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a column about the music of people's lives
this is supposed to be a picture of some dude playing the piano in front of a stained glass window!
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These are some of my former piano students from Baltimore. Can't see them? sorry about that.
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In Praise of Chicken

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 hotdog review

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Hall of Fame

This week's featured recording:

III. Allegro from Trumpet Sonata in F
by Pietro Baldassare
Jeremy McBain, Trumpet

Trumpet and organ seems a congenial combination, though it often gives rise to music of a regal nature, and while the king himself did not attend our concert in November of 2013, we gave the small audience who braved the tornado warning something to feel splendid about. Here is a bit of it.


New on the Blog  
Monday 4/13
You can say that again

four notes hidden throughout and in various ways--but far more sonically pleasing than a word search

Wednesday 4/15

"Scientists discover the nostalgia gene"

It's everywhere in Schumann's Kinderscenen. But how does it affect you?

Friday 4/17
House concert
What I'm up to this evening

upcoming performances....
--The Central Illinois Children's Chorus spring concert, Sunday, May 3, 3:30 pm, Faith UMC, 1719 S. Prospect Rd. admission $5
--concert with "The Chorale"  Sunday May 10, 7 pm. Craig Jessop and Julie Beyler conduct music of John Rutter with chorus and orchestra
   Faith UMC, 1719 Prospect Rd. admission free
--gig with "Timezone" Saturday May 29 at "Cowboy Monkey" in Champaign, time TBA (9pm-ish?)

April 17th house concert

If you weren't at the house concert I gave on April 17th, you can experience it via the web--by listening to recordings of (nearly) every piece on the program and reading about my thoughts on the composers and their music. If you were at said concert, you can experience it all over again, in whole or in part. Enjoy!

                     The program 

    The Simpletons of Sologne
     In Imitation of Birds

Schumann: Scenes from Childhood
Of Strange Lands and People
Curious Story
Blind man's Bluff
Pleading Child
Happy Enough
Important Event
By the Fireside
Knight of the Hobbyhorse
Almost too Serious
Child Falling Asleep
The Author Speaks

Kotzwara: The Battle of Prague

--pause for food---

Satie: Sports and Recreations
Choral inappetissant
La Belancoire
La Chasse
La Comedie italienne
Le Reveil de la Mariee
La Peche
Le Yachting
Le Bain de mer
Le Carnaval
Le Golf
La Pieuvre
Les Courses
Les Quatre-coins
Le Picque-nique
Le Water-chute
Le Tango perpetuel
Le Traineau
Le Flirt
Le Feu d'artifice
Le Tennis

Joplin: The Crush Collision March
Joplin: The Maple Leaf Rag
"Use Your Imagination"
When is a piece of music not simply a piece of music? Is that healthy? Pieces of music with interesting titles and the reasons (or lack of reasons) behind them.

the "Use Your Imagination" Concert blog series

If you want to find out what on earth I was thinking while preparing the concert...my thoughts on (mostly) the music


The Satie
The music around here is clearly going downhill
The thrill of distraction and the agony of the absurd

It's not what it sounds like

The Tasty Science

The Kotzwara
This is how little girls got to play soldiers in the 19th century

Two historical reenactments of Kotzwara's "Battle of Prague"

The Schumann
Scenes or Impressions

You Can Say That Again
Scientists Discover the Nostalgia Gene  

for more punishment here is a short series from 2013 on the first piece in the set.....
The Sound of Nostalgia
     The Power of the Obvious
     That doesn't really work, does it? Have you tried...
     The Beauty of interpretation  

The Joplin
Notes on a Very Polite Train Wreck
 (coming next week)


At the risk of looking like Amazon, people who liked those articles also liked--well, here is some supplemental material on the composers or pieces from this concert:  

 Respecting Mr. Joplin 

Joplin's battle to bring dignity to his person and his art
Erik Satie, the Individual

Topping the Charts 

An Uberpopular cell phone ringtone signals the decline of civilization for those who like to lament this sort of thing