Part of Classics' excellent chronological series, this examines Jelly Roll's recordings from 1923 to 1924, beginning with a Paramount single with his orchestra, "Big Fat Ham," followed by "Muddy Water Blues." Next up are the first six issued Gennett piano solos, then stray singles by Morton's Jazz Band, Steamboat Four, and Stomp Kings. These are proceeded by four more piano solo sides, which were cut for Paramount, before finishing out with a marathon piano solo session for Gennett in 1924.
There's always been a crossover appeal among avant, jazz artists with renegade contemporary classical composers. As with various musical forms, and perhaps life in general, rules are sometimes meant to be broken. String Quartet features a 1979-penned composition by Morton Feldman, recorded by the highly-regarded Dutch group known as the Charles Ives Ensemble.
This program offers three lively, colorful, and captivating orchestral works by two United States composers, born almost a century apart. These pieces exhibit the fruitful exchange and flow of musical material between North and South America that has long played a role in popular music, apparent not only in commercial song and dance music using Latin American melodies and rhythms but also in early jazz and blues where tango rhythms are so often heard, as in W. C. Handy's St. Louis Blues. And both Gottschalk in the 1850s, close to the beginning of a creative American musical tradition, and Gould in the 1950s, when such a tradition had flowered considerably, show a combination of seriousness of approach with a popular touch.
One of the characteristics of Morton Feldman's music is the way silences are thrown into stark relief. Each silence - freighted with memory, charged with expectation - becomes a unique presence in the music more than merely an absence of it. Though his silences are measured in units of time, they also contain an intimation of infinity. The music of the "classical" tradition slows down, speeds up, layers and otherwise manipulates time. Of the other arts, only cinema plays with our temporal perception to a greater degree.