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what are you hearing?

It's odd, Daryl, but I can't find the Yo Yo Ma set [two CDs, Bach, Goldberg Variations]; my wife must have it in her vehicle. It's a terrific recording. A real head piece. I remember going to a party once when it was played followed by Rostopovich's recording--and we debated the merits of each or both on into the night.

The good news is that, when looking for Ma's recording, I found my Jerry Garcia-David Grisman CD [that's what it's called: "Jerry Garcia/David Grisman"]. This is another one that's worth running down. If you don't know Grisman, he may be the best mandolin picker that ever lived. He's one of those blue grass guys, like Peter Rowan [remember "The Free Mexican Airforce"?], that seem to be all over the place--and comfortable about it.

About this time of year: It has always been a problem for me. Most "christmas" music is soppy-sappy crap orchestrated to make you feel festive and mindless in the aisles at Wal-Mart. And by now [December 8] it has grown truly tiresome. There used to be a classical music station DJ in Washington who played christmas music in July and not in October, November, December, and [in case you missed it] January. And it has always torqued me that the greedy co-opted Handel's "Messiah" to sell give-away sentimentality among the pine boughs and snowflakes [and amused me, of course, because Handel would have done it himself if it had occurred to him].

You asked if I have a favorite. Yes. My all time favorite of all time is the Julliard String Quartet of the late-1970s early-1980s playing almost anything--a Beethoven quartet preferred. Robert Mann and Richard Carliss on violin, Samuel Rhodes on viola, and [blush, I don't remember] on cello. Mann was to the Strad what Grisman is to the mandolin. Fantastic. And, if you're in the audience, genuinely heart stopping.

On Thursday, December 4, 2003, at 05:05 PM, Daryl wrote:

Wonderful news!

By the way, I love your juxtaposition w/Yo Yo Ma. Do you have a favorite?

At this time of year, my mix might be Iron Butterfly, Yo Yo Ma and Alabama's
"Christmas in Dixie". And maybe a Canzon of Gabrielli.


Island Jim
Southwest Florida
Zone 10

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