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Customer Reviews for: Bolcom: Piano Rags / Myer

4 Reviews in Total
5 Star: 4 Reviews
4 Star: 0 Reviews
3 Star: 0 Reviews
2 Star: 0 Reviews
1 Star: 0 Reviews

Average Review

5.0 Stars (4 Reviews)

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CD:  $17.99
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 Fine Performances of American Piano Music October 24, 2017
By T. Drake (South Euclid, OH) -- See All My Reviews
Full disclosure: I’ve known Spencer Myer since he was a student at Oberlin and have heard him play numerous times. But that’s not the reason I gave this CD five stars. I did so because the repertoire is interesting, the performances superb, and the sound is faithful. William Bolcom may well be the most important composer of rags since Scott Joplin, who brought the form to the world’s attention over a century ago. I consider the rags of Joplin and Bolcom, along with Barber’s Piano Sonata and Rzewski’s Variations on The People United Will Never Be Defeated, exemplars of American piano music. Bolcom’s rags are firmly tonal and thoroughly American. They also contain a number of unusual touches, from the tone clusters of Poltergeist rag to knocking on the piano frame in Knockout. Myer avoids the pitfall encountered in too many rag recordings and performances: playing the works too fast and straight. It’s clear from Joplin’s frequent comments about tempo that rags are not meant to be either rushed or metronomic. Myer’s chosen tempo suits each individual piece, from the relaxed meandering of the Graceful Ghost, to the mischievous scampering of Poltergeist, to the varied tempos of The Serpent’s Kiss. The Brooklyn Dodge, in particular, has an infectious swing. The sound is excellent, with a nice balance of intimacy and sense of space around the piano. Two of the tracks were recorded using a Hamburg Steinway, but I prefer the New York Steinway used in the other 14 tracks, as it has a somewhat more vibrant sound. Jed Distler’s excellent liner notes give a brief history of rag music (it stemmed from jigs, marches, and cakewalks performed by African-American bands) as well as William Bolcom’s development as a composer. Report Abuse

 Charming, Luscious Modern Rags September 29, 2017
By Jeffrey J. (San Jose, CA) -- See All My Reviews
This is a gorgeous album of splendidly played modern ragtime piano pieces. The Graceful Ghost Rag stands out for its "haunting" forlorn melody and harmonies. Just lovely. Report Abuse

 Delightful Program Superbly Played September 4, 2017
By K. Thompson (Lincoln, NE) -- See All My Reviews
A few of these piano rags were familiar, but most were new to me. Of the former, 'Graceful Ghost' is beautifully played, but more seductive than insouciant. Of the ones new to me, 'The Serpent's Kiss' is more fun than a person should have sitting down. Report Abuse

 beautifully executed January 27, 2017
By k. effren (McKinney, TX) -- See All My Reviews
thank goodness - an artist who does not feel the need rush through the music as if he is trying to catch the last train out of Victoria Station Beautifully paced - beautifully executed Report Abuse

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