Steve Reich @ Carnegie Hall @ 75, with devotees

Composer Steve Reich, age 75, knows secrets of correlating pulsating rhythms and interlocking layers of sycopated melodic patterns which he's eager to reveal in every work he writes. His musical signature is so unwavering it might veer into self-parody, but for the vigor and commitment of his performers. At Carnegie Hall last night four energized new music ensembles poured enthusiasm, precision and a sense of discovery into four recent Reich pieces, making their Master's overlays, cycles and cells variously delightful, ominous, rockin', tense, … [Read more...]

How does Keith Jarrett come to Carnegie Hall? Alone.

In my latest column in City Arts - New York, I share a few thoughts about the solo piano improvisations of Keith Jarrett. The headline's not mine, I don't get it -- but the music he performs at Carnegie Hall Jan. 16 may be transcendent, as far beyond jazz as his last album of solo concerts, Paris/London (Testament) or as with jazz as his duets with Charlie Haden, Jasmine. Subscribe by Email | Subscribe by RSS | Follow on Twitter All JBJ posts | … [Read more...]

Saxes & percussion, Boulez & Symphony

Last weekend the World Saxophone Quartet and percussion ensemble M'Boom blasted 21st century conventions at Birdland -- this weekend Pierre Boulez conducts the Chicago Symphony Orchestra through Bartok's two piano & percussion concerto and Stravinsky's "The Firebird" at Carnegie Hall. Listening opportunities in New York City cover a vast range. Duh, right? … [Read more...]