Archive for May, 2009

There Will Be Blood

May 31, 2009

…just wait for it.  Tonight was the night that I saw Brahms’ violin concerto performed live for the very first time.  This is one of those pieces that will always make my mother cry and will always remind me of THERE WILL BE BLOOD.  Rarely has a piece of [existing] music served a film so well.  I was really looking forward to this performance and, in the end, I was disappointed.  Or, I was disappointed until the end.  I’m not quite sure what the problem was.  There were moments when I was less-than-impressed by the soloist, but I’m not sure if she was really to blame.  I think her instrument went out of tune during the first movement and it was sometimes difficult to hear her solo lines over the rest of the orchestra.  But it was impossible to get any sense of the orchestra because the piece sounded like it was swimming under water.  I couldn’t really hear the piece because it was moving so slow.  I wondered if this was one of those pieces that sounds better on record than live in the concert hall.  Nope!  The third movement SUNG!  I always found it curious that my recording of the piece appears to invite in a choir at the end.  Were there singers?  I had the same impression tonight when everyone dug into those first dramatic notes of the third movement.  Who was singing!   No one – just all those instruments blended together in perfect harmony.  I imagine that the sensation of flying feels something like the sound of this piece – nothing short of glorious!

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Sweet, Sweet, Sweet, Sweet!

May 31, 2009

Heh heh heh.  That’s a little inside joke for anyone who was lucky enough to catch Neko Case this past Friday night.  And that is very much THE problem with Neko – the woman makes you hungry.  Friday was something of an ‘off’ night for her.  She was visibly tired and she finally just announced her discomfort to all of the sold out house.  And yet, she is the consummate professional.  Her voice will not sit down!  She’ll stand there feeling sick and still belt her tunes like there’s no tomorrow.  How can that not make you hungry or greedy or just plain desperate for more?

I have no idea where I was going from there!  I just found this post from over a month ago.  It was sitting there with my swooning thoughts about a long ago Gwen Ifill book signing and my total admiration for an astonishingly reasonable speech by Marjane Satrapi.  It’s probably best to dispose of all three posts and just declare my love outright for these righteous, righteous ladies.