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Music DVD's
The Who:
The Vegas Job
On the evening of October 29, 1999, Roger Daltrey, Pete Townshend and John Entwistle, performed LIVE for the first time in 20 years as a 5-piece band, joined by Zak Starkey and John "Rabbit" Bundrick. This November release coincides with The Who's North American Tour this fall. Bonus Features Include Backstage Interviews With Daltrey And Entwistle.

Kill Your Idols
A documentary that will explain the punk rock movement of the late 70's- early 80's in New York, introduce the leaders, from Lydia Lunch ("It's a way of making music that referenced nothing else--that reminded you of nothing else.") and Teenage Jesus & the Jerks to Suicide and DNA. It will also greatly entertain and inform followers. First time filmmaker S.A. Crary rounded up the principals for a fine articulation of what it was and tried to do to prevailing concepts of music. Examples express a certain uniformity among its purveyors: "It's about energy in motion." "... an excuse to rage." "... reductionism in sound production." You don't even have to be a fan to say, "well done."
"Jimmy Sturr Live!
The King of Polka"

If you're into this dance style, Sturr and his men perform 20 of their top polkas for you. Stomp your feet and slide your hips to such hits as "Rebel Rouser," "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" and "Guacamole."
"Antone's Home of the Blues"
"A Legend Every Night" at this Austin, Texas showcase blues club. This 99-minute DVD features exclusive performance footage, interviews and homages to a blues spot that drew the cream of the crop down from Chicago and throughout the South, many of them making it their special "home." Appearances by the Who's Who of blues show up to sing and to laud Clifford Antone for his pure love of their music and his faithful support: B.B. King, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Muddy Waters, Eddie Taylor, Pinetop Perkins, Willie Nelson, and the list goes on. The music excerpts give you the feel and the taste. This DVD is a must-have for blues fans.
Korn: Live On the Other Side
A totally rocking concert from the stage of the Hammerstein Ballroom in front of one of the most responsive audiences you can imagine--a sign of tremendous adoration and familiarity with the highly produced uber-music. They come with metallic pushiness, crazed arena sound, thematic microphone stands, and all. The nu-metal band group uses the fans as a chorus, and they're never off the beat. Fans will not want to go without this well made concert album.

Motley Crue: Carnival of Sins
Shot live on location at the Van Andel Arena in Grad Rapids, Michigan April 27th, 2005; this is the live concert DVD of their Red, White & Cre world wide tour, captured with 20 cameras. Featuring "greatest hits" as well as new songs, Carnival of Sins is a behind the scenes look at the band and the DVD contains great bonus material for fans. 3 hours, in all.

Make it Funky
You want to know what New Orleans musicians mean by funky? Hear them describe it and give you a taste. This timely release addresses the fears that an important cultural strain of music might have been lost in the Katrina Hurricane, but the spirit expressed here suggests that nothing will be lost. With Earl Palmer, Snooks Eaglin, Bonnie Raitt, the Neville Brothers, and 6 more.

Brubeck Returns To Moscow
The Diary of Alicia Keys: A Documentary Film
Willie Nelson and Friends: Outlaws & Angels
Nat King Cole: When I Fall In Love
John Lee Hooker: Come and See About Me
Putumayo: Travel the World
Toto: Live in Amsterdam
Joe Cocker: Across from Midnight Tour
Joni Mitchell: Painting with Words and Music

Music CD's - 2004

James Galway: Wings of Song
Lang Lang: Live at Carnegie Hall

Live Classical Concerts - 2004

St. Lawrence Qt. @ UCLALive!

New Music (Classical)

Are you ready for a challenge in classical music?

Clasical music today is very exciting -- if you're tuned into what's being written today. Or, at, least, in the last eighty or so years. My awareness of the new generation of music began with Webern, whose work intrigued me. Later, I locked onto Messiaen and graduated to John Adams whose Third Violin Concerto I consider a masterpiece.

But, this school of neo-modern music clearly isn't for every listener whose classical universe is Mozart to Mahler: music of the Baroque, the Romantic and what was once thought of as the Modern Era. The term moves with the times and is anything but static; and I think it's fair to say most clasical listeners aren't even aware of the people who have been moving music along; people like Morton Feldman (American), Karlheinz Stockhausen (German), Iannis Xenakis (Italian), Toru Takemitsu (Japan) or Gyorgy Ligeti (Italian).

And, yet, millions of us have heard and been moved by some of these composer's music in films. Stanley Kubrick knew what he was doing when he appropriated the latter's Lux Eterna for his futuristic "2001: A Space Odyssey," (1968)." And what would "The Hours" have been without the gyrations of Philip Glass' 2009 composition in the soundtrack to make those hours seem endless?

In a way, discovering a composer's work by hearing it in a soundtrack is a perfectly good way to go about discovering your own taste for music beyond Shostakovich, Bartok, Prokofiev and Stravinsky. Or, should I say Mozart and Beethoven? But, the point is to use this first exposure as an introduction; then to follow up with some serious listening and/or collecting. That is, if you're ready to be challenged.

The terms used to describe the music I'm referring to includes "minimalist" (mostly associated with American composition originating in New York), "12-tone" (Arnold Schoenberg's technique in the mid-20th century that woke up the musical world by suggesting that there's more than tonal music and that a little dissonance can open up new compositional vistas.

The crop of "new" composers is more than "living," and the term "twenty-first century" doesn't easily mark out the category. The movement of classical music has been progressing without fitting into one generalized term, but we could settle, perhaps, for "post-modern" or "new school."

In any event, if you've read down to here I'm going to assume you're looking into the subject and might like a few suggestions or, at least, some names you haven't heard before. Here's a list of composers to look into (with links to one album at Amazon, which eill lead to other albums), and it might surprise you. So, dip your ears in these sonic waters:

  • Violin Concerto / Shaker Loops by John Adams
    I don't list Adams first because his name begins with "A." Rather, it's more that his music is more relateable to classical listeners unfamiliar with the New School. Also because he's one of the most active and successful in the genre. He's richly inventive, influential and productive, steadily drawing commissions from great orchestras and other venues. His Violin Concerto, to me, is arguably, one of the best transition pieces for an inductee to post-modern. "Shaker Loops" is an earlier work and one which has been very influential on upcoming composers. Don't know which came first, but it relates to much of Philip Glass's early style from which, I believe, Glass has finally moved on.

  • Fulgurances
    by Unsuk Chin

    This composer is, perhaps, the most unusual in music today. Born in South Korea, she studied in Berlin where she lives today. "Exciting" would be one word to describe the originality and invention of her music. She is a discovery and has yet to receive the fame and appreciation her work will one day bring her. Other albums include: XI, Fantaisie mecanique, Rocana', Violin Concerto, Double Concerto,

    Note that this list is a work in progress. More albums and composers will be added to the list here. But, know that your approval may be measured by your purchases on Amazon which I'll take as a stimulus to add more.