At the end of every month, the NPR Music team picks their favorite albums and songs. Everyone has their passions and they vary widely, from the Atlanta rapper Deante' Hitchcock to the Australian ambient artist Madeleine Cocolas.
On this week's show, we hear the No. 1 albums and songs of May as picked by our staff. There's the Portland band MAITA, which features a singer who entered our Tiny Desk contest in 2018. We also have the 20-year-old Eve Owen (who released an album produced by The National's Aaron Dessner), a team-up between classical guitarist Sharon Isbin and Indian sarod master Ayaan Ali Bangash, and Buscabulla, a duo from Puerto Rico who met in New York City and returned to Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria to rediscover their home. And then there's brilliant jazz guitar playing from the Kurt Rosenwinkel Trio and joy from Scotland's Vistas.
"Love Avalanche" a cool East-meets-West raga featuring multiple Grammy-winning classical guitarist Sharon Isbin paired with the Indian sarod master Ayaan ali Bangash. - Tom Huizenga
In episode 921 of "ANIMAJAZZ", conceived and conducted by BRUNO POLLACCI , broadcast on TUESDAY 2 June at 20.30, on PUNTORADIO, also streaming on www.puntoradio.fm and in an immediate podcast on http: // animajazz. eu will be the protagonists of the evening, which include; "The Dream"; by ODED TZUR from "Here Be Dragons"
Here Be Dragons is the ECM debut of New York based, Tel Aviv born tenor saxophonist Oded Tzur, one of the most strikingly original musicians to have emerged from Israeli's creative jazz scene in recent years, and the leader of an outstanding group.
Oded Tzur has found a new and personal sound for the tenor saxophone. Inspired by his extensive studies from 2007 onward with bansuri master Hariprasad Chaurasia, he has mastered the graceful slides of Indian classical music and brought raga's sense of pitch fluidity and microtonal shading into a jazz context. His pieces elegantly explore and unfold their melodic and atmospheric implications in a context of subtle group interaction. Structurally, each of Tzur's compositions on Here Be Dragons sets out to develop a "miniature raga" over a moving bass, juxtaposing two musical concepts. Oded: "The dialogue between these dimensions takes us wherever it takes us." The ragas deployed in the pieces "Here Be Dragons", "20 Years" and "The Dream" are of Oded's creation, while "To Hold Your Hand" uses an Indian scale called Charukesi and operates on similar principles. He stresses, however, that "raga is, for me, a universal concept. I hear its connection to synagogue prayers, or to the blues – a marvellous creation – and to music all around the world." Ancient and modern traditions are referenced in Oded's work, including traditions of storytelling. "If music has the ability to tell stories," suggested All About Jazz, "saxophonist Oded Tzur proves himself one of the jazz world's premier storytellers." Tzur's concept is also broad enough to embrace some unexpected song choices, and the album concludes with a tender interpretation of "Can't Help Falling In Love", made famous by Elvis Presley.
We remind you that "ANIMAJAZZ" can be heard on TUESDAY at 20.30 in immediate podcast on http://animajazz.eu and the "DOWNLOAD" of the episode can be made, free of charge, from the podcasts area. Happy listening. "ANIMAJAZZ" in collaboration with the PISA ACADEMY OF ART. SEE THE PAGE
The Tiny Desk is working from home for the foreseeable future. Introducing NPR Music's Tiny Desk (home) concerts, bringing you performances from across the country and the world. It's the same spirit - stripped-down sets, an intimate setting - just a different space.
Lara Downes thrives on collaboration. Her new album features Toshi Reagon, the vocal ensemble MUSICALITY and the string quartet called PUBLIQuartet. But in this intimate piano recital from her home in Sacramento, Calif., her only collaborators are her son Simon, who takes on cinematography duties, and her beloved pooch, Kona.
The songs, all from her recent album Some of These Days, might be old, but they are strong statements that resonate in new ways. From Margaret Bonds, one of the first celebrated African-American women composers, there's "Troubled Water," a poignant riff on the spiritual "Wade in the Water" that Downes says takes a "journey from classical virtuosity to gospel, jazz, blues and back again." Samuel Coleridge-Taylor's arrangement of "Deep River," for Downes, now represents "crossing over" the coronavirus crisis, while Florence Price's "Some of These Days," is a vision of better times ahead.
In a moment of vulnerability, Downes admits that not being out on the road – performing, embedded in communities and working with young people – makes her feel "not very useful." But in these performances there's a sturdiness and purpose that provide both comfort and the strength to carry on. Very useful, indeed.
"Margaret Bonds: Troubled Water"
"Samuel Coleridge-Taylor: Deep River"
"Florence Proce: Some Of These Days"
JUNO Award winner Laila Biali's new album, Out of Dust features not only contributions from the singer/pianist's husband; Ben Wittman and son, but also multiple GRAMMY nominees and winners including Lisa Fisher, Alan Ferber, John Ellis, and Larnell Lewis. "There's a line from a song by the indie gospel group, Gungor, that has become like an anthem to me," Biali says. "‘He makes beautiful things out of dust.' That's where the title for the album comes from, and as a songwriter and musician, my ultimate intention and hope is to spread a little more love."
Listen to the attached Laila Biali - 88.9WUCF: Orlando FL Interview with Kayonne Riley
Michael Whalen's "Sacred Spaces" is an epic recording nearly ten years in the making. "I have been pursuing a spiritual ‘awakening' for most of my adult life. Over the past decade, I realized that I am 100 percent responsible for whatever my relationship with a ‘higher being' might be," says Whalen. Filled with sonic landscapes built from hundreds of layers of sound, "Sacred Spaces" is Michael's tour-de-force electronic project, which seamlessly blends his natural gift for melody with fresh textures and percolating rhythms. Deeply inspired by Michael's film and TV work and his love for progressive rock, "Sacred Spaces" is the ambient recording of the year.
MW spoke with 88.1WMBR: Boston, 'New Edge' host; Ken Field. Listen to the attached file
I've covered the music of Mark Abel on these pages before (see articles from April 13, 2012, June 13, 2014, August 20, 2018). I never consciously sought to cover so many. It was one-at-a-time and I've found myself liking and posting on each. Now there is another one, a new one of chamber works, entitled The Cave of Wondrous Voice (Delos DE3570). It features a song cycle and three instrumental works for small chamber configurations.
Generally speaking this is not music that overtly seeks to call attention to itself by being extroverted-Modern or Avant Garde, nor is there a rock or pop influence in any obvious sense. Nonetheless it is inspired and very well put-together music that would not be mistaken for the music of the past nor perhaps as the music of some future utopia, either? It is straightforwardly intricate, expressive and inventive in good ways, in the best ways.
READ THE FULL Gapplegate Classical-Modern Music Review
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.
SEE THE FULL REPUBLICWORLD.COM PAGE
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.
Ludovico Einaudi shares music for calmer times with KCRW
Posted: April 17, 2020 12:00 AM
| By: Admin
Celebrated pianist and film composer Ludovico Einaudi's music has been a mainstay on KCRW over the years, and he's been a frequent guest on our air. His family has a rich history in Italy; Ludovico's grandfather was the first elected President of Italy in the years following WWII after the fall of Mussolini.
Einaudi is quarantining with his wife in a tiny Swiss Alps town called Samedan, a few hours from where he lives in northern Italy.
KCRW: Los Angeles - Chris Douridas recently caught up with him, and below are highlights from our conversation and a couple of his piano pieces that he feels might resonate at this time. They were influenced by his adventures in Mali, where time moves at a different pace. Photo by Larry Hirshowitz.
Ludovico Einaudi today releases a special 12-track digital collection, ‘12 Songs From Home', out digitally on Decca Records on 8thMay 2020 with artwork drawn by the composer. Recorded at home on his own upright piano in one evening during the lockdown, the release follows several live streams that were watched by thousands of people at a time on his Instagram page.
Einaudi explains, "I recorded ‘12 Songs From Home' between March and April 2020 during the peak of Italy's lockdown. In March I started to play live concerts regularly on social media. Switching on my phone to connect for 30-40 minutes with the world has been a beautiful and intimate alternative to the spring tour that I regrettably had to postpone. This new release is the memory of those home live concerts, my memory of this time, the memory of a strange and new atmosphere that we won't forget."
Ludovico Einaudi's Seven Days Walking is inspired by his recurring walk in the Alps done over seven days, each journey altered by daily changes in nature, the weather, perspective and more. Musically, Einaudi plays piano alongside cello and violin, a return to the distinct sound of his solo piano recordings with the blend of soft strings complimenting his minimalist and mesmerizing melodies. All seven albums from Seven Days Walking are now released in one complete collection for fans to enjoy.
Following his sold-out, seven-night residency at the Barbican in early August, Decca announces the release of ‘Seven Days Walking: Day Seven', and the climactic seven-volume collection from composer and pianist Ludovico Einaudi – his most ambitious album project yet, with seven albums released over as many months. A solo piano album, ‘Day Seven' is released on 20thSeptember, followed by a complete box set on 27th September, marking the final stop on Einaudi's intimate journey through the snow-capped Alps.
Ludovico Einaudi has played piano on an Arctic glacier, performed at huge pop music festivals, and become the most-streamed classical artist in the world, but the composer and pianist's new album may be his most ambitious project yet. On March 15 2019, he released the first episode of a seven-part new album called Seven Days Walking (Decca Records/Universal), before embarking on a North American tour at the end of May.
Einaudi also announces today his signing of a new worldwide contract with Decca Records, under Universal Music Group. After nearly 15 years and six album releases together, Decca – the world's No.1 classical music label – is thrilled to renew its working relationship with Einaudi and be the home to his music globally. This is the first time Einaudi's music will be released via Universal Music Group in the United States.
"The seemingly simple but strangely affecting music of Ludovico Einaudi defies pigeonholing…expect to feel transported and mesmerized by (his) artfully wrought compositions." - Daily Telegraph
Stanze (rooms) is a cycle of 16 pieces, and each is a musical space separated from the others like the rooms of a house. It's the diary of a journey, with the aim to achieve the maximum expression using the least possible. This is how award-winning composer Ludovico Einaudi describes Stanze, his first cycle of ballads for solo instrument originally composed for piano over the course of three years. After having listened to the performance of some songs performed on electric harp by Cecilia Chailly (the sister of conductor Riccardo Chailly), Einaudi decided to entrust the playing of the whole project to her, privileging her instrument for the entire album.
7 NEW - 53 Total
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