French composers of the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries delighted in adorning their pieces with foreign, in particular, Italian, elements, often calling attention to them in the titles. Among the most subtle transalpine stylists was Francois Couperin, who was refining the ‘French style’ and publishing his legacy in the form of harpsichord and chamber music. His contemporary, Marin Marais, contributed his own subtle essay in the exotic, a “Suitte d’un gout etranger” published in his Fourth Book of Pieces de une et a trois viole (1717), nearly 30 years after his First Book (the epitome of French viol playing) had appeared.
Since 1987, Dan Laurin has released some thirty titles on BIS. On his latest disc, Sonates et Suites he has chosen to visit France at an exciting point in time. In the early 18th century, when all of the sonatas and suites included here were composed, the system of censorship that ensured that nothing was printed without royal permission was beginning to crumble, at least in the field of music.
Among contemporary composers of orchestral music, Christopher Rouse is a prominent figure, noted for his extremely virtuosic scores as well as for his dark subject matter. Such fantastic – some might say nightmarish – pieces as the ultra-violent Gorgon (1984) and the enigmatic Iscariot (1989) are true to form in their evocation of mythology or religion, and even the elegiac Trombone Concerto (1991) has its suggestions of otherworldly things, particularly in its quotation of Leonard Bernstein's "Kaddish" Symphony and the haunting, dirge-like adaptation of the folk song Tsintskaro at the opening of the third movement. Yet Rouse's music is much more than its allusions, however meaningful, and it's possible to enjoy these works for their raw power and ethereal beauty without knowing anything about their references.
New version of the Paco de Lucía Integral, 27 CDs his complete work remastered. "Cositas Buenas", his last album, comes as a new in this new Integral. Now in a new economic format. This collection is a unique tour of the work of Paco de Lucia from 1964 to 2004. One of the least well-known of the extensive body of work recorded by the Algeciran, which contains some of the tracks that he would include months later on his 1981 record Solo Quiero Caminar with The Sextet. On two songs he counts on the participation of John McLaughlin and Larry Coryell, both of whom collaborated on a series of virtuoso trio performances, an idea promoted by Paco’s manager, Barry Marshall, towards the end of 1978 (Al di Meola soon took the place of Larry Coryell).
The Grünfeld is a highly dynamic opening in which Black’s position often seems to hang together by a single thread; and yet, this apparently precarious equilibrium appears to be enough to make it entirely viable - up to the highest level.
When Leonard Bernstein was asked by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis to compose the inaugural work for the opening of The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., he wrote: “The Mass is also an extremely dramatic event in itself—it even suggests a theater work.” Premiered on September 8, 1971, with additional words by Stephen Schwartz of Godspell fame, Mass is a remarkable, visionary work with a kaleidoscope of musical styles that touches on themes of political protest, existential crisis and religious faith lost and found.