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George Winston ~ Autumn
The precursor to 1982's commercial breakthrough, December, George Winston's 1980 Windham Hill debut boasts all the lyrical power and poignancy of its follow-up. A simple, clear recording for solo piano, Autumn finds Winston developing simple melodic motifs with studied left-hand underpinning, on hypnotic pieces like "Woods," which moves from a brisk rhythmic figure to rubato minor-key runs. Leaving pauses and breaths in all the right places, Winston suggests the play of color and light, the comfortable melancholy, and the encroaching slow-down that characterizes the fall season. Full of memorable themes, sure pacing, and whiffs of classical grandeur, Autumn is a timeless album that belongs to the firmament of the new age canon. --James Rotondi
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I hate to highlight notable compositions, because each of them is beautiful and satisfying to a certain mood. But in particular, "Colors-Dance," "Woods," "Moon," and the track laid down later, "Too Much Between Us," convey a sense of dialogue between two very old, very close friends.
I bought the vinyl version in my first apartment. My roommates and I would sit on our L-shaped couch and read to this music. Somehow, it has the ability to occupy the part of the mind that wants to wander while allowing the rest of your attention to focus on its task. (That may be true of Winston's music in general. )We found this to be true for my son as well, at night when the ADD meds were wearing off but the homework still had to get done.
But don't only listen to "Autumn" when you're doing something else. It is full of emotional content and lovely melody. Unlike many other reviewers, I favor this album over all others, even "December."
This is followed by OCTOBER, which is broken into four sections. The first piece ("Road") makes Winston's piano sound like a lackadaisical young boy bouncing down a dirt roadway on an early, sunny Saturday. It's that sing-songy and full of possibility -- a short and happy piece that wants to light out for the territories like Huck Finn. My other favorite is the final piece of the OCTOBER quartet, "Stars," which is as haunting as the summer constellations of Sagittarius and Scorpio sagging to the south in the ripened, night-time skies of October.
This 20th Anniversary issue includes over 5 minutes of bonus music with the new track, "Too Much Between Us." Altogether, a versatile album that's suitable to read by, dine by, or, best of all, enjoy a glass of wine, shut your eyes, and listen alone in the dark by...
Condition was "like new" as described, CD, jacket and printed enclosures all in pristine condition, at a great price. All were 100% as represented. I was glad that the vendor I chose did provide some description of product condition, which, for me, made the difference in vendor chosen, since I found many of the offerings used their 2 line space to provide generic promotion for their service instead of providing SPECIFIC comments/evaluations of the product offered. It is wonderful to have the resource of AMAZON, to provide such a variety of choices of these hard to find items, with a large selection in prices. [And quite a savings in time and gas and probably prive as well, from doing a search of local merchants for the same item, which likely would have taken longer than the wait from purchase date to the product's arrival through the mail, and I chose standard shipping.]