Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony offer the world-premiere recording of John Adams’ Absolute Jest, commissioned by the orchestra, alongside the composer’s Grand Pianola Music, another SFS commission from 30 years earlier, conducted here by the composer. Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony join forces with America’s most-performed living composer, John Adams, in a colossal album featuring Adams’s Absolute Jest and Grand Pianola Music. Hear Adams’s inspired and witty take on Beethoven’s spirited scherzos in this first-ever recording of his SFS- commissioned Absolute Jest. Also featured is Grand Pianola Music, with its tongue-in-cheek allusions to Beethoven’s Emperor Concerto, written for and premiered by the SFS. Both works speak to the deeply personal and vital relationship of some of the top musicians of our time: John Adams, MTT, and the SFS.
Michael Manson is a highly gifted bass player. He already performed with Kirk Whalum, Brian Culbertson, George Duke or Oletta Adams to just name a few. Like most of the contemporary jazz artists he was on the search of a new label. Now he found his haven in NuGroove Records and presents his label debut Up Front (2008). Portions of this CD have been remastered from his previous album Just Feelin It.
Having earned his composing stripes after the 1960s, John Adams had the pioneering work of Steve Reich, Philip Glass, and Terry Riley close at hand as he ventured into his trade. And, while minimalism's historical continuum helps place Adams, he used Reich, Glass, and Riley (among others) only as a starting point. And here's proof: a 10-CD retrospective of nearly all Adams's recorded compositions on Nonesuch Records, the label that also issued Steve Reich 1965-1995 and Kronos Quartet: 25 Years. Adams's Harmonium, a choral work of startling energy and effervescence, appears here in a new recording, as do distillations of both The Death of Klinghoffer and Nixon in China, two path-clearing operas.
Reissue with the latest remastering and the original cover artwork. Comes with a description written in Japanese. George Adams and Don Pullen knock it out of the park on this one – finding great company in each other's presence, and really moving things forward in the process! The set begins with a long track titled "Mingus Metamorphosis", and that really sums up the spirit of the record – an 80s reworking of all the ideas that the players had learned from Mingus, but with an individual, personal sense that's all their own – and very different than some of the more standard modes of the Mingus Dynasty group that continued the legacy in a more direct manner. Adams is bold one minute, lyrical the next – and plays both tenor and flute – alongside Pullen on piano, Cameron Brown on bass, and Dannie Richmond on drums.
Reissue with the latest remastering and the original cover artwork. Comes with a description written in Japanese. A firey session from the quartet of George Adams and Don Pullen – a set that has the group stretching out in some of their most spiritual modes, yet still finding plenty of time to swing as well! Adams is tremendous on tenor – a very fresh voice in the post-Coltrane world, with phrasing that is all his own – even more amplified when he switches to flute – and Pullen's got this ability to go outside, and show his knowledge of the darker corners of the keyboard – yet never let that side of his playing overwhelm things, possibly because the rhythmic accompaniment from Cameron Brown on bass and Dannie Richmond on drums is so strong. Tracks are all long, and very individual – with the group in high spirits on the titles "Earth Beams", "Magnetic Love Field", "Saturday Nite In The Cosmos", "More Flowers", and "Dionysus".