Blog Posts on Music

Convocation Day

Due to popular demand, I am posting the audio clip of Howard Hanson's speech to Eastman School of Music students in 1943. It was Convocation Day, the beginning of a new academic year.  Click on the audio attachment to hear The Man Himself.  The whole thing is less than two minutes long.
 
 
Howard HansonHoward Hanson

Meet Joe Pug

Loudon Wainwright III wrote a song for Bob Dylan a few years back. Part of it went like this…
 
Yeah, I got a deal, and so did John Prine, Steve Forbert and Springsteen, all in a line.
They were lookin' for you, signin' up others.
We were 'new Bob Dylans,' your dumb-ass kid brothers.

Soprano saves opera! Dies on stage! Wakes for interview!

Eastman grad Kathryn Lewek, who recorded an exquisite set of art songs by Rochester composer Cary Ratcliff in 2008, got an amazing, unexpected chance to step into the starring role in Ambroise Thomas' opera Mignon at the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara on August 7th.  The lead got sick. Lewek was her understudy.  Big moment ensued.  This could be a huge advance for her career.  After the show, she was interviewed about the experience. 
 
 
 

Three minutes at a time

Radio sucks. That’s my conclusion after spending 11 hours driving back home from Chicago Sunday night into Monday morning. My fellow travelers were sleeping during most of the wee small hours. I stopped several times to top off the coffee but I was still having a few of those moments when the white dashes hypnotize and the rumble strips snap you out of it. I had the radio on and searched for something decent, ideally something to which I could sing along. Belting out the Beatles or AC/DC or Louis Armstrong kept my brain alert and occupied and in the moment, but only for three minutes at a time. Then they’d play dreck or a commercial and I’d be zipping up and down the dial again. I think I may have developed carpal tunnel syndrome from hitting the scan button so often.

Holst's trombone induces sheep birth

 We all know the power of the mighty trombone.  Noble, inspiring, breathtaking, the trombone has inspired generations of humans to great things.  Einstein listened to the "Tuba Mirum" from Mozart's Requiem when he finalized the theory of relativity.  Joyce played recordings of Bruckner while he wrote Ulysses.  Al Gore went to a Chicago concert right before he invented the Internet.  

Good-bye to WXXI senior audio producer Dave Sluberski

 
 
It's a sad day for many at WXXI.  Our senior audio producer Dave Sluberski is moving on to greener pastures. He talks about his future plans in the attached audio file.
 
 

Ted Nicolosi and Shared Genes

"Ted Nicolosi & Shared Genes", the shared genes is Ted's dad, Sam, took time to visit our studio Friday. Ted, a senior at McQuaid Jesuit, began playing guitar at 5, and was in coffee shops performing by age 9. He had the great, or daunting, rare opportunity to play a couple of his original songs for Tommy Emmanuel.

Happy Anniversary

"A love for real, not fade away," Buddy Holly sang. It was supposedly the last tune he performed before he climbed into the airplane that brought him down into that cornfield in Iowa 50 years ago. Here in Rochester, the flight paths seem to carry planes over Frontier Field and, if the timing is right, directly into the setting sun. The vapor trails are left to drift in the twilight.