Artist Fellowship | Features

Meet an Artist Fellow: Composer, Bradley Thomas Turner

In the Fall, we hosted composer, Bradley Thomas Turner at Getaway Talladega Valley through our Artist Fellowship program, so he could escape the noise of the city and reconnect to nature and his love of songwriting. During his stay he created a song and a beautiful video to capture it—check that out below along with our interview with him to hear more about his creative practice and his connection to nature.

Fill us in on your background—personally and in your creative practice. 

I’m a composer who gets excited talking about classic film scores, the importance of sound, and the irreplicable beauty of physical, hand-played instruments. I spend a lot of time writing, recording and thinking about music.

How does your connection to nature influence you personally, and how does it influence your art?

Being in nature gives me a new perspective on sound. Everyday where I live, I’m subjected to a multitude of man-made noises that I have no control over (e.g. passing cars or construction sounds). They create such a roar that, most of the time, my brain filters them out. They still affect me though. I end up (somewhat unconsciously) coping by generating my own noise with distractions like the television or my phone, often directly into my ears via Airpods. When I’m in nature, there’s a drastic reduction in volume level that allows me to hear things that would otherwise be drowned out by mechanical noise. Hearing animals or the specific way wind interacts with the unique environment around me starts to feel so much more magical and meaningful than the act of sticking digital recreations of sounds directly in my ears with headphones. It reignites my obsession with the physical phenomenon of sound.

How was your Getaway? Did your free time in your cabin influence your process or inspire any new ideas?

I’m always inspired by traveling to and sleeping in a new place, especially one that’s well-designed and aesthetically pleasing. I end up feeling like I’m in a movie. That combined with the opportunity to be disconnected from the internet made my Getaway a perfect environment for coming up with new ideas. My stay inspired the music I made and the video I shot while there. Making music when I travel feels a bit like keeping a diary. I love being able to record something right there in the space I’m visiting.

You can keep up with Bradley on his website, and his Instagram and TikTok.