Posted by NPR

She died some time this week, 47 years ago. Forty-seven years. I was driving down some street in Iowa City on my way to university when I heard the news on the radio. And there it was. The first thoughts are…No…No…what now?…who will sing those songs for us…who will know?…No…

When I got to the classroom it was silent. No one saying a word. The students in their chairs, the prof standing in front, leaning against the desk. In that silence, in that room on a beautiful day in Iowa City, we were struck. In the confusion of loss and sorrow


AP—Janis Joplin, Woodstock

it was as if we all knew, all at once, that words could not—should not—be spoken. There was that current underneath, that whirlpool of something else that made words insignificant. There would never be enough, never enough of anything. No one else spoke Soul to Soul. No one else could sing the Blues. She was lost to us, and it was we, we who could not save her.

Breath, to breathe, to exhale…

And then somewhat returned from the semi-dead. Oof duh!

I have been in a penitent huddle with myself. The misery of Asthma & ever fluctuating temperatures. Between the sofa shuffle and the O2 misery of mind over matter, I breathe. I did not consider pain or inconvenience or emergency rooms when I smoke smoke smoked that cigarette. And maybe it’s not even all my fault. And you know what? I don’t think it matters one whit. It is what it is. The return is slow, but on the way!


Posted by Classical FM

And I also don’t think that Ludie was sloppy, just that he couldn’t quite get it all out quickly enough. (Maybe no one told him to breathe through it?)




Consider those most difficult: piano pieces, orchestra pieces, double bass, all of them, yes? I wonder if it was intentional by the composer—to make something so difficult that very few musicians even attempt the piece, score, or presentation. I don’t know how some composers had the required stamina to actually write the piece. Take for example, The Mysterium, scheduled for the end of the world. Seriously. That is when it is to be played. And everyone who attends will have a part to play—there will be no observers. I don’t know when the rehearsals are to be held. Obviously I will not be there. I cannot get through the entirety of the piece as a listen. I get it, I really do, it’s just not for me.

La Campanella is at least welcomed by most everyone. And it is as equally enjoyed and played. Playing it however, is indeed a bit of a challenge.

There was a reason Bottesini was known as the Paganini of the double bass. For extra difficulty points, be true to the period and play it on three strings. Personally I’m delighted that I don’t play the bass and have nothing to be challenged by. And it is lovely. Enjoy.

Last for this go ’round, we simply must play some Bach—J.S. Bach – Chaconne in D—The absolute daddy of violin showpieces. SO exposed.

This entire set, plus a few more (later), was presented by Classic FM.

Glenn Gould


Posted by Ludwig Van Beethoven

Here’s Glenn. There’s not a lot to say after that. Such a fascinating character. Such a great musician. And the thing about him that makes him so unique isn’t as much his personality as his distinct style. There are many great pianists today: Martha Argerich, Lang Lang (according to some), among others. But the most identifiable, the minute the fingers touch upon the keys, the cleanest, clearest, lightest fingering—ah yes, that belongs to Glenn Gould.