music clip of the day


Tag: Leo Janacek

Monday, February 18th

yesterday afternoon 

I took a journey that began in late 18th-century Austria, proceeded to mid-20th-century Russia, and concluded in early 20th-century France. Joseph Haydn, Dmitri Shostakovich, Maurice Ravel—they were the hosts. These folks, playing at the University of Chicago’s new Logan Arts Center, were the guides. If one day I learned that my life would be over at midnight, I’d be happy to spend the afternoon, after lunching at a Mexican restaurant (maybe Nuevo Leon on 18th Street), listening to a string quartet.

Pacifica Quartet, New York, 2009; Leo Janacek (1854-1928), String Quartet No. 2 (“Intimate Letters”), first movement

Sunday, 1/29/12

 joy, n. exultation of spirit; gladness, delight. E.g., Calvary Baptist Church in West Philadelphia, with John Legend singing “How I Got Over” (2011).



listening room: (some of) what’s playing

• Theo Parrish, Sound Sculptures, Vol. 1 (Sound Signature)

• Coldcut, 70 Minutes of Madness (Journeys by DJ)

• O.V. Wright, Wright Stuff (Hi UK)

• Bertha “Chippie” Hill, 1925-1929 (Document)

• Animal Collective, Merriweather Post Pavilion (Domino)

• The Fisk Jubilee Quartet, There Breathes A Hope (Archeophone)

•  This May Be The Last Time Singing: Raw African-American Gospel on 45 RPM 1957-1982 (Tompkins Square)

• Lester Bowie’s Brass Fantasy, I Only Have Eyes For You (ECM)

• Chicago Underground Trio, Slon (Thrill Jockey)

• Charlie Christian, The Genius of the Electric Guitar (Sony)

• The Best of the Nat King Cole Trio: Vocal Classics, 1942-46 (Blue Note)

• Chicago Underground Trio, Slon (Thrill Jockey)

• Miles Davis, Legendary Prestige Quintet Sessions (Prestige)

• Bill Dixon with Exploding Star Orchestra (Thrill Jockey)

• Mahmoud Ahmed, Ethiopiques 19 (Buda Musique)

• Ludwig van Beethoven/Julliard String Quartet, String Quartets Nos. 13 & 16 (Sony)

• Ludwig van Beethoven/Solomon, Piano Concertos Nos. 3 & 5 (EMI)

• Ludwig van Beethoven/Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, Herbert von Karajan cond., Symphony No. 7 (Deutsche Grammaphon)

• Bela Bartok/Hungarian String Quartet, String Quartets Nos. 1-6 (Deutsche Grammaphon)

• Bela Bartok/Takacs Quartet, String Quartets Nos. 5-6 (Hungaroton)

• Boulez Conducts Boulez (Deutsche Grammaphon)

• Cleveland Orchestra, Pierre Boulez cond./Mitsuko Uchida, Arnold Schoenberg, Anton Webern, Alban Berg (Philips)

• Morton Feldman, For Bunita Marcus, Markus Hinterhauser, piano (Col Legno)

• Morton Feldman, Piano and String Quartet, Aki Takahashi, Kronos Quartet (Nonesuch)

• Hawthorne String Quartet, Pavel Haas (String Quartets Nos. 2 and 3), Hans Krasa (String Quartet) (London)

• Pavel Haas Quartet, Leo Janacek (String Quartet No. 1), Pavel Haas (String Quartets Nos. 1 and 3) (Supraphon)

• Arvo Part, Litany (ECM)

• Arnold Schoenberg/LaSalle Quartet, String Quartets Nos. 3 and 4 (Brilliant Classics)

• Robert Schumann/Zehetmair Quartett, String Quartets Nos. 1 & 3 (ECM)

• Zehetmair Quartet, Bela Bartok (String Quartet No. 5), Paul Hindemith (String Quartet No. 4) (ECM)

• WKCR-FM (broadcasting from Columbia University)

—Bach Festival
Bird Flight (Phil Schaap, jazz [Charlie Parker])
Eastern Standard Time (Carter Van Pelt, Jamaican music)


Mudd Up! (DJ/Rupture“new bass and beats”)
Sinner’s Crossroads 
(Kevin Nutt, gospel)
Give the Drummer Some (Doug Schulkind, sui generis, Web only)
Lamin’s Show (sui generis)

Tuesday, 1/10/12

What you want, sometimes, is to lose yourself, even if only briefly, in beauty.

Leo Janacek (1854-1928), String Quartet No. 1, “The Kreutzer Sonata,” excerpt (arr. Tognetti), Australian Chamber Orchestra



random thoughts

When you’re young you want to find yourself; when you’re old you want to lose yourself.


reading table

Variations for Two Pianos

for Thomas Higgins, pianist

by Donald Justice

There is no music now in all of Arkansas.
Higgins is gone, taking both his pianos.

Movers dismantled the instruments, away
Sped the vans. The first detour untuned the strings.

There is no music now in all of Arkansas.

Up Main Street, past the cold shopfronts of Conway,
The brash, self-important brick of the college,

Higgins is gone, taking both his pianos.

Warm evenings, the windows open, he would play
Something of Mozart’s for his pupils, the birds.

There is no music now in all of Arkansas.

How shall the mockingbird mend her trill, the jay
His eccentric attack, lacking a teacher?

Higgins is gone, taking both his pianos.
There is no music now in all of Arkansas.

%d bloggers like this: