France’s leading young harpsichordist performs works by two masters of the French Baroque. No surprises there, perhaps … but the harpsichordist in question is Jean Rondeau and the album is called Vertigo. It conceives the harpsichord in vividly theatrical terms. Vertigo takes its name from a dramatic, rhapsodic piece by Joseph-Nicolas-Pancrace Royer, who, along with Jean-Philippe Rameau, forms the focus of this album. If Rameau (1683–1764) is the better-known composer today, especially admired for such operatic masterpieces as Hippolyte et Aricie and Platée, the younger Royer (1705–1755) was also a major figure in his time, rising to become master of music at the court of Louis XV. Both Rameau and Royer excelled in keyboard music and in works for the stage. As Jean Rondeau says: “These two illustrious composers battled for the top spot at the Opéra.” He describes them as “two magicians, two master architects, amongst the most wildly imaginative and brilliant of their era … Two composers who also tried to capture echoes of grand theatre with the palette offered by their keyboard.
2016 solo album from the singer/songwriter best known for his work with the Grammy-winning band America. Recorded at his Los Angeles studio Human Nature, the shimmering 12-track album plays to all of Beckley's strengths; the singer, songwriter and musician played most instruments on the album. "With a solo project I'm really a committee of one," says Beckley. "There's only myself to please. Having said that, it's not always easy. Each project is a snapshot in time. The material on Carousel came from a wide scope of inspiration." Carousel contains original standouts such as the deeply personal "Lifeline", "No Way I'm Gonna Lose You" (co-written with Dan Wilson who won an award for his work with Adele) and "Tokyo", of which Beckley says: "The song actually came to me while I was waiting to board a flight home from Japan. I seem to remember I lost track of time and almost missed the flight".