Paul Winter Consort – Miho-Journey To The Mountain (2010)

FrontCover1Paul Winter (born August 31, 1939) is an American saxophonist, composer and bandleader. A seven-time Grammy Award-winner, he is recognized as one of the pioneers of the world music genre, and also for his genre of “earth music,” which interweaves the voices of the greater symphony of the wild with instrumental voices from classical, jazz and world music traditions. The music is often improvised, and recorded in natural acoustic spaces, to reflect the qualities and instincts brought into play by the environment. With his various ensembles—the Paul Winter Sextet, the Paul Winter Consort, and the Earth Band—he has recorded more than 40 albums, and performed in 52 countries and six continents. (by wikipedia)

And here´s one of his finet recordings, a musical celebration of I.M. Pei’s Miho Museum in the Shigaraki Mountains of Japan

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In this, the finest album by Paul Winter and friends in many a year (2010 Grammy finalist, thus far, at time of this review), we hear a large variety of sounds and rhythms performed on saxophone, sarangi, koto, bansuri, taiko, bendir and other percussion, English horn, oboe, organ, keyboard, carillon, plus voice and chorus. All-star musicians include Winter, Paul McCandless, Eugene Freisen, Glen Velez, Don Gruisin, Steve Gorn, Yangjin Lamu, Dhruba Ghosh, and Japanese specialists. The rich acoustic resonance of the recording chamber is in the Shigaraki Mountain museum designed by I. M. Pei in the form of a Japanese farmhouse, though the bulk of the collection is actually underground. The variety of musical forms reflect the diverse Asian collections of this famous museum, and although they are not traditional but contemporary and musical fusions, they are instilled with the spirit of the ethnic source.

Paul Winter & Yukiko Matsuyama

Certainly quiet and slow, spiritual and meditative, the frequent changes in timbre and style excite and maintain attention. As Winter has done in the past, samples of animal sounds, e.g., birds and whale, are part of some tracks. Unusual in setting and format, this outstanding and beautiful music will be particularly appreciated by jazz fans of Oregon, new age enthusiasts of Paul Winter, and devotees of world music. As the sublime natural site of the museum inspired the musicians, this recording will delight the listener. (Dr. Debra Jan Bibel)

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And yes, this is my answer to the fucking corona virus !

Recorded by Akira Kato at the Miho Museum (Shiga, Japan) and Dixon Van Winkle in the Cathedral of St. John the Divine (New York City) and at Living Music Studios (Litchfield, Connecticut). Additional recording by Bobby Cochran at Laughing Coyote Studio in Redwood Valley, California

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Personnel:
Tim Brumfield (organ on 07., piano on 18.)
Eugene Friesen (cello on 08., 11., 18., 19. + 22.)
Dhruba Ghosh (sarangi on 02., 15., 20.
Steve Gorn (bansuroi on 07., 08., 13., 20. + 22.)
Don Grusin (keboards on 02., 04., 06., 16., 17., 21. + 22.)
Eriko Koide (carillon on 12., 21.)
Yangjin Lamu (vocals on 08.)
Yukiko Matsuyama (koto on 05., 13.
Paul McCandless (english horn on 04., 13. + 17., clarinet on 20., oboe on 22.)
Jordan Rudess (keyboards on 03., 11., 19.)
Cafe (Edson Aparecido da Silva) (percussion on 08.
Arto Tuncboyaciyan (vocals on 03., 11., 13., 16., 20., percussion on 20.
Glen Velez (percussion on 06., 14., bendir on 09.)
Uguisu (vocals on 12.)
Paul Winter (saxophone)
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Shumei Taiko Ensemble (drums on 14.)
Chorus Of Worcester Polytechnic conducted by Wayne Abercrombie (on 19.)
The Shumei Chorus conducted by Hiroko Matsui (on 20.)
The Peach Valley Precision Marching Band (on 20.)
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Asian Elephant, African  Elephant (voice on 14.)
Humpback Whale (voice on 15.)
Western Wind (on 17.)

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Tracklist:

Part I: Many Paths To Paradise:
01. Saxophone (Song Of Miho) (Winter) 3.20
02. Sarangi (Dawn Raga) (Ahir Bairav) (Ghosh) 5.19
03. Arto (Before It’s Too Late) 4.48
04. English Horn (Theme From “On The Steppes of Central Asia”) (Borodin) 4.09
05. Koto (Matsuyama) 1.42
06. Frame Drum (Cedar Grove Dance) (Velez) 2.09
07. Bansuri & Saxophone (Winter/Gorn) 3.53
08. Yangjin (Words Of Wish Fulfillment) (Lamu) 4.48
09. Bendir & Heckelphone (Velez/McCandless) 2.25
10. Saxophone Reprise (Winter) 0.43
11. Arto (Singing To The Mountains) (Tuncboyaciyan) 4.39

Part II: Shangri-la:
12. The Welcome (Song Of Miho): Mitarashi Waterfall  / Carillon (Winter) 0.50
13. Koto Spring (Tuncboyaciyan/McCandless/Gorn/Matsuyama) 5.02

Jakuchu Suite:
14. Elephant Dance (Velez/Winter) 2.55
15. Whale Raga (Gosh/Humpback Whale) 4.25
16. Love Is Not In Your Mind (Tuncboyaciyan) 4.13
17. Twilight (Grusin/McCandless) 2.15
18. Andante (From Sonata #2 In A Minor For Unaccompanied Violin) (Bach) 6.01
19. Remembering (Winter) 4.13
20. Saturday Night In Peach Valley (Tuncboyaciyan) 2.53
21. Song Of Miho (Winer) 0.48
22. Morning Sun (Grusin/Friesen/McCandless/Winte/Gorn) 6.32

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