Far from being just some ‘Klamauk’ Yan Svankmejer’s surrealist films are very well thought out statements about the human condition and its prevalent absurdities and perversions. Here is a short film that shows in an exemplary way what Svankmejer is all about:
It was one of the privileges in my life having been in contact with W G Sebald and exchanging letters over the subject of music shortly before his untimely death. Sebald comes from the same background as I do , the so called ‘Oberallgaeu’, where the city of Sonthofen sits at its very centre, he was […]
Here is some wonderfully idiomatic Gershwin playing, performed by Terry Harrington on an electric keyboard. What an amazing grasp of the music: I give it 100 out of 100.
Lee Luvisi is an outstanding pianist in every respect and if it wouldn’t be for you tube I probably would never heard of him. What a superb sound he creates, one of the most beautiful I have heard in a long time plus unfailing musicianship, what a delight to listen to his playing ! How is it possible […]
Could it be that the great art of Paderewski is nearly forgotten already ? He can definitely teach us a thing or two about Chopin and what is NOT about: flashy, self indulgent and sporty playing, but a music with a tremendous vision and power. Here is a truly breathtaking version by the old man […]
Musical perfection is a rare beast , but sometimes artists can achieve it. The truly incomparable soprano Kathleen Battle sang in 1987 three spirituals as encores at the Salzburg Festival with James Levine at the piano.The second of those spirituals ‘Witness” is such an event. Starting at 4.30 min.
As somebody who always sucked up American culture from Erle Stanley Gardner’s vast ocean of entertaining fiction to the delights of the Coen Brothers and Woody Allen, George Gershwin and his unique style has never ceased to fascinate me. Most interesting are his live electric recordings from the 1920ies. Here is one example:
One of the all time Greats was Nina Simone. Here a true classic. Utterly irresistible.
Talking about musical perfection: there is Mozart of course. And then a not universally agreed upon fact: Jascha Heifetz was one of his most accomplished performers. But that happened in the 1930’ies, when Heifetz recorded a few difficult to obtain violin sonatas and the mighty Divertimento KV 563 with William primrose and Emanuel Feuermann.This recording ( […]
One of the most inventive comedy series in Britain was “The Fast Show”. An amazing variety of highly original and hilarious sketches. “Jazz Club” was one of many featured, here is a taster ! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TebUMhJAKSM plus Johnny, the manic painter. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ldBHQSsiUok plus Ralph and Ted. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CjM89wRMY9I