Thursday, April 28, 2005

I drink to forget (klezmer music-oy!)

who doesn't like a little Klezmer clarinet sometimes?! I actually learned to play a little bit of klezmer music at a clarinet convention last summer. I had no idea of its origins or the big names in klezmer music, and had only heard just a little bit of klezmer music from movies. It was really fun to play, and kind of challenging in some technical aspects.

The group is called klezperanto (?), and the clarinetist is Ilene Stahl-There's a bassist, a trombonist, a percussionist, banjo/guitar player, and piano/accordian player. This piece starts out pretty sad. The clarinet starts in the minor key, playing an almost yearning, very pretty melody acompanied by the banjo and bass. She bends the end of her notes a lot, stops the notes with her throat sometimes, and uses a lot of trills, playing around with the sound, and changing the style-very klezmer. It's in 4/4 and the period is made up of 4- 4 measure phrases, every other one ending on a PAC. The accordian and trombone come in right after the first pac, and these two instruments are playing independently from her, but the trombone and clarinet sometimes have these little call and response motives. There's a big trombone solo where the clarinet cuts out. This is where the song picks up, because the trombone slides up an octave, and then it moves up a third, and is now in the major. The tempo speeds up a lot more, almost double of what the beginning was. The ending is a big "do sol do" in unison, in the major key.

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