Legendary maestro Ustad Amjad Ali Khan and his sons Amaan Ali Bangash and Ayaan Ali Bangaash will be collaborating with multiple Grammy Award-winning guitarist Sharon Isbin. The new album will give viewers a unique teaming of two classical music instruments strumming together. The album, "String For Peace", is scheduled to release on the 22nd of May on the ZOHO label (ZM 202004).
Strings For Peace is a perfect blend of various classics. Viewers will get to listen to a melodious eclectic east-west fusion of sarod and classical guitar. Ustad Amjad Ali Khan and Sharon Isbin have been contemplating about the east-west fashion and finally, their fusion will come to fruition. The album will contain four tracks and cover various ragas composed by Amjad Ali Khan.
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Produced by Windham Hill Records founder Will Ackerman, and with a sound described as "an album to daydream to", Open Waters finds Todd Mosby once again embarking on a creative journey navigating through elements of Jazz, New Age, Folk and Indian music. Coming from a family of inventors (he is the co-inventor of the Imrat guitar along with Kim Schwartz and Imrat Khan), Mosby's early musical DNA was formed from his love of Bluegrass and Folk music, which eventually expanded into Fusion and Jazz.
Todd Mosby's 'Open Waters' wins the 2019 ZMR 'Best Contemporary Instrumental Album'
If there's an air of resignation to the way pianist/composer Bley has titled the movements of her opening suite-"Life Goes On," "On," "And On," "And Then One Day"-it is belied throughout this gently gripping album by Bley's indelible wit and unsinkable sanguinity. Both are evident in her pithy liner notes, her quotes of "Yankee Doodle Dandy" and "The Star Spangled Banner" in the "Beautiful Telephones" suite (inspired by remarks made by the current president during his first week in the White House), her play on call-and-response in the closing suite, "Copy Cat," and the unfrantic flow of her elegant melodies and soothing harmonies. The album title could reference Bley's career (more than five decades of recording), her age (she turns 82 in May), or the longevity of this uncannily simpatico trio (25 years and counting). Touching here on the blues and there on tango, now buoyant, now contemplative, the music is richly poignant but never lugubrious, bent but not sharply angular, spacious and light but never ungrounded. Swallow's unique electric bass sound and Sheppard's stately tenor and soprano sax tones, heard in ample solo space, seamlessly lock in with Bley's eccentric phrasing as the band sublimely plays on.
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Niv Ashkenazi, the only violinist in the world to hold an instrument from the Violins of Hope collection on a long-term loan, has just released an album recorded on that instrument featuring music by composers that were affected by the Holocaust. Ashkenazi, a former student of Itzhak Perlman, is joined on the album by his fellow Juilliard graduate, pianist Matthew Graybil. This recording was part of Ashkenazi's work as Artist in Residence at the Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for the Performing Arts (The Soraya) in Northridge, CA.
Violins of Hope is an artistic and educational project composed of instruments that were owned by Jewish musicians before and during the Holocaust. Violins in the collection were played in the concentration camps and ghettos, providing a source of comfort for some and a means of survival for others.
Violins of Hope was founded by Amnon Weinstein and his son Avshalom, Israeli luthiers who collect these instruments, refurbish them to concert quality, and bring them to communities all over the world, so that their voices can be heard again. The message of these violins is one of hope, tolerance, and remembrance. Niv Ashkenazi: Violins of Hope is the first solo album to be recorded on one of these instruments.
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Close your eyes and travel to exotic new lands!
Academy Award-winning composer and clarinetist Derek Bermel does a lot of traveling, soaking up the musical traditions as he goes. His recent album, Migrations, received a Grammy nomination in the Best Contemporary Classical Composition category. In this episode, Bermel teaches about composer Bela Bartok who inspired one of the pieces on the album. Bartok moved from his native Hungary to New York City at the outset of World War II, and while a lot of great music came out of his journey, his is also a really human story about being a stranger in a strange land. Bermel also talks about the migration of his own European Jewish family and how it influenced his work.
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Robin McKelle released her new album Alterations on Doxie Records in February. On it, McKelle delves into the catalogue of some of the most celebrated women of song, interpreting these masterworks through the lens of the jazz idiom. McKelle follows in a long tradition of female song interpreters, lending her sultry vocal stylings to classics by a diverse list of female innovators including Dolly Parton, Sade, Amy Winehouse, Adele, Janis Joplin, Carol King, Billie Holiday, Joni Mitchell, and Lana Del Ray. McKelle is joined on this release by a group of consummate musicians including co-producer, pianist and arranger Shedrick Mitchell, acoustic and electric bassist Richie Goods, drummer Charles Haynes, guitarist Nir Felder. In addition, esteemed saxophonist Keith Loftis is featured on McKelle's sole original composition on this release, "Head High"; and renowned trumpeter Marquis Hill is featured on Lana Del Rey's "Born to Die". The first single from Alterations, McKelle's rendition of Sade's "No Ordinary Love."
WUCF: Orlando FL interviewed McKelle about the new recording and living in the COVID reality. Listen to the attached file
The Cave of Wondrous Voice, the latest recording featuring new works by composer Mark Abel, is itself a wondrous creation. It features a variety of chamber music pieces in a traditional style but with a contemporary sound. The Delos CD includes three chamber works, two for clarinet, including Intuition's Dance for clarinet and piano and Clarinet Trio, as well as a piece for violin and piano, titled The Elastic Hours, and Four Poems of Marina Tsvetaeva for soprano, English horn and piano. The two compositions for clarinet bookend the album, beginning with the wispy Intuition's Dance, and both works feature renowned performers, clarinetist David Shifrin and pianist Carol Rosenberger.
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Guitarist John Scofield celebrates the music of his friend and mentor Steve Swallow in an outgoing and spirited recording, made in an afternoon in New York City in March 2019 - "old school" style as Scofield says, acknowledging that more than forty years of preparation led up to it.
Grammy Award-winning guitarist Sharon Isbin's new recording, Strings for Peace, with sarod master, Amjad Ali Khan, and his virtuoso sons Amaan and Ayaan Ali Bangash, is a groundbreaking release steeped in the tradition of ragas and talas of North Indian classical music.
The Bureau (original title: Le Bureau des Légendes) is a French political thriller television series created by Éric Rochant and produced by TOP - The Oligarchs Productions and Canal+, which revolves around the lives of agents of the DGSE (General Directorate of External Security), France's principal external security service.
William Susman's 'Scatter My Ashes' is true, undiluted neo-classicalism imbued with Impressionist and romantic overtones / acousticmusic.com
Posted: May 5, 2020 12:00 AM
| By: Admin
In another review this month, I mention there are certain guitar stylists I don't dare begin listening to unless I'm prepared to go through their entire catalogues: Grant Green, Gabor Szabo, George Benson, etc. That's because I get so damned captivated even despite a deep enamorment for the wild fretbenders (John McLaughlin, Robert Fripp, Ritchie Blackmore, that ilk). Well, the same is true on the progressive music side of the house with cats like Mike Oldfield, Barclay James Harvest, and Phillip Glass, especially Glass. There's just something in how he handles the serial minimal task that aces everyone else (Reich, Adams, Nyman), his work filled with a luminescence particular to the man's genius. However, I also listen closely to all those 'somebody elses' and now can add William Susman to the list of hyper-competent composers broadening an oft-embattled field ('n what the heck is wrong with people that they don't understand the sublime genius of work like this?).
His 2009's Music for Moving Pictures (here) was a knockout, but Scatter My Ashes is definitely more refined into the serial / operatic vein, true undiluted neoclassicalism heavily imbued with Impressionist / Romantic overtones and baselines. There are 18 movements here to four song cycles written between 1992 and 2011, one of them rescored for octet, but, really, everything flows in linear and circular motion as though a beautifully eccentric segmented ballet simultaneously restrained and exuberant, more than once ecstatic. Mellissa Hughes, who has worked with top-shelfers Steve Reich and John Zorn among many others, encants Sue Susman's libretti (two cycles), interesting meditations, at times extended haiku-esque, first on elementalities and then the myriad enigmas of earth's most quizzical life form: human beings and their baffling shenanigans.
Scoring the documentary Fate of the Lhapa was an inspiring experience. I worked with a marvelous director, Sarah Sifers, who trusted my musicianship and gave me the freedom to compose a score that attempts to capture the place, culture, spirit and passion of the Tibetan Shamans and their broader historical context.
As with many of my scores, I look for melody and instrumentation that the filmmaker has captured on film. In Fate of the Lhapa, there were stunning musical moments including ritual chanting, a prayer vigil, bells, gongs, drumming and dance. All of these sonic elements contributed to my choice of melody, harmony, rhythm and instrumentation.
OCTET''s inaugural album has been recorded over the past few years with renowned engineer John Kilgore and was released by Naxos on the label Belarca. The album features the music of William Susman including two song cycles (with poems by his sister Sue Susman) Scatter My Ashes and Moving in to an Empty Space performed by soprano Mellissa Hughes, as well as his Piano Concerto and the ensemble work Camille.
OCTET takes the instrumentation of the American big band and scales it down to a brass section of saxophone, trumpet, and trombone and a rhythm section of piano, electric piano, double bass and drums plus vocals.
"William Susman's remarkable achievement is to take the familiar instrumentation of American popular music, harmonic and rhythmic influences from jazz and Afro-Cuban music and sinuous melodic lines that are uniquely his own and weave them into something new and fresh, yet timeless and haunting. Memorable yet enigmatic, simple yet profound, Susman's music is irresistible." - John Kilgore (Grammy Award-Winning Classical Engineer)
Scatter my Ashes reached No. 1 on Amazon's Classical Hot New Releases, No. 8 on Billboard's Classical and was featured in iTunes Classical New and Noteworthy.
Belarca Records presents Collision Point, a new album by American composer William Susman and Rome-based ensemble Piccola Accademia degli Specchi celebrating a 10-year collaboration. Collision Point features music inspired by love, loss, redemption, and the writings of Allen Ginsberg, Colum McCann and Francis Bacon.
The album brings together four premiere recordings including two pieces for the full ensemble: Camille (2010), which was written for the ensemble, and The Starry Dynamo (1994), as well as a piano trio, Clouds and Flames (2010) and a duo, Motions of Return (1996) for flute and piano.
Susman's music is described by AllMusic as "the next developments in the sphere (of) minimalism," and has earned praise from The New York Times for being "vivid, turbulent, and rich-textured," from Gramophone as "texturally shimmering and harmonically ravishing," and from textura as "distinctly American."