Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill | Solitude

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Solitude

by Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill

Question: What do children with disabilities, Rachmaninoff, Bill Evans, Cole Porter, the Gershwins, Irving Berlin, Jeff Bridges, The Middle East, The Star Spangled Banner, odd meters, and award winning Minnesota poetry have in common? Answer: Solitude
Genre: Jazz: Modern Creative Jazz
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  Song Share Time Download
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1. Sirocco
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill
6:36 $1.00
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2. Some Other Time and Bill Evans
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill
6:24 $1.00
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3. Solitude
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill
4:38 $1.00
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4. Jack’s Theme
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill
9:05 $1.00
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5. Night and Day
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill
7:16 $1.00
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6. Coming Late to Rachmaninoff
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill
7:07 $1.00
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7. Someone to Watch Over Me
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill
5:52 $1.00
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8. God Bless America
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill
4:36 $1.00
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9. Waltz for Christian
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill
3:39 $1.00
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10. A Rose for Two
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill
7:47 $1.00
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11. Star Spangled Banner
Larry McDonough & Richard Terrill
2:40 $1.00
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
“Solitude” includes unique interpretations of odd-metered originals based on melody fragments by children with disabilities, including my daughter Rosie; original poems by Minnesota Book Award winner and sax player Richard Terrill over variations on Rachmaninoff and Bill Evans; music from cinema; Broadway standards; international rhythms; and historical pieces.

Andrea Canter of JazzInk writes of Solitude, “In their decade-plus of musical collaboration, Larry McDonough and Richard Terrill have developed an artful empathy, played out in the gigs and recordings of the Larry McDonough Quartet and other ensembles. Pianist/vocalist/composer McDonough has generally assumed a leading role in these projects, with poet/saxophonist Terrill serving as a counterweight and harmonic partner. Solitude is their first project as an unadorned duo, the music stripped to its essence without external pulsetter and drive train. In such a spare sonic wonderland, the duo reconsider some past delights, mine gold in new arrangements and revel in new compositions. For Richard, music is poetry transformed in sound and rhythm; for Larry, melody is an auspicious starting point, time an endless playground. Together, theirs is a “solitude” that evolves when two minds become one heart.”

McDonough’s previous recordings include Larry McDonough Quartet (LMQ) DVD “Live at Minnesota Connection” released in April at Dakota Jazz Club and Restaurant; “Simple Gifts” CD (LMQ, released nationally and internationally in 2008-09, charted #29 on the CMJ Jazz Chart and played on radio throughout the world), “My Favorite Things” CD (music for high school orchestra, concert band and jazz ensembles), “Tuscarora: Short Stories for Jazz Piano” CD (solo piano, dedicated to the my late friend Senator Paul Wellstone and benefitting Wellstone Action), “Live, Cooking at the Dakota” CD (live quintet recording), and “Small Steps” CD (solo piano).

Liner Notes:

“Sirocco” is the desert wind that blows from northern Africa across the Mediterranean Sea to southern Europe. McDonough put the tune in 7/4 time, with 7-bar phrases and a few 7/8 bars thrown in, a “hot” A section played brightly by Terrill’s soprano and a “cool” B section played quietly by McDonough’s piano, to simulate the sirocco winds. “Sirocco” can be heard played by large ensemble on McDonough’s earlier recording “My Favorite Things” and by LMQ on “Live at Minnesota Connection”.

Both Terrill and McDonough are Bill Evans devotees, and “Some Other Time” is one of the pianist’s signature ballads, here featuring Terrill reading his poem “Bill Evans” over McDonough’s sparse presentation of the theme. McDonough finishes with a classic Evans modulated ending.

The title track “Solitude” is the first of three pieces from the Fingersteps Project, in which compositions are based on melody fragments written by children with disabilities on adaptive computer equipment. On “Solitude,” McDonough took melody fragments from Elie Gorman, Jack Thuleen, and Christian Adzick and shaped a long tone melody in 7/4 time, modulating from Bb minor to its polar opposite E minor. Terrill added lyrics that emphasize the quiet darkness of the piece.

The film “The Fabulous Baker Boys” has long been a favorite of McDonough for its great acting and music, along with its accurate portrayal of the life of workaday musicians. The Dave Grusin piece, “Jack’s Theme”, recurs in the film as the Jeff Bridges character seeks to find the role music should play in his life. McDonough’s arrangement keeps the haunting quality of the piece, yet places it in 5/4 time.

The Cole Porter standard “Night and Day” begins and ends with Terrill’s unaccompanied tenor. McDonough’s vocal is dedicated to his wife, flautist Carol Bergquist.

McDonough conceived the ambitious “Coming Late to Rachmaninoff” after reading Terrill’s poem “Coming Late to Rachmaninoff” from the book of the same name, winner of a Minnesota Book Award for Poetry. The poem’s speaker, parked on the side of a road in a suburban wasteland, reflects on the beauty of the Adagio from Rachmaninoff’s “Second Symphony in E Minor”. McDonough borrowed themes from the piece but placed them in a different order and in 11/4 time.

With “Someone to Watch Over Me”, McDonough returns to a favorite Gershwin standard, singing the often forgotten verse as well as the better known chorus. Terrill’s tenor adds a mournful solo. Another standard, “God Bless America”, could not be treated more differently. Often blindly patriotic, here the Berlin standard is recast in a Middle Eastern 5/4 rhythm to suggest that music is most noble when it brings people together rather than drive them apart.

The next two pieces come from the Fingersteps Project. “Waltz for Christian” is based on a 5 note melody fragment by Christian Adzick. McDonough ran the segment forward and backward over descending chords and an up tempo waltz to create the piece, and Terrill added lyrics. “A Rose for Two” is based on melody fragments written by McDonough’s daughter Rosie, and Jennifer and Patrick, children of Fingersteps creator Dan Moffatt. Rosie wrote the A section melody, Jennifer and Patrick wrote the B section melody, and McDonough placed them over shifting minor harmonies and a 5/4 meter. Earlier recordings of “A Rose for Two” appear on McDonough’s CD “My Favorite Things” performed by orchestra, and on the LMQ DVD “Live at Minnesota Connection”.

McDonough and Terrill end the CD with “Star Spangled Banner”, which McDonough previously recorded as a solo piano piece on the CD “Tuscarora: Short Stories for Jazz Piano”. McDonough rearranged the piece as a Gershwin-like ballad to reflect the mixed emotions accompanying war and love of country.

Bios:

Legal Aid lawyer and law professor Larry McDonough was selected by William Mitchell College of Law as one of "100 Who Made a Difference" over the 100 year history of the school. He also is a St. Paul jazz pianist and singer, performing around the world and recording with his group the Larry McDonough Quartet as well as solo, and in duos and trios. He has performed with legendary saxophonist and composer Benny Golson, Trombonist Fred Wesley, and trumpeter Duane Eubanks, as well as a who’s who of local jazz artists, and was inducted into the Minnesota Rock Country Hall of Fame for his work in the group Danny’s Reasons.
http://larrymcdonoughjazz.homestead.com/Biography.html

Sax player and Minnesota State University Mankato English Professor Richard Terrill received the 2004 Minnesota Book Award for Poetry, for his poetry compilation “Coming Late to Rachmaninoff” (University of Tampa Press, 2003). Richard Terrill, tenor sax, has been performing with Larry McDonough since December 2001. He also has performed with guitarist Jim McGuire and with Chaz Draper's Uptown Jazz Quartet. As a college student, Terrill was a member of the award winning University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Jazz Ensemble, and performed with later-to-be Pat Metheny keyboardist Lyle Mays in the Lyle Mays Quartet, winner of small group honors at the Midwest College Jazz Festival. He has also worked with pianist Geoff Keezer. He teaches creative writing at Minnesota State University, Mankato. http://larrymcdonoughjazz.homestead.com/Dick.html

“Bill Evans”, From “Almost Dark”, by Richard Terrill, University of Tampa Press: 2010

Should anyone ever fail
this beautifully again,
promise me

your late conversion
won’t keep you
from at least

sending word--that someone
once again
hasn’t wasted life

on certainty.
Heroin, counterpoint,
Ravel, cocaine:

When he got into something
he really got into it.
It seems too much

to deny a man
slumped forehead to the keys
and their impossible jagged line

like black and white starlight,
his right arm limp with dead nerves,
while the left hand turns out the stars.

The shirt someone buttoned for him,
cigarettes on spring days,
the background chatter that wasn’t there. Isn’t.

How long it takes to die this way
when it rains outside, and within.
I suppose when the wind behaves,

the waves take note.
I’ll hear that someone
came through the revolving door

again into
the shapeless dark
and began to play.

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