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Short Trip Home


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Audio CD, September 7, 1999
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Short Trip Home + Heartland: An Appalachian Anthology + Appalachian Journey
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Amazon.com

Bassist-composer Edgar Meyer is no stranger to genre "crossover"--he's created moving string quartet works, recorded a classical album with bluegrass greats, and, of course, earned his chops on the folk scene. But Short Trip Home, Meyer's collaboration with violinist Joshua Bell (and bluegrass musicians Sam Bush and Mike Marshall), might be one of his most effective projects yet--a successful mix of bluegrass, improv jamming, and chamber music. The lovely title track is a moving, solitary piece, with Joshua Bell doing most of the lyrical work. "BP" is as close to a bluegrass jam as anything on this disc, with Bell's fiddle, the duo mandolins, and Meyer's bass all working together in a syncopated frenzy. "Death by Triple Fiddle" ends this disc on a thundering note--a "breakdown" if ever there was one. If you loved Meyer's work with Yo-Yo Ma on Appalachian Waltz, or perhaps just want to hear one very sublime, genre-fusing take on Americana themes, this disc is perfect for you. --Jason Verlinde

1. Short Trip Home
2. Short Trip Home: Hang Hang
3. Short Trip Home: BT
4. Short Trip Home: In The Nick Of Time
5. Short Trip Home: Concert Duo, The Prequel
6. Short Trip Home: BP
7. Short Trip Home: If I Knew
8. Short Trip Home: OK, All Right
9. Short Trip Home: Death By Triple Fiddle
10. Short Trip Home: Concert Duo Movement 1
11. Short Trip Home: Concert Duo Movement 2
12. Short Trip Home: Concert Duo Movement 3
13. Short Trip Home: Concert Duo Movement 4

Product Details

  • Performer: Joshua Bell, Edgar Meyer, Sam Bush, Mike Marshall
  • Audio CD (September 7, 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B00000K4IU
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,075 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

152 of 156 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 12, 1999
Format: Audio CD
You heard it here, folks. I am a classical fan who, like most other classical fans, shrinks away from the mention of the word "crossover" like it's got the plague. Being classically trained in violin, and taking great joy in blasting the fans of Vanessa-Mae, the announcement of Joshua Bell, Edgar Meyer, Sam Bush, and Mike Marshall collaborating on a folk/classical/bluegrass fusion CD was quite a shock to me, initially. Heck, I didn't even know who Sam Bush And Mike Marshall were. Bluegrass? That conjures up in my mind an image of a banjo-pickin', overall-wearin' geezer with bad dental hygeine, sitting on his wood porch somewhere in the middle of nowhere. Or at least, that's what I used to be like until I heard this CD. This CD is simply amazing. Meyer's compositions are a joy to listen to- they do justice to all the genres they touch upon and exude a joy and warmth in a way that only folk music can. And something happened to me. I started tapping my foot along to "Hang Hang" and suddenly realized that I could get to like this kind of stuff. I rushed out to buy tickets to their concert. I had a blast. Nowdays, a few bars of "Short Trip Home" and "If I Knew" slip their way into my practice time, in between the Mozart and Mendelssohn music. The melodies are absolutely unforgettable and instantly addictive. Now, I am seriously considering taking up folk fiddling. All this, from a girl who used to say that hell would freeze over before she ever played "fiddle". And all because of this CD. This CD has done what crossover CD's are supposed to do: expand the horizons of the listeners with innovative and beautiful music. Hey, if I got converted, anyone can. Buy this CD. I mean it. BTW: my apologies to all bluegrass performers and fans everywhere: I will never, never, EVER make fun of you folk or your genre again.
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 6, 2000
Format: Audio CD
In a country where adults are starving for music that is not bland pop, that is nonetheless accessible, and that is aimed at adult sensibilities, the sales rank of this recording disappoints me. Hopefully this review will help to do something about the sickness that results from the lack of substance being tube-fed to us by the music industry. Too much truly great music is commercially stillborn for failure to fit a niche within the narrow range of radio formats, or for failure to be safely classified as one genre or another.
Have you ever wondered where they get those great musical interludes on PBS or NPR? Quite often the answer is this ensemble, or some portion thereof in yet another great and genre bending band. Sam Bush is known to many as a long time member of the traveling virtuosos that were New Grass Revival, and Marshall can play mandolin with anyone. Neither could be called a mindless picker by anyone but a closed-minded clod. There is a depth and discipline to their bodies of work that would make any cultured person take note whether or not their source genre, bluegrass, appeals to a particular person's sensibility. On this recording, they alternate between solid foundation rhythms, melodies that will stay with you like a winter's remembrance of sun on your back, and beautiful harmonies. However, those of you who have never seen the country from anything but a car window need not fear. I'm not much of a country fan, and this is not a bluegrass recording. Meyer and Bell on, respectively, bass and violin, bring the sensibilities of modern classical music to bear. The recording includes thoughtful chamber compositions, but it is not really a classical recording.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By John Truslow on September 1, 2002
Format: Audio CD
I was pleasantly surprised by this album. I must admit that when I bought it, I was caught up in the "O' Brother, Where art thou?" frenzy - so after the first playing of this disc I was momentarily struck by one of those, "what the heck did I order THIS for" moments. While there is an obvious Appalachian influence, this is not a collection of old-time thigh slapping tunes. This is well constructed, beautiful instrumental (only) music with a Blue Ridge flavor. It's even possible to say that there is more of a New Age feel here than a Southen one. The music is mostly upbeat, though there is a nice mix of fast and slow tunes. This album will appeal to those who are more inclined towards classical music than those who are inclined to 1930s and 40s traditional Bluegrass. God bless you if you're inclined to both.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Perry Clark on December 27, 1999
Format: Audio CD
This amazing recording of Joshua Bell, Edgar Meyer, and friends does all it needs to do with the very first track. Carrying the title of the full disc, the initial selection is one of those rarest of creations, a work of art that simply sweeps away all before it. Listening to this song, and Bell's beautiful playing, is to relive the experience of discovering a love for music. While the rest of the recording is quite good, and to be highly recommended, buy it for the title song, and enjoy.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Bob Zeidler on June 17, 2000
Format: Audio CD
This album can be predicted to be a chartbuster for some time to come. The reasons are obvious to all fans of Edgar Meyer (among whom I count myself): His ability to "mix it up" with rhythmic glee, using strings alone as the driving pulse, his way of putting together themes and harmonies for chamber strings, typically in a contemplative way, that recall the chamber music of Bartok, Kodaly and Janacek, his unequaled skill as the leading contrabassist of our time, and, most prominently for those classical music lovers who are looking for "interesting and fresh" crossover music, his unmatched skill in writing down music lines for nonimprovisational classical string players that sounds fully improvisational.
This last point cannot be overstated. For both Yo-Yo Ma elsewhere and Joshua Bell on this disc, Meyer has created music that has the freshness and immediacy of improvisation without actually being so. The piece de resistance on this disc is of course "Death by Triple Fiddle," and I expect that this track will keep the album on the charts. But it is actually the more ruminative tracks, such as the title tune and "If I Knew," which I personally favor, largely because everyone in the group is much more in his element in these. Truth to tell, after repeated hearings of "Death by Triple Fiddle," the sense I get is that Sam Bush and Mike Marshall are great fiddlers in their own right, and Josh Bell's lines in this (virtuosic as they are) eventually start to wear thin because he can't quite get into the swing of the whole thing.
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