Communist Sousa: Happy 4th

Once again, we bring you the Soviet-era Czechoslovak Brass Orchestra, conducted by Rudolf Urbanec, this time performing Sousa’s “The Thunderer” right in the groove. Happy Independence Day.

Soviet-era Sousa

From my favorite Sousa recording, made in Soviet-era Czechoslovakia, the “George Washington Bicentennial” March.

Two sides of Bach

Review: Baroque Music Festival, Corona del Mar illuminates two sides of Bach. The Orange County Register, June 23, 2015.

Graun hogs day at Baroque Music Festival, Corona del Mar

Sorry, couldn’t resist the pun …

Review: Graun gets his day at Baroque Music Festival, Corona del Mar. The Orange County Register, June 22, 2015.

How to make a martini for Dad on Father’s Day (or any day)

North By Northwest Plaza

The first step in making a good martini is to throw away your vodka. Sorry, but there it is. No self-respecting martini drinker would be caught alive with a so-called “vodka martini” in his hand, a misnomer if there ever was one, since there is no such thing. Martinis are made with gin. Deal with it.

Making a martini is really rather simple (unless, perhaps, you’ve had a couple), but it’s also pretty easy to mess up. But to my mind, when properly made, there’s no more satisfying after-work, pre-dinner drink to be had — clean, medicinal and, best of all, powerful — so follow my instructions closely.

First (OK, second, since you’ve already thrown away the vodka), slap a Dean Martin CD on the stereo. Listen for a while, then turn it off, so you can concentrate. I’ll trust that you have martini glasses and a metal cocktail shaker. If not, stop reading and go to the store now (try Crate and Barrel).

Read more…

Preview: 35th Baroque Music Festival, Corona del Mar

35th annual Baroque Music Festival, Corona del Mar will focus on Bach. The Orange County Register, June 19, 2015.

Review: 69th annual Ojai Music Festival

Review: 69th annual Ojai Music Festival is chock-full affair. The Orange County Register, June 18, 2015.

photo: Mariah Tauger for the Ojai Music Festival.

From the archive: Vinko Globokar, Nov. 24, 2000

(Editor’s note: I had forgotten that I had heard the composer himself perform “?Corporel”.)

A one-man band of surreal sound // REVIEW: Avant-garde musician Vinko Globokar offers a survey of his experimental works, with humor attached.
By TIMOTHY MANGAN
Published:  11/24/2000

If you haven’t seen or heard Vinko Globokar you’ve never seen or heard anything quite like him. The French-Slovenian composer-trombonist, who appeared in the Music and Media Building at University of California, Irvine, Tuesday night, is a one-man band of the European avant-garde. If the world were a painting by Salvador Dali, he’d be the street musician.

Trombone is his nominal instrument. But he rarely plays it in a conventional way. Instead, he uses it as a tool to make an encyclopedia of sounds, a rich catalog of sci-fi sonorities that you wouldn’t imagine possible, usually accomplished without electronic additives.

Read more…

Pacific Symphony season finale

Review: An eclectic mix brings season to an end for St.Clair and the Pacific Symphony. The Orange County Register, June 12, 2015.

Ojai Music Festival: Friday night

Review: Percussionist Steven Schick makes Ojai Music Festival his own. The Orange County Register, June 14, 2015.

photo: Mariah Tauger for the Ojai Music Festival

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