This sparkling suite for violin and piano came into being when the composer had to adapt his incidental score for a production of Shakespeare's play to the impending absence of the chamber orchestral. The result is a brilliant piece for violin and piano, which the composer quickly released in a four-movement version. There are other recordings of the chamber orchestra suite in five-movements that duplicate only three of the movements of this version. Violinist Gil Shaham and pianist André Previn are ideal partners in this brilliant performance. The four movements allow Shaham to show four sides of his violinist's personality: He skips and plays in carefree fashion in the opening movement, indulges in the grotesquery and parody of the second, gets to play the romantic in the garden scene of the third movement, and dazzles with virtuosity in the final hornpipe. Previn's part is more than mere accompaniment; the piano often has a large part of the mood of the music and his contribution is, to use a word already employed here, ideal.
Roberta Alexander’s outstanding CD of vocal music by Samuel Barber demonstrates the soprano’s understanding of the composer’s musical language and emotional content … The Netherlands Radio Philharmonic plays very well under the tasteful leadership of Edo de Waart.
Pianist/vocalist Patricia Barber is the Alanis Morissette of the jazz world. Her serpentine, poetic songs teeter between deftly witty and awkwardly Latinate. Each album is more ambitious than the last, taking her deeper into avant-garde territory both lyrically and instrumentally. Verse is no exception…
An all-too-rare new recording from Polyphony and Stephen Layton presents highlights from the choral repertoire by four twentieth-century American giants: Samuel Barber, Leonard Bernstein, Aaron Copland and Randall Thompson. Framed by Thompson’s understated favourites Alleluia and Fare Well, the programme includes Bernstein’s Missa brevis, Copland’s early set of four motets, and—of course—Barber’s inimitable Agnus Dei.
Patricia Barber is a crack jazz pianist, an innovative composer, a singular vocal stylist, and among the most original lyricists/song-poets to come down the pipe in 40 years. Her use of metaphor and metonymy is woven inextricably into her trademark melodies, which create mental and sonic images that evoke insight and emotion. Smash, Barber's debut for Concord, is comprised of original material performed by an excellent band that includes guitarist John Kregor, bassist Larry Kohut, and drummer Jon Deitemyer.
Chicago pianist and vocalist Patricia Barber is making lots of ears burn. Her torch song touch speaks volumes to jazz vocal fanatics, but she has an adventuresome side that speaks likewise to fans of woollier jazz. Barber's vocal delivery is swaggering and burnished, always angling against oddball time signatures and often dropping weird lyrical science. From e.e. cummings poems, Barber moves into prescient observations on our society: "For company in the 21st century," she sings, "I go to the club, talk through the show / I'm so hip there's nothing about jazz / That I don't know." Trumpeter Dave Douglas and guitarist John McLean add a sharp edge, and the Choral Thunder Vocal Choir give Modern Cool soul-drenched dynamics that push the CD into the realm of instant classics.
Features 24 bit remastering and comes with a mini-description. The aptly titled The Warm Sound reunites Frances Wayne with husband and arranger Neal Hefti, adding to the equation a wonderful support unit including tenorist Al Cohn, guitarist Billy Mure, pianist Hank Jones, and flautist Jerome Richardson to yield one of the singer's most delightful and consistent sessions. Hefti keeps his more extravagant impulses in check here, creating a series of sophisticated but appealingly simple arrangements that underscore the breathy appeal of Wayne's vocals. Likewise, warhorses including "'Round Midnight" and "Prelude to a Kiss" prove particularly well-matched to her sexy but sweet persona.