Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Monday, March 30, 2015

John Ogdon Plays Henri Dutilleux, Florent Schmitt & Paul Dukas

Henri Dutilleux's Piano Sonata has received innumerable recordings ; John Ogdon's classic recording from 1972 is one of the best. This is a majestic work, and under Ogdon's hands its subtly jazz-influenced rhythms and sparkling textures receive a particularly sublime and contemplative reading. Florent Schmitt's Deux Mirages is an exceptional little-known work from 1920. Schmitt surely had Debussy in mind, as these pieces use whole-tone scales, a device much in keeping with the composer's work. Ogdon shines in these radiant performances and his ability to capture the tonal shifts, from somber to ecstatic, in "Et Pan" is remarkable.
The second Mirage, "La Tragique Chevauchée" is a forceful and harrowing work, as demonstrated by its fierce dotted rhythms and unrelenting drive. Paul Dukas's Piano Sonata is a singular achievement from an enigmatic composer who lived a long life but left behind only a few compositions. Fusing a blend of romantic impetuosity with classical restraint, this work is rightly regarded as a masterpiece of French music. With his substantial technique, John Ogdon was ideally suited to works of great magnitude, and in this blazing, classic recording we find the perfect marriage of piece and performance.

Source : http://www.arkivmusic.com/classical/album.jsp?album_id=18560&album_group=14

John Ogdon
Henri Dutilleux
Florent Schmitt
Paul Dukas


Henri Dutilleux

Piano Sonata
1 I. Allegro con moto  8:31
2 II. Lied — assez lent  6:11
3 III. Choral et Variations  11:04

Florent Schmitt

Deux Mirages
4 N° 1. Et Pan, au fond des blés lunaires, s'accouda  5:39
5 N° 2. Le Tragique Chevauchée  5:58

Paul Dukas

Piano Sonata in E-Flat minor*
6 Modérément vite  10:10
7 Calme — Un peu lent — Très soutenu  9:57
8 Vivement, avec légèreté  8:51
9 Très lent — Animé  12:24


John Ogdon - p

Recorded at N° 1 Studio, Abbey Road, London ; June* & July, 1972

Sunday, March 29, 2015

André Previn's Touch

André Previn was, at sixteen, already a piano prodigy. Born in Berlin in 1929, he moved to Los Angeles with his family at the end of 1938. He came to jazz from traditional music, but never turned his back on his origins, maintaining a vigorous discipline in both musical fields, and brilliantly diverse in his musical talents.
Since he first walked through the gates of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in 1945 as a music department employee at the age of 17, André Previn, kept one foot firmly planted in the two worlds of which he was a citizen—the Hollywood celluloid cosmos that earned him security, prestige and Academy Award recognition through his work as an M-G-M music director, and the jazz scene, in which he found leave-of-absence enjoyment with a combo in a club. His jazz style was out of King Cole, with touches of Art Tatum.
On these recordings, made in 1955 and 1956 with some close friends, he displayed all his personal qualities, ease and technical skill over a variety of moods and tempos, in an atmosphere of relaxation. It’s subtle — and the Touch is unmistakeably Previn.

Source : http://www.freshsoundrecords.com/previns_touch_2_lps_on_1_cd-cd-5286.html

André Previn
Previn's Touch
(2 Lps On 1 Cd)


1 Let’s Get Away From It All (Dennis, Adair)  2:42
2 Moonlight In Vermont (Blackburn, Suessdorf)  3:19
3 It Happened In Sun Valley (Warren, Gordon)  3:07
4 Serenade to Sweden (Ellington)  3:15
5 Island In The West Indies (Duke, Gershwin)  3:26
6 Flying Down To Rio (Youmans, Kahn, Eliscu)  2:31
7 Honolulu (Warren, Kahn)  2:50
8 How Are Things in Glocca Morra ? (Lane, Harburg)  3:44
9 On A Slow Boat To China (Loesser)  3:20
10 London In July (Duke, Cahn)  3:25
11 San Francisco (Kaper, Kahn, Jurmann)  2:57
12 Sidewalks Of Cuba (Oakland, Parish, Mills)  2:24
13 Reprise : Let’s Get Away From It All (Dennis, Adair)  2:40
14 Moonlight Becomes You (VanHeusen, Burke)  3:23
15 It’s Easy To Remember (Rodgers, Hart)  3:07
16 Invitation (Kaper)  3:45
17 Let’s Fall In Love (Arlen, Koehler)  2:53
18 I Fall In Love Too Easily (Styne, Cahn)  3:04
19 Too Late Now (Laner, Lerner)  3:29
20 Laura (Raskin, Mercer)  4:09
21 You Are Too Beautiful (Rodgers, Hart)  3:18
22 It Could Happen To You (VanHeusen, Burke)  3:01
23 When You Wish Upon A Star (Harline, Washington)  2:04
24 My Foolish Heart (Young, Washington)  2:10
25 But Beautiful (VanHeusen, Burke)  3:13


[# 1-13] from "Let's Get Away from It All !" (Decca DL 8131).

André Previn - p
Al Hendrickson - g
Red Mitchell - b
Irv Cottler - dr
Recorded in Hollywood, California ; April 11 [# 1, 3, 8, 9 & 13] ; 13 [# 5, 6, 10 & 11] ; & 18 [# 2, 4, 7 & 12], 1955
[# 14-25] from "Hollywood At Midnight" (Decca DL 8341).
André Previn - p
Al Hendrickson - g
Carson Smith - b
Shelly Manne - dr
Recorded in Hollywood, California ; March 28 [# 16-19, 22 & 25] ; & 30 [# 14, 15, 20, 21, 23, 24], 1956

Pete Jolly Trio - Little Bird

This LP reissue of a release from the obsolete Ava label brings back a hit record. Pianist Pete Jolly, his trio (with bassist Chuck Berghofer and drummer Larry Bunker) and guests (guitarist Howard Roberts and percussionist Kenny Hume) play mostly standards, but it is Jolly's version of the catchy "Little Bird" that caught on. This is a fine all-around straight-ahead session (highlighted by "Never Never Land," "Spring Can Really Hang You Up the Most" and "Falling in Love With Love") that deserves to be reissued on CD eventually.
Scott Yanow

Source : http://www.allmusic.com/album/little-bird-mw0000866942

Pete Jolly
Little Bird


1 Little Bird (Grove, Jolly, Wolf)  2:22
2 Three Four Five (Jolly)  2:42
3 Never Never Land (Styne, Comden, Green)  6:33
4 Alone Together (Dietz, Schwartz)  8:01
5 To Kill a Mockingbird (Bernstein, David)  2:30
6 Spring Can Really Hang You Up the Most (Landsman, Wolf)  2:59
7 My Favorite Things (Hammerstein, Rofgers)  4:22
8 Toot, Toot, Tootsie (Erdman, Kahn, Russo, Fiorito)  5:10
9 Falling in Love with Love (Rodgers, Hart)  2:26


Pete Jolly - p
Chuck Berghofer - b
Larry Bunker - dr
Howard Roberts - g
Kenny Hume - perc

Recorded at Conway Recording Studios, Hollywood, California ; November, 1962 & January, 1963

Howard Roberts - Jaunty-Jolly ! & Guilty !!

The Sixties were perhaps the golden era for Hollywood studio musicians. In addition to the music produced for the television and film industry, the L.A. scene was burgeoning with popular musical groups. The record business was in the firm grip of a rock revolution inspired largely by the Beatles and scores of hopeful rock bands got record deals. It's even been rumored that many of the more traditional recording artists, who were rapidly becoming anachronisms, lost record contracts merely because of the vast amount of vinyl needed to accommodate the new era's rock acts. Because of this change a curious thing happened that created some strange bedfellows: a number of jazz artists began working as session players. It's no secret that many of the popular rock groups of the time were ghosted on vinyl by studio musicians. Once again, it was a matter of economics. Most jazzers could read charts well, were by definition inventive, and could nail an arrangement quickly. Studio time was expensive and using experienced players was simply cost effective. Howard Roberts was one of those jazz artists who found an abundance of work in the studios. He began playing professionally at age 13 in Phoenix and was working with Art Farmer by age 16. He was 20 in 1950, when he arrived in Los Angeles and began playing jam sessions and after-hours clubs. Shortly after that he was gigging with the Bobby Troup Quartet where he developed a chordal style of playing that helped spark a trend in which small groups used the guitar in lieu of a piano. By the late Fifties, he was one of the most sought-after players in town. He was open-minded and imaginative and his influence on the music scene was profound. He lent his instantly recognizable, bluesy though sophisticated style to countless pop records and was averaging 3000 sides a year covering dates from Elvis to the Electric Prunes. A cover story in the guitarist's bible Guitar Player Magazine called him a renaissance man - a sideman, soloist, educator and innovator. Fortunately, in the Mid-Sixties Howard got the call to record as a leader. That wise move by Capitol Records yielded a series of marvelous albums with jazzy treatments of some the era's most popular tunes. What you're holding now are two of the best examples. Jaunty-Jolly ! and Guilty !! were recorded in 1967 with Howard fronting such other Hollywood heavies as keyboardists Dave Grusin and Victor Feldman, drummer Shelley Manne, bassist Chuck Bergofer and fellow guitar aces Al Hendrickson, Bill Pitman and Jack Marshall...
Jim Carlon
From the booklet

Source : http://www.jimcarlton.com/liner%20notes.htm

Howard Roberts
Jaunty-Jolly !


1. I Will Wait For You (Legrand, Gimbel)  2:24
2. So Nice (Valle, Valle)  2:41
3. Winchester Cathedral (Stephens)  1:52
4. Sing No Blues (Grusin)  3:58
5. Theme From "The Sand Pebbles" (Bricusse, Goldsmith)  2:28
6. A Man And A Woman (Barouh, Lai, Keller)  2:17
7. Music To Watch Girls By (Ramin)  2:21
8. All (Jessel, Grudeff, Fidenco, Oliviero)  2:29
9. If She Walked Into My Life (Herman)  3:12
10. The Face I Love (Valle, Gilbert)  2:13
11. Mercy, Mercy, Mercy (Zawinul)  2:54
12. Watch What Happens (Legrand, Gimbel)  2:03
13. Ode To Billie Joe (Gentry)  2:18
14. Triste (Jobim)  2:05
15. Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You (Crewe, Gaudio)  2:16
16. Look Of Love (Light, Drake, Davies)  2:50
17. Yellow Days (Carrillo, Bernstein)  2:19
18. Walk Tall (Zwanuli, Marrow, Rein)  2:18
19. You And I (Lyra, De Moraes)  1:59
20. O Barquinho (Manescal, Boscoli)  2:23
21. Wait Until Dark (Mancini, Livingston, Evans)  2:51
22. Up, Up and Away (Webb)  2:29


[# 1-11]
Howard Roberts - g
Dave Grusin - p
Shelley Manne - dr
Chuck Bergofer - b & Fender b
Larry Bunker, Emil Richards - dr
Bill Pitman - g
Recorded in Hollywood, California ; February 21 & 28, 1967 & March 7, 1967
[# 12-22]
Howard Roberts - g
Dave Grusin - org
Chuck Berghofer - b
Al Hendrickson, Jack Marshall - g
John Guerin - dr
Paulo Fernando de Magalhaes, Larry Bunker - dr & perc
Claudio Miranda - perc & voc
Vic Feldman - el p & perc
Recorded in Hollywood, California ; September 21 & 22, 1967 

See the complete artwork

Toshiko Akiyoshi and her International Jazz Sextet

This very obscure record is not the first date as a leader by Toshiko Akiyoshi, but it is a gem worth acquiring. The pianist is joined by an all-star group that includes either cornetist Nat Adderley or trumpeter Doc Severinson, clarinetist/alto saxophonist Rolf Kuhn, flutist/tenor saxophonist/baritone saxophonist Bobby Jaspar, guitarist René Thomas, bassist John Drew, and drummer Bert Dahlander. There's a feeling of camaraderie as a mixture of head arrangements ("Broadway") and written charts ("Strike Up the Band") of standards, as well as original material by the participants (Jaspar's tasty "Sukiyaki" and the leader's "United Notions"), unfold before the listener. The record begins on a slightly campy note as each musician, following the leader's example, introduces himself in his native language.
Ken Dryden

Source : http://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:jxfuxq8gld6e

 Toshiko Akiyoshi
and her
International Jazz Sextet
United Notions


1 I Cried for You (Arnheim, Lyman, Freed)  3:34
2 Introduction  0:31
3 Broadway (Bird, McRae, Woode)  6:48
4 Sukiyaki (Jaspar)  6:30
5 Swingin' Till the Girls Come Home (Pettiford)  6:50
6 United Notions (Akiyoshi)  6:19
7 Civilized Folk (Freedman)  4:15
8 Strike up the Band (Gershwin, Gershwin)  4:24
9 Jane (Freedman)  4:16


Toshiko Akiyoshi - p
Nat Adderley - crt
Doc Severinson - tp
Bobby Jaspar - ts, bs & fl
Rolf Kuhn - cl & as
René Thomas - g
John Drew - b
Bert Dahlander - dr

at Beltone Studios,, New York City ; June 13, 1958

Les McCann Ltd. - On Time

Les McCann’s “On Time” was the eighth album of this talented and popular jazz pianist’s leader career. Always a consummately swinging and distinctively soulful communicator, he displays the full extent of his honest preaching, warmth and creativity in a range embracing the impressionistic on the introduction to On Time, and an expansive chordal approach on It Could Happen to You. In the pieces here, including four excellent originals by the group’s members, he is engagingly melodic over the opening of Fondue, a fine vehicle for improvisation, while Jefferson’s This for Doug is a lovely piece ; and Maichen, by bassist Leroy Vinnegar, has a pretty, infectious melody, warmly embraced by McCann and the featured guest, Joe Pass, whose lucid solos are among the highlights of the album, particularly his theme statement on Yours Is My Heart Alone. Ron Jefferson and Vinnegar are ideal accompanists.


The last three tracks feature the veteran blues singer and guitarist Bumble Bee Slim (aka. Amos Easton), one of the best loved bluesmen during the ‘30s. Accompanied by the Les McCann Ltd., these were part of an album titled Back in Town !, recorded by Slim in 1962, after a long period out of the studios, and they make a nice addition to this collection.

Source : http://www.freshsoundrecords.com/les_mccann_ltd._on_time_+_bonus_tracks-cd-5821.html

Les Mccann Ltd.
On Time
(+ Bonus Tracks)


1 On Time (McCann)  4:16
2 Yours Is My Heart Alone (Lehar, Herzer, Smith, Loehner)  4:47
3 This for Doug (Jefferson)  5:36
4 Fondue (McCann)  5:11
5 Bernie’s Tune (Miller)  3:02
6 Maichen (Vinnegar)  4:34
7 It Could Happen to You (VanHeusen, Burke)  4:59
8 You’re Driving Me Crazy (Donaldson)  4:58
9 So What (Davis)  3:01
10 Direct South (Easton)  3:29 (*)
11 Drifftin’ Blues (Easton)  4:27 (*)
12 Midnight Special (Scott) 2:29 (*)

(*) Bonus Tracks

[# 1-9] from the album “Les McCann Ltd.—On Time” (Pacific Jazz Stereo-56)
Les McCann - p
Joe Pass - g
Leroy Vinnegar - b
Ron Jefferson - dr
Recorded at Pacific Jazz Enterprises, Inc./ Rex Studios ; Los Angeles, May 17 [# 3, 6 & 9] ; June 22 [# 5 & 8] : & August 20 [# 1, 2 & 7], 1962
[# 10-12] from the album “Bumble Bee Slim—Back in Town !” (Pacific Jazz Stereo-54)
Same as above
Bee Slim - vcl & whstl [# 12]
Recorded at Pacific Jazz Enterprises, Inc./ Rex Studios, Los Angeles ; April 26, 1962

Toshiko's Piano

Toshiko Akiyoshi was only 23 years old when Oscar Peterson heard her during a Jazz at the Philharmonic tour of Japan in 1953 ; he immediately went raving to impresario Norman Granz to implore him to record her. So Granz produced Akiyoshi's debut as a leader on a 10" disc (released as Amazing Toshiko Akiyoshi in Japan and as Toshiko's Piano elsewhere) with the Jazz at the Philharmonic rhythm section (guitarist Herb Ellis, bassist Ray Brown, and drummer J.C. Heard). The Bud Powell influence is rather obvious during several of the tracks, as Akiyoshi slashes her way through "What Is This Thing Called Love ?," "I Want to Be Happy," the lesser-known "Shadrach," and a very brisk treatment of Johnny Hodges' "Squatty Roo." She also shows promise at more relaxed tempos, playing standards such as "Gone With the Wind" and a dreamy, somewhat impressionistic piano solo of "Laura." Rounding out the set are two originals, the lightly swinging "Toshiko's Blues" and slightly exotic "Solidado." Because it is likely that the master tapes to this session were misfiled or lost, it remained out of print until a Japanese collector provided a copy of the original disc as source material for this 24-bit Japanese CD reissue. This formidable debut was the start of a long and successful career, so Oscar Peterson deserves as much thanks as Norman Granz for introducing the jazz world at large to this phenomenal pianist, Toshiko Akiyoshi. The only thing that may cause some buyers to hesitate to purchase this disc is the relatively high price for a playing time of under 24 minutes.
Ken Dryden

Source : http://www.allmusic.com/album/toshikos-piano-mw0000501741

Toshiko Akiyoshi
Toshiko's Piano


1 What Is This Thing Called Love ? (Porter)  2:45
2 Gone With the Wind (Magidson, Wrubel)  2:33
3 I Want to Be Happy (Caesar, Youmans)  2:14
4 Toshiko's Blues (Akiyoshi)  3:44
5 Shadrach (McGimsey)  2:41
6 Solidado (Akiyoshi)  3:29
7 Squatty Roo (Hodges)  2:38
8 Laura (Mercer, Raksin)  3:27


Toshiko Akiyoshi - p
Herb Ellis - p
Ray Brown - b
J. C. Heard - dr

Recorded at Radio Tokyo Studio 2, Tokyo, Japan ; November 13 & 14, 1953

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Gabor Szabo - The Sorcerer & More Sorcery

Hungarian born guitarist and composer Gábor Szabó recorded eight records for Impulse between 1966 and 1968. Some of those albums, such as Jazz Raga and Spellbinder are masterpieces, while others, like Simpatico (with Gary McFarland) and Light My Fire (with Bob Thiele) are embarrassing exercises in self-indulgence. The pair of recordings issued on this Impulse two-fer were always meant to be together, though they were released separately; they are closer to the former category than the latter. The Sorcerer and More Sorcery contain live performances of two of Szabo's greatest quintets in concert settings: Jimmy Stewart on guitar, Lajos "Louis" Kabok on bass, either Marty Morell or Bill Goodwin on drums, and Hal Gordon on percussion. The Sorcerer was recorded between April 14-15 at the Jazz Workshop in Boston. It contains three of Szabó's best-known originals in the elliptical "Space" featuring stellar guitar interplay between Szabó and Stewart, the modal, Eastern-tinged "Mizrab," and the bluesy "Comin' Back," written with Clyde Otis. Among the other fine moments are a fingerpopping' funky read of Sonny Bono's "The Beat Goes On" and a fine straight up jazz take on Cole Porter's "What Is This Thing Called Love," with stinging work from Stewart and popping bongos from Gordon. More Sorcery contains three more cuts from the same Jazz Workshop performance including the Spanish-flavored original, "Los Matadoros," and an excellent reading of "Corcovado." The latter three tracks were cut live at the Monterey Jazz Fest and feature an innovative, blissed-out jazz cover of" Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds," and a knotty version of Szabó's "Spellbinder" with intense engagement between Stewart and the leader. All told, this two-fer revises history — a bit — and accounts for one of the best live recordings in his career.
Thom Jurek

Source : http://www.allmusic.com/album/the-sorcerermore-sorcery-r2219164/review

Gábor Szabó
The Sorcerer
More Sorcery


1 The Beat Goes On (Bono)  4:53
2 Little Boat (O Barquinho) (Boscoli, Menescal)  4:23
3 Lou-Ise (Stewart)  4:17
4 What Is This Thing Called Love ? (Porter)  5:16
5 Space (Szabo)  6:39
6 Stronger Than Us (Arough, Lai)  4:13
7 Mizrab (Szabo)  6:58
8 Comin' Back (Otis, Szabo)  1:55
9 Los Matodoros (Szabo)  12:09
10 People (Merrill, Styne)  5:18
11 Corcovado (Quiet Nights) (Jobim)  3:23
12 Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds (Lennon, McCartney)  9:44
13 Spellbinder (Szabo)  6:53
14 Comin' Back (Otis, Szabo)  4:54

[# 1-8]
Gábor Szabó - g
Jimmy Stewart - g
Lajos "Louis" Kabok - b
Marty Morell - dr
Hal Gordon - perc
Recorded live at the Jazz Workshop, Boston ; April 14-15, 1967
[# 9-14]
Same as above, except Bill Goodwin - dr, replaces Morell [# 12-14]
Recorded same place [# 9-11] ; & Monterey Jazz Festival, Monterey, California ; September 17, 1967.

Milt Jackson & Wes Montgomery - Bags Meets Wes

Milt Jackson was 38 when, in December 1961, he co-led this superb hard-bop date with the distinctive guitarist Wes Montgomery. A jazzman who was as opinionated as he was gifted, Jackson wouldn't hesitate to tell you exactly what he thought of a musician -- so when he praised Montgomery, you knew his praise was genuine. Not surprisingly, the boppers prove to be quite compatible on Bags Meets Wes, which finds them co-leading an all star-quintet that also includes pianist Wynton Kelly, bassist Sam Jones, and drummer Philly Joe Jones (who shouldn't be confused with swing drummer Jo Jones). Although Jackson and Montgomery prove what lyrical ballad players they could be on the standard "Stairway to the Stars," ballads aren't a high priority on this album. Instead, the improvisers put more of their energy into the blues -- and the 12-bar format serves them well on "Sam Sack," "Blue Roz," and "S.K.J." Equally strong are hard-swinging versions of Montgomery's "Jingles" and Benny Golson's "Stablemates." Originally released on LP by Riverside in the early 1960s, Bags Meets Wes has been reissued several times over the years. When Fantasy reissued it on CD for the Original Jazz Classics (OJC) series, the label added alternate takes of "Jingles," "Stairway to the Stars," and "Delilah"...
Alex Henderson

Source : http://www.allmusic.com/album/bags-meets-wes-r141274

Milt Jackson
Wes Montgomery
Bags Meets Wes !
(Japanese 20 bit K2 super coding)


1 S.K.J. (Jackson)  5:17
2 Stablemates (Golson)  5:48
3 Stairway to the Stars [Take 3] (Malneck, Parish, Signorelli)  3:38
4 Blue Roz (Montgomery)  4:47
5 Sam Sack (Jackson)  6:06
6 Jingles [Take 9] (Montgomery)  6:56
7 Delilah [take 4] (Young)  6:13
8 Stairway to the Stars [take 2] (Malneck, Parish, Signorelli)  3:46
9 Jingles [take 8] (Montgomery)  6:52
10 Delilah [take 3] (Young)  6:18


Milt Jackson - vb
Wes Montgomery - g
Wynton Kelly - p
Sam Jones - b
Philly Joe Jones - dr

Recorded at Plaza Sound Studios, New York City ; December 18 [# 2-4, 6, 8-9] ; & 19 [other selections], 1961.

Sonny Stitt Plays Bird

Sonny Stitt forged his own approach to playing bebop out of the sound and style of Charlie Parker, so this tribute album was a very logical project. With fine support from guitarist Jim Hall, pianist John Lewis, bassist Richard Davis and drummer Connie Kay, Stitt performs ten Charlie Parker compositions, plus Jay McShann's "Hootie Blues"; these renditions of "Now's the Time" and "Yardbird Suite" were previously unreleased. Stitt, who mastered bebop and could play hot licks in his sleep, is in top form on such numbers as "Constellation," "Confirmation" and "Ko-Ko," making this an essential item for straight-ahead jazz fans (although the prolific altoist would record eight other albums in 1963 alone). [Originally released in 1963 Stitt Plays Bird was reissued on CD in 2006 and contains bonus tracks.]
Scott Yanow

 Source : http://www.allmusic.com/album/stitt-plays-bird-mw0000195617

Sonny Stitt
Stitt Plays Bird


 1 Now's the Time (Parker)  3:18
2 My Little Suede Shoes (Parker)  3:04
3 Parker's Mood (Parker)  4:19
4 Constellation (Parker)  3:16
5 Au Privave ( Parker)  2:39
6 Hootie Blues (McShann)  6:35
7 Confirmation (Parker)  4:35
8 Koko (Parker)  4:51
9 Yardbird Suite (Parker)  4:49
10 Scrapple from the Apple (Parker)  3:48
11 Ornithology (Harris, Parker)  3:39


Sonny Stitt - as
John Lewis - p
Jim Hall - g
Richard Davis - b
Connie Kay - dr

Recorded in New York City ; January 29, 1963

Jean Hubeau Plays Paul Dukas

This disc presents all of Paul Dukas's piano compositions. The Sonate was first performed publicly by Edouard Rissler, on May 10, 1901, at the Salle Pleyel. The work is in four movements and is similar in form to Bethoven's last sonatas, which Dukas dearly loved. The middle section of the third movement, a fugue, and the slow introduction to the fourth movement, are evocative of Beethoven's opus 110 and 106, respectively. In Debussy's opinion, "for the grandeur of its conception, it ranks immediately after Beethoven's sonatas. This is an important work which should encourage the highest expectations of music aficionados. One must adlit, however, that this genre of music possesses its own particular magic..."
The relative scarcity of Dukas's compositions for piano doed not overshadow their importance. Though the major works employ classical forms and echo Beethoven, Franck and others, we cannot fail to recognize their grat originality and give them their rightful place among the compositions of Debussy and Ravel.
Denis Gerlin, transalted by Fred Baker, from the booklet

Jean Hubeau
Paul Dukas


Piano Sonata in E-Flat minor
(Dédiée à Camille Saint-Saëns)

1 Modérément vite  11:16
2 Calme - un peu lent - très soutenu  11:12
3 Vivement, avec légèreté  8:11
4 Très lent - animé  13:07 

Variations, Interlude and Finale
(Sur un thème de Jean-Philippe Rameau)

5 Thème : Le lardon, menuet  0:26
6 Variation I. Tendrement  0:37
7 Variation II. Assez vif, très rythmé  0:33
8 Variation III. Sans hâte, délicatement  1:13
9 Variation IV. Un peu animé, avec légèreté  0:35
10 Variation V. Lent  1:24
11 Variation VI. Modéré  1:12
12 Variation VII. Assez vif  0:27
13 Variation VIII. Très modéré  0:43
14 Variation IX. Animé  0:24
15 Variation X. Sans lenteur, bien marqué  0:47
16 Variation XI. Sombre assez lent  2:23
17 Interlude. Un peu plus lent  2:24
18 Finale (Variation XII). Modérément animé - Vif  4:07

19 Prélude élégiaque  4:31
(Sur  le nom de Haydn)

20 La Plainte, au loin, du Faune  4:39
(Pièce écrite pour "Le Tombeau de Claude Debussy")


Jean Hubeau - p

Recorded at the Salle Adyar, Paris ; November, 1987

Marylène Dosse Plays Camille Saint-Saëns

Collectors in their 40s and older will remember Vox Boxes, highly affordable three-LP sets as useful for filling gaps in one's collection as they were for allowing one to explore unfamiliar repertoire. My youthful experiences with the range of Beethoven's piano music were courtesy of Alfred Brendel and his series of Vox Boxes. I still remember Walter Kraft's series of Bach's organ works — the Vox Boxes had Dürer woodcuts on the front !
Vox didn't neglect the Romantic repertoire either. In 1974, they recorded French pianist Marylène Dosse in what must have been about two Vox Boxes worth of Saint-Saëns' complete works for solo piano. Annie Petit joined her for the four-hand works, not an inconsequential part of this the composer's piano oeuvre. Many of the recordings were made in New York at Elite Recordings, under the excellent guidance of producer Joanna Nickrenz and engineer Marc Aubort. The remaining works were recorded in Stuttgart.
The music on these five CDs is not consistently "important," but Saint-Saëns' quality control was very rigorous, and there's nothing here that embarrasses the composer's reputation, as based on more famous works such as the "Organ" Symphony and Danse macabre. A fair portion of this music is within the grasp of moderately talented amateurs, and some of it is easier than that. All of it is interesting, regardless of its difficulty. On the other hand, there is much difficult writing here which will remind listeners what a fine pianist Saint-Saëns apparently was. In his solo piano works, he eschewed large forms. There are no piano sonatas for example, and even the longer opus numbers consist of smaller of pieces, or are sets of variations. (An example of the latter is the endlessly fascinating Beethoven Variations for two pianos, based on the Minuet from the third of Beethoven's Opus 31 sonatas.) Like Chopin and Schumann, Saint-Saëns wrote his share of nominally didactic Études — there are three sets of them here, and also a set of Fugues — and like the aforementioned composers, their musical interest raises them far above the level of mere finger exercises.
Probably the most famous work here, apart from the Carnival of the Animals (which is played with more pedantry than necessary), is the little Valse mignonne — a favorite of England's Queen Victoria and Alfred Cortot alike ! Surprises include two pieces derived from the piano concerto movements, and Souvenir d'Ismailia, an exotic rhapsody on Arab themes. (The composer visited the northern part of Africa several times in his life.)
Dosse plays this music with a dry and almost brittle brilliance that is very French, if not always ideally suited to the wide breadth of Saint-Saëns piano output. What's nice about these lively performances is that they sound spontaneous ; they are like ink that is still wet on the page. Occasionally, one feels that a second take, or at least a little more time in the studio, would have smoothed over some of the minor technical bumps. Still, given the scope of the project, Dosse's playing is admirable, and it is never less than affectionate. Petit is a very like-minded partner in the four-hand works. The engineering is clattery but serviceable. Vox's booklet contains a long and helpful note by Charles Suttoni, guiding the listener through each work. This set is well worth considering, particularly when it is so inexpensive.
Copyright © 2004, Raymond Tuttle

Source : http://www.classical.net/music/recs/reviews/v/vox03607a.php

Marylène Dosse
Camille Saint-Saëns
Complete Works for Piano


Cd. 1

6 Bagatelles, Op. 3
1 Poco sostenuto  2:43
2 Allego animato quasi presto  3:18
3 Poco adagio  3:18
4 Moderato assai  2:40
5 Allegro molto  4:03
6 Poco sotenuto  5:20

7 Duettino, Op. 11 — duet* 6:37
8 Beethoven Variations, Op. 35 — 2 pianos*  18:16
9 Allegro, Op. 29*  9:51
(from Concerto n° 3 in E-Flat Major)
10 Caprice sur les Airs de Ballet d'Alceste  12:05


Cd. 2

Three Mazurkas
1 Mazurka n° 1 in G minor, Op. 21  3:24
2 Mazurka n° 2 in G minor, Op. 24  4:04
3 Mazurka n° 3 in B minor, Op. 66  4:47

4 Gavotte in C minor, Op. 23  3:53

6 Études, Op. 52
5 Prélude*  2:04
6 Andantino malinconico*  2:20
7 Prélude-Fugue  4:38
8 Andantino*  2:37
9 Prélude-Fugue*  6:39
10 Etude en forme de valse*  5:19

11 Allegro appassionato in C-Sharp minor, Op. 70      5:30
12 Menuet et Valse, Op. 56  12:09
13 Une nuit À Lisbonne (Barcarolle dor Orchestra in E-Flat major, Op. 63)*  3:52
14 Polonaise for 2 Pianos in F minor, Op. 77*  10:10


Cd. 3

Album, Op. 72
1 Prélude  3:24
2 Carillon  4:03
3 Toccata  2:20
4 Valse  4:34
5 Chanson Napolitaine  3:01
6 Final  5:30

7 Souvenir d'Italie in G minor, Op. 80  7:48
8 Feuillet d'album in B-Flat Major 4 Hands, Op. 81*  3:01
9 Les Cloches du soir, Op. 85  2:41
10 Pas redoublié 4 Hands in B-Flat Major, Op. 86*  3:15
11 Scherzo, Op. 87 — 2 pianos*  9:34
12 Valse Canariote in A minor, Op. 88*  5:23

Suite for piano, Op. 90
13 Prélude & Fugue  3:07
14 Menuet  4:06
15 Gavotte  2:39
16 Gigue  2:11


Cd. 4

1 Souvenir d'Ismaïlia, Op. 100*  6:13
2 Valse nonchalante in D-Flat major, Op. 110  3:47
3 Caprice Arabe for 2 Pianos, Op. 96*  7:10
4 Thème Varié, Op. 97  7:01
5 Valse mignonne in E-Flat major, Op. 104  2:45
6 Caprice héroïque for 2 Pianos, Op. 106*  9:17
7 Valse langoureuse in E Major, Op. 120  4:38
8 Valse gaie, Op. 139  4:50

Six Études for the Left Hand, Op. 135*
9 Prélude  2:11
10 Alla Fuga  1:55
11 Moto perpetuo  1:54
12 Bourrée  4:20
13 Elégie  5:08
14 Gigue  1:58


Cd. 5

Six Études, Op. 111
1 Tierces majeurs et mineurs  2:02
2 Traits chromatiques  2:26
3 Prélude et Fugue  5:28
4 Les Cloches de la Palmas  4:20
5 Tierces majeurs chromatiques  2:16
6 Toccata d'après le 5e Concerto  4:32

7 Marche interalliée, Op. 155 — duet*  4:55

Six Fugues, Op. 161
8 Allegro moderato  4:25
9 Poco allegro grazioso  3:11
10 Allegretto  2:42
11 Allegro moderato  2:40
12 Andantino quasi allegretto  2:46

Carnaval des Animaux

15 I. Introduction et Marche royale du lion  2:06
16 II. Poules et Coqs  0:45
17 III. Hémiones (ou Animaux véloces)  0:39
18 IV. Tortues  2:00
19 V. L'Eléphant  1:25
20 VI. Kangourous  0:49
21 VII. Aquarium  2:21
22 VIII. Personnages à longues oreilles  0:58
23 IX. Le Coucou au fond des bois  2:13
24 X. Volière  1:35
25 XI. Pianistes  1:39
26 XII. Fossiles  1:18
27 XIII. Le Cygne  3:07
28 XIV. Finale  1:48


Marylène Dosse - p
Annie Petit - p [in the 4-Hand Works]
Würtemberg Chamber Orchestra, Jörg Faerber - dir [Cd. 5, # 15-28]

Recorded at Elite Recordings, New York & at Sudwest Tonstudio*, Stuttgart ; 1974

François-René Duchable Plays Maurice Ravel

Far from being a trail-blazer or a forerunner of extreme modernism, Maurice Ravel was a classical musician — classical in the musical forms he used, classical in spirit and classical in his tastes ; and in all this he was following in the footsetps of those seventeeth- and eighteenth-century masters who took such immense pains and pride in achieving craftsmany perfection. The fascination he felt fot the technical refinements of composition and for the quest for objectivity in music meant that this composer-cum dignostician derived his greatest satisfaction from the exercise of ingenuity in finding ways round obstacles (gleefully self-imposed, these) and in discovering problems.
Ravelhad little time fot the technical and the theoretical pretensions of the so-called "intellectual" composers (he habitually applied this sobriquet to the group around Vincent d'Indy) : his world is that of an aesthete who steers a delicate path just this side of preciosity. And yet behind the deliberate façade of airy detachment a very different Ravel can sometimes be detected, a personality of dark shadow terrors and anxieties not untinged with black magic. This is vertainly true of the Concerto in D major for left hand (which was commissioned by the oe-armed pianist Paul Wittgenstein), for in it Ravel reveals his nightmares and exposes his unhealed wounds : and yet the work is the twin of the sunny and serene G major concerto : thery were composed virtually simultaneously...
Alain Féron (from the booklet) Translated by Anthony Laude

Maurice Ravel


1 Piano Concerto in D major  18:22
("For the left Hand")

Piano Concerto in G major
2 Allegramente  8:07
3 Adagio assai  9:18
4 Presto  4:05

5 Tzigane  9:41
(Concert fhapsody for violin and orchestra)

(Three Poems for voice and orchrestra withe
verses by Tristan Klingsor)
6 Asia  9:41
7 The Magic flute  2:46
8 The In Different  3:45


François-René Duchable - p
Pierre Amoyal - vl [# 5]
Rachel Yakar - spr [# 6-8]
Jean-Claude Hermengat - fl [# 6-8]
Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Armin Jordan - dir.

Recorded at Victoria Hall, Geneva ; September, 1986

Friday, March 27, 2015

François-René Duchable Plays Franz Liszt

Of all the great names of the piano, none is greater than Liszt's : for he was not only a dazzling virtuoso and an improviser of genius, but also an exceptional composer, fascinated by all that was new, and most prolific. It was the combination of these qualities that enabled him to revolutionise the approach to the instrumeny, to the extent that today he is still looked on as a modern.
The works recorded here are all the better chosen for the real musical expressiveness that goes with their characteristic pianistic virtuosity of Liszt's innovations. It may be partly due to the fact that none of these works was actually composed during his virtuoso period itself, which was in his youth, when he was working above all as a soloist, but that they all profit from the serious consideration Liszt subsequently devoted to his work, having abandonned his virtuoso career. The Blessing of God in Solitude and above all the Sonata date from the period when he was at Weimar in his maturity and at the peak of his creative genius. It was at this time that he discovered orchestral writing and — through the symphonic poems — applied his aesthetic study of programme music ; the two Legends are of slightly later date and belong to the third and last period, when he was above all preoccupied by religious ideas...
Anne Bongrain, from the Booklet (translated by John Underwood)

Franz Liszt


Sonate en Si mineur
1 Lento assai - Allegro energico - Quasi adagio  6:46
2 Allegro energico  2:16
3 Recitativo - Andante sostenuto - Quasi adagio  9:19
4 Allegro energico - Più mosso - Stretta quasi presto - Presto  9:31
Prestissimo - Andante sostenuto - Allegro moderato - Lento assai

Deux Légendes
5 Saint-François d'Assise. La Prédication aux Oiseaux  9:44
6 Saint-François de Paule marchant sur les flots  8:16

7 Bénédiction de Dieu dans la Solitude  16:13
(Harmonies poétiques et religieuses)


François-René Duchable - p

Recorded at Salle Adyar, Paris ; May, 1984