A Song A Day
Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Awards
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- [00:00:00.250](contemplative synthesizer music)
- [00:00:05.630]Music, something that's been a part
- [00:00:08.800]of David Besonen's entire life.
- [00:00:13.195]Music is always something that just feeds the soul.
- [00:00:16.500]It is a gift from God and we were designed to do it.
- [00:00:19.500]From a young age, Besonen has been playing
- [00:00:21.510]the piano and saxophone.
(jazzy saxophone music)
- [00:00:26.410]And it all started out with the help
- [00:00:27.820]of his mom and piano teacher.
- [00:00:29.430]Because of that, I just kept doing
- [00:00:31.340]more and more and more and more.
- [00:00:32.173]And the more I learned, the more I enjoyed it,
- [00:00:34.140]and so that's kinda of how it started for me.
- [00:00:36.780]Besonen started composing his own music
- [00:00:38.920]when he was a first grader.
- [00:00:40.210]I wrote my piece, and it was simple and dumb,
- [00:00:43.850]but it got me excited and it was like, oh!
- [00:00:46.200]And every time I'd write another song I'd try something new,
- [00:00:48.420]and then it started becoming cooler and more complex,
- [00:00:51.250]and I'd write with other people.
- [00:00:53.150]And now, at 21 years old,
- [00:00:54.580]the still-young musician continues to work at his craft.
- [00:00:58.010]Then last March, the COVID pandemic
- [00:00:59.920]stopped live music performances,
- [00:01:01.970]so Besonen and several musician friends started a challenge.
- [00:01:05.970]They wrote a new song a day for an entire month.
- [00:01:08.911]And that was just like a really fun way
- [00:01:10.360]to stay intentional with our time.
- [00:01:12.380]But Besonen didn't stop there.
- [00:01:14.270]He went on to create his first EP,
- [00:01:16.580]which features five of the songs he wrote
- [00:01:18.410]during the challenge.
- [00:01:19.650]I ended up working on all of 'em
- [00:01:21.540]for about four or five months,
- [00:01:23.080]and then August of 2020, so this past August,
- [00:01:26.420]I decided to release them; I thought that would be fun.
- [00:01:29.030]I wanted to start releasing music,
- [00:01:30.660]and I had to start somewhere.
- [00:01:32.050]With a month's load of new music,
- [00:01:33.650]David had a lot of original songs to pick from.
- [00:01:36.660]His friend and fellow musician, Erik Skoog,
- [00:01:38.910]admires his efforts.
- [00:01:40.260]Having his piano background,
- [00:01:42.050]he's got a lot of chord structure
- [00:01:44.300]and a lot of deep song-building, I guess you could say,
- [00:01:47.670]but he also plays saxophone really well,
- [00:01:49.720]and so he knows how to find these solo elements,
- [00:01:53.120]these melodic elements, and layer things.
- [00:01:55.600]Besonen says he writes not just
- [00:01:57.270]for his love of music, but for his faith in God.
- [00:02:00.030]I am a very devoted Christian.
- [00:02:01.900]My faith's the most important thing to me,
- [00:02:03.729]and the Bible talks a lot about how we're supposed
- [00:02:05.660]to use our gifts, especially music, to worship.
- [00:02:08.240]And that's, I think, just the most fulfilling way
- [00:02:10.640]I can use my talents,
- [00:02:12.720]just to give back to the people that have helped me,
- [00:02:15.070]but also give back to God who gave me these gifts.
- [00:02:17.500]Although Besonen is a computer science major,
- [00:02:20.070]music continues to be a big part of his life.
- [00:02:22.690]He's involved in various UNL bands
- [00:02:24.920]and has taken many classes through the music school.
- [00:02:27.780]One professor in the College of Music has even become
- [00:02:30.340]an unofficial mentor for him.
- [00:02:32.460]Professor Tom Larson says there are students
- [00:02:34.730]like David that are-
Curious, they're ambitious,
- [00:02:39.070]they're hardworking.
- [00:02:40.670]And although Besonen doesn't know
- [00:02:42.120]what he's going to end up doing-
- [00:02:43.590]He's either gonna have a hit record someday,
- [00:02:45.650]or he's gonna cure cancer, you know, (chuckles)
- [00:02:48.200]he's one of those guys.
- [00:02:49.670]Right now, the musician is working
- [00:02:51.160]on an album with a few other artists
- [00:02:52.910]that they plan on releasing this summer.
- [00:02:54.810]For the Nebraska News Service,
- [00:02:56.390]I'm Jill Lampkins reporting.
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