We don’t hear the name Agustin Barrios (1884-1944) much today, but in his home country of Paraguay – and in certain guitar circles – he is still revered. Guitarist John Williams once said of Barrios “…is the best of the lot, regardless of era. His music is better formed, it’s more poetic, it’s more everything!” Barrios dedicated his life to both music and poetry. He composed over 300 individual compositions. During his travels throughout South America, Barrios would sign copieds of this poems and give them to anyone who wanted one. Collectors warn that the originals are difficult to authenicate.
Barrios’ music fell into three major categories: imitative, folk and religious. Many musicians consider his work call “La Catedral” his greatest composition. Barrios played parts of it to Andres Segovia and Segovia was entranced by it. He called it “… ideal for the repertory of any concert guitarist.”
Our Guitar Picks this week:
Agustin Barrios – Waltz No. 3 – Alexander-Sergei Ramírez
Antonio Vivaldi – Guitar Concerto, RV93 – John Williams
Joseph Haydn/Francois de Fossa – Grand Duo Op.9/5 – Castellani-Andriaccio Duo
JS Bach – Prelude, Fugue and Allegro for Lute in E flat major, BWV 998 – David Lippel
Manuel de Falla – Danza del Molinero – Miloš Karadaglić
My ukulele pick this week is my friend Ken Middleton’s version of a Bob Dylan classic:
Every weekday at 10:30am I play what I call a “guitar pick.” It’s a work featuring the guitar. It can be as a solo instrument, in a chamber setting or with orchestra. On Monday I played a guitar trio by François de Fossa. De Fossa was born in 1775 in the south of France. Besides being a guitarist and composer, De Fossa was an officer in the French military. His trios show a similarity to the Italian composer Luigi Boccherini who made his living in Spain. Among De Fossa’s works is a set of guitar duos with some movements consisting of transcriptions of movements from Symphonies by Joseph Haydn.
This week’s guitar picks:
François de Fossa – Guitar Trio, Op. 18: no 1 – Wynberg, Simon; Beaver, Martin; Epperson, Bryan
Scott Joplin – The Easy Winners – Giovanni de Chiaro
Nicolo Paganini – “Moses” Variations – Gil Shaham and Goran Sollscher
Joaquin Rodrigo – 3 Spanish Pieces – Eduardo Fernandez
This week’s ukulele pick is a song by Toronto-based Zoe Henderson with a sweet original song:
Every weekday at 10:30am I play what I call a “guitar pick.” It’s a work featuring the guitar. It can be as a solo instrument, in a chamber setting or with orchestra. Thursday’s pick was by the Spanish composer Joaquin Rodrigo. Rodrigo lost his eyesight due to illness when he was three years old. He began learning music and instruments (piano and violin) when he was eight. He composed mostly for piano, but a work he wrote for guitar and orchestra in 1939, Concierto de Aranjuez, with its famous 2nd movement was to establish him in the public eye as a composer for the guitar. That work’s sucess led to other commissions for guitar – or guitars – with orchestra. Concierto Malaga is influenced by the sounds of flamenco music. Rodrigo’s work with the Romeros would continue including works for 2- and 4 guitars with orchestra.
Manuel de Falla – Miller’s Dance – Eduardo Fernandez, guitar
Anonymous – Romance – William Gomez, guitar
Joaquin Rodrigo – Conceirto Malaga – Pepe Romero, guitar
Manuel Ponce – 3 Popular Mexican Songs – Adam Holman, guitar
My ukulele pick is a Song for Everybody by my friend – a Nashville-base songwriter – named Matt Lindahl.
Every weekday morning at 10:30 I present the “Guitar Pick,” a musical selection that features the guitar in some form or fashion. It can be as a solo instrument, in a chamber setting or with orchestra. On Friday’s show I played Joaquin Rodrigo’s Concierto Andaluz, scored for 4 guitars and orchestra. The family of guitarists collectively called “Los Romeros” hail from Andalucia, Spain. Through the years, Rodrigo and the Romeros forged a tight partnership. One of the results of this partnership was this work, named after the Romeros’ home town. The compositions display the styles of Buleria, Zapateado and Sevillana dances. And it’s a lot of fun!
Other guitar picks this week:
J N Hummel – Grand Serenade No. 1 – Consortium Classicum
JS Bach – Suite for lute, BWV 1006a – Sharon Isbin
Enrique Granados – Spanish Dances – Folkwang Guitarren Duo
Georg Philipp Telemann – Bourée alla Polacca – John Williams and Friends
My ukulele pick today comes from the amazing Jake Shimabukuro. He once promised to create a ukulele version of Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody. He later said he regretted saying that! But he finally did it and spectacularly so!