Stefano Battaglia Trio : Interprets Alec Wilder

Stefano Battaglia (1965 , Milan) is an Italian classical and jazz pianist. He has played extensively on the international circuit, performing as a soloist with the European Youth Orchestra in Barcelona (1981), and winning the "J.S. Bach Festival" award in Düsseldorf as the best new pianist of the year (1986) and the Brussels National Radio Award as the best young European pianist … Continue reading Stefano Battaglia Trio : Interprets Alec Wilder

The Tomasz Stanko Quartets : Polish and New York

Tomasz Stańko is a Polish trumpeter, composer and improviser. Often recording for ECM Records, Stańko is strongly associated with free jazz and the avant-garde. Coming to prominence in the early 1960s alongside pianist Adam Makowicz in the Jazz Darings, Stańko later collaborated with pianist Krzysztof Komeda, notably on Komeda's pivotal 1966 album Astigmatic. In 1968, Stańko formed an acclaimed quintet that included Zbigniew Seifert on … Continue reading The Tomasz Stanko Quartets : Polish and New York

Thomas Demenga : Bach Suites for Cello, summary of critical reviews

"If I don’t feel too good,” writes Swiss cellist Thomas Demenga, “I go to my studio and play one or two suites – it’s a mental cleansing process.” Plenty of musicians turn to Bach for solace or recalibration; the question is, who can translate that personal connection into something usefully meaningful to other people? Swiss … Continue reading Thomas Demenga : Bach Suites for Cello, summary of critical reviews

François Couturier : French pianist + Tarkovsky Quartet make genre-defying music

“I believe that the music belongs to the true interpreter, the true artist,” said 20th century Spanish composer and pianist Federico Mompou. “Here is the music. What does it suggest to you?” German cellist Anja Lechner and French pianist François Couturier took that challenge head-on in their album, Moderato cantabile. Though Moderato cantabile is Lechner and … Continue reading François Couturier : French pianist + Tarkovsky Quartet make genre-defying music

Two Portraits of Bob Dylan

For most, if not all, Bob Dylan fans his tenth studio album, Self Portrait, released on June 8, 1970, was infuriating and a disappointment.  Over the years the response has softened somewhat, but the recording stubbornly remains one of his least popular. "What is this shit?" – kicked off Griel Marcus' infamous review of Self Portrait in Rolling … Continue reading Two Portraits of Bob Dylan

The Winding Stream: deftly crafted documentary celebrates the Carter and Cash families

Beth Harrington celebrates the Carter and Cash family and its enduring contributions to country, folk and roots music in “The Winding Stream,” an impressively researched and deftly crafted feature that doubtless will find an appreciative audience through exposure in home-screen platforms. Clearly a long-gestating labor of love, “The Winding Stream” boasts among its highlights a … Continue reading The Winding Stream: deftly crafted documentary celebrates the Carter and Cash families

Harry Smith and the Anthology of American Folk Music

Sixty-five years ago this year an event occcured which changed the course of American music.  A unassuming man, unknown, with no professional expertise other than his devotion to old 78s of American vernacular music, released to the public the Anthology of American Folk Music. “Had he never done anything with his life but this Anthology, … Continue reading Harry Smith and the Anthology of American Folk Music