music clip of the day


Category: violin

Thursday, May 25th

never enough

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750), Partita No. 2 in D minor
Itzhak Perlman (violin), live, London, 1978


art beat: other day, Art Institute of Chicago

Utagawa Hiroshige (1797-1858), Bullfinch on a camellia branch

Tuesday, April 18th

sounds of Russia

Alfred Schnittke (1934-98), Piano Quintet (1972-76), live (Katya Apekisheva, piano; Boris Brovtsyn, Julia-Maria Kretz, violins; Amihai Grosz, viola; Torleif Thedéen, cello), Netherlands, 2010



random sights

other day, outside Chicago (Chicago Botanic Garden)

(Taking a break—back in a while.)

Thursday, April 13th

old school

Tommy Jarrell (fiddle, vocals), “Cripple Creek,” live, Mt. Airy, N.C., 1983

Wednesday, April 5th

Another take.

Maurice Ravel (1875-1937), String Quartet in F major (1903)
Hagen Quartet, live, Austria (Salzburg), 2000

1st movt.

2nd movt.

3rd movt.

4th movt.

Tuesday, April 4th

Sometimes I just want to be swept away.

Maurice Ravel (1875-1937), String Quartet in F major (1903), 1st Mvt.
Takács Quartet, live, New York, 2017




reading table

cloud becomes a mountain
a cloud

—Kobayashi Issa (1763-1827), translated from Japanese by David G. Lanoue

Monday, March 13th

Saturday night, in Chicago, at the Museum of Contemporary Art, I heard the Spektral Quartet. They performed a single piece, this one, which lasted not one, or two, or three, or four, but five hours. Awash in sounds and silences, I got up out of my metal chair, I looked at my watch, I checked my text messages, my email, not once.

Morton Feldman (1926-1987, MCOTD Hall of Fame*), String Quartet No. 2 (excerpt), Flux Quartet, live, 2013



random sights

this morning, Oak Park, Ill.



*With saxophonists Von Freeman and Henry Threadgill; trumpeter Lester Bowie; drummer Hamid Drake; gospel singer Dorothy Love Coates; poets John Berryman, William Bronk, and Wislawa Szymborska; and photographer Helen Levitt.

Saturday, March 4th

never enough

This took my breath away—more than once.

Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827), Violin Concerto; Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra (Philippe Herreweghe, cond.) with Patricia Kopatchinskaja (violin), live, 2014

Wednesday, February 22nd


Miranda Cuckson, violin; Michael Hersch (1971-), Fourteen Pieces for unaccompanied violin, excerpt; live, 2009


Monday, February 20th

Yesterday, in Chicago, at the Art Institute, I heard this woman play the violin. She played for well over an hour, by herself, without intermission. She performed seven pieces: the earliest, by Pierre Boulez (Anthèmes 1), was composed in 1992; the latest, by Steve Lehman (En Soi), this year. When a performer surrenders to the music wholeheartedly, she invites you, the listener, to do the same. And I did, gratefully.

Miranda Cuckson, violin

Ralph Shapey (1921-2002), Etchings (1945; excerpt), 2009


Playing and talking, 2015




Saturday, February 4th

never enough

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750), Partitas No. 1 (B minor), 2 (D minor), and 3 (E major) for solo violin; Gidon Kremer (violin), live, Austria (Lockenhaus), 2006



art beat: other day, Art Institute of Chicago

Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890), Grapes, Lemons, Pears and Apples, 1887



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