Rachmaninoff’s impromptu solo-piano rendering of his Symphonic Dances documents roaring cataracts of sound, massive chording, and pounding accents powered by a demonic thrust the likes of which no studio environment has ever fostered. Rachmaninoff’s humbling presence, re-encountered, is gigantic, cyclopean.
Here’s a typical example of a classical group’s description of the program it’s performing, alongside some (rough) equivalents from popular music (the arty branch of it), and what the former might learn from the latter.
A great number of Americans have “moved on.” Their lives are fine, and the Great Recession is just a bad, dimly recalled memory, like a really bad winter flu from years ago. But for a number of us, it was one of the defining events of our lives.
Hollein is still optimistic about not being the CEO, but will that last?
When he started the publication Radio Free Jazz, he didn’t know it, and he, would become a legend.
Musicians can, with the right management in place, identify not as “us vs them,” but as part of the big circle of the orchestra.
Years ago, before I was shown the door, I briefly taught at the Manhattan School of Music within their graduate program for aspirant orchestral musicians. My intention was to impart some knowledge about the history of the orchestra in order to shed light on the decline of orchestras and of orchestral performance – and to suggest that young musicians might be able contribute constructively.
The Pacific Northwest is home to a dozens of superior jazz musicians. By no means are all of them of them in Seattle and Portland, the attention-getting large cities of western Washington and Oregon. Dozens manage to find work playing in Spokane, Eugene, Bend, Yakima — and increasingly in the region’s burgeoning winery tasting rooms and restaurants.
I always proceed with fear and trembling when I venture into the topic of marketing. As I have said in the past, I am not a marketer. Nevertheless, there continue to be numerous valuable lessons …
Back in the 1990s, Harvey Lichtenstein – who recreated the Brooklyn Academy of Music – invited me to lunch and asked me if I wanted to run an orchestra.
Max Hollein, the Met’s new director, who spoke confidently and compellingly during our informal NYC lunches while he was directing three Frankfurt museums, twice surprised me in the space of one week with his uneasy, hesitant delivery during introductory remarks …
Conservatory education has been changing. Not everywhere, but in many places. New ideas, new thoughts about what education for classical musicians should be. What you’re going to read here comes from Brian Pertl, the extraordinary dean of the Lawrence Conservatory, at Lawrence University in Wisconsin.
Emil Viklický, Humoresque (NCML)
Last spring, Czech pianist Emil Viklický traveled from Prague to visit relatives in the American Midwest. Never one to forgo a playing opportunity, while he was there he gave a concert at the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.
Rafal Sarnecki, Climbing Trees (Outside In Music)
Mikkel Ploug/Mark Turner, Faroe (Sunnyside)
Mark Turner/Ethan Iverson, Temporary Kings (ECM)
Hans Teuber & Jeff Johnson, Deuce (Origin)
Jazz fusion from Slovakia on a sort of hammered dulcimer? Yes.
Here’s an action list from the museum in Rio de Janeiro.
The jazz saxophonist’s creativity is unmatched – and here’s the music to prove it.
On its Facebook page, Rio de Janeiro’s Museu Nacional do Brazil has posted an “action list” of ways in which concerned museum lovers can participate in what the devastated institution optimistically calls “the reconstruction of the museum.”
Several days ago, I went to the New York Botanical Garden to see its summer exhibition, Georgia O’Keeffe: Visions of Hawai‘i. It included several paintings I knew nothing about. And, as I soon discovered, from talking with friends and posts on Facebook and Instagram, neither did many other art-lovers.
When Paul Taylor died of renal failure on Wednesday, August 29th, and I was coping with that news, I started to think not just of the 140 dances he made during his remarkable career, but of his connection to the great figures of 20th-century dance whose pantheon he joins.
Jazz-World fusions abound, but in general, the musicians that create this music play instruments that have already been integrated into the jazz “sound.” What is less common is to find musicians who play what Howard Mandel would dub “instruments rare to jazz.”
Scott Reeves Jazz Orchestra, Without A Trace (Origin)
Wayne Escoffery, Vortex (Sunnyside)
Ivo Perelman, Octagon (Leo Records)
Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong, Cheek To Cheek: The Complete Duet Recordings (Verve)
WARNING: The video below (posted yesterday on Twitter) of the fire-ravaged interior of what was once the National Museum of Brazil (now largely reduced to rubble) may induce nausea and is not for the faint-of-heart.
For the last few months I’ve been meaning to revisit some of the abiding concerns of this blog and the book that inspired it. Mostly, I’m talking about what we used to call the press …
Mrs. T and I are putting our lives back together after her unexpected hospital stay. It’s taken some doing.
Even in times of budgetary constraint, cultural institutions must not be shortchanged when it comes to financial support for their most basic function—the protection of the irreplaceable objects of cultural and scientific importance that are in their care.
Thelonious Monk: The Complete Prestige Recordings
Any Monk collection without the Prestige dates is missing the pianist’s early partnership with Art Blakey, who is considered by many musicians and critics to have been Monk’s ideal drummer.
Pianist and composer Randy Weston, who championed the African origins of jazz, died at home in New York yesterday. He was 92. With his distinctive rhythmic patterns and powerful harmonic progressions, Weston…
Our tireless staff of thousands is often asked to review all sorts of books, and from time to time one or another seems worth noting. This one, for example, by Elina Gertsman
I wrote an appreciation of Paul Taylor for the online edition of today’s Wall Street Journal. Here’s an excerpt. * * * Paul Taylor, who died on Wednesday at the age of 88, was…