Daily Archives: May 18, 2014

Make Music Part of Your Life Series: Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 17 “Tempest” Valentina Lisitsa 3. Allegretto


Beethoven Piano Sonata No. 17 “Tempest” Valentina Lisitsa 3. Allegretto

Recorded during pre-concert rehearsal at Torroella de Montgri April 17 2014 .
Your next best chance to hear it live :
Paris, May 21, 2014 , Salle Gaveau

Special thanks to http://www.jorquerapianos.com/ for one of the best pianos I ever encountered

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Haiku: Spider Web, poetic thought by George B

Haiku:  Spider Web, poetic thought by George B

Suspended between
tree and grass the trap is set:
remorselessly stands…

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Pope Francis, the Eucharist, and the Culture of Mate | First Thoughts | First Things

mate2In the midst of political, religious, national, and personal battles, there is one thing that unites all Argentines: Mate.

Mate (pronounced máh-teh), despite what you may have heard, is not an herbal green tea. That makes it sound sissy. It is a tea-like drink made from a green-colored yerba (herb), but it is much more robust than tea. For Argentines,

via Pope Francis, the Eucharist, and the Culture of Mate | First Thoughts | First Things.

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Great Compositions/Performances: Leontyne Price, 1962: Swing Low, Sweet Chariot – RCA Victor LM-2600


Leontyne Price, 1962: Swing Low, Sweet Chariot – RCA Victor LM-2600

Digitized from the LP shown above, issued on the RCA Victor Red Seal label, catalogue number LM-2660.

Swing low, sweet chariot
Coming for to carry me home
Swing low, sweet chariot
Coming for to carry me home

I looked over Jordan and what did I see
Coming for to carry me home
A band of angels coming after me
Coming for to carry me home

If you get there before I do
Coming for to carry me home
Tell all my friends I’m coming too
Coming for to carry me home

“Swing Low, Sweet Chariot” is a historic American Negro spiritual. The earliest known recording was in 1909, by the Fisk Jubilee Singers of Fisk University. It is also the anthem of the English Rugby team. In 2002, the Library of Congress honored the song as one of 50 recordings chosen that year to be added to the National Recording Registry. It was also included in the list of Songs of the Century, by the Recording Industry Association of America and the National Endowment for the Arts. “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot” was written by Wallis Willis, a Choctaw freedman in the old Indian Territory in what is now Choctaw County, near the County seat of Hugo, Oklahoma sometime before 1862. He was inspired by the Red River, which reminded him of the Jordan River and of the Prophet Elijah’s being taken to heaven by a chariot (2 Kings 2:11). Many sources claim that this song and “Steal Away” (also composed by Willis) had lyrics that referred to the Underground Railroad, the resistance movement that helped slaves escape from the South to the North and Canada. Alexander Reid, a minister at the Old Spencer Academy, Choctaw boarding school, heard Willis singing these two songs and transcribed the words and melodies. He sent the music to the Jubilee Singers of Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee. The Jubilee Singers popularized the songs during a tour of the United States and Europe. The song enjoyed a resurgence during the 1960s Civil Rights struggle and the folk revival; it was performed by a number of artists. Perhaps the most famous performance during this period was that by Joan Baez during the legendary 1969 Woodstock festival.

Swing Low, Sweet Chariot est une chanson de type Negro spiritual qui vient des États-Unis. La chanson a également un lien important avec l’équipe d’Angleterre de rugby à XV et elle est régulièrement chantée lors des matches de cette équipe.

“Swing Low, Sweet Chariot” on yhdysvaltalainen hymni, jonka choctaw-intiaani Wallis Willis sävelsi ennen vuotta 1862.

Swing Low, Sweet Chariot è uno storico brano musicale spiritual nero, inciso per la prima volta dai Fisk Jubilee Singers nel 1909. Nel 2002 la Biblioteca del Congresso ha inserito il brano tra le 50 canzoni del National Recording Registry. È stato inoltre inserito nella lista delle Songs of the Century dalla RIAA e dal Sovvenzionamento Nazionale per le Arti e la Ricerca.



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The Culture of Yerba Mate: Tradition, tradition, tradition

<b>SOLD!</b> \"Labyrinth\" Mate Gourd & Bombilla, By Javier Zinna

The most traditional way to drink yerba mate is like the Indians did – from a cup (gourd) and straw (bombilla). Genuine mate drinkers say a well “cured” mate contributes to the good taste of the drink. Also by using the cup and straw it forcibly removes far more of the valuable nutrients which yerba mate has to offer. Other methods do not. You will need to try your own combination of cups and straws as yerba mate will taste differently in each type. Each person must experiment to find which best suits his taste. !Yerba Mate cups can be made from many different types of material. These include the natural gourd, wood, horns, ceramic, glass or metal.

Click here to learn more about Yerba Mate Gourds

How do I CURE my Yerba Mate Gourd

  • Pyrography is the art of decorating wood or other materials (in this case a Yerba Mate gourd) with burn marks resulting from the controlled application of a heated object such as a poker. It is also known as pokerwork or wood burning.
    Pyrography means “writing with fire” and is the traditional art of using a heated tip or wire to burn or scorch designs onto natural materials such as wood or leather. Burning can be done by means of a modern solid-point tool (similar to a soldering iron) or hot wire tool, or a more basic method using a metal implement heated in a fire, or even sunlight concentrated with a magnifying lens. Pyrography is also a traditional folk art in many European countries, including Hungary, as well as countries such as Argentina in South America.

    • Javier Zinna is one of the greatest mate gourds artisan in Argentina. He is currently living in Misiones, the land of Yerba Mate. Last year the FAM (Feria Artesanías Mercosur) held a contest among the exhibitors who chose their best work to compete. Javier won it. It is a great honor to have his works back in our catalog.

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MAKE MUISC PART OF YOUR LIFE SERIES: Duo Kontarsky PLAYS BIZET Jeux d’enfants Op.22 – 1982 *vinyl*


Duo Kontarsky @ BIZET Jeux d’enfants Op.22 – 1982 *vinyl*

Georges BIZET: Jeux d’enfants Op.22, 12 pieces for piano 4 hands
0:05 / 1. L’Escarpolette (Reverie. Andantino) [2’52”]
2:57 / 2. La Toupie (Impromptu. Allegro vivo) [0’57”]
3:53 / 3. La Poupée (Berceuse. Andantino semplice) [2’49”]
6:42 / 4. Les Chevaux de Bois (Scherzo. Allegro vivo) [1’18”]
8:01 / 5. Le Volant (Fantaisie. Andantino molto) [1’14”]
9:15 / 6. Trompette et Tambour (Marche. Allegretto) [2’07”]
11:22 / 7. Les Bulles de Savon (Rondino. Allegretto) [1’22”]
12:44 / 8. Les Quatre Coins (Esquisse. Allegro vivo) [2’07”]
14:52 / 9. Colin-Maillard (Nocturno. Andante non troppo) [1’58”]
16:50 / 10. Saute-Mouton (Caprice. Allegro molto) [1’21”]
18:10 / 11. Petit Mari, petite Femme! (Duo. Andantino) [3’00”]
21:10 / 12. Le Bal (Galop. Presto) [1’39”]
Alfons & Aloys Kontarsky, piano (rec. 1982 – vinyl (p)1983 DGG)
Alfons & Aloys KONTARSKY – piano duet *vinyl*

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GREAT COMPOSITIONS/PERFORMANCES: Sviatoslav Richter PLAYS Schumann – Etudes symphoniques op 13 – Richter studio


Schumann – Etudes symphoniques op 13 – Richter studio

Robert Schumann
Etudes symphoniques op.13
Sviatoslav Richter
Studio recording, Salzburg, 1-3, 6, 7,14,15 & 24.IX.1971

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GREAT COMPOSITIONS/PERFORMANCES: Beethoven – String Quartet No.2 in G major, Op.18 – Végh Quartet – 1952


Beethoven – String Quartet No.2 in G major, Op.18 – Végh Quartet – 1952

Ludwig van Beethoven: The Early String Quartets, Opus 18
String Quartet No. 2 in G major, Op. 18, No. 2
(Streichquartett Nr. 2 in G-dur, Op. 18, Nr. 2)

I. Allegro
II. Adagio cantabile — Allegro — Tempo I
III. Scherzo. Allegro
IV. Allegro molto, quasi presto

Végh Quartet
Sándor Végh, 1st violin
Sándor Zöldy, 2nd violin
Georges Janzer, viola
Paul Szabo, violoncello

The 1952 Haydn Society Recordings


The String Quartet No. 2 in G major, op. 18, No. 2, was written by Ludwig van Beethoven between 1798 and 1800 and published in 1801.

Of the Op. 18 string quartets, this one is the most grounded in 18th-century musical tradition.[1] According to Steinberg, “In German-speaking countries, the graceful curve of the first violin’s opening phrase has earned the work the nickname of Komplimentier-Quartett, which might be translated as ‘quartet of bows and curtseys’.”[2]

The nickname may have originated from one of Haydn’s last string quartets written about the same time (Op. 77, No. 1; 1799), which was also known as the Komplimentier-Quartett. Haydn was Beethoven’s teacher at the time, and there are similarities in style between the two quartets. They are also both in the key of G major.[3]

After he finished the quartet, Beethoven was not satisfied with the second movement and wrote a replacement. Sketches of the original slow movement survive and a complete version has been reconstructed by musicologist Barry Cooper.[4] It was performed publicly, possibly for the first time, by the Quatuor Danel in the Cosmo Rodewald Concert Hall at the Martin Harris Centre, University of Manchester, on 30 September 2011.


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Saint of the Day – May 18: St. John I, Pope and Martyr (Feast day – May 18)

Saint of the Day

May 18 Saint of the Day

St. Pope John I
May 18: St. John I, Pope and Martyr (Feast day – May 18) A native of Tuscany in Italy, John was elected Pope while he was still an archdeacon upon the death of Pope Hormisdas in 523. At that time, the ruler of Italy was Theodoric the Goth who subscribed to the Arian brand of Christianity, but had tolerated and even favored his Catholic subjects during the early part of his reign. However, about the time of St. John’s accession to the Papacy, Theodoric’s policy underwent a drastic change as a result of two events: the treasonable (in the sovereign’s view) correspondence between ranking members of the Roman Senate and Constantinople and the severe edict against heretics enacted by the emperor Justin I, who was the first Catholic on the Byzantine throne in fifty years. …Read More

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TODAY’S HOLIDAY: Haiti Flag and University Day

Haiti Flag and University Day

National unity is a primary theme of Flag and University Day in Haiti, an independence celebration and an occasion to recognize the country’s educational system. Flag Day became an annual celebration shortly after Catherine Flon sewed the first red and blue flag in 1803, a year before Haiti won its independence from France. The government incorporated University Day as part of the celebration in 1919. Haitians wave flags throughout the day’s parades and fairs, which take place throughout Haiti as well as in New York and Miami, two cities with large Haitian communities. More… Discuss

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QUOTATION: Nathaniel Hawthorne

What other dungeon is so dark as one’s own heart! What jailer so inexorable as one’s self!

Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864) Discuss

TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: Isabella d’Este (1474)

Isabella d’Este (1474)

One of the leading women of the Italian Renaissance, d’Este was a major cultural and political figure. She had a shrewd political acumen and ruled Mantua as regent for her son after the death of her husband. Known as “The First Lady of the World,” she was well-educated, a skilled musician and singer, and a renowned patron of the arts. Her simple style made her a trendsetter, and her fashion was imitated throughout Italy and France. Which artist did she repeatedly ask to paint her portrait? More… Discuss

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THIS DAY IN THE YESTERYEAR: Plessy v. Ferguson: “Separate but Equal” Ruled Constitutional (1896)

Plessy v. Ferguson: “Separate but Equal” Ruled Constitutional (1896)

In this case, the US Supreme Court upheld a Louisiana statute mandating racially segregated railroad cars, ruling that the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment dealt with political and not social equality. This provided constitutional sanction for the adoption of the Jim Crow laws. Justice Henry Billings Brown wrote the majority opinion, stating that “separate but equal” laws did not imply one race’s inferiority to another. What prompted Homer Plessy to serve as the case’s plaintiff? More… Discuss

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ARTICLE: Exercise Critical for Women’s Heart Health

Exercise Critical for Women’s Heart Health

Lack of exercise is the number one risk factor for heart disease in women over the age of 30. Inactivity surpasses even obesity, smoking, and high blood pressure as a risk factor, a fact that might come as a surprise to most women. This does not mean that these other factors should be ignored, but it does highlight the importance of incorporating physical activity into one’s daily routine. Exercising 30 to 45 minutes a day can cut a woman’s heart disease risk in half. More… Discuss

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Phonetics is the study of the sounds of languages. This branch of linguistics focuses on the production, perception, and analysis of speech sounds from both a physiological and an acoustic point of view. Phonetics is not a new discipline—the first phoneticians were Indian scholars working to preserve the pronunciation of Sanskrit holy texts around 300 BCE, and the Classical Greeks are credited with the first writing system based on a phonetic alphabet. What is a phoneme? More… Discuss

WORD: mendacious


Definition: (adjective) Lying; untruthful.
Synonyms: dishonest, deceptive, deceitful, duplicitous
Usage: She was more upset with the mendacious child for his dishonesty than his initial misbehavior. Discuss.