The Classical Variations

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Alex Henderson
Despite his excesses, pianist/arranger Uri Caine is a musician who commands admiration and respect. His experimentation hasn't always paid off; at times, Caine's work has been audacious for the sake of being audacious. But when you're evaluating a musician, you have to look at the big picture -- and Caine's willingness to take risks has served him well more often than not. It generally serves him well on The Classical Variations, which finds Caine putting his orchestral jazz/classical spin on Ludwig van Beethoven, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Johann Sebastian Bach, and other Euro-classical icons. This 72-minute CD offers a combination of previously released recordings which ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Alex Henderson
Despite his excesses, pianist/arranger Uri Caine is a musician who commands admiration and respect. His experimentation hasn't always paid off; at times, Caine's work has been audacious for the sake of being audacious. But when you're evaluating a musician, you have to look at the big picture -- and Caine's willingness to take risks has served him well more often than not. It generally serves him well on The Classical Variations, which finds Caine putting his orchestral jazz/classical spin on Ludwig van Beethoven, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Johann Sebastian Bach, and other Euro-classical icons. This 72-minute CD offers a combination of previously released recordings which come from Caine albums that include Diabelli Variations, Love Fugue, and Uri Caine Plays Mozart and previously released material. Because 11 of the 20 selections were previously released, The Classical Variations shouldn't be considered a best-of; instead, it is an album that uses both new and old recordings in service of the variations theme. And while some consumers might object to paying for a CD that isn't a true best-of yet only contains about 55 percent new material, The Classical Variations nonetheless has a lot going for it. Jazz and Euro-classical are the disc's primary influences, but Caine incorporates everything from Jewish klezmer to hip-hop. Some jazz snobs and classical snobs will cry foul, insisting that the influence of hip-hop has no place on an album that has anything to do with either jazz or classical. But then, Caine has never worried about offending purists of either the jazz variety or the classical variety -- and even though The Classical Variations can be self-indulgent at times, the disc nonetheless gives listeners many reasons to think highly of his artistry.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/11/2008
  • Label: Winter & Winter
  • UPC: 025091014521
  • Catalog Number: 145
  • Sales rank: 125,823

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Uri Caine Primary Artist, Piano, Fortepiano
David Moss Vocals
David Binney Alto Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone
Don Byron Clarinet
Michael Formanek Bass
Greg Osby Alto Saxophone
Ralph Peterson Drums
Bob Stewart Tuba
Dominic Cortese Accordion
Ralph Alessi Trumpet
Jim Black Drums
Mark Feldman Violin
Erik Friedlander Cello
James Genus Bass
Drew Gress Bass
Joyce Hammann Violin
Mark Ledford Vocals
Chris Speed Clarinet
Barbara Walker Vocals
Josh Roseman Trombone
David Gilmore Guitar
Nguyên Lê Guitar
DJ Logic Turntables
DJ Olive Turntables
Paolo Biordi Soprano Viola
Cordula Breuer Soprano Recorder
Cristiano Contadin Bass Viol
Michael Freimuth Lute
Wolfgang Kläsener Conductor
Rodney Prada Tenor Viola
Concerto Köln Ensemble
John Hebert Bass
Josefine Lindstrand Vocals
Vittorio Ghielmi Bass Viol
Mark Ledford Vocals
Kettwiger Bach-Ensemble Choir, Chorus
Technical Credits
Uri Caine Composer
Stefan F. Winter Producer, Executive Producer
Julie Patton Text
Mariko Takahashi Executive Producer
Shulamith Wechter Caine Text
Julie Paton Text
Stefan Winter Producer, Executive Producer
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