Various Artists – Concert Of The Century (1976)

FrontCover1.JPGI guess this was a very special night at the Carnegie Hall, New York. This concert should celebrate the 85th anniversary of this legendary concert hall.

My uncle bought this double LP as a Christmas present for my father back when it first came out. It was recorded in celebration of the 85th anniversary of Carnegie Hall. That concert night featured Leonard Bernstein and members of the NYP, Isaac Stern, Rostropovich, Yehudi Menuhin, and of course, Dieskau and Horowitz! Bach’s double violin concerto in D minor is unpolished with Stern and Menuhin and the entire cast singing Handel’s “Hallelujah” from the Massiah at the end is a bit much and over the top.

Still, it was indeed a historical night and Dieskau and Horowitz’ performance of Schumann’s Dichterliebe made it so. A must have for anyone who loves this piece or wishes to fall in love with it. (Peter Chordas)

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The performance of the slow movement of the rachmaninoff cello sonata is among the most touching recordings that have ever been made. (Joerg)

The performance of the slow movement of the rachmaninoff cello sonata is among the most touching recordings that have ever been made. (Pete)

All lovers of Lieder seem to have a certain passion and veneration for Fischer-Dieskau’s interpretation of Schumann’s Dichterliebe. It is appearant that this singer’s understanding of the music, his vocal capacity, his beautiful phrasing, clear diction, and his general (outstanding) musicianship enable him to communicate these Lieder in a way nobody else has done before (save maybe Hotter) or since.
In this live-recording he is supported by no other than Vladimir Horowitz! And the inspiration between these two artists works wonders. Horowitz’ playing in crucial moments of the cycle fx “Ich Grolle Nicht” adds a spiritual dimension to the interpretation that you do not get from Moore, Brendel or Demus. We are dealing with the best interpretation of this cycle ever conveyed to disc. (Tommy Nielsen)

And … listen to “Pater Noster” … unbelieveable music … I call this music … spiritual music, even I don´t believe in god !

What a night !

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Personnel:
Leonard Bernstein (harpsichord on 05.)
Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (vocals on 04. + 07.)
Vladimir Horowitz (piano on 02. – 04. + 07.)
Yehudi Menuhin (violin on 05. + 07.)
Mstislav Rostropovich (cello on 02., 03. + 07.)
Isaac Stern (violin on 02., 05. + 07.)

Members Of The New York Philharmonic conducted by Leonard Bernstein (on 01., 05. + 07.)
The Oratorio Society Orchestra conducted by Lyndon Woodside (o6. + 07.)

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Tracklist:
01. Leonore – Overture No3/Ouvertüre Nr3/Ouverture Nº3 Op.72a (Beethoven) 14.34
02. Piano Trio In A Minor/Klaviertrio, A-moll/Trio Pour Piano En La Mineur – Op.50, I – Pezzo Elegiaco (Tchaikovsky) 18.18
03. Sonata For Cello & Piano In G Minor/Sonate Für Violoncello & Klavier G-moll/Sonate Pour Violoncelle & Piano En Sol Mineur – Op.19, III Andante (Rachmaninoff) 5.47
04. Dichterliebe, Op.48 (Schumann/Heine) 29.30
05. Concerto In D Minor For Two Violins/Konzert Für Zwei Violinen, D-moll/Concerto Pour Deux Violons En Ré-mineur BWV 1043 (Bach) 15.29
06. Pater Noster (Tchaikovsky) 3.53
07. The Messiah/Hallelujah Chorus (Händel) 4.04

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Vielles Chansons de France (Songbook) (1948)

FrontCoverA chanson (French pronunciation: ​[ʃɑ̃sɔ̃], “song”, from Latin cantio, gen. cantionis) is in general any lyric-driven French song, usually polyphonic and secular. A singer specializing in chansons is known as a “chanteur” (male) or “chanteuse” (female); a collection of chansons, especially from the late Middle Ages and Renaissance, is also known as a chansonnier.

 

The earliest chansons were the epic poems performed to simple monophonic melodies by a professional class of jongleurs or ménestrels. These usually recounted the famous deeds (geste) of past heroes, legendary and semi-historical. The Song of Roland is the most famous of these, but in general the chansons de geste are studied as literature since very little of their music survives.

The chanson courtoise or grand chant was an early form of monophonic chanson, the chief lyric poetic genre of the trouvères. It was an adaptation to Old French of the Occitan canso. It was practised in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Thematically, as its name implies, it was a song of courtly love, written usually by a man to his noble lover. Some later chansons were polyphonic and some had refrains and were called chansons avec des refrains. A Crusade song was known as a chanson de croisade.
Burgundian chanson

In its typical specialized usage, the word chanson refers to a polyphonic French song of the late Middle Ages and Renaissance. Early chansons tended to be in one of the formes fixes—ballade, rondeau or virelai (formerly the chanson baladée)—though some composers later set popular poetry in a variety of forms. The earliest chansons were for two, three or four voices, with first three becoming the norm, expanding to four voices by the sixteenth century. Sometimes, the singers were accompanied by instruments.

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The first important composer of chansons was Guillaume de Machaut, who composed three-voice works in the formes fixes during the 14th century. Guillaume Dufay and Gilles Binchois, who wrote so-called Burgundian chansons (because they were from the area known as Burgundy), were the most important chanson composers of the next generation (c. 1420-1470). Their chansons, while somewhat simple in style, are also generally in three voices with a structural tenor. Musicologist David Fallows includes the Burgundian repertoire in A Catalogue of Polyphonic Songs 1415-1480. These works are typically still 3 voices, with an active upper voice (discantus) pitched above two lower voices (tenor and altus) usually sharing the same range.

Later 15th- and early 16th-century figures in the genre included Johannes Ockeghem and Josquin des Prez, whose works cease to be constrained by formes fixes and begin to feature a pervading imitation (all voices sharing material and moving at similar speeds), similar to that found in contemporary motets and liturgical music. The first book of music printed from movable type was Harmonice Musices Odhecaton, a collection of ninety-six chansons by many composers, published in Venice in 1501 by Ottaviano Petrucci.

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Beginning in the late 1520s through mid- century, Claudin de Sermisy, Pierre Certon, Clément Janequin, and Philippe Verdelot were composers of so-called Parisian chansons, which also abandoned the formes fixes, often featured four voices, and were in a simpler, more homophonic style. This genre sometimes featured music that was meant to be evocative of certain imagery such as birds or the marketplace. Many of these Parisian works were published by Pierre Attaingnant. Composers of their generation, as well as later composers, such as Orlando de Lassus,[clarification needed] were influenced by the Italian madrigal. Many early instrumental works were ornamented variations (diminutions) on chansons, with this genre becoming the canzone, a progenitor of the sonata.

French solo song developed in the late 16th century, probably from the aforementioned Parisian works. During the 17th century, the air de cour, chanson pour boire and other like genres, generally accompanied by lute or keyboard, flourished, with contributions by such composers as Antoine Boesset, Denis Gaultier, Michel Lambert and Michel-Richard de Lalande.

During the 18th century, vocal music in France was dominated by opera, but solo song underwent a renaissance in the 19th century, first with salon melodies and then by mid-century with highly sophisticated works influenced by the German Lieder, which had been introduced into the country. Louis Niedermeyer, under the particular spell of Schubert, was a pivotal figure in this movement, followed by Édouard Lalo, Felicien David and many others.

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Another offshoot of chanson, called chanson réaliste (realist song), was a popular musical genre in France, primarily from the 1880s until the end of World War II.[1][2] Born of the cafés-concerts and cabarets of the Montmartre district of Paris and influenced by literary realism and the naturalist movements in literature and theatre, chanson réaliste was a musical style which was mainly performed by women and dealt with the lives of Paris’s poor and working class. Among the better-known performers of the genre are Damia, Fréhel, and Édith Piaf.

Later 19th-century composers of French art songs, known as mélodie and not chanson, included Ernest Chausson, Emmanuel Chabrier, Gabriel Fauré, and Claude Debussy, while many 20th-century and current French composers have continued this strong tradition.

In France today “chanson” or “chanson française” typically refers to the music of singers such as Charles Trenet, Guy Béart, Jacques Brel, Jean Ferrat, Georges Brassens, Édith Piaf, Charles Aznavour, Barbara, Dalida, Serge Reggiani, Léo Ferré, Mireille Mathieu and Serge Gainsbourg and more recently Mano Solo, Dominique A, Matthieu Chedid, Benjamin Biolay, Jean-Louis Murat, Miossec, Mathieu Boogaerts, Daniel Darc, Vincent Delerm, Maurane, Zaz, Bénabar, Renan Luce, Olivia Ruiz. Chanson can be distinguished from the rest of French “pop” music by following the rhythms of French language, rather than those of English, and a higher standard for lyrics. (by wikipedia)

And here´s a rare little songbook called “Vielles Chansons de France” (“Old chansons from France” – 38 pages) from 1948 with a lot of old chansons from France and with a lot of really nice illustrations …

Enjoy this rarity from my archive of songbooks.

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The backcover of this songbook

Fotheringay – Same (1970)

FrontCover1Fotheringay is the self-titled album by the group formed by Sandy Denny after she left Fairport Convention in 1969, and was the group’s only contemporaneous release. It was recorded in 1970 with former Eclection member and Denny’s future husband Trevor Lucas, with Gerry Conway, Jerry Donahue, and Pat Donaldson. The album includes five Sandy Denny compositions (one of which was co-written with Lucas), one song by Lucas, as well as two traditional songs and two cover versions: Bob Dylan’s “Too Much of Nothing” and Gordon Lightfoot’s “The Way I Feel”.

When Sandy Denny departed Fairport Convention, insisting that she wanted to concentrate upon her own songwriting rather than pursue the band’s exploration of traditional English music, she never meant she also intended abandoning the folk idiom itself. Although all but two of the songs on this, her first post-Fairport project, are indeed original compositions, it is readily apparent that, like former bandmate Richard Thompson, her greatest talents lay distinctly within the same traditions as the poets and balladeers of earlier centuries, while the fact that fully one-half of Fotheringay itself would eventually join Fairport illustrates the care that went into the band’s formation. Even the group’s name resonates.

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“Fotheringay” was also one of Denny’s best-loved Fairport songs. Listening to the album, too, one can see and hear the mothership all over the show, from the tight dynamics of “The Sea” to the simple beauty of “Winter Winds” and on to the showpiece “Banks of the Nile,” a Napoleonic Wars-era ballad set firmly in the storytelling mold of “A Sailor’s Life,” “Tam Linn,” and the post-Denny Fairport’s own “Bonnie Bunch of Roses.” The presence of producer Joe Boyd and guest vocalist Linda Peters complete the sense of a family affair.

Where Fotheringay and Fairport drift apart is in the instrumentation — one of Fairport’s most-endearing talents, after all, was the sense of ramshackle adventure that the bandmembers brought to their recordings. Fotheringay was far more “musicianly,” Melody Makerpacking a perfectionism that comes close, in places, to stifling the sheer exuberance of the music. The overuse of Trevor Lucas’ distinctly mannered vocals, too, reveals the album in a disappointing light — great guitarist though he was, his voice offers nothing that you could not hear in any amateur folk club, any night of the week, rendering Dylan’s “Too Much of Nothing,” Gordon Lightfoot’s “The Way I Feel,” and his own “Ballad of Ned Kelly” little more than makeweights. Such failings are completely overshadowed, of course, by the triumphs that are Denny’s finest contributions — the best of which close the album on a peak unheard since “The Sea,” back at the beginning of the cycle. “The Banks of the Nile” rates among the loveliest and most evocative performances of her entire career, while the hauntingly hypnotic “Two Weeks Last Summer” and a moody “Gypsy Davey” draw out an expressiveness that had similarly been in short supply elsewhere on the record. The end result is an album that, while every Denny fan should hear it, is best experienced sliced and diced across the various compilations that purport to tell the story of Fairport Convention. Bereft of the faults that never make those collections, Fotheringay deserves every kind word that has ever been sent in the band’s direction. [In 2004, Fledg’ling records released a remastered edition that included live versions of “Two Weeks of Summer,” “Nothing More,” “Banks of the Nile” and “Memphis Tennessee,” recorded at the 1970 Rotterdam Pop Festival.] (by Dave Thompson)

The only Fotheringay album to be released in vocalist Sandy Denny’s lifetime, the full-throttle folk album is a propulsive proposition. The eight minute long ‘Banks of the Nile’ is a sumptuous, atmospheric vehicle for Denny’s brilliant voice. (New Musical Express)

Without any doubt: A timeless classic of British Folk !

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Personnel:
Gerry Conway (drums)
Sandy Denny (guitar, piano, vocals)
Jerry Donahue (guitar, vocals)
Pat Donaldson (bass, vocals)
Trevor Lucas (guitar, vocals)
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background vocals:
Todd Lloyd – Linda Thompson

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Tracklist:
01. Nothing More (Denny) 4.36
02. The Sea (Denny) 5.31
03. The Ballad Of Ned Kelly (Lucas) 3.33
04. Winter Winds (Denny) 2.11
05. Peace In The End (Denny/Lucas) 4.02
06. The Way I Feel (Lightfoot) 4.45
07. The Pond And The Stream (Denny) 3.18
08. Too Much Of Nothing (Dylan) 3.54
09. Banks Of The Nile (Traditional) 8.05

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On the road again: Tenerife

I will stay for 10 days in Tenerife :

Tenerife  is the largest and most populated island of the seven Canary Islands. It is also the most populated island of Spain, with a land area of 2,034.38 square kilometres (785 sq mi) and 898,680 inhabitants, 43 percent of the total population of the Canary Islands.

…maybe I´ ll find some interesting spanish records …

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Have a nice time and I will be back on February 13 …

I wih all readers of this blog … the best !

Mick Taylor – A Stone´s Throw (1999)

FrontCover1Michael Kevin Taylor (born 17 January 1949) is an English musician, best known as a former member of John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers (1966–69) and the Rolling Stones (1969–74). He has appeared on some of the Stones’ classic albums including Let It Bleed, Sticky Fingers and Exile on Main St..

Since leaving the Rolling Stones in December 1974, Taylor has worked with numerous other artists and released several solo albums. From November 2012 onwards he participated in the Stones’ 50th-Anniversary shows in London and Newark, and in the band’s 50 & Counting World Tour, which included North America, Glastonbury Festival and Hyde Park in 2013. The band decided to continue in 2014 with concerts in the UAE, Far East & Australia and Europe for the 14 On Fire tour. He was ranked 37th in Rolling Stone magazine’s 2011 list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time. Guns N’ Roses guitarist Slash states that Taylor had the biggest influence on him.

After spending two years as a resident of Miami, during which time he played with a band called ‘Tumbling Dice’ featuring Bobby Keys, Nicky Hopkins and others, Taylor moved back to England in the mid-1990s. He released a new album in 1998 entitled “A Stone’s Throw.” Playing at clubs and theaters as well as appearing at festivals has kept Taylor connected with an appreciative audience and fan base (by wikipedia)

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Former Stone and John Mayall alumnus cuts loose on this 1999 session in the company of English stalwarts Max Middleton and Rabbit Bundrick. Taylor is a more than capable vocalist, and his playing as always walks the fine line between blues and rock bombast. Most revealing is the laid-back “Never Fall in Love Again,” a wistful change of pace from the stronger electric side of this very rock-oriented blues album. Other highlights include “Lost in the Desert,” “Late at Night,” and “Blind Willie McTell.” (by Cub Koda)

Mick Taylor gave so much to the Rolling Stones when he was with them. Some of their most beautiful, layered music happened when he was in the band, including perhaps their greatest guitar solo track, “Time Waits for No One” on ‘It’s Only Rock and Roll’. Though I love all the Stones’ stuff, there is something extra in the Mick Taylor years. Whereas after he left, the Stones developed a lean sound, with Keith Richards and Ronnie Wood practicing the ancient art of weaving, Mick Taylor did his own bluesy riffs on top of Richards. At times, it borders on symphonic.

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On this solo album, Taylor has put together a solid cadre of rock and blues musicians and produced a beautiful work that can be listened to over and over. I have only had it a few days and have already listened to it three times. There really is not a weak track on the album, which leans towards a rock/blues sound that highlights Mick’s blues guitar skills. It proves to anyone who has listend to the Stones from the Taylor years that Taylor wrote a few songs that ended up being credited to the Glimmer Twins instead. Eight of the ten songs are written by Taylor himself, demonstrating his wide-ranging abilities in the songwriter department. Too bad he never got the credit (or royalties) he deserved from his contributions in the Stones.

It’s the kind of album you can listen to any time. And I disagree with some reviewers about Taylor’s voice. It’s not great, but it’s got that smoky, rough sound that works with the blues, comparable to Clapton’s. It works with the material. (by R. Morris)

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Personnel:
Robert Ahwai (guitar)
Jeff Allen (drums)
Michael Bailey (bass)
Richard Bailey (drums)
Hillary Briggs (organ, synthesizer)
John “Rabbit” Bundrick (organ)
Lisa Daniel (background vocals)
Martin Ditcham (percussion)
Kuma Harada (bass)
Andy Macintosh (saxophone)
Max Middleton (clavinet, piano)
Mick Taylor (guitar, slide-guitar, vocals)

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Tracklist:
01. Secret Affair (Taylor) 5.18
02. Twisted Sister (Allen/Briggs/Taylor) 6.20
03. Never Fall in Love Again (Taylor) 4.20
04. Losing My Faith (Briggs/Taylor) 4.28
05. Morning Comes (Taylor) 3.40
06. Lost In The Desert (Taylor) 5.55
07. Blues In The Morning (Taylor) 6.33
08. Late At Night (Taylor) 6.45
09. Here Comes The Rain (Williams) 5:50
10. Blind Willie McTell (Dylan) 8.38

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Gwilym Simcock – Perception (2007)

FrontCover1When Chick Corea calls you a creative genius, you know you’re on to something. Praise like this is nothing new to UK piano whiz kid Gwilym Simcock, though. He’s won more prizes than he’s had hot dinners, but on this long-overdue first album he leaves room for his band to shine too.

Odd time signatures and rhythmic surprises are trademarks of Gwilym’s up-tempo pieces on Perception – inspiration he’s got from playing with Bill Bruford. Melodic lines fall over each other in “Sneaky” and rhythms criss-cross in “A Typical Affair”. Martin France’s stunning drumming ignites the fast passages on the album, and the pitter-patter of his percussion complements Gwilym’s impassioned playing, while John Parricelli’s guitar can be rocky-electric (on “Sneaky”), or warm and classical-sounding (on “Time and Tide”).

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On Gwilym’s slower tunes, like “And Then She Was Gone”, he becomes meditative and spacious. From a one-finger intro, thick layers of piano, bass, and drums build up, giving Stan Sulzmann’s sax just the canvas it needs to expand and soar. In “Affinity”, delicate, dexterous piano lines and chattering drums link in lacy patterns around a Latin feel, held together by melodic sax and Phil Donkin’s fine, singing bass.

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Gwilym was classically trained before becoming besotted by jazz, and it’s obvious in his solo pieces. His touch makes music into raindrops in “Voices”, as notes start on their separate journeys, jostle together, and order themselves into a quiet resolution. A live recording of “My One and Only Love” opens like a Beethoven sonata, the beautiful melody floating on effortless ripples of notes.

This album’s an ideal showcase for Gwilym Simcock. He plays solo, leads a trio and a five-piece, plays his own compositions and throws in a couple of imaginatively interpreted standards. Perception may have been a long time coming, but it’s a gem of a debut. (by Kathryn Shackleton , BBC)

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Personnel:
Ben Bryant (percussion)
Phil Donkin (bass)
Martin France (drums)
John Parricelli (guitar)
Gwilym Simcock (piano)
Stan Sulzmann (saxophone)
Written-By – Gwilym Simcock (tracks: 1 to 8)

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Tracklist:
01. A Typical Affair (Simcock) 8.16
02 Sneaky (Simcock) 6:13
03 And Then She Was Gone (Simcock) 5:56
04 Time And Tide (Simcock) 9:29
05 Almost Moment (Simcock) 3:55
06 Voices (Simcock) 3:12
07 Affinity (Simcock) 6:53
08 Message (Simcock) 8:00
09. The Way You Look Tonight (Fields/Kern) 8.26
10. My One And Only Love (live) (Wood/Mellin) 8.28

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