Carrie Rodriguez is a Texan singer-songwriter and violinist whose repertoire includes country, folk and rock, but is at her best when she explores her Mexican roots. Her great aunt Eva Garza, a Spanish-language singing star in the 1940s, inspired Rodriguez to “create my own blend of Tex-Mex music”. It’s a mix of classic Mexican songs, many slow and unashamedly emotional, and her own compositions, which are often in the ranchera tradition. The opener, Perfidia, shows how well Rodriguez has succeeded. She revives this tuneful, well-worn song of betrayal with pained, attacking vocals, helped by strong harmony work by Raul Malo and glorious twanging guitar by the great Bill Frisell. Elsewhere, there’s a powerful treatment of the 30s love song Noche de Ronda. Rodriguez’s compositions have a dash of country-blues and include a tribute to the ranchera star Lola Beltrán. This is a fresh, confident set.
Official Release #85. This triple volume package contains an audio documentary tracing the conception and construction of Frank Zappa's We're Only in It for the Money (1968) and Lumpy Gravy (1968) masterworks. As the second entry in the Project/Object series (the first being the MoFo Project/Object in 2006 that gathered four CDs worth of goodies from the Freak Out! era), the modus operandi for Lumpy Money (2009) remains much the same as its predecessor. Presented within are primary components from both works in several unique – and formerly unissued – incarnations and configurations. It should also be noted that neither of Zappa's mid-'90s approved masters for We're Only in It for the Money or Lumpy Gravy are found here. Instead of retreading those – which (as of this 2009 writing) remain in print on the Rykodisc label – the nearly three-and-a-half hours served up here offer an embarrassment of insight into the development of the music, as well as the modular recording style that Zappa was evermore frequently incorporating into his craft.
The young Swiss cellist Christian Poltéra released three remarkable discs of Swiss modernist music in 2007. First came Othmar Schoeck's concerto and sonata for cello plus four song transcriptions for cello and piano. Then came Arthur Honegger's concerto and sonata for cello plus two sonatines. And last there was this one, Frank Martin's concerto and ballade for cello and 8 Preludes for orchestra.