Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Similarly Requested CDs
Mark Swinton | 09/10/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I've played some Scott Joplin rags in my time: for a classically-trained pianist and organist, they are a wonderful way to 'let down my hair,' musically speaking...This recording is presented as a standard introduction to Joplin's rags. I must say I find it a bit of a mixed bag. It is odd, for instance, to find an arrangement and what looks like a completion by another composer nestling side by side in the programme; likewise, I notice that a number of very good pieces are not included (such as "Elite Syncopations," one of my favourites). Nonetheless, there are some true classics on here, including "Pineapple Rag," "Bethena" and the ever-popular "Entertainer" and "Maple Leaf Rag" - undoubtedly Joplin's finest compositions.Roy Eaton's renditions are fresh and even a touch free-spirited. I always play Joplin at fixed tempi; Eaton on the other hand varies his speeds noticeably in each work and I found this a little off-putting, although now I see that it underlines the 'laid-back, feel-good' nature of ragtime. One of the other reviewers on this page has likened it to attending a very good recital; I am inclined to agree.The informative notes devote much space to describing Joplin's unfortunate battles against racism throughout his life (indeed, he narrowly missed being born as a slave), which makes this recording poignant as well as joyful. I must admit that I once thought that Joplin was white; discovering otherwise has actually heightened my appreciation for his music, coming as it does from a culture that has done very well in the face of brutal and unfair treatment over the centuries. This CD is a very good tribute to him and makes for enjoyable hour or so of listening. I believe it's worth quoting John Potter of the Hilliard Ensemble: "you can keep your Mahler symphonies- give me some of this any day!""
Joplin redux ne plus ultra
Mark Swinton | 04/15/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"A classically trained pianist performs the good old Jopin stuff in a way you've never heard. Roy Eaton can read music! He plays with astounding confidence and music-school precision. The result is a fresh sound straight out of a big-time recital hall. Eaton's renditions of The Chrysanthemum, Bethena and Pleasant Moments are like they've never been played before. This is a 1992 recording, but it is feel-good music that will make your commute a happy experience."