Béla Fleck is the world's premier banjo player, a 16-time Grammy Award winner nominated in more categories than any other musician, a genre-busting collaborator, a film producer and a composer. Foremost, though, he is a dad. The impact of fatherhood on Béla is reflected in Juno Concerto, named for his firstborn son with fellow folk musician Abigail Washburn. The album was recorded with the Colorado Symphony, conducted by José Luis Gomez and also includes two tracks with the Brooklyn Rider string quartet: 'Griff' and the second movement of 'Quintet for Banjo and Strings,' the latter a previously unrecorded collaboration with friend and mentor Edgar Meyer, representing Béla's first experimentation with classicalRead more music. The banjo in these movements embodies the voice of doom, interrupting the music with dark, dissonant interjections culminating in a melancholy banjo solo-a contemplative end to the album that reveals Béla's true depth as a composer. Juno Concerto is a reminder that Béla Fleck is among the most innovative and virtuosic musicians of our time.
This is not Bela Fleck’s first attempt at a banjo-classical fusion: often working with bassist Edgar Meyer, his experiments in this vein go back to the Quintet for banjo and strings, written with Meyer in 1984 and recorded in part here. The Juno Concerto resembles earlier works written with Meyer, with flowing fusion banjo solos blooming out of Copland-esque fanfare music in the opening movement. The slow movement, based on a simple plucked figure in the banjo, is the part that sticks with you the most here. The rather brash finale's banjo passagework is undeniably crowd-pleasing.
Excellant work in different genreMay 5, 2017By Robert B. (Steamboat Springs, CO)See All My Reviews"This is a different genre for this musician who I have always followed. This is an collection of well written works and is up to par with his normal works."Report Abuse