Avant garde music for that piece of furniture called a piano.

Started by Mandryka, December 20, 2020, 08:44:10 AM

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mabuse

Quote from: T. D. on July 06, 2021, 06:38:23 AM
Sorry if slightly OT, but here's a funny jazz story (emphasis and [...] added):

...But there was one Blue Note Pete La Roca album, Basra. Steve Kuhn [the pianist on Basra] is a wonderful pianist who played with Pete in John Coltrane's tremendous band with Steve Davis on bass. I saw that quartet often at the Jazz Gallery. Eventually Steve, Pete and I played a lot together and made a few records. Three Waves was Kuhn's trio date, while Art Farmer's Sing Me Softly of the Blues has a wonderful rendition of the Carla Bley title track. But the record most people know today is Basra.
...
"One of the tunes on Basra was 'Lazy Afternoon,' a tender ballad. We were in full flight, mid-take, with our eyes closed, when Kuhn reached inside the piano to pluck a chord. There were immediate loud and abrupt noises over the P.A. Rudy [legendary recording engineer Rudy Van Gelder] came running out to the room in the middle of the take and angrily told Kuhn, 'If you touch those strings again, this date is over.' We were all sitting there pinned to our seats with our eyes bugged out.

...

https://jazztimes.com/features/columns/steve-swallow-pete-la-roca/

Great story. Thanks, T.D.
I remember also once a jazz connoisseur told some stuff about how Alfred Lion was not really a nice person... (I forgot the details)
The guys weren't as progressive as we might imagine.

Anyway, I love this album, Basra.
And Sing Me Softly of the Blues is my favorite Art Farmer's album.

torut

Quote from: T. D. on July 06, 2021, 06:38:23 AM
Sorry if slightly OT, but here's a funny jazz story (emphasis and [...] added):

...But there was one Blue Note Pete La Roca album, Basra. Steve Kuhn [the pianist on Basra] is a wonderful pianist who played with Pete in John Coltrane's tremendous band with Steve Davis on bass. I saw that quartet often at the Jazz Gallery. Eventually Steve, Pete and I played a lot together and made a few records. Three Waves was Kuhn's trio date, while Art Farmer's Sing Me Softly of the Blues has a wonderful rendition of the Carla Bley title track. But the record most people know today is Basra.
...
"One of the tunes on Basra was 'Lazy Afternoon,' a tender ballad. We were in full flight, mid-take, with our eyes closed, when Kuhn reached inside the piano to pluck a chord. There were immediate loud and abrupt noises over the P.A. Rudy [legendary recording engineer Rudy Van Gelder] came running out to the room in the middle of the take and angrily told Kuhn, 'If you touch those strings again, this date is over.' We were all sitting there pinned to our seats with our eyes bugged out.

...

https://jazztimes.com/features/columns/steve-swallow-pete-la-roca/

That is an interesting story. I read that Burton Greene was the first jazz pianist who directly played the piano strings on record (probably around 1966), adapting the idea of Henry Cowell. He called it piano harp. He also played prepared piano with golf balls and other objects. If Rudy Van Gelder allowed it, Kuhn might have been the first jazz pianist to record inside the piano.

Mandryka



https://thebifemarchive.bandcamp.com/album/the-history-of-photography-in-sound-2018bifem-live

At last! Finnissy's History of Photography in excellent sound. Live performance by Mark Knoop. Confirms my intuition that this cycle is a masterpiece - but it's hard to tell from the sound on Ian Pace's recording. Even the free bandcamp stream is better sounding than the Pace.

The biggest revelation for me is how much fire there is in the music, it's passionate! Every bit as passionate as English Country Tunes.

There's a fourth Finnissy large piano cycle called Folklore, but as far as I know only the first two pieces have been recorded. Does anyone know if Folklore III and IV are anywhere to be heard?
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

T. D.

Google reveals Vimeo videos of Folklore 3 and 4 by a Jacob Rhodebeck from 2008.

This recording is from my Final Doctoral Recital at the Staller Center Recital Hall at Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY on December 9, 2008.

https://vimeo.com/19242184
https://vimeo.com/19260417

See also, for instance

https://www.facebook.com/spectrumNYC/posts/congratulations-to-pianist-jacob-rhodebeck-for-his-superb-perfoemance-of-michael/947296422043057/

http://www.jacobrhodebeck.com/repertoire.html

Mandryka

Quote from: T. D. on February 24, 2022, 04:06:16 PM
Google reveals Vimeo videos of Folklore 3 and 4 by a Jacob Rhodebeck from 2008.

This recording is from my Final Doctoral Recital at the Staller Center Recital Hall at Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY on December 9, 2008.

https://vimeo.com/19242184
https://vimeo.com/19260417

See also, for instance

https://www.facebook.com/spectrumNYC/posts/congratulations-to-pianist-jacob-rhodebeck-for-his-superb-perfoemance-of-michael/947296422043057/

http://www.jacobrhodebeck.com/repertoire.html

Very good, thank you. Discussion of the cycle here

https://www.jstor.org/stable/3878893
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

T. D.

Mr. Rhodebeck's website states he's in the process of recording the complete cycle, but I couldn't find independent verification. Something to watch for.

Mandryka



Listening to Ivan Fidele's Etudes - Boreale and Australe. Very good recording by Pascale Berthelot. Some info here, I do not think the music has been produced with chance operations, despite the provocative title!

https://www.ecmrecords.com/shop/1569501624

The music is very accessible - like, anyone who can enjoy Webern, let's say, should find this a rewarding cd to explore.

I've not explored Fidele's music much - he's been Arditi-fied - I expect he's a pretty solid composer in the old time classical music composer vein (i.e. proper scores, usual instruments, performers seated politely.)
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

Mandryka



https://tamrikokordzaia.bandcamp.com/album/sieben-sonnengesichter-klaus-lang

This is meditative music, sweet, harmonious and introspective, people who know other things by Klaus Lang will know what to expect. Sweet isn't quite the right word -- it's not like a box of chocolates, there's enough going on there rhythmically and harmonically to keep it interesting.  It can, for me, really touch the spot. From what I know of their tastes, TD may well like it, and milk. I certainly like it.

(NB there are sound problems on Spotify.)

There is, by the way, quite a bit of Klaus Lang's music on bandcamp, I didn't know

https://klauslang.bandcamp.com/
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

Mandryka

Quote from: Mandryka on May 03, 2021, 08:27:57 AM


This CD features quite a long and exploratory piece of music called Beginners Mind, I have to say that it's one of the more interesting examples of piano music I've ever heard, a systematic exploration of a range of styles. Ian Pace is in fine fettle for it, and well recorded too. Zimmermann is, I think, a good composer - in a Howard Skempton/Laurence Crane sort of way.

Booklet here

https://d2ajug1vehh95s.cloudfront.net/92057booklet.pdf
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

Mandryka

Gertrud Schneider and Thomas Bächli play quartertone duets. Just a wonderful little album of gorgeous rarities, words fail me for once, jaw has dropped to the floor, all the music simple and accessible and appealing. You'll find it streaming everywhere

Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

Mandryka

Quote from: Mandryka on March 03, 2021, 12:09:26 AM
https://www.youtube.com/v/_Ncfn1_UkIQ

Christopher Fox's More Things in the Air than are Visible part iii is for piano and various ambient nocturnal sounds including woofing dog, and tweety and hooty birds. 

Rather nice.

Back to this, the movement with dogs and birds is like a modern sounding Bartok nocturne - really cool music actually, worth a try even for those who wouldn't normally touch anything avant garde with a barge pole.
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

Mandryka

Howard Skempton's Humming Song

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=icOkDh1Ca2s&ab_channel=Tulkinnanvaraista

The idea is that there is no development, we are left to experience each sound in isolation rather than in a sequence of pitches. It does seem similar to the interview chords in Act 2 of Billy Budd, which starts at about 2:50 here

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBRYQj9wfSI&ab_channel=BenjaminBritten-Topic

which in turn always makes me think of the second movement, the serenade, of Shostakovich's 15th quartet

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CFVM2WSEcKs&ab_channel=pastrychef1985

Skempton's Recessional, which is for any keyboard apparently, but I can only find organ, is kind of in the same style

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x0yw...l=CarsonCooman
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

Mandryka

https://open.spotify.com/album/2EYM5AoY8sjJZQxxzZdI6i?highlight=spotify:track:2fXkXebTeu7wEkOkHqqAxL

John McGuire's 48 Variations for two pianos -- played by Deborah Richards and Herbert Henk

This music has been taken up by Mark Knoop, and his performance is hearable here

https://auditoridigital.cat/video/sampler-48-variations-for-two-pianos/

Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

Mandryka

The preface to Finnissy's Folklore

PREFACE


Folklore. Gramsci's imperative to compile an inventory of the 'infinity of traces' that historical processes leave on 'the self'. Folklore—a distant memory, an assemblage, a critical elaboration, an opposition of conjunctions, an open-ended investigation, a palimpsest, a self-portrait.


Folklore. Inherent attitudes. Pretension—the piano (a 'respectable' Victorian mantleshelf, spineless and domesticated)—Grieg (from childhood), another vision of Arcadia (cowherds, and peasants dancing); Grieg's influence on Percy Grainger (dismissed by some as a wayward amateur dishing up folk-tunes for the parlour), Grieg's harmonic innovations (impact on Debussy); John Cage (... Grieg was more interesting than the others ...). What else do I remember?


Folklore. England: insular and conservative, institutionalized de-spiritualized, tawdry and corrupt. Transforming 'angry young men' into embittered, cynical `couch-potatoes'. Rendering artists impotent through mockery and stereotyping (what is there to be afraid of ?). Politics: Capitalism. A free country in which censorship is universally rife. Hypocrisy. Bigotry. The cheap laugh. Cardew, Orton, Jarman. `Deep (Tippett) River'. Heads fall and are swept under the carpet. Nothing behind the eyes. Imperialism is served.


Folklore. Travel broadens the mind. (Food broadens the stomach). White men belittle Aboriginals (a member of the music-faculty at Melbourne Uni. asked why I was interested in `primitive trash'. Do I declare an interest in 'symbols of oppression'?) Power. The Archaeology of Knowledge. Levi-Strauss, Foucault. Diversity—or the world-culture (e.g. modernism)? Folklore. Untidy—insufficiently selective. Art/ editing/Experience (skill, in itself, potentially obscures icon/essence). A simulacrum. Evocation becomes Provocation.

Michael Finnissy
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Mandryka


From Geofffrey Douglas Madge's recording of George Flynn's Derus Simples

QuoteContinuants exist at times and change from time to time. Xis a temporary part of Y if X is at some time part of Y and at some time (when Y exists) not part of Y. Parts without temporary parts are moments. X coincides with Y if X is at one or more times identical to Y. (Notes and melodies often coincide; superposed notes never coincide.) Moments of X coincide with X. A temporary part of X does not coincide with any part of some moment of X. Parts without parts are simples. All simples are parts of moments. Not all moments of parts are simples.

X is a regular continuant if every moment of part of X is part of a moment of X. (Every part of X coincides with part of each of one or more moments of X.)

Memories and their objects are regular continuants.

The times of parts of a moment of an object of memory need not be identical. The times of contiguous moments of an object of memory need not be contiguous.

 A moment of a memory part is a rich moment if its object has temporary parts. (The object of a rich moment coincides with more than one moment.) Every moment of a rich memory is a rich moment. Objects of brief rich memories coincide with symphonies, yesterday, vacations, April, and other continuants of extended duration. Rich memories of words are thoughts.

Not every part of the object of a rich memory Z is the object of part of Z. No temporary part of the object of a momentary part of Z is the object of part of Z. No momentary part of the object of Z is the object of part of Z. No part of a rich memory is isomorphic to its object.

Non-temporary parts of the object of Z are objects of parts of Z.

The simples of a rich moment are rich [or Derus] simples. A rich simple is a qualification of its object. The qualification of this changing to that has this-changing-to-that-ness as a qual-ity. Some qualities can only be qualities of parts of rich memories (e.g. getting-redder-ness). Some relations can only relate parts of rich memories (e.g. getting getting-redder-ness-er than).

— Kenneth Derus: Memories and their Objects

Kenneth Derus (b. 1948) is a former director of the Center for Combinatorial Mathematics and the dedicatee of George Flynn's American Icon and Kaikhosru Sorabji's Opus secretum. He has written about music for Tempo and The New Grove (among others) but is mainly concerned with the mereotopology of memory experience.
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Florestan

Quote from: Mandryka on December 15, 2022, 11:15:56 AMThe preface to Finnissy's Folklore

QuoteFrom Geofffrey Douglas Madge's recording of George Flynn's Derus Simples

I hope their music sounds better than their mumbo-jumbo.  ;D

"Art is no excuse for boring people." - Jules Renard

"Melody is the essence of music." - Mozart

Mandryka

Quote from: Florestan on December 29, 2022, 03:39:22 AMI hope their music sounds better than their mumbo-jumbo.  ;D



Here's some more -- I forgot to post George Flynn's essay

QuoteDERUS SIMPLES is a continuous work whose gestures, shape and character result from expansions of simple sounds or ideas — "simples" — into complexities that frequently revert back to their simple origins.

The prevailing simple in this work is the tritone (usually F-B, near the center of the keyboard). Derus Simples begins and ends with this tritone. However developed, its presence throughout the piece ought generally to be clear.

The first part of Derus Simples expands on the tritone in an easily heard manner: the simple dyad accumulates notes in a variety of attack and decay modes while registrally expanding to the keyboard's lowest and highest B's. The following part [tr 2] develops arpeggiated and single-strike aggregates, with the arpeggiations expanding into fluid passages [tr 3] and the aggre-gates articulating their own "chorale" (however interrupted by the fluid passages), both of which, in turn, eventually prepare [tr 4] for the work's central, contrapuntal, section.

The contrapuntal section starts five times [Trs 5 - 9], with each start (except the second) leading to a progressively more elaborate and obviously more demanding development. The final develop-ment of this section at first dissipates (starting at Tr 10) to a momentary, quiet contemplation of material surrounding the cen-tral F-B tritone, and later to a progressively more frenzied approach to three "curtains" of sound [Trs 11 - 13] that prepare for the final section of Derus Simples. Each curtain consists of the same vast arpeggiation, low to high, followed by a version of the previously heard material.

The final section [tr 14] presents much of the work's original material but in reverse order, with interpolations from the contra-puntal section and sudden "mini" elaborations here and there (Tr 15 for example). The opening arpeggiations are recalled [tr 16], as is the central contrapuntal section [tr 17], while the original tri-tone becomes progressively more isolated as the end approaches, until it stands alone.

Derus Simples was commissioned by the philosopher Kenneth Derus as a way of celebrating the centenary of the composer Kaikhosru Sorabji (1892-1988). Its title acknowledges ideas pre-sented by Kenneth Derus in discussing Sorabji's music: in particu-lar his suggestion that we appreciate melodies, not notes, as basic elements ("simples") when we listen to and remember Sorabji's music. This notion of things being "simples" (basic elements with no parts) in certain worlds, but obviously structures (full of parts) in other worlds, galvanized my thinking while composing Derus Simples. (A definition of "Derus simple," as the term is used in philosophy, appears elsewhere in this booklet.) - GEORGE FLYNN
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Florestan

Quote from: Mandryka on December 29, 2022, 03:44:09 AMHere's some more -- I forgot to post George Flynn's essay


This is a cut above the other two, actually.  ;)
"Art is no excuse for boring people." - Jules Renard

"Melody is the essence of music." - Mozart

Mandryka

https://www.rodoni.ch/busoni/novitacd/finnissy.html

Programme note on Finnissy's Kapitalistische Realisme (mit Sizilianische Männerakte und Bachsche Nachdichtungen) from History of Photography by Kenneth Derus
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

Mandryka





Ross Bolleter's Secret Sandhills is a work for six ruined pianos. I know you probably won't believe me -- but this is a serious piece of music and well worth seeking out.  This is possibly a "great" album of piano music.  Bolleter's written a book about music which I'd like to see, The Well Weathered Piano -- how drole!


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