“A Little Bit About Joseph A. Peragine”

-(by John Muccino of Muccino Works LLC)

I want to write a little bit about Joseph A. Peragine, a friend of mine who I've done a lot of work for over the past couple years. A lot of this information (and much more) you can find on his website, but I'd like to share with you some of the bullet points and my experience knowing him. 

Joseph A. Peragine is a paranoid schizophrenic artist and author. He tried to kill himself in October of 2000 due to his undiagnosed illness reaching a fever pitch, and has been recovering ever since. I met him in 2014 when he hired me to play piano on a song he was recording with Producer Pat Noon at Eight Sixteen Music Studio. At that point he had already been recovering for over a decade, and meeting him you would never be able to guess all that he's been through (though I guess you could say that about everyone). You would just see Joe P., a kind, soft-spoken, smart guy who writes and records a LOT of music. He hired me again to do some string arranging for him, wanting to transform some of his existing material into ambient orchestral instrumentals, and I started to get a glimpse into the fascinating rabbit hole that is Joe P.'s entire personality and creative identity. 

Music is one of Joe's many methods of medicating his illness. This translates to an insatiable urge to create, the likes of which I have not known in any other musician I have come into contact with. He does not stop. He will work with Pat tirelessly for months on a record full of intricate, 10-20 minute songs, and before it's even mixed he's booking studio time for the next record that is already completed conceptually in his head. Needless to say, he kept Pat and I busy. For my part, I was tasked with arranging around a dozen of his songs for different string-wind combinations, playing piano and leading live recording sessions. Through working with Joe I gained vital experience arranging unfamiliar music using new instrumental palettes and dealing with the logistics of enlisting and recording classical instrumentalists live in the studio. I won't lie and say it wasn't hard to keep up with him sometimes, because that's just the way he is. He has an endless capacity for creating and never settling for anything less than perfect (which can be exhausting just as much as it is inspiring). All three of us learned a lot from each other throughout the process, but Pat and I especially; we learned how to keep up with Joe. 

Time to Face This World is Joseph A. Peragine's autobiography told in the form of a 12-hour audiobook complete with self-narration, original music, and sound effects, which adds up to, in his words "a virtual reality movie-like experience." 

It is the culmination of years of intense recovery and artistic toil. An achievement so massive, I have a hard time believing anyone could have pulled it off themselves in the way that Joe has. Sure, Pat and I did our part in making his musical vision a reality, but for every hour we spent in the studio there were perhaps ten hours Joe would spend of his own time, writing, editing, recording, narrating, re-writing, compiling, organizing, more editing, more writing, until it was all there. Exactly as he wanted it. I am so excited for it to finally be set free from the shackles of the creative process. You can finally hear his story in his own words. A Beautiful Mind for the modern age.

Congratulations Joe on this massive achievement. I am happy to have lent a hand in bringing your story to life.