Today in history: 17 May 1866
The French composer and pianist was born on this date in Hornfleur, Normandy.
In 1887, Satie left the Parisian home of his father and stepmother to take lodgings in Montmartre. By this time, he had started what was to be an enduring friendship with the romantic poet Patrice Contamine, and had had his first compositions published by his father. He soon integrated with the artistic clientele of the Le Chat Noir Café-cabaret, and started publishing his Gymnopédies. Publication of compositions in the same vein (Ogives, Gnossiennes, etc.) followed. In the same period he befriended Claude Debussy.
Politically, Satie was a socialist and joined a party early in the twentieth century. He also played a full part in the artistic life of Paris becoming associated with Ravel and young musicians as well as the Dada movement and surrealism.
After years of heavy drinking, Satie died on 1 July 1925 from cirrhosis of the liver, never having married.
Satie's best known music is his Gymnopédies but most people at some time will have heard his Gnossiennes Nº 1 which I am posting here. The pianist is Pascal Rogé and the monochrome photographs of Paris add to the atmosphere.
[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u9Op2emDBZk&feature=related"]Erik Satie bajo la lluvia. - YouTube[/ame]