music

happy anniversary to an old friend

Homage to Sgt Pepper

When I read that today is Sgt Pepper Day, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the release of one of my favorite records of all time I remembered that the record that I bought fifty years ago lives in a box of vinyls in the basement of our house. Since it has been many years since I last took it out it seemed the perfect time to re-visit an old friend that was once so familiar to me.  Like many of you I suspect, I knew all the words to all of the great songs, but one in particular left a lasting impression.

    

    

Listening to When I’m Sixty Four in 1967 it seemed to be so many years into the future that I couldn’t imagine ever being such an age. Now, fifty years later, I see sixty four in my rear view mirror by a few years.  What happened? Well, I still have my Valentine and even my hair, but best of all beautiful “Grandchildren on my knee,” so “Who could ask for more.”

Enjoy John, Paul, George and Ringo from one of the greatest albums of all time…

…”They’re guaranteed to raise a smile

“There’s a battle outside and it is ragin'”

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I couldn’t resist re-purposing this image, which I originally posted three years ago, as a final submission for this week’s Photo Challenge: H2O, to celebrate the Nobel Prize for Literature being awarded to Bob Dylan today. I shall never forget hearing “The Times They Are A Changin'” for the first time in the sixties. His lyrics seem even more relevent today than they did all those years ago.

Read them, listen to them, reflect on them.

 

“Come gather ’round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You’ll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you
Is worth savin’
Then you better start swimmin’
Or you’ll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin’.

Come writers and critics
Who prophesize with your pen
And keep your eyes wide
The chance won’t come again
And don’t speak too soon
For the wheel’s still in spin
And there’s no tellin’ who
That it’s namin’
For the loser now
Will be later to win
For the times they are a-changin’.

Come senators, congressmen
Please heed the call
Don’t stand in the doorway
Don’t block up the hall
For he that gets hurt
Will be he who has stalled
There’s a battle outside
And it is ragin’
It’ll soon shake your windows
And rattle your walls
For the times they are a-changin’.

Come mothers and fathers
Throughout the land
And don’t criticize
What you can’t understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road is
Rapidly agin’
Please get out of the new one
If you can’t lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin’.

The line it is drawn
The curse it is cast
The slow one now
Will later be fast
As the present now
Will later be past
The order is
Rapidly fadin’
And the first one now
Will later be last
For the times they are a-changin’.”

Bob Dylan  1963

Balletlujah revisited

dance i

Last June I was inspired by a CBC documentary on the Alberta Ballet Company’s Balletlujah, a celebration of the music of K.D.Lang. My posts on Days 170 and 173 of my 365 day challenge were an expression of that inspiration using photographs I took from my TV screen during the CBC broadcast. For this week’s Photo Challenge: Dance I thought I would revisit those photographs and share with you the magic and sublime beauty of the dancers as they performed both on stage and in the warm Canadian prairie sunshine to the magnificent voice of K.D.Lang.

This is the Alberta Ballet Company’s description of Balletlujah for their 2015-2016 Season:

A true Albertan artistic triumph, Balletlujah! is a remarkable dance creation born from an intimate collaboration between two of Alberta’s most celebrated artists: k.d. lang and Jean Grand-Maître. It features a visually stunning homage to the people and landscapes of the Canadian prairies which shaped lang’s profound vision of music and life. Over 17 incomparable interpretations, including “Constant Craving,” “Big Boned Gal” and “Hallelujah,” Balletlujah! traces the unique journey of a young woman who abandons her hometown for romance and the City of Angels – but the mystical prairies will call her back to her treasured roots and to her true love.

Enjoy K.D.Lang’s wonderful interpretation of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah, which he described as being done to its “ultimate, blissful state of perfection.”

a little MOZ…ART

MozArt

delete accents – acrylic on canvas 36″x 47″

Color harmony and tone come together with a little piece of Mozart.

The story of the painting, which I painted a few years ago, is worth re-telling. It began when I was attempting to master Mozart’s Piano Sonata in C, K 330, (without much success I might add). I had obtained a copy of the music in a music sale and as I struggled to learn it I became more and more intrigued by all of the marginalia written by whoever had been my predecessor. I particularly enjoyed, and could relate to, the note written presumably by his or her music teacher, “breathe”. You will find the small section I used for the painting at the top of the page.

Sonata K330

For the completeness of this week’s Photo Challenge I thought I would search for a recording of the Sonata and found one by Deutsche Grammophon of Vladimir Horowitz in 1986, which was recorded in Moscow.

Why not follow along with the music and enjoy the mastery of one of the greatest pianists who has ever lived.

A Little Mozart iii

Studio 365: Day 296

viii

If you go down to the woods today…

Walking in the woods today the music and words of Teddy Bear’s Picnic immediately came to my mind as I tramped in muddy boots through the trees. I hadn’t thought about the song for many years but it’s one that is so familiar to me, and I suspect to many of your reading this, and yet I knew nothing about its origins. Thanks to Wikipedia I discovered the melody was written by the American composer John Walter Bratton in 1907, and the lyrics were added by the Irish songwriter Jimmy Kennedy in 1932. The first vocal recording was by Henry Hall and his orchestra in 1932. Enjoy his classic recording as you “go down to the woods” with me, although “you better go in disguise.”


Day 296

Studio 365: Day 116

Man in Motion

Day 116 viii

Maestro Donato Cabrera conducting the Las Vegas Philharmonic.


Last night we enjoyed a sublime evening of music at the Smith Centre for the Performing Arts here in Las Vegas. The added pleasure was watching Maestro Cabrera painting the music in the air with his baton, thrusting, smoothing, coaxing as he directed the Las Vegas Philharmonic in exhilarating performances of John Adams’ The Chairman Dances, Foxtrot for Orchestra and Tchaikovsky’s 5th Symphony.

Day 116

The concert was made even more memorable by the guest soloist, the brilliant pianist Joyce Yang, winner of the Silver Medal at the 12th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition in 2005, playing Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini. Her exquisite performance brought us all to our feet, applauding, cheering and shouting Bravo, Bravo, adding to a night full of both motion and emotion. In the pre-concert discussion with the audience she gave away the secret to her genius: fifteen to twenty hours of practice to learn one minute of music.

After the concert was over Miss Yang greeted everyone in the foyer and graciously signed our CD’s. Two more treasures to take home tonight after ten spectacular days, as we say our farewells to family and return to Vancouver.

Palette Cleanser

Photography 101: Water –  We want to see your interpretation of water — how might your image reveal more about you?

Water i

Water, the essential element in the life of the studio.

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And so you have the story behind the name of my blog “revealed”…

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If you have a few moments listen to the Lentement from Handel’s Water Music played by Jordi Savall and Le Concert Des Nations, and enjoy a few changing palettes as you do so.

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