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At Home With Friends / Joshua Bell


Release Date: 09/29/2009 
Label:  Sony   Catalog #: 752716   Spars Code: n/a 
Composer:  George GershwinJohn DowlandAstor PiazzollaEnnio Morricone,   ... 
Performer:  Chris BottiJoshua BellStingCarel Kraayenhof,   ... 
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Tiempo Libre
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews

This is a disc that many strictly "classical" listeners may pass over--not surprisingly, since this isn't really a "classical" recording. However, its illustrious and very accomplished host deserves a chance to show another side (or sides, actually) of his musical life, one that includes informal collaboration in his New York home with artists from pop, jazz, and non-western classical genres--and so he offers this rather congenial hodge-podge that somehow goes together while juxtaposing extremely diverse styles and levels of artistic refinement.

Actually, when you hear the opening track--a fine light jazz treatment of I loves you Porgy, with Bell, pianist Billy Childs, a number of other instrumental
Read more players, and featuring jazz/pop trumpeter Chris Botti--you may just wish this group would take the whole program. But we move from Gershwin to Dowland via the voice of Sting, whose slightly strained, boyish quality is overshadowed by the lively obbligato/accompaniment of Bell's violin.

There are hits--bandoneon-ist Carel Kraayenhof and Bell in Piazzolla's Oblivion and Luis Bacalov's Il Postino; Bell, baritone Nathan Gunn, and pianist Jeremy Denk in Rachmaninov's song O, cease thy singing, maiden fair (with obbligato by Fritz Kreisler); Ravi Shankar's duet for sitar and violin, performed by daughter Anoushka and Bell; Bell and Marvin Hamlisch's rendition of I'll take Manhattan--and misses: pop singer Josh Groban's Cinema Paradiso (exactly what language is that...?); Kristin Chenoweth's unconvincing, uncomfortable My Funny Valentine (not her song); bassist Edgar Meyer and mandolinist Chris Thile's weirdly meandering Look Away. But hey, this is a hodge-podge meant to capture the spirit of Bell's "anything goes" house concerts--and in that it succeeds.

Of course, the recordings were not actually made in Bell's home--rather they were made in a couple of different studios, and you can tell. There's a decided artificiality to the balances due to some odd mixing and highlighting of certain instruments that do not seem to share the same acoustic space. Nevertheless, I enjoyed this, especially for Bell's clever, artful, and always appropriately stylish playing.

--David Vernier, ClassicsToday.com
Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Porgy and Bess: I loves you, Porgy by George Gershwin
Performer:  Chris Botti (Trumpet), Joshua Bell (Violin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1935; USA 
Length: 4 Minutes 13 Secs. 
2.
Firste Booke of Songes or Ayres: no 17, Come againe, sweet love doth now envite by John Dowland
Performer:  Sting (Voice), Joshua Bell (Violin)
Period: Renaissance 
Written: 1597; England 
Length: 3 Minutes 57 Secs. 
3.
Enrico IV: Oblivion by Astor Piazzolla
Performer:  Carel Kraayenhof (Bandoneon), Carel Kraayenhof (Bandoneón), Joshua Bell (Violin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1984; Argentina 
Length: 3 Minutes 54 Secs. 
4.
Cinema Paradiso by Ennio Morricone
Performer:  Josh Groban (Voice), Joshua Bell (Violin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1988; Italy 
Length: 4 Minutes 27 Secs. 
5.
Para Ti by Traditional
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin)
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Tiempo Libre
Length: 3 Minutes 45 Secs. 
6.
Babes in arms: My funny valentine by Richard Rodgers
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin), Kristin Chenoweth (Voice)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1937; USA 
Length: 5 Minutes 45 Secs. 
7.
Maybe So by Edgar Meyer
Performer:  Edgar Meyer (Bass), Joshua Bell (Violin)
Period: 21st Century 
Written: USA 
Length: 4 Minutes 50 Secs. 
Notes: Composed with Sam Bush and Mike Marshall. 
8.
Sonata for Violin and Piano no 3 in C minor, Op. 45: Allegretto by Edvard Grieg
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1886-1887; Norway 
Length: 6 Minutes 41 Secs. 
9.
Eleanor Rigby by Paul McCartney
Performer:  Frankie Moreno (Voice), Joshua Bell (Violin), Frankie Moreno (Voice)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: by 1966; England 
Length: 3 Minutes 58 Secs. 
10.
Songs (6), Op. 4: no 4, Sing not to me, beautiful maiden by Sergei Rachmaninov
Performer:  Nathan Gunn (Baritone), Joshua Bell (Violin)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1892; Russia 
Length: 4 Minutes 12 Secs. 
11.
Il Postino: Theme by Luis Enriquez Bacalov
Performer:  Carel Kraayenhof (Bandoneón)
Period: Contemporary 
Written: 1994; Italy 
Length: 3 Minutes 42 Secs. 
12.
Left Hand Song by Regina Spektor
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin), Regina Spektor (Voice)
Period: 21st Century 
Written: USA 
Length: 2 Minutes 45 Secs. 
13.
Chovendo na roseira by Antonio Carlos Jobim
Performer:  Dave Grusin (Piano), Edgar Meyer (Double Bass), Joshua Bell (Violin),
Chris Thile (Mandolin)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: Brazil 
Length: 3 Minutes 27 Secs. 
14.
Look Away by Diane Warren
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin), Anoushka Shankar (Sitar)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: USA 
Length: 4 Minutes 16 Secs. 
15.
Variant Moods by Ravi Shankar
Performer:  Anoushka Shankar (Sitar), Joshua Bell (Violin)
Length: 9 Minutes 2 Secs. 
Notes: This is the shorter version of "Variant Moods" by Ravi Shankar.  
16.
I'll Take Manhattan by Richard Rodgers
Performer:  Joshua Bell (Violin), Marvin Hamlisch (Piano)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: USA 
Length: 3 Minutes 26 Secs. 

Sound Samples

I Loves You Porgy
Come Again
Oblivion
Cinema Paradiso
Para Tí
My Funny Valentine
Maybe So
II. Allegretto espressivo alla Romanza from Sonata No. 3 in C Minor for Violin and Piano
Eleanor Rigby
O, Cease Thy Singing, Maiden Fair, Op. 4 No. 4
Il Postino
Left Hand Song
Chovendo Na Roseira
Look Away
Variant Moods - Duet for Sitar & Violin (Abridged Version)
I'll Take Manhattan

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