About Rob Costlow

About Rob

Music lovers of all ages will be transported to a less complicated, more relaxed world with Costlow's collection of original piano melodies that showcase the talent and universal reach of his passionate and raw sound. Even though Costlow's music is often placed with certain genres, his style is neither new age, classical or jazz. Costlow simply delivers independent, sincere and contemporary music to which listeners can easily relate.

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A Little More About Rob

By the time he was twelve, Rob Costlow was trying his piano instructor's patience by adding his own endings to songs during lessons and recitals. "I literally despised taking lessons and especially practicing other people's music. It just wasn't for me. I had so many notes running through my head, I wanted to create my own music," admits Rob. This soon brought an end to the lessons that began at age five. Rob realized that his musical future was going to take a different path than the one set by his teachers.

Rob is a true Hoosier born and raised in Indiana. Growing up in a large family helped Rob become focused and tenacious. As the youngest of six boys, Rob got used to seizing every opportunity. In fact, it was one of Rob's brothers that introduced him to contemporary piano music. "It was so different than the music I studied in lessons," says Costlow. "It helped give me the courage to try my own hand at composition. I said to myself 'I can do this!' It was an immediate outlet to express myself and also provide a sense of calm when times were stressful."

At age eleven, Rob lost his mother to ovarian cancer. Even as a young boy, Rob was affected by his mother's constant courage in the face of such adversity. His Mom had and continues to have a huge impact on Rob's life and music.

Rob received a Bachelors and Masters degree in Kinesiology from Indiana University, Bloomington (IU). Before transferring to IU as a junior, Rob began his college career as a Piano Performance and Composition major at Ball State University. He then changed majors to Kinesiology as a sophomore, giving an ironic twist to the meaning of Rob's first album, Sophomore Jinx.

At IU, Rob was hit by a drunk driver and suffered injuries in both hands resulting in a broken left-hand and carpel tunnel syndrome in his right. Through surgery and physical therapy Rob has recovered, but still feels aching in his hands after extensive piano performances.

While working on his Masters Degree at IU, Rob unofficially started his own record label based on a business class project. In 2002, Rob released his first professional solo project, Sophomore Jinx (re-released 2005), containing all original music. In 2004, Rob officially founded TOURIST RECORDS®. Through TOURIST RECORDS®, Rob continues to create and license music. He hopes to inspire other artists to make their own impact in the world.

Professionally, Rob has worked for influential New Media companies. It is through the Internet that Rob has connected with many people of different backgrounds and cultures. He has gained fans of all ages worldwide, confirming that people are in need of much more than just your typical "top 40" music.

An admitted perfectionist, Rob will sometimes carry on a conversation longer than it should go. Rob loves to travel, "cut a rug" when the mood is right, eat pizza and Twizzlers, put ketchup on everything, and spend time with his family.

While Rob has come a long way since his childhood lessons, his love for creating original compositions is still at the heart of his contemporary piano music. "Music is what inspires me," says Costlow. "It is in my soul. I never force myself to write. I do it when it comes to me. I take things a day at a time."

Praise

A Sampling of Feedback on Rob's Music

"Rob Costlow takes contemporary solo piano light years beyond typical new age sentimentality...reflective, cleanly elegant work to which you'll return again and again."
- Magnatune.com (The world's first Internet-era record label)

"Rob Costlow definitely has his own style. His original compositions are refreshing and I would recommend his albums to all music lovers. Keep your eyes and ears on this guy."
- Jim Brickman (Platinum selling pianist - www.jimbrickman.com)

"I just wanted to say that I found your track on my phone - absolutely stunning. I then searched for your website and have realized you are one talented man. Beautiful music with so much emotion! I have never emailed anyone about their music, but you truly deserve praise and what's two minutes out of my life when you have spent yours composing some wonderful pieces."
- Fan (United Kingdom)

"I have never once written a musician, or any form of artist that I do not have some direct social connection to. However, your music has compelled me to write a very brief message just to let you know how truly amazing and inspiring your music is. I have listened to enormous varieties of music, and performed on a smaller scale in a number of choirs, rock bands, etc. I mention this because you play only one instrument with only one set of hands. This astounds me because your music has more feeling and more emotion than what many hands or voices could ever create for many other music groups. So, I just thought I'd write a small thank you for doing what you do, because the world needs music worth listening to."
- Fan (Pennsylvania)

"Before I write you my big thank you, I want to explain how I came to your music. I was learning and working for my university. After hours of work I searched the internet to stimulate my head for more creativeness. After a few minutes I got to your music...and normally piano music isn't my style. But I listened to your beautiful tones and after the first song I tried your whole album. The result was that I finished my homework and got a really great grade. So, I really want to say: Kiitos! Thank you! Danke! Merci! Gracias a usted! Grazie!"
- Fan (Germany)

"When people hear the phrase, "a work of art", people generally imagine a painting or sculpture. When I hear the phrase, "work of art", I think, "The beautiful music of Rob Costlow." There are very few artists (both classical and contemporary) that I have heard that encapsulates my mind with such wonder and beauty. When I listen to your music I feel the urge to be a better person, be more creative, and keep practicing my piano. Keep up the good work. Everyone I know that has heard your music loves it."
- Fan (Washington)

"Music is a beautiful thing, it can inspire us, make us happy or sad. It can move you and drive you. There is something about your music that captures life. I know it sounds cheesy of false, but its not, something about your music has caught me, and filled me with a sense of awe that I find very difficult to put into words. And the point of me writing this is just to thank you, for making my day that much more enjoyable, and I'm sure that its true for many more people out there, and I hope your inbox is so full of messages similar to mine. Your songs have forced hope into me, and for that I thank you."
- Fan (United Kingdom)

"If you are like your music sounds to me, you have to be a wonderful person. Thank you very much for your next masterpiece "Reconstruction." Go on with that wonderful kind of music. Maybe you can't believe it, but normally I listen to metal-music, but your music is a great feeling. Thank you again."
- Fan (Germany)

"Dude, your music brings such peace of mind. So much more beautiful than mainstream music. Love it."
- Fan (California)

"As a fan of prog-rock music, when I hear the words "solo piano album", it often makes me cringe. The thought of a well-honed keyboard player going acoustic and showing off their dexterity and, more so, their ego. These artists tend to be appalling songwriters and such albums are barely listenable despite the instrumental prowess they display.

Thank heavens for Rob Costlow!

One listen to Woods of Chaos is enough to convince anyone that Rob is not only a skilled pianist but also a very gifted and (for want of a better word) efficient songwriter. It's not an album where he shows off how fast he can play the piano, but one that displays the moods he can evoke with it. And before you go thinking he's another Richard Clayderman, his writing isn't romanticized and sugar-coated dross at all - it's hard to describe: it's too modern to be classical and too diverse to be new age. What's even more surprising is that a full album of solo piano instrumentals is incredibly easy to listen to in one go - a rare feat.

Play the opening track, 'Meant to Be' and that speaks for itself. You'll be back for more - I guarantee it."
- Fan (United Kingdom)

"Music is universal, but I have found so many resonant moments in your music that are identifiably Asian in their sensibilities. Maybe it's because the music took me on a journey during which I revisited my own life experiences. I have listened to all three albums, and I am truly impressed. The music became soundtracks for the different stages of my life!"
- Fan (Singapore)

"Your music is from out of this world... I just can't stop listening to it."
- Fan (Chile)

"Rob's music has a very powerful narrative element."
- Fan (Virginia)

"I've just got a new phone, and I was going through my ringtones, and my eldest daughter pricked her ears up when she heard 'Woods of Chaos' a tune supplied with my phone. Your music is just superb and I am really grateful to whoever was inspired to put Woods of Chaos on my Nokia."
- Fan (United Kingdom)

"It's a real pleasure to listen to your music. You give me a good taste to life. I really appreciate your efforts to make people happy. I am asking God that you continue to amaze us with such beautiful music."
- Fan (Algeria)

"I'm a French listener of Radio Paradise web radio. I've discovered Woods of Chaos and want to say that I've never listened to a thing like this! It's very great! Thank you for this."
- Fan (France)

"Words fail to describe Rob Costlow's piano melodies. I was never into piano songs that much, but listening to him even makes me want to learn."
- Fan (United Kingdom)

"When I fell in love, I was listening to you. When the love of my life went away, I was listening to you. When I'm missing someone deeply, I listen to you. When I feel alive, I'm listening to you. You're amazing...it's just not music. I do not call this music...it's more than anything. It's all about feelings. It's not anything that I can explain."
- Fan (Turkey)

"Rob's music is inspiring and full of emotion, which allows the listener to adapt it to their own tastes and styles seamlessly. Nothing is forced (no words, just the instrument), which creates a calm and relaxing atmosphere for various occasions or pure solitary enjoyment."
- Kelly Perdew (Winner of The Apprentice 2 and successful entrepreneur)

"For lovers of piano whether classical or contemporary, Rob Costlow's music is highly recommended. There are pianists that play with precision and there are pianists that play with precision and passion. Costlow is one of those. He has that rare ability to combine flawless performance with soulful renderings of beauty that touch you deep inside."
- Karen Newton (Innerchange Magazine Music Reviews)

"Wow Rob, 'Meant to Be' has just made the hairs on my arm stand on end. How wonderful that you haven't succumb to doing a cheesy cover...or that you're happy enough to allow your music to stand up on its own two feet without any accompaniment. I am VERY impressed."
- Podcast Paul (Podcast host)

"It's nice to hear something different, and though I'm not what one might consider a "new age" fan, you're influences give you a greater depth, and roundness that translates into something I can listen to, and enjoy. I can't stand music that bores me, and yours did not."
- Garland T (Producer)

"Wonderfully creative and inventive piano work."
- Zoe Montana, (DJ of Radioio Acoustic - www.radioio.com)

"Rob Costlow is one of the best new solo pianists that I have heard in years."
- Steve Parente (Owner of Smiling Ear Radio)

"Firstly, let me say that I don't usually do this sort of thing and this is not my usual cup of tea and to be honest, I got it for my fiancé, I usually listen/like well produced hip/trip hop, drum n' bass and Jazz, mainly modern. This music is wonderful. It is beautifully played and in places it moved me to tears. It made me think of all the people and things I love and move me in this world. I hope this doesn't sound too stupid and sloppy, but who cares if it does. If you want to hear someone/something rather special, put your feet up and hear this! If you are disappointed see a doctor because there must be something wrong with you (only my opinion). Wim Mertens and Philip Glass spring to mind. I may be wrong, but again who cares. :) I don't know what else to say other than this is proper, phew and WOW!
- Fan (United Kingdom)

"Just wanted to drop you a quick line thanking you for the music. Sophomore Jinx has become one of my favorite acoustic wallpapers while working, ever since I purchased it from Magnatune. It's one of the few albums I can play at work without immediately causing a flurry of complaints regarding the sound volumes."
- Fan (The Netherlands)

"Your sound is authentic, resonating with harmonic purpose and movement"
- Fan (Australia)

"Your music, it's beautiful! It's actually made me want to begin listening to piano music again...and believe me, that's a grand task in itself."
- Fan (California)

"Every artist of any caliber needs positive reviews, and Rob Costlow stands out from the outset. I felt throughout the album that Rob was going to breakout into song, but instead kept the sweet flow of ivory in the listener's ears. James Blunt watch out because there is a new guy in town. I see big things from Rob in the future..."
- Fan (Luxembourg)

"I discovered Rob's music after hearing the song "I Do" on "The Daily Source Code" podcast. I quickly went out and bought "Sophomore Jinx." After listening to the whole album I got back on the web and bought "Woods of Chaos" as well. Rob's work has a very unique style to it. I highly recommend that you check out www.robcostlow.com and listen to the streams that are on his site. If you like solo piano tracks, Rob Costlow is one of the most talented pianists that I have heard in a long time. A definite five out of five very big stars!"
- Fan (Montana)

"To really enjoy every note...sit back, close your eyes and it's as if you are right there next to Rob and his piano. Crisp and clear with nothing in the way to overpower the beautiful highs and lows of his notes just as it should be. There is nothing more simple, yet complicated and moving as Rob Costlow's acoustic music."
- Fan (Arkansas)

"Movie music looking for a movie. I don't normally like instrumentals unless they are exceptional... I like the piano. Great playing with a very evocative feel."
- Fan (United Kingdom)

"It doesn't get much better than this... beautiful work on the piano with relaxed pauses. Clearly a well trained musical genius on this composition. Nothing to criticize here, the artist has clearly found his niche and has no problem getting the sound from his mind to his instrument! Well done."
- Fan (Florida)

"I ordered the CD because my wife and I were listening to "L.A./Passing By" on Radioio Acoustic last week, when she said that would sound nice in the bedroom. That was all the encouragement I needed to order."
- Fan (Texas)

"Very pretty and clean and would serve well in a movie track. Obviously real talent on the other end of the line. This is either one very nice instrumental or you need to turn the vocals up a little."
- Fan (Maryland)

"Smooth relaxing piano music that fits perfect on a romantic evening. Warm sounding acoustic piano, nothing better than the real thing!"
- Fan (Belgium)

"This piano performance is delivered with obvious emotion and passion. The melody is beautiful and really draws me in."
- Fan (California)

"Wow! This is gorgeous. The melody moved me and took me out of my world for just a few minutes. I wanted more. Wonderful."
- Fan (Wyoming)

"Real mood music. I imagine you could have this placed in TV & film effortlessly."
- Fan (Canada)

"Rob Costlow's music inspires and soothes the soul. Thanks for the magic, Rob. Your passion and genius come through beautifully. Now get back to the studio and bring us even more!"
- Brian Johnson (Philosopher and founder of eteamz and PhilosophersNotes)

"As someone not familiar with instrumental music, I was surprised to find such an enjoyable and thought provoking experience. Well, I'm a Rob Costlow fan after hearing Sophomore Jinx through a friend. I find his music relaxing, inspiring and nostalgic. I'm looking forward to his next album."
- Dan Keller (Founder of Lifeletics)

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