Friday, December 14, 2012

Jeremy Smith, Special Collections Librarian and Curator of the James and Susan Neumann Jazz Collection radio interview on Dave Brubeck

Listen to Jeremy Smith, Special Collections Librarian and Curator of the James and Susan Neumann Jazz Collection talk about jazz legend Dave Brubeck, who died on December 5, 2012.  Listen here.

Holiday Greetings from the Oberlin Conservatory Library!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 2013 Inductees Include Public Enemy, Rush, Heart, Randy Newman & Donna Summer

The following article is provided by Rolling Stone, which covered the announcement of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 2013 inductees: Rush, Public Enemy, Heart, Randy Newman, Donna Summer and Albert King.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame has officially announced next year's inductees: Rush, Public Enemy, Heart, Randy Newman, Donna Summer and Albert King will all join the class of 2013, with Summer, who passed away this May, and King, who died in 1992, earning the honor posthumously. Lou Adler and Quincy Jones will both receive the Ahmet Ertegun Award for non-performers.  More

Ravi Shankar death: Tributes pour in for 'godfather of music'

Musicians from India and around the world have paid tributes to legendary sitar player Ravi Shankar, who has died aged 92.

His friends in the musical world all appear to agree that the contribution of the three-time Grammy winner to music will keep him alive in the minds of people all over the world for many years to come.

Many say that he will be remembered principally for being the first Indian musician to take the subcontinent's versatile and spontaneous styles to the West.

His sitar contribution to songs by the Beatles - George Harrison was taught by Shankar - on their Rubber Soul, Revolver and Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band albums have guaranteed his immortality, critics say.  More

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Simón Bolívar Orchestra Lifts Youth in a Troubled Nation

When conductor Gustavo Dudamel brings the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela (SBSOV) to Carnegie Hall as the culmination of a 14-day, five-city US tour, many of its 200 musicians will have traveled a long way from lives of desperate poverty, crime and violence.

The orchestra is based in Caracas, Venezuela, one of the most violent cities in the Western hemisphere. It registered 3,218 homicides during the first 10 months of this year, putting it easily on track to beat last year’s toll of 3,488 homicides, according to CICPC, the national police agency. Last year, there were 19,336 homicides in Venezuela, ranking it higher than neighboring Colombia or Mexico, which is plagued by a drug war.  More

Charles Rosen, Scholar-Musician Who Untangled Classical Works, Dies at 85

Charles Rosen, the pianist, polymath and author whose National Book Award-winning volume “The Classical Style” illuminated the enduring language of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven, died on Sunday in Manhattan. He was 85.

The death, at Mount Sinai Hospital, was of cancer, said Henri Zerner, a friend of many years.
Published in 1971, “The Classical Style” examines the nature of Classical music through the lens of its three most exemplary practitioners. Given that these titans were working with the same raw materials — the 12 notes of the Western musical scale — as the Baroque composers who had preceded them, just what was it, Mr. Rosen’s book asked, that gave their music its unmistakable character?  More

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Legendary Jazz Musician Dave Brubeck Dies

Dave Brubeck, the legendary jazz pianist and composer, known for defying jazz conventions and for recordings like "Take Five" and "Blue Rondo a la Turk," has died.
Brubeck died of heart failure in Norwalk, Conn. He was one day short of his 92nd birthday.
His All Music biography says Brubeck distinguished himself from the popular jazz musicians of the West Coast by playing unusual time signatures, "adventurous tonalities," and proving that complex music could find a larger audience.  Read More

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Newly 'Discovered' Beethoven Pieces Ignite Scholarly Debate

A lost piano sonata! A forgotten string quartet! A tenth symphony!

Musicologists have long fantasized about uncovering lost works of the immortal composers. More than a few have made it their lifelong mission to assemble composer’s scattered sketches, fragments and jottings into complete, readily-to-perform musical statements. Add the name Beethoven to the mix and pulses really begin to race.

Last month, two newly-reconstructed Beethoven works were given what was billed as world premieres within weeks of one another: one is a two-minute hymn setting barely 74 measures long, performed in Manchester, England. The other is said to be the sketch of an early piano sonata, clocking in at 23 minutes. It was performed in Amsterdam and a commercial recording was made by Martin Oei, a 16-year-old piano wiz.   More

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

New title -- Wax Poetics

A new title, Wax Poetics, is now available in Con Periodicals.

Happy 70th Birthday, Jimi Hendrix

Today is the birthday of electric guitar hero, James Marshall Hendrix. The "Purple Haze" creator would turn 70 years old if he were still alive today, and this fact is blowing our minds.

On the anniversary of his birth, Jimi Hendrix's hometown of Seattle is celebrating the legendary musician in an exhibit at EMP Museum titled, "Hear My Train A Comin': Hendrix Hits London." Devoted entirely to the guitarist's nine month stint in the UK capital, the collection of lyrics, instruments, photographs and fashion covers Hendrix's 1960s British debut. The period, packed with three unforgettable singles and a magnificently successful album, amounted to the perfect prelude to Hendrix's fiery performance at the '67 Monterey Pop FestivalMore

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Football Player Turned Opera Star

  NEW YORK (AP) — Keith Miller was a bruising fullback out of the University of Colorado who never quite made it to the National Football League. He has, however, become a star at the Metropolitan Opera.  How Miller made the … Read More

Musical America Instrumentalist of the Year: WU MAN

Wu Man is the very model of a modern soloist. More importantly, her work is part of a big step in the evolution of Western classical music. The best measure of her achievement is that her instrument, the pipa--a Chinese lute that dates back some 2,000 years--is no longer an exotic curiosity. Symphony audiences have heard her perform concertos by Lou Harrison and Tan Dun. She performs regularly with Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble, the Kronos Quartet, as a soloist in Bang on a Can marathons, and in chamber groups and orchestras giving the premieres of works by Terry Riley, Philip Glass, Chen Yi, and Bright Sheng, who have written pipa parts into their works with her sound and dexterity in mind.

Musical America Announces Vocalist of the Year: Joyce DiDonato

Joyce DiDonato is the American opera singer par excellence. Onstage or off, there are few people in opera who radiate this Kansas native's degree of natural goodness and warmth. For all these qualities, however, the intensity, fury, and abandon of roles such as Donizetti's Maria Stuarda are well within her emotional range, as she proved at Houston Grand Opera last season. This season she performs a recital program called "Drama Queens," featuring Baroque arias sung by royal characters (recorded by Virgin Records). Operatic appearances include a reprise of the title role in Maria Stuarda at the Metropolitan Opera, Romeo in Bellini's I Capuleti e i Montecchi in Munich and Kansas City, Elena in Rossini's La donna del lago in Santa Fe, and the title role in Cendrillon in Barcelona.

Musical America Musician of the Year: GUSTAVO DUDAMEL

In eight short years, 31-year-old Gustavo Dudamel has become more in demand than any conductor in the world. He is a household name in Los Angeles, where he is music director of the Philharmonic. He is mobbed in Berlin, Vienna, Milan, London, and Caracas, Venezuela, where he is one of his country's best-known and well-loved celebrities. Often compared to Leonard Bernstein, Dudamel shares the American conductor's charisma, tireless advocacy for music education, and expressive music-making. Dudamel studied violin as a child, and in his early teens he was invited to study conducting with José Antonio Abreu, architect of Venezuela's famed El Sistema music-education program. At age 18 he became music director of the Sistema's elite Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra. In 2004, at age 23, he won the Bamberg Symphony's Gustav Mahler Conducting Competition, and in 2007 he began a five-year appointment with Sweden's Gothenburg Symphony, which recently ended with his being named honorary conductor. His Los Angeles appointment, which began in September 2009, has been distinguished by the orchestra's founding of the Sistema-like Youth Orchestra of Los Angeles (YOLA) and a continuation of the orchestra's and his own commitment to new music, notably that of John Adams, who is the LAPhil's creative consultant.