ABOUT SETH FINGERS FLYNN BARKAN:
Composer - Performer - Dracula Factory
Seth "Fingers" Flynn Barkan (42) is a Stride Pianist, composer, book maker, videogame critic, programmer, poet, and visual artist. He is most widely known for "Blue Wizard Is About To Die!" (a collection of prose-poems about the arcade era), and "The Best Linux Games Podcast," (his weekly podcast covering the best games available for the GNU/Linux Operating System, now celebrating it's 8th year in circulation).
Barkan came to piano late in life. After teaching himself to read music at the age of 12, he began begging his parents for lessons. Eventually, at 13, he studied Classical Theory and piano under the masterful Roger Bushell. The following year, he also began a 7 year-long odyssey learning Jazz Theory, composition, arranging, modular synthesis, and MIDI from the (sadly obscure) musical genius Buddy Hill.
Hill was instrumental in the creation of the iconic MiniMoog with Robert Moog. Hill's unique understanding of modular synthesis from its very earliest days, and his direct (as well as indirect) contributions and influence on the creation of MIDI as a universal language for instruments, sequencers, and synthesizers to communicate with each other meant that Barkan spent his formative years learning directly from one of the most consequential (if not well-known) pioneers of music technology in the analog-to-digital era.
As an adult, Barkan was fortunate enough to study Music Theory at the college level under avant-garde Concert Clarinetist, ardent exponent of 21st Century experimental music, and mercilessly rigorous musical educator, Dr. D. Gause-Snelson. Ironically, Dr D. was a contemporary of Wendy Carlos, who helped to create the Moog Synthesizer, and who popularized a timeless conception of post-modern soundscapes with her arrangements and compositions for films such as "Tron," "A Clockwork Orange," as well as iconic albums like "Switched-On Bach."
Barkan's work as a Stride Pianist (a relatively obscure form of early Jazz that bridges the gap between Classical, Ragtime, and early Jazz) has been featured on WNYC's "Studio 360" program, nationally syndicated via PRI. He performed for years on the Las Vegas Strip (as well as many off-Strip bars). At one point, he had over 1 Million views of his performances during the early years of YouTube (stats were lost after Google acquired the company).
"Ever since I was 14 years old (in 94') and began to compose and arrange with MIDI, I've had a double life. I will forever be a Traditional Jazzer, first and foremost, but that's only one side of the coin. [With "Slutty Wizard"] I think I can finally go berserk with the secret, futuristic side. In a fun, retro, psychotic, roller-coaster kind of way."
Barkan resides in his native Las Vegas, where he has a home studio, more Linux PCs than he can count, his enormous videogame and sheet music collections, and an unending stream of programming and podcasting deadlines. He hopes to resume performing as a Stride Pianist on the Las Vegas Strip as the pandemic slows down and life returns to his crippled city. He is available for interview upon request.