t amazes me how many films today have a soundtrack that isn't informed by the movie itself. This interchangeable claptrap has made it almost impossible to review. But composer William Susman flavors the setting of Sarah Sifer's Fate of the Lhapa beautifully. Interestingly enough, I saw this documentary many, many years ago, and it truly affected me, but I never knew the soundtrack was available until it was sent to me to review 13 years after its original release. Go figure.
While there are certainly traditional forms of Western instrumentation such as harp, Susman has incorporated sounds we would associate with Nepal: There is no list, but I believe we are hearing drums - such as the dhimay, madal, and khin - a bansuri (a bamboo flute), a plucked string (perhaps the tunga), tingsha cymbals, a sringa (a large "C"- or "S"-shaped horn which is also a political symbol), and more. Along the way is minimalism that is so transporting it would make Philip Glass proud, as it helps achieve a sense of bittersweet spirituality so prevalent in the film. (Glass is also a fierce proponent for Nepal's freedom and Buddhist principles - the latter evidenced in his opera, Satyagraha.)
At first, part of the fun for me was parsing out the instruments (wait - is this sound that conch shell that has both ritual and religious importance in Hinduism?), but magically by the seventh of eleven tracks, they merge into a higher plane of trance-inducing balminess that lovingly elucidates the subject matter. While it's accurate to say that the music of Susman (who also performs) blends that mysterious, uncanny long-established Asian music with those soul-moving Western strings evokes what the press notes call an "ancient healing tradition in danger of extinction," this is music that stands alone from the film - in fact, this journey requires you to listen with headphones on and your eyes closed. The mixing by Stephen Hart at Berkeley's Fantasy Studios makes everything sound crystal clear.
READ THE FULL STAGE & CINEMA REVIEW
James Whale's film classic Frankenstein (1931), starring Boris Karloff, was released without a musical score, as were many films in those early days of the talkie. A number of critics, including Leonard Maltin, have remarked that Frankenstein is badly in need of music. Michael Shapiro's 70-minute score is written to be played simultaneously with the screening of the film. For modern-day concert- and moviegoers, his haunting music adds significantly to the emotional impact of the film.
Harmonious World Podcast's Hilary Robertson interviews composer and conductor Michael Shapiro.There's a good chance that I'll be jumping on a plane as soon as such things are possible again - this time to see the operatic version of Michael's film score to the original film of...
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Ben Rosenblum plays both piano and accordion on this pastoral session with the blended horns of trumpeter Wayne Tucker, Jasper Dutz on tenor sax or bass clarinet, guitarist Rafael Rosa, bassist Marty Jaffe, drummer Ben Zweig and guests Jake Chapman/vib, Sam Chess/tb and Jeremy Corren/p. Chapman's vibes team with Tucker's horn on an Old World tango of a title track with added accordion atmosphere, with similar moods with Corren replacing Chapman on the European "Motif From Brahms". A fun tarantella with Tucker out in front gets you dancing on "Fight Or Flight" with the horns in gorgeous harmony on the elegiac "Bright Above Us" and the folk tune "Izpoved". The team takes a dreamy read of Leonard Bernstein's "Somewhere" with Neil Young's "Philadelphia" a rich vehicle for Rosa and Chess. Sounds of the piazza.
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Labrinth pulls off yet another pristine, passionate endeavour through his latest number ‘No Ordinary.' The British singer-songwriter has always displayed a knack for taking simple melodies and working wonders with them, and he does so again with this latest feature.
The composition is gentle but magical in its own way, especially when coupled with Labrinth's soulful, touching voice that seems to hit every feeling in the range. The first verse makes use of light bass instrumentation that is resounding without being overpowering; the vast majority of the focus is on Labrinth's phenomenal vocal range that's underscored at each and every step of the way. What gives the composition the extra edge is the vocal layering and overlapping that carries us all the way to the chorus. His voice is so powerful that even the moderate notes are charged with an all-consuming force. The lyrics refer to both ‘devotion' and ‘Holy Ghost,' hinting to the religious stylings of the melody, though they're never hammered in.
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NPR Music and Lara Downes announce the launch of AMPLIFY With Lara Downes, a new bi-weekly series of intimate and deeply personal video conversations with visionary Black musicians who are shaping the present and future of the art form, premiering Saturday, October 17 on NPRMusic.org, YouTube, and social media platforms.
Created and hosted by pianist and artist Lara Downes, and co-produced by NPR Music's Tom Huizenga, this series invites viewers to experience raw, revealing, and open-hearted conversations reflecting on how artists are responding and creating in this time of profound challenge and change. Downes and her guests-initially including MacArthur Fellow vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Rhiannon Giddens, 2020 Avery Fisher Prize-winning clarinetist Anthony McGill, multidisciplinary artist Helga Davis, and vocalist Davóne Tines, with other guests such as Sheku Kanneh-Mason and family to follow-connect and reflect on highly relevant themes ranging from music and mission, legacy and lineage, to transformation and change.
Guests to include Rhiannon Giddens, Anthony McGill, Helga Davis, Davóne Tines, and Sheku Kanneh-Mason and family.
Series premieres today!! Saturday, October 17 on NPR Music.org and NPR's YouTube and social media platforms.
Says Downes of the series: "In this time of our collective reckoning about historical inequities in American life and art, I'm excited to amplify the voices of extraordinary artists of color, shining a bright light on a diverse and rich future that is, in the words of James Weldon Johnson, 'full of the hope that the present has brought us.'"
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What is multiple Grammy-winning classical guitarist Sharon Isbin's response to everyone wearing masks to stay healthy? "Welcome to my world!" she says. "I've been wearing an N95 mask for almost 20 years on every single airplane flight, and since doing that, I've never gotten sick from flying."
In this 90.1WRTI: Philadelphia TIME IN interview, Sharon talks about navigating the pandemic with more healthy habits, including Transcendental Meditation, and learning the technology to create new ways (beyond Zoom) of teaching her guitar students at Juilliard, where she directs the department she founded in 1989.
Sharon met with me on Zoom on September 22nd, 2020 to talk about life during the panedemic. Here are edited excerpts from our conversation:
For her latest studio album, pianist Hélène Grimaud travels to Salzburg where she creates a fascinating juxtaposition between the eternal Mozart and the Ukrainian composer Valentin Silvestrov. In selecting the music for this album, Grimaud has carefully chosen music by Mozart that fits into an overall dramaturgy: from his famous unfinished D minor Fantasy, she transitions seamlessly into the great D minor concerto, K. 466. The C minor Fantasy then signals "the end of Mozart" and a new beginning: Silvestrov's The Messenger starts with a theme reminiscent of Mozart and creates a connection between the present and the world that existed before.
For October 15 2020, Hélène Grimaud: The Messenger is the WFMT: Chicago 'Featured New Release'
Inspired by the ground-breaking mission of NASA's Juno space probe and its ongoing exploration of Jupiter, Juno to Jupiter is a multi-dimensional musical journey through electronic, progressive, ambient, techno, orchestral, and vocal music.
Milan Records today announces the release of Luca Guadagnino's WE ARE WHO WE ARE (ORIGINAL SERIES SCORE) featuring music by producer, multi-instrumentalist, composer, songwriter and vocalist DEVONTÉ HYNES.
Anne Akiko Meyers - Serenade: The Love Album / Buffalo News review
Posted: September 20, 2015 12:00 AM
| By: Admin
Anne Akiko Meyers, "Serenade: The Love Album" Violinist Meyers and The London Symphony Orchestra, Keith Lockhart, conductor (eOne Music). Violinist Anne Akiko Meyers' delicate tone, cushioned by the London Symphony Orchestra, lends a wistful sheen on this disc to 13 pops selections. Many are the usual suspects – the theme from "Cinema Paradiso," for instance, or "Gabriel's Oboe" from "The Mission," and of course Astor Piazzolla's "Oblivion." But there are a few surprises. More people should play "I'll Be Seeing You." It's such a great melody, and Meyers gives it virtuoso treatment complete with double stop passages and high whistly notes. "Laura," with its twisting chromatics, is also a violinist's dream, and "When You Wish Upon a Star" – what's not to love? "Somewhere," from "West Side Story" is also a natural. (It's a ripoff from Richard Strauss, don't forget.) Meyers adds embellishments and improvisations. The album kicks off with Bernstein's "Serenade," an extended piece I find kind of pretentious and ponderous. But all in all this is an appealing collection, perfect for classical music newbies and anyone who wants to sit back and bask in prettiness. It's sweet how Meyers recorded this album in honor of her parents' 50th wedding anniversary. ŒŒŒ (Mary Kunz Goldman) SEE ALL THE REVIEWS ON Buffalo News PAGE
Superstar violinist Anne Akiko Meyers is one of today's most in demand classical performers. A Billboard Top Selling Classical Instrumentalist of the Year, she is beloved by audiences around the world, with a reputation for innovative programmes and ground-breaking commissions. Mirror in Mirror marks her 36th studio album and is one of her most personal projects to date.
Anne Akiko Meyers new Fantasia recording marks her 35th studio album and is one of her most important projects to date. The Billboard Top Selling Classical Instrumentalist of the Year has had numerous albums reach the Number 1 spot and Fantasia is expected to perform as the album captures incredible virtuosity and poetic color with these iconic works by Ravel, Einojuhani Rautavaara's last major work, written for Meyers, and Karol Szymanowski's sensuous Violin Concerto No. 1.
14 NEW 115 TOTAL
SYND: C24, TRH, CBC, BBC Direct: SiriusXM, MOOD, iTunes Markets include: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston, Seattle, Cleveland, Minneapolis, Portland, St. Louis, Cincinnati, Detroit, Austin, Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Honolulu, NE(Statewide), NE(Statewide), MI(Statewide) INTER: Canada, UK Online: Grammophone, AccuRadio
eOne has released Anne Akiko Meyers' 31st album: Serenade: The Love Album, an exploration of love in all its dimensions, featuring Leonard Bernstein's "Serenade" and ten world premieres from seven living composer-arrangers. "Serenade" is one of Leonard Bernstein's masterpieces, and was recorded in anticipation of the composer's upcoming 100th birthday celebration. It is based on a reading of Plato's Symposium, in which seven ancient Greek philosophers debate the meaning of love. Anne Akiko Meyers, a champion of living composers, commissioned seven renowned composer-arrangers to create ten works for violin and orchestra from love-inspired music from stage and film to pair with the Serenade. The London Symphony Orchestra and conductor Keith Lockhart join Anne in this recording, which will be released on the celebration of Anne's own parents' 50th wedding anniversary, produced by Susan Napodano DelGiorno and engineered by GRAMMY-award winner Silas Brown.
16 NEW 158 Total
SYND: Classical 24, CBC, TRH Direct: SiriusXM, Music Choice, MOOD Markets include: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston, Philadelphia, Wash DC, Dallas, Atlanta, St. Louis, Seattle, Cleveland, Minneapolis, Cincinnati, Portland, Detroit, Baltimore, Houston, Denver, Pittsburgh, Austin, New Orleans, Albuquerque, Memphis, Tucson, Buffalo, Louisville, Omaha, Columbus OH, Madison WI, Honolulu, Canada Online: Joon Media, Philosophy Talk, Taintradio, Classical Candor
On September 30th, celebrated violinist Anne Akiko Meyers will release The American Masters internationally on eOne. This recording, Anne's 30th, features world premieres of two pieces written for her: Mason Bates's Violin Concerto and the Lullaby for Natalie by Oscar and Grammy Award winning composer John Corigliano. Samuel Barber's Violin Concerto, a staple of the violin repertoire, and the most popular American concerto for violin and orchestra is also featured on this recording. Leonard Slatkin, a champion of all three composers, conducts the London Symphony Orchestra.
36 NEW - 81 Total
SYND: Classical 24, CBC Direct: SiriusXM, Music Choice, MOOD Markets include: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston, Philadelphia, Wash DC, Atlanta, St. Louis, Seattle, Cleveland, Minneapolis, Cincinnati, Portland, Detroit, Denver, Pittsburgh, Austin, Louisville, Madison WI, Honolulu, Canada Online: Classical Candor, Audiophile Audition, all about jazz, Taintradio, ClassicallyHip, News & Observer
Anne Akiko Meyers releases her fourth recording on the eOne label, The Four Seasons: The Vivaldi Album. Performing with the English Chamber Orchestra under the direction of David Lockington, Ms. Meyers presents two Italian legends with Antonio Vivaldi and Guarneri del Gesù. New recording of Vivaldi's famed Four Seasons – as well as the Vivaldi Triple Concerto on which Meyers plays all three parts – marks the recording debut of the 1741 ‘Vieuxtemps' Guarneri del Gesù violin, considered one of the finest sounding violins in existence.
25 New: 184 Total
SYND: PRI/Classical 24, NPR/Morning Edition, The Romantic Hours Direct: SiriusXM, Music Choice, MOOD, In-Flight Markets include: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Boston, Philadelphia, Wash DC, Dallas, Atlanta, Seattle, Cleveland, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Portland, Baltimore, New Orleans, Austin, Pittsburgh, Denver, Baltimore, Cincinnati, Detroit, Albuquerque, Indianapolis, Berkeley CA, Tucson Louisville, Madison WI, Honolulu Online: RadioIO, Taintradio, MusiClassical, WGOE, Audiophile Audition
Violinist Anne Akiko Meyers' newest recording for eOne entitled Air: The Bach Album will be released on Valentine's Day, 2012. This is Anne Akiko Meyers' first orchestral album for eOne and features the English Chamber Orchestra with Steven Mercurio conducting. Music includes Bach's Violin Concertos Nos. 1 & 2, the Double Concerto for 2 Violins, and arrangements of Bach's "Air", "Largo" from the Harpsichord Concerto in f minor, and the Bach/Gounod "Ave Maria."After her recent acquisition of the "ex-Napoleon/Molitor" Stradivarius violin from 1697, Meyers decided to become the first violinist to record both solo parts of the Double Concerto on two different violins, and joked that this was the first time she agreed with all of her 'partner's' musical ideas.
Markets include: New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, Philadelphia, Wash DC, Dallas, Atlanta, Cleveland, Seattle, St. Louis, Baltimore, Minneapolis, Cincinnati, Denver, Kansas City, Detroit, Austin, Houston, Pittsburgh, Buffalo, Indianapolis, New Orleans, Buffalo, Puerto Rico, Canada
Violinist Anne Akiko Meyers: Seasons...Dreams, with Reiko Uchida, piano; Emmanuel Ceysson, harp. Works by: Beethoven, Debussy, Faure and Wagner alongside world premiere recordings of arrangements by Tyzik, Pritsker and De Rosa. The innovative and versatile violinist Anne Akiko Meyers releases Season...Dreams, her newest recording on E1 Music. One of the world's premiere concert violinists, Anne Akiko Meyers has been celebrated throughout her nearly three-decade career for her exceptional musicianship, charismatic presence and creative diversity. On this new release, Meyers is joined by long-time collaborator Reiko Uchida on piano and the young harpist of the Paris Opera, Emmanuel Ceysson.
9 New 'ON' this week: 129 Total
Synd: NPR/All Things Considered, WFMT/The Romantic Hours, PRI/Classical 24 Direct: SiriusXM Markets include: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Wash DC, San Francisco, Boston, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Seattle, Denver, Cleveland, Minneapolis, Pittsburgh, Detroit, Baltimore, Kansas City, New Orleans, Austin, San Antonio, Honolulu, Louisville, Buffalo International: Canada, UK Online: RadioIO, Taintradio, WGOE