There All Along: A collection of 21st century salon music by Fire & Air
Very salon-style. My favorites are “Thunder and Stars” and “Free and Clear.” The others are also a lot of fun, but I think I did my best in those two.
Händel in a New Light: Piano variations on themes from his top operas
- “Pompe vane di morte” (“The vain pageantry of death” from “Rodelinda”):
01 Standard: As close to the flavor of the original as I can get on a piano.
02 Swing: Händel the honky-tonk piano player!
03 Jazz: Händel gets into a cutting contest with Art Tatum. (He loses of course because hey, Art Tatum.)
04 Debussy: Händel gets hit on the head and wakes up thinking he’s an absinthe tippler in Impressionist Paris.
- “Con rauco mormorio” (“With harsh mutterings” from “Rodelinda”):
05 Standard: Once again, as close to the original as I can get on a piano.
06 Tango: Just too damned fun.
07 Rock: Sort of Elton John-ish, if you squint and close one eye.
08 Etude: I’m not entirely certain what to call this one. Sounds like a Mozartean etude, so there you go.
- “Se fiera belva ha cinto” (“The proud beast, once chained” from “Rodelinda”):
09 Standard: And again, hewing as closely as possible to the original on a piano. Super-peppy and catchy tune!
10 Ragtime: Almost unbelievably fun. Swung Baroque show tunes are made for syncopation.
11 Impromptu: Very late Romantic period. You can only listen to Godefroid’s “Danse des Sylphes” so many times before it starts to germinate on you.
12 Albeniz: Particularly, “Asturias.” This one was very fun.
- “Confusa, si miri l’infida consorte” (“Regard the unfaithful wife” from “Rodelinda”):
13 Standard: This one probably works best on the piano since it has a percussive quality.
14 Five/four: Took forever since this was not an easy time signature to wrap my head around at first.
15 Harp etude: Inspired by Hasselmans’ “La Source.” You wouldn’t think something so flowing and watery would work well with something so martial, but it did. Moved into B Major from B minor.
16 Hemiolas: And at last, one that was just my own personal interpretation based on something I find personally fun, no style but my own, and it took my until the very end to get there. I am in love with hemiolas and like to play with them.