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Thread: Praeludium

  1. #1

    Default Praeludium

    Among the many cherished memories and precious souvenirs that I brought home from the CMSA's convention in Baltimore was a CD titled Praeludium by Chris Acquavella. It certainly merits both praise and interest, so I thought it would be a good thing to start a thread on that very topic.

    First off, I will demur on "reviewing" Chris' performance of my own work on that album; that, I leave to others. This recording has SO many things to like that I must cherry-pick a couple of them, simply in the interest of brevity; others may wish to single out their own favorites.

    While I am no early music expert by any stretch of the imagination, I was hopelessly charmed by the O'Carolan piece, played on a most magical mandolino— again, I defer to the experts on what sort of instrument it is. To me, it sounded like a most enchanted, ah... mini-lute? micro-harp? Anyway, the sonority was truly angelical. That one take is worth the price of the entire CD, IMHO.

    My heart was warmed by the performance from Bach's Partita BWV 1004. Chris' playing is uniformly excellent and, somewhere "backstage", I could hear Ali humming along... But Chris is his own person, his own artist, with his own interpretation; I would not wish to slight him by some "reminds me of" faint praise. In this, and in ALL works performed on this CD, there is artistry of the highest caliber, and mandolin-playing of the highest order.

    Enthusiastically recommended! [By way of the usual disclaimer: NFI. For full disclosure, considering the minuscule market for mandolin recordings, those so called "mechanical rights" that would inure to my benefit by the sales of this CD, as written into U.S. law, would amount to, uhm... a cappuccino at Starbucks or something. But this is what full disclosure means, so I speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but.]

    Three cheers for Chris Acquavella!

    Victor
    It is not man who lives, but his work. (Ioannis Kapodistrias)

  2. #2
    Moderator JEStanek's Avatar
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    Default Re: Praeludium

    I'll be ordering a copy very soon.

    Jamie
    There are two things to aim at in life: first, to get what you want; and, after that, to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind achieve the second. Logan Pearsall Smith, 1865 - 1946

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    Default Re: Praeludium

    Let me second Victor's positive reaction to Chris' new CD. It is beautifully recorded, expertly played, and a real pleasure to hear. Many of the pieces were also performed live by Chris during his appearances at CMSA Baltimore.

    I especially like his shortened version of the Bach Dm Partita. I've long thought that the piece is complete at the end of the Giga and that the Chaconne, wonder that it is, seems sort of tacked on. Chris' approach creates a whole new context for the Partita that I really enjoy.

    I also really love hearing the O'Carolan piece played in a baroque style, with some variation and elaboration. The whole CD is well worth seeking out.

    John G.

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    Default Re: Praeludium

    I got the CD from Chris before CMSA and am utterly enchanted by it. I'm especially delighted to discover some of the pieces by past Japanese masters of the genre (Takashi Ochi and Jiro Nakano), both of whom are new discovery to myself. I also delight in finding that with each listen I'm hearing new nuances of the pieces, so like John and Victor, I wholeheartedly recommend it (with the usual NFI disclaimer).

    BTW Mandolin Moments has a recent piece about Chris and his new CD that's quite a good read: http://mandolinmoments.com/index.php...ris-Acquavella

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