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The Kaleidoscopic Tones of Christmas

However uplifting Messiah and the Christmas Oratorio may be, even after all the recordings and annual performances, I’d grab for Heinrich Schütz’s Christmas Story (Historia der Geburt Jesu Christi) even…

Rasta Notes

“He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man.” — Psalms 104:14 “I don’t have a credit card or bank account or any…

Sierra Nevada World Music Festival 2011: Peace. Love. Music. And Tacos

Late on Friday afternoon, winding carefully towards Boonville through the lovely hills on Highway 128 near metropolitan Yorkville, we saw a car upside down next to the road. There were…

Living Musical Legend; Unlikely Sex Symbol Willie Nelson

Halfway into his recent nonstop 2-hours-plus set at San Francisco’s fabled Fillmore, Willie Nelson eased into one of his more romantic hits, “You Were Always on My Mind.” Begging for…

My Butt: The Musical

My Butt: The Musical

“If a man love the labor of any trade, apart from any question of success or fame, then God has called him.” Robert Louis Stevenson So… some extremely wealthy and…

Prince Did It Way Better Faking It With The Black-Eyed Peas & Obama

The transformation of the NFL — and by extension all professional leagues — from sports to entertainment can be seen most clearly in the evolution of the Super Bowl half-time…

First The Downers, Then The Uppers

Using music as medicine goes back to Antiquity and beyond. The Greeks were not alone in recognizing that music was powerful stuff, capable of not only calming the body, but…

The Greatest Pianist Ever

It’s almost impossible to evoke good music in print, especially the dazzling and extraordinary sound of the world’s greatest pianist, Art Tatum. But, that’s not for lack of trying. Here’s…

Come, Let Us Run Barefoot Through the Surging Surf of Schlock: Kristmas Kitsch

Christmas is the most musical season. Melodies embedded in the memory are reanimated to light the fires of commerce, Christian devotion, and the family romance, packaging the Christmas Experience in…

Unexpected Encounters With Greatness

Being present at a musical performance of unex­pected greatness is even more memorable than having high expectations met. When I heard Rostropovich with the Boston Symphony under Seiji Ozawa in…

Bach On The Accordion? High Plains Trudgery

An increasing number of drawing-room revolutionar­ies have begun to discuss their strategies to overthrow that despot, the musical score. Rather than treat the notes on the page with slavish admiration,…

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