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Meyer, Bottesini: Concertos

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - EJ Johnson
On the face of it, Edgar Meyer and Giovanni Bottesini 1821-1889, the two composers represented on this entertaining and out-of-the-ordinary album, wouldn't seem to have that much in common; one is a leading figure in today's American musical scene, the other a nearly forgotten 19th-century Italian. It turns out, though, that in addition to being composers, both are supreme virtuosos of that unsung instrument, the double bass, and share, in very different ways, a wonderfully playful approach to music. Many listeners will already be familiar with Meyer and his style-hopping ways through his award-winning albums such as Appalachian Journey, Perpetual Motion, and his ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - EJ Johnson
On the face of it, Edgar Meyer and Giovanni Bottesini 1821-1889, the two composers represented on this entertaining and out-of-the-ordinary album, wouldn't seem to have that much in common; one is a leading figure in today's American musical scene, the other a nearly forgotten 19th-century Italian. It turns out, though, that in addition to being composers, both are supreme virtuosos of that unsung instrument, the double bass, and share, in very different ways, a wonderfully playful approach to music. Many listeners will already be familiar with Meyer and his style-hopping ways through his award-winning albums such as Appalachian Journey, Perpetual Motion, and his extraordinary recording of Bach Cello Suites on double bass!. Bottesini is another matter, but rest assured you're in for a discovery. Both composers supply a pair of works to the billing here; Meyer plies his bass in each, enlisting two frequent collaborators -- cellist Yo-Yo Ma and violinist Joshua Bell -- to join him for two of them: Ma in Meyer's Double Concerto and Bell in Bottesini's lighthearted showstopper, the Gran Duo Concertante. Filling out the program is Bottesini's B Minor Concerto and Meyer's Concerto in D, both for solo bass and orchestra. Meyer's own compositions could never be mistaken for anything but American, borrowing generously from jazz, the blues, and Appalachian fiddling. Just listen to the melody if you can call it that of the opening movement of the Double Concerto 1995, which evokes a blues guitar riff, or try the last movement of the Concerto in D 1993, which might best be described as a psychedelic hoedown. Still, the orchestral writing is lush, with hints of Bartók every now and again. Bottesini's music, however, comes from a very different tradition. Grand, broadly melodic, and instantly appealing, it wears its insouciance on its sleeve. The B Minor Concerto is a dazzling virtuoso display for the bass, but the Gran Duo is the real winner: Technical fireworks mingle with music of simple charm and operatic lyricism, and Meyer and Bell pull it off with all the effortless delight one could hope for.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/11/2002
  • Label: Sony
  • UPC: 074646095621
  • Catalog Number: 60956
  • Sales rank: 85,474

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Edgar Meyer Primary Artist, Double Bass
Yo-Yo Ma Cello
Joshua Bell Violin
Hugh Wolff Conductor, Conductor
Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra Performing Ensemble, Ensemble
St. Paul Chamber Orchestra Ensemble
Technical Credits
Richard King Engineer
John Schaefer Liner Notes
Steven Epstein Producer
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Amazing bassplaying

    Edgar Meyer has one of the most personal playing style of all classical bassplayers I know. It feels like his style comes mostly from his Bluegrass playing. Little vibrato and he allows frases to breath, giving also gaps between frases. Perfect in intonation and his security is unbelievable. (He's doing rather fast tempos in I and III movm. in the Bottesini concerto). Playing his own great cadenzas who are so full of invention and youth. Before the cadenzas (I and III movm.Bottesini)he makes a tempo change...I won't say more, you have to hear this for your self. His own music is almost as close to bluegrass as classical music will ever get. I'm not so impressed about the compositions but the playing is good. Josuha Bell and Yo Yo Ma, help making this cd a must for every music lover. For Bass players: This is the most fresh and solid Bottesini performance I've heard.

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