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Tarrega: Guitar Music / Mats Bergstrom


Release Date: 11/17/2009 
Label:  Naxos   Catalog #: 8572365   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews



TÁRREGA 16 Preludes. Las dos Hermanitas. Adelita. Marieta. Mazurka. Maria. Receurdos de la Alhambra. Rosita. Pepita. Capricho árabe. Paquito. Gran vals. Alborada. Isabel. Vals. Pavana. Estudio brillante de Alard Mats Bergström (gtr) NAXOS 8.572365 (61:45)


Francisco Tárrega (1852–1909), a noted composer of guitar music and its most influential Spanish virtuoso performer of the 19th century, lived in an era when not much fuss was made about intellectual Read more property rights, I’d guess, because though he was an able composer he borrowed from some of his predecessors and contemporaries. For example, he did credit Johann Strauss II for writing the waltz Tárrega renamed Isabel . But during this more permissive era he was not above appropriating the works of others into his “imaginative transcriptions,” much as jazz musicians include standard riffs of jazz masters, such as Duke Ellington’s signature phrases, as homages. As Mats Bergström in his album notes points out, Preludio sobre un tema de Mendelssohn is an arrangement of a section near the end of Mendelssohn’s Hebrides Overture, while Oremus is an extract from Robert Schumann’s Albumblätter , op. 124. The introduction to Las dos Hermanitas found in at least one edition of the work is almost identical to that of Frédéric Chopin’s Valse brillante , op. 34. Isabel is an arrangement of two themes from the Kuss-Walzer by Johann Strauss and Estudio brillante de Alard is a transcription of Study No. 2 for solo violin by the French composer Delphin Alard (1815–1888). Finally, Bergström mentions that “measures 13–16 of Gran vals must be one of the most frequently heard tunes of our time: It is the ring tone for Nokia mobile phones.”


While Tárrega is noted for compositions of his own, particularly the 16 Preludes, he has proven an ingenious borrower of music he liked, and enjoyed writing these sections into his own, often larger, compositions. This makes him somewhat unusual, and somewhat more fun to listen to. Personally, I like playing “Spot that quote!”


The Swedish soloist Mats Bergström, with a nod to authenticity, plays a replica guitar, a one-to-one copy of Tárrega’s favorite (1888) instrument. He plays as well as any guitar virtuoso I’ve heard: robustly, yet with great control and subtlety, respect for the music, and an authoritative sense of how Tárrega must have played these pieces (probably garnered from Tárrega’s own notes, and/or third-party written descriptions of his concerts). Bergström seems to have a bit of the historian about him, if his album notes are any indicator. In all, that makes the album a thoroughly enjoyable one, a Bergström-led tour through Tárrega’s works with some scholarly notes displaying a new angle on the compositions, making us listen intently to have the fun of spotting the next quote, all played with a tasteful and accomplished hand. Highest praise to Bergström for the research, album notes, and playing in the reincarnated style of Tárrega. And a tip of the hat to the Naxos engineers, who, once again, seem to get the acoustic just right. Very highly recommended.


FANFARE: Ilya Oblomov
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Works on This Recording

1. Preludes (16) for Guitar by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
2. Las dos hermanitas by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
3. Mazurkas (4) for Guitar: no 1 in G minor, Adelita by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
4. Mazurkas (4) for Guitar: no 3, Marieta by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
5. Mazurkas (4) for Guitar: no 2 in G major by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
6. Maria by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
7. Recuerdos de la Alhambra by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: circa 1880-1905; Spain 
8. Rosita by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
9. Pepita by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
10. Capricho árabe by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
11. Paquito by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
12. Gran Vals by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
13. Alborada by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
14. Isabel by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
15. Vals for Guitar by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
16. Pavana by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 
17. Estudio brillante by Francisco Tarrega
Performer:  Mats Bergström (Guitar)
Period: Romantic 
Written: Spain 

Sound Samples

Prelude in D minor (track 10): Prelude in D minor
Prelude in A minor (track 8): Prelude in A minor
Prelude in G major (track 7): Prelude in G major
Prelude in E major (track 14): Prelude in E major
Prelude in E major (track 5): Prelude in E major
Prelude in B minor (track 13): Prelude in B minor
Prelude in A major (track 19): Prelude in A major
Prelude in F sharp minor
Prelude in B minor on a theme by Mendelssohn
21 Preludes: Prelude in B minor
Prelude in E major, "Lagrima"
Prelude in G major (track 4): Prelude in G major
Prelude in D minor, "Endecha"
Prelude in D minor, "Oremus"
Valse: II. Las dos Hermanitas
4 Mazurkas: No. 1 in G minor, "Adelita"
4 Mazurkas: No. 3. Marieta
4 Mazurkas: No. 2 in G major
Maria
Recuerdos de la Alhambra
Rosita Polka: Rosita
Pepita
Capricho arabe
Valse: I. Paquito
Gran vals
Alborada
Isabel
Valse: III. Vals in D major
Pavana
10 Artistic Studies, Op. 19: Study No. 2 in A major, "Estudio brillante" (arr. Tarrega)

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