Music Highlights - August

Here we are - resuming the music posts! School is finally in full swing and everyone is back in the groove. We ended our Infamous 30 Day Challenge to keep our playlists alive over the summer, and we had some great participants. Congratulations Chris, you won the $5 Dairy Queen gift card! Shout out to Conrad for having the most enries - 7! Wow!!

Don't forget, if you would like to hear a certain class appropriate artist, make a suggestion and you might hear it in the coming weeks!

Warmly,

Gabrielle

Week of August 4th, 2016
Seabird
Album Spotlight: Rocks into Rivers

Songs Played: Don't You Know You're Beautiful; Believe Me; Sing to Save My Life; Trust; The Good King

Piano based Rock group Seabird's album cover for Rocks Into Rivers

Piano based Rock group Seabird's album cover for Rocks Into Rivers

"Formed in 2004 around the talents of siblings Aaron (vocals and keyboards) and Ryan (guitar) Morgan, Cincinnati-based modern rock outfit Seabird crafts soul-searching, piano-driven, alternative pop in the vein of ColdplayDavid Crowder BandNeedtobreathe, and Switchfoot. The band’s 2008 debut, ‘Til We See The Shore, scored a hit with the single "Rescue." It was followed in 2009 by Rocks into Rivers." - James Christopher Monger, allmusic.com

 

Week of August 11th, 2016
Album Spotlight: Pride and Prejudice Soundtrack

Songs Played: Dawn; Stars and Butterflies; The Living Sculptures of Pemberley; Georgiana, Liz on Top of the World

Pride and Prejudice Sountrack Album Artwork

Pride and Prejudice Sountrack Album Artwork

"Dario Marianelli is an Italian composer of film and concert music. Born in Pisa, he started piano studies and began singing as a chorister at age 6. When his voice broke, he devoted himself to playing piano and composing. He studied privately and took exams as an external student in nearby Florence, Lucca, and Livorno, and also studied counterpoint before moving to England. There, he studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and spent three additional years studying at the National Film and Television School. His film career extends back to 1994 with his score for Paddy Breathnach's movie, Ailsa. Over the course of two decades, he composed music for such films as The Brothers Grimm; V for Vendetta; Agora; Eat, Pray, Love; Jane Eyre; Salmon Fishing in the Yemen; and Quartet, as well as many others. He has achieved recognition for his work with filmmaker Joe Wright, providing scores to the films Pride and Prejudice, Atonement, The Soloist, and Anna Karenina. Among his honors, Marianelli has won the Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award, the Phoenix Film Critics Society Award, and the World Soundtrack Award." - Blair Sanderson, allmusic.com

 

Week of August 18th, 2016
Artist Spotlight: Billy Joel

Songs Played: Piano Man; Uptown Girl; We Didn't Start the Fire; Vienna; She's Always a Woman

The Main Man himself, Billy Joel!

The Main Man himself, Billy Joel!

"Although Billy Joel never was a critic's favorite, the pianist emerged as one of the most popular singer/songwriters of the latter half of the '70s. Joel's music consistently demonstrates an affection forBeatlesque hooks and a flair for Tin Pan Alley and Broadway melodies. His fusion of two distinct eras made him a superstar in the late '70s and '80s, as he racked an impressive string of multi-platinum albums and hit singles.

Born in the Bronx, Joel was raised in the Long Island suburb of Hicksville, where he learned to play piano as a child. As he approached his adolescence, Joel started to rebel, joining teenage street gangs and boxing as welterweight. He fought a total of 22 fights as a teenager, and during one of the fights, he broke his nose. For the early years of his adolescence, he divided his time between studying piano and fighting. Upon seeing the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1964, Joel decided to pursue a full-time musical career and set about finding a local Long Island band to join. Eventually, he found the Echoes, a group that specialized in British Invasion covers. The Echoes became a popular New York attraction, convincing him to quit high school to become a professional musician." - Stephen Thomas Erlewine, allmusic.com

 

Week of August 26th, 2016
Album Spotlight: Court the Storm

Songs Played: Squawk; Bendito; Moral Panic; Como Ratones; Idaho's Genius

Court the Storm
Source: https://www.google.com/_/chrome/newtab?esp...

Music Highlights - May

As individual people with individual tastes, we tend to find a genre of music that we really enjoy and stick with that genre. Passion Studios wants to expand every student's musical horizons, knowledge and repertoire, so the students creativity can thrive and draw influence in an eclectic environment. At the end of every month, I will create a blogpost highlighting these musical masterminds, with the biography's directly linked below the quote. If you enjoyed an artist that was played in class and don't remember what artist was, remember to check up here for a thorough list of artists, songs played in class and mini biography!

We listened to jazz, jazz contemporary and classical music this past month in the studio. As always, feel free to reach out to me anytime regarding your favorite artists and what you've heard in class. I look forward to more fantastic artist spotlights and growing with my students.

Warmly,

Gabrielle

Week of May 9th, 2016
Jazz Spotlight: Thelonious Monk

Songs Played: Monk's Dream - Take 8; 'Round Midnight; Body and Soul; Ruby, My Dear; Straight, No Chaser

Thelonious Monk at Minton's Playhouse, September 1947

Thelonious Monk at Minton's Playhouse, September 1947

"The most important jazz musicians are the ones who are successful in creating their own original world of music with its own rules, logic, and surprises. Thelonious Monk, who was criticized by observers who failed to listen to his music on its own terms, suffered through a decade of neglect before he was suddenly acclaimed as a genius; his music had not changed one bit in the interim. In fact, one of the more remarkable aspects of Monk's music was that it was fully formed by 1947 and he saw no need to alter his playing or compositional style in the slightest during the next 25 years." - Scott Yanow, allmusic.com

Week of May 16th, 2016
Album Spotlight: Aja by Steely Dan

Songs Played: Black Cow; Aja; Deacon Blues; Peg; Home at Last; I Got The News; Josie

Steely Dan in concert in Luzerne, Switzerland

Steely Dan in concert in Luzerne, Switzerland

"Most rock & roll bands are a tightly wound unit that developed their music through years of playing in garages and clubs around their hometown. Steely Dan never subscribed to that aesthetic. As the vehicle for the songwriting of Walter Becker and Donald FagenSteely Dan defied all rock & roll conventions. Becker and Fagen never truly enjoyed rock -- with their ironic humor and cryptic lyrics, their eclectic body of work shows some debt to Bob Dylan -- preferring jazz, traditional pop, blues, and R&B. Steely Dan created a sophisticated, distinctive sound with accessible melodic hooks, complex harmonies and time signatures, and a devotion to the recording studio. With producer Gary Katz,Becker and Fagen gradually changed Steely Dan from a performing band to a studio project, hiring professional musicians to record their compositions. Though the band didn't perform live after 1974, Steely Dan's popularity continued to grow throughout the decade, as their albums became critical favorites and their singles became staples of AOR and pop radio stations. Even after the group disbanded in the early '80s, their records retained a cult following, as proven by the massive success of their unlikely return to the stage in the early '90s." - Stephen Thomas Erlewine, allmusic.com

 

Week of May 23rd, 2016
Classical Spotlight: Frédéric Chopin

Songs Played: Nocturne en me bémol majeur, Op. 9, no. 2; Nocturne No. 8 in D Flat Op. 27, no. 2; Nocturne in E Flat Major, Op. 9, no. 2

Portrait by Maria Wodzińska, 1835

Portrait by Maria Wodzińska, 1835

 

"Although a few major pianists, notably Glenn Gould, have dismissed his music as excessively ornamental and trivial, Frédéric Chopin has long been recognized as one of the most significant and individual composers of the Romantic age. The bulk of his reputation rests on small-scale works that in other hands would have been mere salon trifles: waltzes, nocturnes, preludes, mazurkas, and polonaises (the last-named two groups reflecting his fervent Polish nationalism). These works link poetically expressive melody and restless harmony to high technical demands. Even his etudes survive as highly appealing concert pieces by emphasizing musical as well as technical values." - James Reel, allmusic.com

Source: http://www.allmusic.com/