Monday, April 20, 2015

Staccato-tom-catto: Gershwin plays the Rhapsody

'Shwin playing 'Shwin. One can easily hear the way the piece has drifted and evolved. I love the "laughing clarinet" at the beginning. A lot of those sassy "wah-wah-wah"s have been toned down too much in recent recordings, I think. This is a smart-ass/kick-ass piece of music that reminds me of those frenetic old silent cartoons. We have a much more polished and sophisticated Rhapsody now, I think, but we've also lost something. Joa-jj's playing is frenetic and has a sort of hoppity-boppity style you don't hear now. There's some really interesting rubato touches. He kind of jerks the tempo around, toys with it like an all-powerful god, which he is. Overall, he's much more staccato-tom-catto than the rest of them Sometimes he just plays like he's in a saloon. (A genius can do that.) And OH how I wish they hadn't had to edit it to fit on one side of a record!

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