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Brown, Earle: Chamber Music (Matchless)

Earle Brown conducts a chamber ensemble including John Tilbury on piano through a number of compositions, including versions of "October", "November", & "December", "Corroboree 1964 For Three Pianos", "Trio For Five Dances", and "Tracking Pierrot For Ensable".

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product information:

UPC: 786497521524

Label: Matchless
Catalog ID: MRCD52
Squidco Product Code: 1742

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2003
Country: Great Britain
Packaging: Jewel Case
Tracks 1-10 recorded at Gateway Studios, Kingston-upon-Thames Surrey, England.

Track 11 recorded July/August 2002.

Track 12 recorded at the Dal Niente concert at the Union Chapel, London, November 12th 1999.


Simon Allen-vibraphone, marimba, percussion, harmonicas, various sound producing media

Peter Bevan-trombone

Bridget Carey-viola

Tania Chen-piano

Robert Coleridge-piano

Francesca Hanley-flute

Nicolas Hodges-piano

Mieko Kanno-violin

Lore Lixenburg-voice

Zoe Martlew-cello

Mannon Morris-harp

Fiona Ritchie-vibraphone, marimba

David Ryan-clarinet, bass clarinet

Nancy Ruffer-flute

Andrew Sparling-clarinet, bass clarinet

John Tilbury-piano

Earle Brown-conductor

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track listing:

1. October 1952 Version 1 1:03

2. November 1952 Version 1 5:22

3. Mm=87 (Harp) 1:39

4. Mm=135 (Piano) 0:42

5. October 1952 Version 2 1:20

6. December 1952 2:24

7. November 1952 Version 2 5:07

8. 1953 Version 1 2 & 3 3:20

9. Trio For Five Dances 3:30

10. Corroboree 1964 For Three Pianos 11:55

11. For Systems 1954 (Multi-Timbral Realisation) 12:07

12. Tracking Pierrot For Ensable 18:24

Related Categories of Interest:

Compositional Forms
NY Downtown & Jazz/Improv
Octet Recordings
New in Compositional Music

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descriptions, reviews, &c.

"In some respects, Earle Browns chamber music is music that, although written with no eye to the future, much less stylized for a vaguely futuristic age in which culture IS furniture, is tailor-made pre-fabricated, almost to serve as soundtrack to an arty science fiction film. Think of Tarkovskys Solaris or Kubricks, or even Speilbergs Close Encounters , in which sound is often neither strictly diegetic or non-diegetic. Noise or what under hyper-circumstantial conditions could be interpreted as music may, in fact, be an extra-terrestrial language; our own transmissions beamed back at us, encoded with new objectives; light; the music of the spheres Who knows? As alien and chill as it sometimes can be, what is perhaps more engrossing about this music and more discomfiting about it in pure emotional terms is that little bit of familiarity it does possess. It is uncanny music. This uncanniness wants to support the idea that music can flow and exist independent of its Self, scrutiny be damned, as if sounds are ultimately unintentional with no other purpose than to defy the concepts of right and wrong. If that is so, then why can a sequence of seemingly random notes and phrases stir such positive emotion in one listener while stirring in another the heaves and shudders that accompany a putrid smell in a damp room? It is not the responsibility of music to answer such questions, but to raise them. Browns incongruously sensual yet frugal rhapsodies effectively do exactly that."-Bagatellen

Artist Biographies:

"Andrew Sparling has played guest principal clarinet with many UK orchestras, including the BBC Scottish, Philharmonia, Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, London Sinfonietta, Sinfonia ViVA, New Kent Opera and Grange Park Opera.

Andrew also appears regularly with many of the most important Contemporary Music Ensembles in the UK, including the Almeida Opera, Apartment House, Chroma, Double Image, Ensemble Exposè, Gemini, Lontano and the Michael Nyman Band.

As a soloist and chamber musician Andrew performs regularly with the pianist, Thalia Myers and he has also joined the Brindisi Quartet to perform the Mozart Clarinet Quintet, and also the first performance of Gabriel Jackson's Quintet: In Prairial and Thermidor. Andrew has given solo and chamber recitals in the UK, Europe, USA, the Far East and the Middle East.

Andrew has been invited to give recitals at the London Festival of Chamber Music, run by the English String Quartet, every year since 2001

In May 2000, he made his concerto debut at the Royal Festival Hall with the Philharmonia playing the Capriccio Notturno by the French composer, Nicholas Bacri.

Andrew also performs on period instruments, and plays principal clarinet in Charles Hazelwood's orchestra The Mozart Collective, taking part in the BBC 2 drama-documentary series "The Genius of Mozart" broadcast in 2004. Andrew acted the role of clarinettist Anton Stadler and the photo in Andrew's photo gallery (click on the RHS Photo Gallery link) shows him rehearsing Mozart's Clarinet Quintet with the composer. He has since played principal clarinet with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment (including a run of Gluck's Iphigénie en Tauride at Covent Garden, on baroque clarinets), Classical Opera Company, Armonico Consort and the Tallis Scholars."

-Morgensterns (

"John Tilbury (born 1 February 1936) is a British pianist. He is considered one of the foremost interpreters of Morton Feldman's music, and since 1980 has been a member of the free improvisation group AMM.

Tilbury studied piano at the Royal College of Music with Arthur Alexander and James Gibb and also with Zbigniew Drzewiecki in Warsaw. 1968 he was the winner of the Gaudeamus competition in the Netherlands.

During the 1960s, Tilbury was closely associated with the composer Cornelius Cardew, whose music he has interpreted and recorded and a member of the Scratch Orchestra. His biography of Cardew, "Cornelius Cardew - A life unfinished" was published in 2008.

Tilbury has also recorded the works of Howard Skempton and John White, among many others, and has also performed adaptations of the radio plays of Samuel Beckett.

With guitarist AMM bandmate Keith Rowe's electroacoustic ensemble M.I.M.E.O., Tilbury recorded The Hands of Caravaggio, inspired by the painter's The Taking of Christ {1602). In this live performance, twelve of the members of M.I.M.E.O. were positioned around the piano in a deliberate echo of Christ's Last Supper. The thirteenth M.I.M.E.O. member (Cor Fuhler) is credited with "inside piano" as he interacted and interfered with Tilbury's playing by manipulating and damping the instrument's strings, essentially doing piano preparation in real time. Critic Brian Olewnick describes the album as "A staggering achievement, one is tempted to call The Hands of Caravaggio the first great piano concerto of the 21st century."

Another notable recent recording of Tilbury's was Duos for Doris (like The Hands of Caravaggio also on Erstwhile Records), a collaboration with Keith Rowe. It is widely considered a landmark recording in the genre of electroacoustic improvisation (or "EAI").

In 2013 he collaborated with artist Armando Lulaj in FIEND performance at the National Theatre of Tirana (Albania)."

-Wikipedia (

"Earle Brown (December 26, 1926 - July 2, 2002) was an American composer who established his own formal and notational systems. Brown was the creator of open form,[1] a style of musical construction that has influenced many composers since-notably the downtown New York scene of the 1980s (see John Zorn) and generations of younger composers.

Among his most famous works are December 1952, an entirely graphic score, and the open form pieces Available Forms I & II, Centering, and Cross Sections and Color Fields.

Brown was born in Lunenburg, Massachusetts, and first devoted himself to playing jazz. He initially considered a career in engineering, and enrolled for engineering and mathematics at Northeastern University (1944-45). He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1945. However, the war ended while he was still in basic training, and he was assigned to the base band at Randolph Field, Texas, in which he played trumpet. The band included saxophonist Zoot Sims. Between 1946 and 1950 he was a student at Schillinger House in Boston, which is now the Berklee College of Music. Brown had private instruction in trumpet and composition. Upon graduating he moved to Denver to teach Schillinger techniques. John Cage invited Brown to leave Denver and join him for the Project for Music for Magnetic Tape in New York. Brown was an editor and recording engineer for Capitol Records (1955-60) and producer for Mainstream-Time Records (1960-73).

Brown's contact with Cage exposed David Tudor to some of Brown's early piano works, and this connection led to Brown's work being performed in Darmstadt and Donaueschingen. Composers such as Pierre Boulez and Bruno Maderna promoted his music, which subsequently became more widely performed and published.

Brown is considered to be a member of the New York School of composers, along with John Cage, Morton Feldman, and Christian Wolff. Brown cited the visual artists Alexander Calder and Jackson Pollock as two of the primary influences on his work. He was also inspired by author, Gertrude Stein, and by many artists he was personally acquainted with such as Max Ernst and Robert Rauschenberg.

Brown died in 2002 of cancer, in Rye, New York."

-Wikipedia (

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