Stories » Rachel Barton Pine's 'Blues Dialogues' plumbs the depths of the African American experience / Black Grooves

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Rachel Barton Pine's 'Blues Dialogues' plumbs the depths of the African American experience / Black Grooves

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In 1997, violinist Rachel Barton Pine presented her landmark album, Violin Concertos by Black Composers of the 18th & 19th Centuries, on the Cedille Records label. Released 21 years later, Blues Dialogues is the most recent culmination of Pine's ongoing research into music by Black composers. Going beyond the confines of Western classical music, her new project features twelve works that draw upon the African American experience and more specifically, blues idioms, which the violinist claims is her "second-favorite genre of music." This is certainly a fitting sentiment for a Chicago native, especially one who has polished her blues chops by jamming with two local legends-Son Seals and Sugar Blue.

Blues Dialogues plumbs the depths of the African American experience, as well as the depth and breadth of Rachel Barton Pine's virtuosity and interpretive abilities. Now in her prime, Pine has matured into an artist capable of the most subtle nuances and dazzling technical displays, which she demonstrates on every single track of this captivating album.

A member of the Chicago Music Association (originally founded as a branch of the National Association of Negro Musicians), Pine established the Music by Black Composers Project in 2001 and has since collected more than 900 works by 350 composers spanning four centuries. Through her RPG Foundation, she offers curriculum materials for aspiring young musicians, both spreading awareness and offering access to music by Black composers. Additional information on these pedagogical materials can be found on the MBC website.

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