Two super groups - the strings led by violinist Markus Däunert (leader of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra), and the winds led by oboeist Nicholas Daniel (whose distinguished career began with him being named BBC Young Musician of the Year) - combine in this, their second recording for Linn.
Eduardo Mata was an internationally known conductor. He conducted a wide repertoire and was particularly recognized for twentieth century music, particularly of Latin American composers. He began studying guitar when he was about eight years old. In 1953, he enrolled in the National Conservatory of Music, studying with Rodolfo Halffter and Jose Moncayo. From 1960 to 1963, he was in the composition workshop of Carlos Chavez and Julián Orbón. After winning a Koussevitzky Fellowship, he traveled to Tanglewood where he continued his studies in composition under Gunther Schuller and in conducting from Max Rudolf and Erich Leinsdorf…
Since the repertoire for cello octet is small and consists almost entirely of arrangements and new works, expect Four Winds, Conjunto Ibérico's 2002 release, to be somewhat eccentric and experimental. Leader Elias Arizcuren and his virtuoso cellists seek a happy medium between the intimacy and clarity of a much smaller chamber group, and the richness and power of a full string orchestra; but such a balance is hard to sustain, and their shifting back and forth feels unsteady. In Terry Riley's Requiem for Adam, the ensemble is pulled between extremes of symphonic density and chamber transparency, and this heavy arrangement seems only to distort the dynamics and textures of the original version for string quartet.
The ensemble London Winds, praised by BBC Music for its 'technical accomplishment, expressive commitment and warmth of timbre', presents in this recording great twentieth-century works for winds. It features music by Hindemith, Nielsen, and Janáček, and, from the next generation, Barber and Ligeti. Although not equally prolific (Kleine Kammermusik is Hindemith's single contribution to that genre while winds are generally more prominence in Nielsen's music), all these composers brought the wind repertoire back to prominence, after a quiet period of more than a century. The music is full of playfulness and European folk colours.
On January 20, 1973, Freddie King and a tight quartet performed at a TV studio in Dallas, Texas. "It was humming in there," recalls director Jim Rowley. "Absolutely cooking." King was 38 and enjoying what he called "the Fillmore circuit" in America as well as the adulation of throngs (including adoring rock stars) in Europe, especially England.