distinctive vocal textures to David’s music resulting in critically acclaimed CD projects and a DVD concert release.

When working with others, he is known for his generosity in ensuring that the collaborations allows the music to evolve and metamorphosise into something none of the participants would have done themselves.

“I think working with people with whom there is a close spiritual connection always brings out the best collaborations,” David ponders. “Indeed thinking about it, several of my closest friends and I have a shared personal loss and grief, so there is a definite emotional and spiritual connection that binds us.”

David Wright

“But at the end of the day,” David states firmly; "It's about the music, that’s it! Not egos, not the past, not who did what, or with what; it’s not about commerciality, it’s simply about the music, dare I say, art. Working with people who have a shared ethos in the process just makes creating music so much easier…and fun.”

David’s influences are plentiful, from Brian Wilson to Santana, from Rimsky-Korsakov to Klaus Schulze, and his musical odyssey has now spanned over half his life. 

“I once told someone that I have to make music,” he says. “And they respond that I didn’t have to. I had to explain that they didn’t understand what I meant. When I say I have to, I mean, I HAVE to, I can’t stop, it’s like a drug. Sometimes I wish I could stop! But I have to make music to make sense of my existence. It’s what drives me, it’s why I’m here.”

As David concludes: “We all have our influences, but at the end of the day, what we composers and musicians really want to do is to create what we want, what we’d basically like to listen to. For me, the challenge is always to create something different to what I did before, to find new ways of expressing myself through music. While I’m always striving for technical excellence, the music must contain that indefinable emotional essence, that spiritual ‘something’, and that is always the hardest part, because it comes from an unknown place at an unspecified time during the process. So as long as I have something to say and can continue to make that spiritual connection, then I will keep making music.”

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