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Music News 11/12/2014

The Capitol Hill Chorale’s Paliashvili

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Zakaria Paliashvili (1871 -1933) is considered the father of Georgian classical music, but is little know in the West. After discovering the work, then after years of dogged scholarly research, the Capitol Hill Chorale has recorded Paliashvili: Georgian Sacred Chants on the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom (Capitol Hill Chorale, $20), one of the composer’s greatest works, in the original Georgian for the first time. Georgian Sacred Chants was written in 1909, and Paliashvili emphasized the ancient Georgian chant traditions within the work, balancing the Georgian and Russian choral practices. “Too Russian for Georgians and too Georgian for Russians,” the work was only performed once in the composer’s lifetime, and recorded once in Church Slavonic. The Chorale created a new performing edition, and sings the original Georgian text, under the direction of Fred Binkholder. The CD includes a 32-page booklet with program notes, and full texts in Georgian, English, and English transliteration.

NOTE: There was a good piece on the Chorale and the making of the album on WAMU’s Metro Connection.




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Lost on the River: The New Basement Tapes (Harvest Records, $11.98) – Bob Dylan sent T Bone Burnett some lyrics he wrote in 1967, around the time he and the Band recorded the songs on The Basement Tapes (the full set was released last week). Burnett recruited singer/songwriters young and old—Elvis Costello, Rhiannon Giddens (Carolina Chocolate Drops), Jim James (My Morning Jacket), Marcus Mumford (Mumford & Sons), Taylor Goldsmith (Dawes)—to craft melodies to the lyrics, and record them together. The all-star group call themselves The New Basement Tapes.

Bette Midler, It’s the Girls! (WB, $17.98) – From the very beginning of her career, Bette Midler has been inspired by the harmonies of the Andrew Sisters and the girl groups of the 1960s. On It’s the Girls!, she dives into this delightful material with writer/arranger Marc Shaiman (Hairspray), covering great songs by the Boswell Sisters, the Ronettes, the Chiffons, the Chordettes, the Marvelettes, among others. Listen to the Divine Miss M talk about the project on NPR.

Martha Argerich  & Daniel Barenboim, Piano Duos: Mozart, Schubert, Stravinsky (Deutsche Grammophon, $18.98) – Argerich and Barenboim, both from Argentina and friend for 60 years, recorded as a piano duo for the first time, captured live in Berlin in April of this year. They perform Mozart’s Sonata for 2 Pianos KV 448, Schubert’s Variations on an Original Theme D 813, and the show-stopping centerpiece, Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring (Version for Piano Duet).