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Keith Jarrett

Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach

Release Date: June 30, 2023

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Keith Jarrett - Interview + Speech at NEA Jazz Masters Awards 2014
1 Württemberg Sonatas: Sonata I in A minor / Moderato  
2 Andante  
3 Allegro assai  
4 Sonata II in A-flat major / Un poco allegro  
5 Adagio  
6 Allegro  
7 Sonata III in E minor / Allegro  
8 Adagio  
9 Vivace  
10 Sonata IV in B-flat major / Un poco allegro  
11 Andante  
12 Allegro  
13 Sonata V in E-flat major / Allegro  
14 Adagio  
15 Allegro assai  
16 Sonata VI in B minor / Moderato  
17 Adagio non molto  
18 Allegro  
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Keith Jarrett’s account of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s Württemberg Sonatas is a revelation.  “I’d heard the sonatas played by harpsichordists, and felt there was a space left for a piano version,” says Jarrett today.  This outstanding recording, made in May 1994 and previously unreleased, finds the pianist attuned to the expressive implications of the sonatas in every moment.  The younger Bach’s idiosyncrasies: the gentle playfulness of the music, the fondness for subtle and sudden tempo shifts, the extraordinary, rippling invention…all of this is wonderfully delivered. The fluidity of the whole performance has a quality that perhaps could be conveyed only by an artist of great improvisational skills. In Jarrett’s hands, CPE Bach’s exploration of new compositional forms retains the freshness of discovery. The pianist also takes to heart CPE’s famous statement:  “Since a musician cannot move others unless he himself is moved, he must of necessity feel all of the affects that he hopes to arouse in his listeners."

Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach’s Württemberg Sonatas were written in 1742-3, and dedicated to Carl Eugen Duke of Württemberg, who studied with CPE at the court of Frederik the Great in Berlin. Published in 1744, they are regarded today as musical masterpieces of the era between the Baroque and the Classical. 

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