Linda Mantooth's Profile
Linda began formal piano lessons at the age of eight and continued for the next six years. Although she practiced her pieces like a good little piano student, her heart was not totally in it. “I felt restricted and restrained by the notes on the page,” she says. “I spent a lot of my practice time simply playing songs by ear -- things I had heard on the stereo or at church -- or just playing simple creations of my own.”
Piano lessons stopped in eighth grade after Linda’s parents realized she was playing her own compositions rather than her piano assignments. “I finally felt free to do what I wanted at the piano…no notes to have to follow…complete freedom…. just me and the piano. Eighty-eight keys…the possibilities seemed endless. Of course, I am thankful for those six years of lessons since that gave me a good music foundation,” she says.
For years and years, Linda continued playing the piano, still focusing on playing by ear, all in the comfort and safety of her living room. In 1999, she purchased a Yamaha Clavinova digital piano. This was a turning point for Linda, since the piano could record her music and help keep track of her work. This is when she really began seriously composing piano pieces and spending many hours each day at the piano. After a year of doing this, she was starting to get restless and felt a desire to “do something more” with her music.
In August of 2000, Linda investigated a songwriting class at a local college. She met Keith Hays, the professor who taught the class, and she decided to see what that class could teach her about writing music. After completing the class, Linda began working with Mr. Hays to learn about refining her music. Mr. Hays set a goal for Linda to take her works of art and put them on a CD so everyone could enjoy the music.
Linda established her own record label, Piano Portraits Music. Linda’s first CD, Fruit of the Spirit, was released on
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