Notes and Editorial Reviews
Ludwig van Beethoven invented jazz. That statement might seem enough to provoke a paroxysm from a musicologist, but, with a passage in his final piano sonata, No 32, Beethoven created the first example of pure swing in the history of music. We might also wonder how the serious-minded Johannes Brahms could open a sonata movement with a walking bass blues that smacks of the Mississippi Delta, or how Modest Mussorgsky, in his Pictures at an Exhibition, foreshadows Quincy Jones. This album makes these extraordinary connections before exploring the profound influence of jazz on composers of the 20th century, from Maurice Ravel to Leonard Bernstein.