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Brant, Scelsi, Wolpe, Xenakis, Cage, Glass, Feldman

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Audio CD, September 22, 1995
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Editorial Reviews

This CD contains reissues of two different recording projects. My primary desire was to reissue CP26, an LP with music of Scelsi, Xenakis, and Glass, which constituted a combination-of-flavors I still enjoy. Obviously, 44 minutes of music is far too short for a CD (as an aside--is the public even aware of how the increase in available time on a CD, as opposed to an LP, and the expectation that that time will be filled, has made the already marginal "business" of releasing recordings of 20th century music ever more absurd?). Having re-acquired the tapes of my LP set "Music for a 20th Century Violinist," the idea of combining CP26 with some of the "20th Century Violinist" material was obvious, but which material? I did not wish to lose the contrasts within CP26. What could I choose that might even enhance those contrasts? Fortunately, "20th Century Violinist" contained four bon-bons, or should I say petit-fours, that I felt could both offset the larger pieces, and! nevertheless preserve their identify. While deciding upon the order that best would embed the original three works, I began to sense relations among some that couldn't and shouldn't be present, but which I nevertheless found. It is my hope that this arrangement of these pieces will eventually appear to be as if intended from the very beginning.
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Product Details

  • Performer: Paul Zukofsky
  • Audio CD (September 22, 1995)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Cp2 Records
  • ASIN: B000004AE6
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #945,411 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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From what I know of him, violinist Paul Zukovsky is not someone you want to like - in fact, he's very easy to hate. Here's the man who, as the head of the Arnold Schoenberg Institute of the University of Southern California from 1992 to 1996 (a position he acquired thanks to the support of the Schoenberg heirs), presided over the estrangement of the Schoenbergs and the removal of the invaluable Schoenberg archive to Vienna, through what were, apparently, deceitful and slanderous manoeuvres and accusations (courts ruled against him and the USC) aimed at depriving the Schoenbergs of their copyrights and deviously wresting the Schoenberg archive from them. That must be one of the major flops of American musicology and academia, ever. And as if this were not enough, just recently, in 2009, this man who had tried to rob the Schoenbergs of their copyright ownership posted an infamous copyright notice by which he pretended - and in grossly vulgar terms to boot - to forbid any use or quote of his father's works (an obscure - inasmuch as poetry is a niche interest and is obscure to most - experimental American poet of the so-called "objectivist" movement whose name I won't even mention lest Zukovsky litigates), even in doctoral dissertations (he went as far as to advise doctoral students NOT to study the works of his father) or wherever, unless money was paid to him. Wow.

It's almost entertaining to meet a man apparently so eager to paint himself as the ultimate jerk. He must have been the inspirations for Despicable Me's Gru, although it remains to be demonstrated, in the case of Zukovsky, that there is a soft heart buried deep inside.

OK, I needed to vent that out of my system. That being said, you may have no sympathies for the man Wagner and be enraptured by his music.
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By A Customer on March 19, 1999
Format: Audio CD
Paul Zukofsky is, by anyone's standards, the most well-respected performer of modern classical violin music. This CD is perhaps the best introduction to the kind of thing Zukofsky's been doing for years. The performance is like no other, and it should be said that this is partially because no one else could possibly play this music. It's too new. Too difficult. Too modern. The Scelsi stands out as a highpoint (violin accompanied by a series of music boxes), as does a rather beautiful early piece by John Cage. This CD is a perfect addition to anyone's classical music collection as it presents a carefully selected sample of modern classical violin pieces by its premiere interpreter. Do not pass go: buy this CD.
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