Brian Wilson Reimagines Gershwin
Features 12 ReImagined Classics & 2 New Collaborations
1. Rhapsody in Blue (Intro)
2. The Like In I Love You
3. Summertime/ I Loves You Porgy/ I Got Plenty O’Nuttin’/ It Ain’t Necessarily So
4. ‘S Wonderful
5. They Can’t Take That Away From Me
6. Love Is Here To Stay
7. I’ve Got a Crush On You
8. I Got Rhythm
9. Someone To Watch Over Me
10. Nothing But Love
11. Rhapsody In Blue (Reprise)
I almost passed this one up. As much as I love the Beach Boys and especially Pet Sounds, I just couldn’t get into either of the Smile albums. Reimagines is something completely different though. There have been a lot of rock musicians cashing in on the “Great American Songbook”. Rod Stewart has been really popular with his albums in the genre, but what Brian Wilson has done is simply not the same. Just as the name says, Wilson has re-imagined classic Gershwin songs in a way that are simply brilliant, fun, and a little crazy.
If you can imagine the Beach Boys singing “You Can’t Take That Away From Me” in a completely surfing music sound, then you might have a little bit of an idea of how this music sounds. It simply makes me smile and even laugh. It leaves me feeling straight-up joyful. I know it’s hard to imagine Wilson without that hint of melancholy that has been in him at least as far back as Pet Sounds, but Wilson’s take on Gershwin is pure sincerity and pure joy.
It all starts on side one with a cappella version of “Rhapsody in Blue,” which slips it way in and out of the album. Then there is his take on “I’ve Got Rhythm”, which truly sounds like an old Beach Boy song. Wilson creates two new songs from unfinished Gershwin pieces. As far as I know, these are the first posthumous co-writing credits for the Gershwin Brothers.
Very Highly Recommended!!!
LANG LANG LIVE IN VIENNA
Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
Piano Sonata No. 3 in C Major, Op. 2
1. Allegro con brio
3. Scherzo (Allegro)
4. Allegro assai
Piano Sonata No. 23 in F minor “Appassionata”, Op. 57
5. Allegro Assai
6. Andante con moto
7. Allegro ma non troppo
Isaac Albéniz (1860-1909)
Iberia Book 1
9. El Puerto
10. Fete-Dieu A Seville
Sergei Prokofiev (1891-1953)
Piano Sonata No. 7 in B-flat Major, Op. 83
11. Allegro inquieto
12. Andante caloroso
Frederic Chopin (1810-1849)
14. Etude, Op. 25, No. 1 in A flat Major
15. Polonaise No. 6 in A flat Major, Op. 53 “Heroic”
16. “Grande Valse Brillante” Nr. 2 Op. 34, No. 1 in A-flat Major
Now let’s really change musical moods and listen to an incredible solo piano album. It was recorded in Vienna’s legendary Musikverein concert hall, and the pianist is the renowned Lang Lang. In 2009, Time Magazine included him on their list of the 100 Most Influential People in the world. Steinway has created five versions of the “Lang Lang Steinway” and this is the first time in its 150 year history that Steinway has ever used an artist’s name to produce pianos. To top it off, the New York Times called him the “Hottest artist on the classical music planet.”
Every other recording I have heard by Lang Lang have been a little too spectacular, lacking the soul of the music he is playing, but with this album I have found a Lang Lang album I will keep.
True enough, he still gets carried away with his own technical ability at times in this performance, but I have to admit that overall I find it quite moving. There are times when I’m in certain moods that I love solo classical piano music and this is the first album by Lang Lang that I will reach for when I’m in one of those moods.
Music From The Motion Picture “GLADIATOR”
Audiophile 180g, 45rpm Vinyl
Gatefold, Full Color Jacket
Pressed by The Pallas Group, Germany
Mastered by Bernie Grundman from Original Masters
The Lyndhurst Orchestra
Gavin Greenaway, conductor
Lisa Gerrard, vocals
All Music written by Hans Zimmer, except:
* Written by Lisa Gerrard
** Written by Hans Zimmer, Lisa Gerrard and Klaus Badelt
+ Written by Lisa Gerrard and Klaus Badelt
++ Written by Hans Zimmer and Djivan Gasparyan
This release from ORG is the first 45rpm vinyl version of this recording. You may or may not like the music. I enjoy it every now and then, but the reason for owning this LP is for showing off your stereo, if it’s up to it, that is. The scale, the bass, the slam, and the dynamics are just unbelievable.
I compared it directly to my SACD and the vinyl just did everything better. If you like the music or you want a great demo disc, this LP will not disappoint.
John Antill (1904-1986)
The London Symphony Orchestra
Sir Eugene Goossens, conductor
Corroboree-Suite from the Ballet
Ginastera: Panambi-Suite from the Ballet
At the California Audio Show, Kara Chaffee, chief engineer of deHavilland Audio, was playing an old seven-inch reel tape of this album. Of course, my reason for being in the room was to hear their new tape-head preamp, but what I came away with was another album I had to find on vinyl since I don’t have a reel-to-reel player and don’t see one in my future. One of the best things about audio shows is discovering new music.
Corroboree is an Australian Aboriginal dance. In 1947, Sir Eugene Goossens gave the world its first performance of John Antill’s composition that documents this dance. Then, in 1960 Everest recorded Goossens and the LSO playing it on 35mm magnetic film. Classic Records meticulously cut this Lp from the original 3-track masters on their Quiex SV-P 200g vinyl. The recording, the performance, and most of all the music is simply magnificent.
If you like big, bold orchestral music, then don’t miss out on this performance and recording, they are both world class, and the music is so powerful that it may just blow you away. By the way the cover is pretty cool, too.
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