music clip of the day


Category: clarinet

Thursday, May 4th

Sometimes, like yesterday, when I bumped into this, what I really need, whether I know it or not, is something kaleidoscopic.

Enno Poppe (1969-), Holz (“Wood”); Ensemble Dal Niente (Enno Poppe, guest cond.), live, Chicago, 2016


Thursday, January 26th

What we need—now more than ever.

Clickety Clack! Clickety Clack!
What is this madness that Nixon has put upon us?
Clickety Clack! Clickety Clack!
Won’t someone bring the spirit back?

—Rahsaan Roland Kirk (1935-1977), 1973

Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Bright Moments, recorded live (San Francisco), 1973*


*Track list (courtesy of YouTube):
A1. Introduction
2. Pedal Up
3. You’ll Never Get To Heaven
4. Clickety Clack
5. Prelude To A Kiss
6. Talk (Electric Nose)
7. Fly Town Nose Blues
B1. Talk (Bright Moments)
2. Bright Moments Song
3. Dem Red Beans And Rice
4. If I Loved You
5. Talk (Fats Waller)
6. Jitterbug Waltz
7. Second Line Jump

Wednesday, December 7th

Sometimes I want to hear something that will quicken my pulse; sometimes I want something that will slow it—like this, for instance, which I heard the other night in Chicago, played by the group for whom it was written ( One sound . . . another . . . another . . .

Jürg Frey (1953-), Fragile Balance (2014), excerpt; Ensemble Grizzana (Jürg Frey, clarinet; Mira Benjamin, violin; Richard Craig, flute; Emma Richards, viola; Philip Thomas, piano; Seth Woods, cello); 2015



reading table

Winter seclusion—
sitting propped against
the same worn post

—Matsuo Basho (1644-1694), translated from Japanese by Sam Hamill (The Sound of Water: Haiku by Basho, Buson, Issa, and Other Poets)

Monday, October 10th

Sometimes no word seems more beautiful—quiet.

Jürg Frey (1953-), Paysage pour Gustave Roud; Jürg Frey (clarinet), Dante Boon (piano), Stefan Thut (cello), live, 2011



reading table

In the middle of the road there was a stone
there was a stone in the middle of the road
there was a stone
in the middle of the road there was a stone.

Never should I forget this event
in the life of my fatigued retinas.
Never should I forget that in the middle of the road
there was a stone
there was a stone in the middle of the road
in the middle of the road there was a stone.

—Carlos Drummond de Andrade (1902-1987), “In the Middle of the Road,” translated from Portuguese by Elizabeth Bishop


random sights

this morning, Oak Park, Ill.


Thursday, September 1st


Hamiet Bluiett (baritone saxophone, clarinet, flute, voice), William Parker (bass, doson gouni, shakuhachi), Hamid Drake (drums, voice), live, New York, 2016



reading table

Three bowls of stew
and you feel
rich after all

—Yosa Buson (1716-1783), translated from Japanese by W.S. Merwin and Takako Lento

Wednesday, August 31st


Michel Portal (clarinets, accordion), Hamid Drake (drums), live, France (Le Mans), 2012



reading table

sings all day,
and day not long enough.

—Matsuo Basho (1644-1694), translated from Japanese by Lucien Stryk and Takashi Ikemoto

Saturday, July 30th

keep on dancing

M.A.K.U. SoundSystem, live (TV show), New York, 2016

Saturday, July 16th

sounds of Oslo, Amsterdam, and Chicago

What if your office sounded like this?

Paal Nilssen-Love Trio (PNL, drums, percussion; Ab Baars, clarinet, shakuhachi, tenor saxophone; Ken Vandermark, tenor saxophone, clarinet), live, Oslo, 2011



random sights

this morning, Chicago (Columbus Park)

FullSizeRender (87)

The flowers seem not to know—this park’s in one of the city’s most violent neighborhoods (Austin).

Saturday, June 25th

Entering his sound-world isn’t hard. What’s hard is leaving.

Tristan Murail (1947-), La Barque mystique, 1993

Monday, June 6th

yesterday in Chicago

At the Art Institute—next to Millennium Park, site of Saturday’s Gospel Fest—I heard this piece for the first time, played by three Chicago-based musicians (violinist Yuan-Qing Yu, clarinetist J. Lawrie Bloom, pianist Adam Nieman). It, too, sang.

Charles Ives (1874-1954), Largo for Violin, Clarinet, Piano (1901-02); Lucy Chapman-Stoltzman (violin), Richard Stoltzman (clarinet), Richard Goode (piano), 1990


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