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Hollow Sun: Legacy

Here we are – the final part of the series!

There is so much more that could have been written about the luminary Stephen Howell.

One of the things that drew me to his story was the conjunction of creativity, business dealings, high art and the explorative world of synthesizers and sampling.  Ultimately leading to the creation of unique digital instruments.

I found each part in the consecutive timeline of his story demonstrated an ability to learn; grow in skill and get things done.  The will to do things properly. And moreover the ability to be genuinely creative; good humoured but nevertheless always disciplined!

For what it’s worth I believe an undisciplined life is an unhappy one.  And I think if we were to have asked Stephen if he agreed with that sentiment,  I think he would.

One gets the sense that even the unpleasant stuff has to be done, and still done well. Because it’s the boring stuff that showcases the good and interesting in its best light.

When I started this series, I knew there was plenty to go at, and really if we consider it, Stephen Howell could have had four quite different albeit for the most part creative careers.  But rather wisely he chose a little bit of each of them…

And, as we saw in part PART THREE Hollow Sun Towers are still standing. Being continued by his children and close friends. The creations that Stephen developed very much collaboratively are still available at the Hollow Sun website for us today.

Living creatively

The leaving of music creation tools may be seen as somewhat of an unusual legacy. Because it is an unusual career. 

Do we see “VST developer” on school career boards?!  One can almost imagine the rights to Stephens unusual creations being read out in the reading of the will!

But even that itself somehow speaks to the kind of person Stephen Howell was. It wasn’t going to be a “regular” life, even if it can be said such a thing exists. But nevertheless he had what appears to be a very good start in life where the values of discipline, personal integrity and personal industry were espoused. 

Ambition is a funny thing.  Stability and security are great places to launch from.  Even if all that is, is a low paid job on the ‘factory floor,’ and there are those few who without any discernable stability in their lives still reach for the stars and actually arrive there.

Ultimately, after years of traveling and noise Stephen was able to live that quieter life in Wales he envisioned, where to innovate and not-be-boring was as much a staple of his workspace as the coffee cup or the mixing desk.

It’s been tempting for me to close this series with some great epithet that would somehow sum everything up and stay as a fitting tribute.  But then I realized I already have, it is this six part series on his life and work.

I hope you enjoyed reading this series, if you did – Thank you. Here are links to parts one to five. SN

Hollow Sun: The Dawn Hollow Sun: AKAI Years Hollow Sun: High Noon Hollow Sun: Eventide Hollow Sun: Nightfall
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