Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Monday, May 25, 2015

The Fabulous Teddy Wilson at the Piano

Teddy Wilson made a fair number of recordings as a leader during the 1950s and 1960s, but the Columbia LPs, such as this trio session from the mid-1950s, have become an obscurity instead of a candidate for reissue. Part of the problem may be that all of the 12 standards recorded by Wilson on this date are so associated with his repertoire and his approach (swinging yet low-key without garish musical ornamentation) that it is easy to overlook such an album. His rhythm sections (either Al Hall and J. C. Heard or Al McKibbon and Kansas Fields) are relegated strictly to time keeping, so the focus is exclusively on the leader, who swings as well as during any time in his long career. But his seemingly effortless playing disguises the fact that this musician worked very hard to hone his craft and didn't feel the need to continuously change his style over time. His trademarked tenths are a key part of his interpretation of "Rosetta," and the waterfall like glissandi in songs like "Them There Eyes" are reminiscent of an economical Art Tatum. All of his solo tracks, especially "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes," prove to be memorable. Maybe this LP will never be regarded as one of Teddy Wilson's most essential dates as a leader, but any fan of his music will not be disappointed if he or she manages to acquire a copy of this collector's item.
Ken Dryden

Source : http://www.allmusic.com/album/mr-wilson-the-fabulous-teddy-wilson-at-the-piano-mw0000362307

Teddy Wilson
Mr. Wilson
The Fabulous Teddy Wilson at the Piano


1 Smoke Gets In Your Eyes (Harbach, Kern)  3:20
2 Rosetta (Hines, Woode)  2:52
3 These Foolish Things (Link, Strachey, Marschwitz)  3:04
4 Them There Eyes (Pinkard, Tauber, Tracey)  3:00
5 I Can't Get Started (Gershwin, Duke)  3:05
6 China Boy (Winfree, Boutelje)  2:42
7 I Can't Give You Anything But Love (McHugh, Fields)  2:39
8 I Surrender Dear (Barris, Clifford)  3:10
9 I've Got The World On A String (Arlen, Koehler)  2:50
10 After You've Gone (Creamer, Layton)  2:53
11 Bess, You is My Woman Now (Gershwin, Heyward, Gershwin)  2:28
12 Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea (Koehler, Arlen)  2:11


[# 1 & 2]
Teddy Wilson - p
Al Hall - b [# 2]
J. C. Heard - dr [# 2]
Recorded in Chicago ; April 7, 1941
[# 4-6 & 8]
Teddy Wilson - p
Al Hall - b [# 4 & 6]
J. C. Heard - dr [# 4 & 6]
Recorded same place as above ; April 11, 1941
[# 3]
Teddy Wilson - p
Recorded in New York ; January 21, 1942
[# 9]
Teddy Wilson - p
Arvell Shaw - b
J.C. Heard - dr
Recorded in New York ; June 29, 1950
[# 7, 10-12]
Teddy Wilson - p
Al McKibbon - b
Kansas Fields - dr
Recorded in New York ; August 25, 1950

See also

Chico Hamilton - El Chico & Futher Adventures

In 1965, Japanese altoist Sadao Watanabe was Chico Hamilton's regular reed player, and it is for his playing (fairly early in his career) that this LP is most notable. Also heard from is guitarist Gabor Szabo (winding up a long period with Hamilton), bassist Al Stinson, guest trombonist Jimmy Cheatham (on three of the eight songs), and the Latin percussion of Willie Bobo and Victor Pantoja. The band plays a couple of movie themes (including "People"), three Hamilton originals, a group improvisation, and two obscurities. The influences of Latin jazz, bossa nova, and the avant-garde are mixed into the unusual musical blend.
Scott Yanow

Source : http://www.allmusic.com/album/el-chico-r140049

Chico Hamilton
El Chico
Futher Adventures of El Chico


1 El Chico (Hamilton)  3:46
2 People (Merrill, Styne)  6:07
3 Marcheta (Schertzinger)  4:02
4 This Dream (Bricusse, Newley)  3:12
5 Conquistadores (Bobo, Hamilton, Stinson, Szabo, Thiele)  6:40
6 El Moors (Hamilton)  5:25
7 Strange (Latouche, Fisher)  4:48
8 Helena (Hamilton)  4:19
9 Got My Mojo Working (But I Just Won't Work on You) (Foster, Waters)  3:07
10 Who Can I Turn To (When Nobody Needs Me) (Bricusse, Newley)  3:39
11 That Boy With Long Hair (Hamilton)  4:14
12 Day Dream (Sebastian)  2:14
13 The Shadow of Your Smile (Mandel, Webster)  3:17
14 Evil Eye (Szabo)  3:19
15 Monday, Monday (Phillips)  2:26
16 Manila (Hamilton)  4:51
17 My Romance (Hart, Rodgers)  2:53
18 Stella by Starlight (Washington, Young)  4:58


[# 1-8]
Chico Hamilton - dr
Jimmy Cheatham - tb [# 3, 6 & 7]
Sadao Watanabe - as & fl
Gabor Szabo - g
Al Stinson - b
Victor Pantoja & Willie Bobo - lat perc
Recorded in New York City ; August 26 [# 3 & 7] & August 27 [other selections], 1965
[# 9-18]
Chico Hamilton - dr
Clark Terry - tp [# 9, 11, 12 & 15]
Jimmy Cheatham - tb [# 9, 11, 12 & 15]
Charlie Mariano - as
Jerome Richardson - fl & alt fl
Danny Bank - pic [# 9, 11, 12 & 15]
Gabor Szabo - g
Richard Davis - b [# 9, 11, 12 & 15]
Ron Carter - b [other selections]
Victor Pantoja & Willie Bobo - lat perc
Recorded at Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey ; May 2 [# 10, 13, 14, 16-18] & May 5 [# 9, 11, 12 & 15], 1966

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Ruby Braff & George Barnes - Live at the New School

Digby Fairweather called this group "a dazzling quartet, one of the great small groups in jazz." I wouldn't argue with that, in fact if I rated my own collection in order of gratification this CD would be in the top three. Sadly the group lasted only from 1973 to 1975; this recording being made live in 1974. The group consisted of two gifted virtuosos and two modest rhythm men, Michael Moore (bass) and Wayne Wright (guitar), who, during the whole of the 20 tracks never take a solo. They simply provide the finest of backgrounds for Ruby Braff (trumpet) and George Barnes (guitar) to create masterful patterns. Musically, the empathy of these co-equal accompanists provides jazz in the mainstream form of the highest integrity. The more you hear this music the more you appreciate it. Without doubt this is a very special recording made by the New School Audio Engineering Class and as stated the music is recorded very satisfactorily however there were no voice mics. So, much of the verbal crossfire is lost. But there again one buys these CDs for the music.
Mike Powell

Source : http://www.amazon.co.uk/product-reviews/B000003H8N/

Ruby Braff
George Barnes
Live at the
New School
(The Complete Concert)


1 This Can't Be Love (Hart, Rodgers)  3:54
2 With me for Love (Braff, Wilson)  3:31
3 There Will Never Be Another You (Gordon, Warren)  3:50
4 Solitude (DeLange, Ellington, Mills)  2:28
5 Struttin' With Some Barbecue (Armstrong, Raye)  3:32
6 On the Sunny Side of the Street (Fields, McHugh)  3:09
7 Thou Swell (Hart, Rodgers)  4:19
8 Body and Soul (Eyton, Green, Heyman, Sour)  4:01
9 Squeeze Me (Waller, Williams)  3:38
10 It Don't Mean a Thing (If it Ain't Got That Swing) (Ellington, Mills)  3:36
11 Rockin' in Rhythm (Carney, Ellington, Mills)  2:30
12 Sugar (Alexander, Mitchell, Pinkard)  4:45
13 Liza (All the Clouds'll Roll Away) (Gershwin, Gershwin, Kahn)  3:48
14 You're a Lucky Guy (Cahn, Chaplin)  3:35
15 Don't Blame Me (Fields, McHugh, Raksin, Wess)  3:01
16 Cheek to Cheek Berlin)  2:38
17 Mean to Me (Ahlert, Turk)  4:09
18 Here, There and Everywhere (Lennon, McCartney)  2:07
19 Goose Pimples (Henderson, Trent)  4:08
20 No One Else But You (Redman)  4:35


Ruby Braff - crnt
George Barnes - g sl
Wayne Wright - rhth g
Michael Moore - b

Recorded live at The New School, New York, New York ; April 22, 1974

Ingfried Hoffmann (feat. René Thomas)

Hip Hammond from Ingfried Hoffmann — one of the coolest musicians to ever play organ on the European scene, and one with a resume that includes loads of great soundtrack and easy sessions, plus key work with reedman Klaus Doldinger ! This early session has Hoffmann working in surprisingly soulful territory — hitting the Hammond with a feel that's a mixture of US soul jazz and some of the groovier styles he was working out in the Doldinger combo — all with a really cool tone on the instrument, one that's unlike anyone else we can think of ! Ingfried goes for a really clear, clean touch on the keys — but there's also a bit of echo at the back too — a way of holding onto the notes that makes things almost sound a bit spacey at points, even when there's a punch to his playing. There's also a bit of piano on the session — and other players include René Thomas on guitar, Helmut Kandlberger on bass, and the mighty Klaus Weiss on drums — always a treat on a date like this ! Titles include the killer "Midnight Bossa Nova", plus "Ingfried's Blues", "Jada", "TV Swing", "Soul Twist", "Au Clair De La Lune", and "Love For Sale".
© 1996-2009, Dusty Groove America, Inc.

Source : http://www.dustygroove.com/item.php?id=85pb2bvyjk

Ingfried Hoffmann
Hammond Tales


1 Au Clair de La Lune (Trad. Arranged by Hoffmann)  3:41
2 Jada (Carleton)  4:18
3 TV-Swing (Kuhn)  4:18
4 Soul Twist (Hoffmann)  6:12
5 Black Is the Color of My True Love's Hair (Gershwin)  4:44
6 Oh Lady, Be Good (Porter)  4:19
7 Midnight Bossa Nova (Hoffmann)  3:16
8 Love for Sale (Porter)  4:13
9 Ingfried's Blues (Hoffmann)  8:25
10 It's a Long Way to Tipperary (Judge, Willams)  3:49


Ingfried Hoffmann - org & p
René Thomas - g
Helmut Kandlberger - b
Klaus Weiss - dr

Recorded in Köln, Germany ; July 14, 1963

Sviatoslav Richter Plays Prokofiev (Live in Japan)

"These recordings, made during two live concerts with a simple cassette recorder, cannot claim to offer the same technical quality as a digital recording. However, I feel that they deserve to be made available to a broader public for purely artistic reasons".


That sounds official enough, and yet according to the Richter discography which can be consulted at www.trovar.com and which has some distinguished names among its compilers, the given dates are wrong. They claim that Sonata n° 6 was played on 12 February 1981 and the rest on 6 March of that year. I wish companies putting out this sort of material would be clearer about what they are actually issuing and how they come to have it. Instead, we just get a reasonable enough essay by Ingo Harden on the music itself. Be that as it may, nobody is disputing that we have here examples of a late return by Richter to part of his Prokofiev repertoire. As for the recording, the reference to a "simple cassette recording" struck horror in my soul but I suggest it must have been something a bit more sophisticated. It is true that in comparison with the 1960 Carnegie Hall recital recently issued by RCA (see my review) and containing the 6th Sonata and a similar selection from Visions fugitives, the earlier recording has slightly greater richness and depth, but the present one has none of the instability of pitch, distortion and dynamic compression usually associated with amateur taping. A certain shallowness struck me as possibly a true reportage of the acoustics of the hall and/or the piano used, and I wondered if it was taped from a broadcast rather than just by someone sitting in the hall with a tiny cassette recorder hidden under his seat or in her handbag. Certainly, no prospective buyer need fear that the performances will be seriously compromised on technical grounds. Another question that the notes might have addressed, bearing in mind that the album is entitled "A Musical Friendship", is that of the frequency with which Richter actually programmed Prokofiev’s music...

Sviatoslav Richter


Cd. 1

Piano Sonata n° 6 in A major, op. 82
1 I. Allegro moderato  9:08
2 II. Allegretto  4:03
3 III. Tempo di valzer. Lentissimo  6:32
4 IV. Vivace  7:16

 Piano Sonata n° 9, in C major, Op. 103
5 I. Allegretto  7:37
6 II. Allegro strepitoso  3:07
7 III. Andante tranquillo  8:10
8 IV. Allegro con brio, ma non troppo presto  5:49

Piano Pieces from the Ballet
9 I. The Quarrel. Moderato. Allegro irato, op. 1023  3:17
10 II. Gavotte. Allegretto, op. 952  2:20
11 III. The Fairy of Autumn. Allegro moderato, op. 973  1:06
12 IV. Orientalia. Andante dolce, op. 976  1:41
13 Waltz. Cinderella and the Prince. Allegretto, op. 102 n° 1  6:18


Cd. 2

Légende, Op. 12 n° 6
1 Andantino  3:39

Visions fugitives, Op. 22
2 N° 3. Allegretto  1:12
3 N° 4. Animato  0:49
4 N° 5. Molto giocoso  0:20
5 N° 6. Con eleganza  0:25
6 N° 8. Commodo  1:26
7 N° 9. Allegretto tranquillo  1:00
8 N° 11. Con vivacità  0:52
9 N° 14. Feroce  0:57
10 N° 15. Inquieto  0:42
11 N° 18. Con una dolce lentezza  1:19

Danza Op. 32
12 Allegretto. Con eleganza  2:34
Valse Op. 32
13 Lento espressivo  2:52
Pensées Op. 623
14 Andante  6:03
Sonatine pastorale Op. 592
15 Moderato  4:39
Paysage Op. 592
16 Allegretto  2:53
Rondo Op. 522 from "Le fils prodigue"
17 Moderato, quasi allegretto  4:41
Valse Op. 961 from "War and Peace""War and Peace"
18 Moderato  5:13
"Suggestion diabolique" Op. 4
19 Prestissimo fantastico  3:05


Sviatoslav Richter - p

Recorded at Bunka Kaikan Hall, Tokyo ; June 3, 1981 [cd. 1, # 1-4 & Cd. 2] ; & December 1980 [cd. 1, # 5-13]

...According to the above-mentioned discography, only two pieces here, the Rondo Op. 52 n° 3 and the Valse Op. 1, do not exist in alternative Richter versions, but the previous tapings all date from around two decades earlier. In the case of the 6th Sonata no fewer than six versions exist from 1956 (Prague) to 1966 (Locarno), then silence until 1981. The two alternatives of the 9th Sonata are from 1956 (Prague) and 1958 (Moscow). Most of the alternatives of the smaller pieces come from 1960, in which year Richter programmed a not dissimilar sequence. I speak very tentatively, since I realize that during the late 1960s and the 1970s Richter must have given hundreds of recitals of which no recorded trace remains, but it does rather look as though his proselytizing on behalf of his friend reached its peak in the decade following the composer’s death and tailed off until this single late return. It is interesting that the pieces he returned to were the same as always. The selection of ten pieces from "Visions fugitives", for example, is exactly the same as in 1960. But I repeat, recordings may yet emerge to disprove this point. Compared with the 1960 Carnegie Hall performance of Sonata n° 6, three out of four movements were slower in 1981. The 1981 first movement gains in grandeur at the cost of a slightly laboured feel at times, but the 1981 second movement is a delight. Richter uses the extra space to give the music a knowing, even saucy, air. And, while in 1960 he emphasized the "Lentissimo" part of Prokofiev’s instructions, in 1981 he does not forget that it is also marked "Tempo di valzer" ; it now has a greater flow, conversational ease taking the lead over grim depth-searching. By 1981 Richter could no longer go hell-for-leather at certain passages of the finale as in 1960, but the more lyrical sections are perhaps better integrated into the whole. Altogether, it looks as if confirmed Richterites will need both versions. I don’t have either of the earlier recordings of 9, but can report a loving, mellow and relaxed performance. The smaller pieces — almost all in a moderate tempo — equally testify to a Richter who, contrary to his image, was ready to relax and even show a degree of humanity and humour behind the graic snitet jaws. What he can’t quite do is persuade me that, after the explosive Op. 3 and Op. 4 pieces — from which the famous "Suggestion diabolique", stunningly played, closes the programme — and the wholly remarkable, aphoristic "Visions fugitives", Prokofiev’s later short pieces are much more than the Soviet equivalent of Hausmusik. The differences between the 1960 and 1981 performances of Richter’s selection from the Visions are minimal ; very slightly, his younger self seems more vividly attuned to the young composer’s essays in expressionism, but the richer recording may have contributed to my impression. In 1960 these pieces were played in small groups as encores, so applause bursts in several times along the way. This is clearly a point in favour of the 1981 version purely as a listening sequence. The Gavotte from "Cinderella" was also an encore in 1960 ; the 1981 performance has more relaxed charm. Confirmed Richterites will need no encouragement from me to snap this up ; those whose interest is more specifically in Prokofiev, or just good music in general, are advised that this album documents an important musical relationship and an authoritative interpreter of some of the 20th century’s finest piano music in more than acceptable sound. Richter’s own assessment, quoted at the beginning of this review, proves entirely correct.
Christopher Howell

Source : http://www.blogger.com/post-create.g?blogID=1698175558508888075

See also

Sviatoslav Richter Plays Prokofiev

Sviatoslav Richter was acknowledged to be a unique interpereter of Sergei Prokofiev's music already in the early 1940s. A remarkable coincidence was in that it was particulary with Prokofiev's music the composer marked the beginning of his concert activities. His first performance in Moscow, falling outside of the category of a student recital, was organized by Heinrich Neuhaus, who came up with the idea of presenting a concert of works by Soviet composers. The first part of the concert was played by Neuhaus himself, presenting compositions by Myaskovsky, Alewandrov and Krein, and the second part he entrusted to young Richter. The latter's program included Prokofiev's Pastoral Sonatina, Landscape, Rondo from "The Profigal Son" and, what was especially important, the Sixth Sonata. Richter told about this performance a few decades later to his German admirers, who imprinted his life story in a small brochure from the series "Musicians in Conversations." It reflected a number of amusing details — about the fact that Richter was barely able to learn the sonata a day prior to the concert because the composer was supposed to be present at the concert, how the anxious Prokofiev came up on the stage and shook the perplexed pianist's hand... From that time on the acquaintance of the two musicians evolved to a strong friendly and artistic fellowship. Richter became the first performer of the Seventh Sonata, the Sonata for Cello and Piano, the Ninth Sonata and the Symphony-Concerto, the only time he performed as a conductor, and the composer's other works...
From the booklet

Sviatoslav Richter


Piano Sonata n° 2 in D minor, Op. 14
1 I. Allegro ma non troppo  6:15
2 II. Scherzo - Allegro ma non troppo  1:47
3 III. Andante  5:00
4 IV. Vivace  4:48


5 Legend, Op. 12 n° 6  3:53

Visions Fugitives, Op. 22
6 N° 6  0:27
7 N° 18  1:41

8 Landscape, Op. 59 n° 2  3:19
9 Valse (from the opera "War and Peace", Op. 96, n° 1)  5:40


Piano Sonata n° 9, in C major, Op. 103
5. I. Allegretto  8:10
6 II. Allegro strepitoso  3:20
7 III. Andante tranquillo  8:41
8 IV. Allegro con brio, ma non troppo presto  6:06


Sviatoslav Richter - p

Recorded in performance, Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory ; 1961 [# 1-4] ; 1979 [# 5-13]

Wilhelm Kempff Plays Franz Schubert

Kempff himself wrote the liner notes to this highly satisfying set and states the following : "The deeper we penetrate into the world of Schubert, however, the greater is our surprise at discovering that the 'heavenly length' for which he is reproached is to be regarded relatively. If the length becomes evident as longueurs, the fault lies with the interpreter (I speak from my own experience...)." Indeed, in listening to Kempff play the Schubert sonata canon the thoughts of "overly long" or "needlessly repetitive" never entered my head. Barring some extraordinary performances of individual sonatas over the years, such as Richter's old Russian recording of the C minor (D.958) on Melodiya or Serkin's equally old recording of the B-Flat (D.960), this is the best playing of the Schubert sonatas I know.
I used to think of some of the earlier sonatas as practice or training pieces for the later masterworks (which of course by definition they are, but they need not be viewed retrospectively from the vantage point of the late works). Unfortunately, they often sound boring and immature. This is due to defects in players and the playing, not a problem with Schubert. Kempff makes all the sonatas here, including the early ones, glow with the utmost musicality so they stand on their own as beautiful works. Just one example : In the earlier of the a minor sonatas he handles little secondary figures that are intercalated within major theme phrases in an amazingly musical and beautiful way. As a pianist myself, I could never figure out how to make them unobtrusive, let alone desirable. Under Kempff's fingers they fit sublimely into the fabric of the work. The playing is clearly layered, every note and phrase has its place and purpose, his internal logic is such that nothing Schubert wrote sounds less than as it should. One more example: The first movement of the G major sonata ("Fantasy" sonata, D 894) floats in its ethereal haze but goes fast, not slow. Kempff can produce the effect of suspended animation without suspending the actual motion. This is no doubt what Schubert intended but it is very difficult to pull off as a performer. Kempff's treatment of the last 5 sonatas (D, G, A, c minor, and B flat) is breathtaking.
This set is a revelation. What a magnificent panorama of Schubert's development as a composer! Also, the origins of later composers' styles can be traced to Schubert's writing for piano. The roots of Bruckner's iterated and protracted symphonies can be heard, for example, in the way the finale of the a minor sonata begins. (I don't think this is apparent from other players, who lack Kempff's lyricism and mysticism.) Included beside the actual titled sonatas are various fragments of incomplete sonatas and collections of piano pieces that in effect are untitled sonatas (such as D 459/459A).
The recordings are from around 1965-1970 and the piano sound is singing, glowing, radiant. I recommend this set wholeheartedly to anyone interested in great musicianship, masterly piano playing, Schubert's piano music, and Schubert's evolution as a composer. Kempff makes you realize that the magic didn't all happen in the last year of Schubert's life, and I can't think of another pianist who does that for me. (There are few, if any, major players of Schubert with whom I'm not familiar.) Kempff was the leading German pianist of the immediate post-WW II era, but I think he has largely been forgotten. His Schubert, Beethoven, and Brahms are wonderful. Modern players, despite their steel fingers and elephantine endurance and machine-like (sometimes machine-gun-like) techniques, stand to learn a lot from this old master's art.
Elliot Richman

Source : http://www.amazon.com/product-reviews/B00004SA8A/ref=acr_dpx_hist_5?ie=UTF8filterBy=addFiveStarshowViewpoints=0

Wilhelm Kempff
Franz Schubert

The Piano Sonatas


Cd. 1

Piano Sonata n° 21 in B-Flat major, D.960
1 I. Molto moderato  21:09
2 II. Andante sostenuto  9:18
3 III. Scherzo (Allegro vivace con delicatezza)  4:48
4 IV. Allegro ma non troppo  8:01

Piano Sonata n° 3 in E major, D.459
5 I. Allegro moderato  6:02
6 II. Scherzo (Allegro)  4:58
7 III. Adagio  5:30
8 IV. Scherzo con trio (Allegro)  3:45
9 V. Allegro patetico  7:34


Cd. 2

Piano Sonata n° 19 in C minor, D.958
1 I. Allegro  8:39
2 II. Adagio  6:54
3 III. Menuetto (Allegro)  3:50
4 IV. Allegro  10:27

Piano Sonata n° 20 in A major, D.959
5 I. Allegro  10:45
6 II. Andantino  7:31
7 III. Scherzo (Allegro vivace)  5:20
8 IV. Rondo (Allegretto)  12:00


Cd. 3

Piano Sonata n° 18 in G major, D.894
1 I. Molto moderato e cantabile  10:54
2 II. Andante  6:53
3 III. Menuetto (Allegro moderato)  3:58
4 IV. Allegretto  8:58

Piano Sonata n° 17 in D major, D.850
5 I. Allegro vivace  9:44
6 II. Con moto  10:25
7 III. Scherzo (Allegro vivace)  9:31
8 IV. Rondo (Allegro moderato)  9:19


Cd. 4

Piano Sonata n° 16 in A minor, D.845
1 I. Moderato  8:04
2 II. Andante, poco mosso  9:04
3 III. Scherzo (Allegro vivace) - Trio (Un poco più lento)  6:44
4 IV. Rondo (Allegro vivace)  5:12

Piano Sonata in C major, D.840
("Reliquie" — Fragment)
5 I. Moderato  15:12
6 II. Andante  8:09

Piano Sonata n° 14 in A minor, D.784
7 I. Allegro giusto  8:46
8 II. Andante  4:11
9 III. Allegro vivace  5:26


Cd. 5

Piano Sonata n° 13 in A major, D.664
1 I. Allegro moderato  10:38
2 II. Andante  4:32
3 III. Allegro  5:18

Piano Sonata n° 11 in F minor, D.625
4 I. Allegro  9:52
5 II. Scherzo: Allegretto - Trio  6:08
6 III. Allegro  6:17

Piano Sonata n° 9 in B major, D.575
7 I. Allegro ma non troppo  8:00
8 II. Andante  5:42
9 III. Scherzo (Allegretto)  5:32
10 IV. Allegro giusto  5:31


Cd. 6

Piano Sonata n° 7 In E-Flat major, D.568
1 I. Allegro moderato  10:03
2 II. Andante molto  6:04
3 III. Menuetto (Allegretto)  4:30
4 IV. Allegro moderato  8:06

Piano Sonata n° 5 in A-Flat major, D.557
5 I. Allegro moderato  4:10
6 II. Andante  3:14
7 III. Allegro  4:29

Piano Sonata n° 6 in E minor, D.566
8 I. Moderato  7:07
9 II. Allegretto  8:57


Cd. 7

Piano Sonata n° 4 in A minor, D.537
1 I. Allegro ma non troppo  7:28
2 II. Allegretto quasi andantino  6:07
3 III. Allegro vivace  4:36

Piano Sonata n° 2 in C major, D.279
4 I. Allegro moderato  8:59
5 II. Andante  5:40
6 III. Menuetto: Allegro vivace - Trio  3:52

Piano Sonata n° 1 in E major, D.157
7 I. Allegro ma non troppo  7:03
8 II. Andante  7:40
9 III. Menuetto: Allegro vivace - Trio  4:54


Wilhelm Kempff - p

Recorded at Beethovensaal, Hannover ; between February 1965 & January 1969

See the compete artwork

Sviatoslav Richter Plays Prokofiev (Praga)

When Richter was twelve years old, he heard Prokofiev give a concert in Odessa (Ukraine) during Prokofiev's concert tour of 1927. Both Prokofiev's music and playing had a great effect upon the young Richter. Later in the spring of 1940, Neuhaus took the then-25 year old Richter to listen to Prokofiev play his newly completed Sixth Piano Sonata at a private apartment in Moscow. Richter turned the pages of the music while Prokofiev played. Richter later remembered ,"...even before Prokofiev had finished playing, I had decided -- I will play that!" He did, but not before Prokofiev himself gave the premiere public performance of the Sixth Sonata on 08-Apr-1940. Prokofiev was impressed with Richter's performance and developed a respect and admiration of his playing. Prokofiev invited Richter to premiere both the Seventh and Ninth Piano Sonatas. Richter also accompanied Mstislav Rostropovich in the premiere of the Sonata for Cello and Piano in C major, Op. 119 on 01-Mar-1950. Although Richter and Prokofiev connected on a musical level, they never became close. Richter later wrote, "I was never especially close to Prokofiev the man. I was intimidated, and for me, he was wholly contained in his music — both then and now." Richter frequently played Prokofiev's works in his recitals beginning in 1940, his favorite works being the Piano Sonata n° 7 and 8, the Fifth Piano Concerto, and selections from the Visions Fugitives, Op. 22.

Source : http://www.prokofiev.org/prokofievans/prkfartist.cfm?atype=Artists&aid=24

Sviatoslav Richter
Serguei Prokofiev

Three Piano Sonatas


Piano Sonata n° 2 in D minor, Op. 14
1 I. Allegro ma non troppo  6:53
2 II. Scherzo  1:53
3 III. Andante  5:20
4 IV. Vivace  4:36

Piano Sonata n° 5 in A minor, Op. 82
5 I. Allegro moderato  8:26
6 II. Allegretto  3:47
7 III. Tempo di valzer lentissimo  6:36
8 IV. Vivace  6:26

Piano Sonata n° 9 in C major, Op. 103
9 I. Allegretto  7:07
10 II. Allegro strepitoso  2:41
11 III. Andante tranquillo  2:01
12 IV. Allegro con brio, ma non troppo presto  10:54


Sviatoslav Richter - p

Recorded in Prague on February 2, 1965 [# 1-5] ; November 16, 1965 [# 5-8] & December 6, 1956 [# 9-12]

Sviatoslav Richter - Live in London

Sviatoslav Richter was devoted to Beethoven and kept nearly two dozen of the composer's 32 sonatas in his active repertory. But some sonatas — such as 3 in C Major (Opus 2, 3), 7 in D Major (Opus 10, 3), and 32 in C Minor (Opus 111) — turned up on Richter programs decade after decade, while others appeared for a season or so never to return. Richter's relationship to Sonata n° 29 in B-Flat (Hammerklavier) belongs to the latter category. He performed it all over Europe in the spring and summer of 1975 and seems never to have programmed it again. One wonders why. Richter was designed by God to perform the Hammerklavier. He had the huge hands necessary for its reckless leaps, the strength and stamina for its marathon length, and the intellect necessary to make lucid its grinding dissonance and (in the finale) its pounding counterpoint. Perhaps Richter thought that at 60 — his age when he began to program it — he was a little too old for the Hammerklavier. Certainly, even a Richter enthusiast can be forgiven for wishing the pianist had turned to the piece 10 years earlier. Still, the pianist's Hammerklavier is heroically grand and fiercely energetic.
Stephen Wigler

Source : http://www.amazon.com/Beethoven-Sonatas-piano-No29-No3/dp/B00004Y6OG

Sviatoslav Richter
Live in London


Ludwig van Beethoven

  Sonata n° 29 in B-Flat Op.106

1 I. Allegro  11:00
2 II. Scherzo ; assai vivace  3:03
3 III. Adagio sostenuto, appassianato e con molto sentimento  17:41
4 IV. Largo. Allegro risoluto  11:55


Sviatoslav Richter - p

Recorded live at the Royal Festival Hall (London) ; June 18, 197[5]

Sviatoslav Richter & Benjamin Britten - Piano Music for Four-Hands

It was on June 20, 1964 that Sviatoslav Richter made his unplanned debut at Aldeburgh. Following performances earlier that month in Warsaw, Dresden, and Paris, Richter had expected to enjoy a brief pause in his concert activity by attending several Aldeburgh events at which his colleague, cellist Mstislav Rostropovitch, would be appearing. Upon his arrival, however, Richter was quickly persuaded to join forces not only with Rostropovitch but aslo with Benjamin Britten for a pair of concerts on the same day ! The repertoire included the Brahms E Minor and Grieg A Minor Cello Sonatas (released on Music & Arts CD-283), two solo Schubert Sonatas (Music & Arts CD-642) and - with Britten as Richter's four-hand partner - the Schubert A-flat Variations. Thus began most auspiciously, what would become a total of eleven appearances by Richter at the Aldeburgh Festivals of 1964, 1965, 1966, 1967, and 1975...
®1992 Donald Manildi, from the booklet

Sviatoslav Richter
Benjamin Britten
Piano Music for Four-Hands


Franz Schubert

Grand Duo Sonata in C, Op. Posth. D.812
for Piano Four Hands
1 I. Allegro moderato  12:53
2 II. Andante  9:41
3 III. Scherzo/Trio  5:38
4 IV. Allegro vivace  10:46

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Sonata in C, K. 521
for Piano Four Hands
5 I. Allegro  12:50
6 II. Andante  7:42
7 III. Allegretto  7:25


Sviatoslav Richter & Benjamin Britten - p

Recorded in performance, at Aldeburgh Festival ; 1965 [# 1-4] ; & 1966 [# 5-7]

Arthur Rubinstein Plays Grieg

Arthur Rubinstein was midway through his 75-year-long performing career before he learned the Grieg Concerto. In his autobiography, he reports that he was under the then-common impression that the Concerto was "cheap stuff" and not worthy of his time. RCA wanted to record him playing the piece, and Rubinstein's wife liked the Concerto. She purchased the score and placed it on his piano. Reading through it, he realized it "was easy to play and lovable." Thus began a love affair that was to continue until the pianist's retirement in 1976.
This performance, recorded in 1942, was the first of four recordings of the work Rubinstein made — there is an additional, filmed performance from 1975. One can take the technical finish of this brisk, polished performance for granted. Not to be underestimated is the orchestral contribution. Eugene Ormandy, one of the most underrated conductors of the 20th century, was an especially sympathetic and gifted accompanist. He matches Rubinstein phrase-for-phrase, rubato-for-rubato.
The solo works on this album are taken from the legendary "Rubinstein Plays Grieg" LP recorded in 1953. This recording had the unique distinction of remaining in the active catalogue until the demise of the LP in the late-1980s. The performances here are as fresh, direct, and lacking in phony sentiment as the Concerto. It is a pity that Rubinstein was never persuaded to re-record these solo pieces in stereo, as there are always those closed-minded individuals who will refuse to purchase a mono recording, no matter how great the performance is.
The recorded sound — except for a barely percepible change of pitch at 5'30" in the first movement of the Concerto — has been superbly restored.
Hank Drake

Source : http://www.amazon.com/Rubinstein-Collection-Vol-13-Concerto/dp/B0014LX7XG

Arthur Rubinstein
Edvard Grieg


Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16
1 I. Allegro molto moderato  11:20
2 II. Adagio  5:17
3 III. Allegro moderato molto e marcato - Quasi presto  9:20

Ballade for Piano in G minor, Op. 24
4 Theme. Andante espressivo  1:13
5 Var. I. Poco meno andante, ma molto tranquillo  1:03
6 Var. II. Allegro agitato  0:57
7 Var. III. Adagio  1:13
8 Var. IV. Allgro capriccioso  0:44
9 Var. V. Più lento  1:34
10 Var. VI. Allegro scherzando  0:33
11 Var. VII. Allegro scherzando  0:42
12 Var. VIII. Lento  1:59
13 Var. IX. Un poco andante  2:03
14 Var. X. Un poco allegro e alla burla  1:09
15 Var. XI. Più animato  0:43
16 Var. XII. Meno allegro e maestoso  1:06
17 Var. XIII. Allegro furioso  0:28
18 Var. XIV. Prestissimo  1:09

Lyric Pieces
19 Cradle Song, Op. 68 n° 5  2:06
20 Spring Dance, Op. 47 n° 6  1:19
21 Berceuse, Op. 38 n° 1  2:37
22 Folk Song, Op. 38 n° 2  1:39
23 Papillon, Op. 43 n° 1  1:27
24 Spring Dance, Op. 38 n° 5  1:11
25 Shepherd Boy, Op. 54 n° 1  3:26
26 Little Bird, op. 43 n° 4  1:34
27 Folk Song, Op. 12 n° 5  1:15
28 Elfin Dance, Op. 12 n° 4  0:39
29 Album Leaf, Op. 28 n° 4  2:48
30 Lyric Piece. March of the Dwarfs, Op. 54 n° 3  2:47


Arthur Rubinstein - p
Philadelphia Orchestra/Eugene Ormandy - dir.

Recorded in the Academy of Music, Philadelphia; March 6, 1942 [# 1-3] ; in Hollywood ; November 6, 1953 [#4-18] ; & August 11, November 4/6 & December 12, 1953 [# 19-30]

Sviatoslav Richter Plays Schubert (D. 958 & 960)

Dating from the early seventies, the great Sviatoslav Richter delivers two astonishing performances of late Schubert. Despite being blessed with an awe-inspiring technique, it is the sheer level of Richter's concentration throughout coupled with his minute attention to detail that makes the two performances on this disc such a compulsive and special experience and ranks them alongside the finest available in the catalogue. The C minor Sonata (1827/8) becomes a cogent, gripping experience in Richter's hands. From the arresting opening through the bleakest sounds of the development, the music is driven by Richter's masterly control of rhythm. His full tone means that Schubert's sonorities sound with the utmost weight. Even more importantly, Richter, throughout the disc, gives Schubert's inner voices their own life : this generates the vitality which propels the movement along. Furthermore, he refuses to fall into the trap of overly relaxing the tempos in the lyrical passages, with the result that the underlying pulse retains its integrity. This relentless concentration is at its most impressive in the Adagio. The sheer scope of his conception means that he can give the fullest tone to the chordal passages in the Menuetto without for a second making one think that this is too much for Schubert. In the finale, Richter confronts Schubert's stark juxtapositions head on, without the slightest hint of apology. Perhaps it could be argued that he fails to relax enough, but this would not be in line with his impressive interpretation. A performance, then, to sit alongside the supremely sensitive Uchida (Philips 456 579-2, coupled with D959). The rhythmic sense which forms the backbone to D958 really comes into its own in the 1972 recording of the enormous final B-Flat sonata. There is no doubt that Richter definitely heeds the 'Molto moderato' marking, but still secures a seamless legato. With the extra space his chosen speed allows, the low left hand trill response to the initial statement of the first theme is truly disturbing. To take this movement slowly is easy enough : but to follow it through a 25-minute musical argument requires the concentrational stamina of a Richter. Throughout this monumental reading, textures are perfectly (and sometimes exquisitely) controlled. Richter ensures there is no let up by bringing near stasis to the Andante sostenuto. This seems perfectly fitting, natural even, after the experience of the first movement: the sweet balm of the third movement Scherzo comes as a blessed relief. Only later does one realise that Richter is merely following what Schubert directs, i.e. 'con delicatezza'. The finale is perfectly balanced and shaded. It remains to refer to some great performances of this Sonata which are currently available: the transcendentally otherworldly Uchida (Philips 456 572-2), the imperial Pollini (DG 427 326-2) and Maria Yudina's live 1947 performance on Dante HPC123 (this latter version deserving of greater currency). But students of Schubert (or of sovereign piano playing) should not be without Richter's account.
Colin Clarke

Source : http://www.musicweb-international.com/classRev/2001/July01/SchubertRichter.htm

Sviatoslav Richter
Franz Schubert


Piano Sonata n° 19 in C minor, Op. posth. (D. 958)
1 I. Allegro  11:27
2 II. Adagio  8:14
3 III. Menuetto. Allegro  3:32
4 IV. Allegro  8:36

Piano Sonata n° 21 in B-Flat major, Op. posth. (D. 960)
5 I. Molto moderato  24:31
6 II. Andante sostenuto  10:04
7 III. Scherzo. Alegro vivace con delicatezza  3:51
8 IV. Allegro ma non troppo  7:52


Sviatoslav Richter - p

Recorded by Ariola-Eurosdisc in 1973, Munich [# 1-4] & 1972, Schloss Anif, Salzburg [# 5-8]