Tag Archives: kronos quartet

Episode 60: Songs are Sung


Cage became famous for his use of prepared piano like this, in which he'd stuff any number of objects between a piano's strings. He used one such treatment on "In the Name of the Holocaust."


I rather enjoy the challenge of creating themed shows based on friends’ suggestions.  I had three good ones to choose from this week: songs that should have made it on the radio in the 70s, the fact that I own this record proves there is a God and He loves me very much, and 20th Century classical music.

Although it was the most difficult and the most serious, I chose the last theme. I think it’s because I fee like I haven’t explored “classical” music enough on my show.  (“Classical” is obviously a catch-all for just about any kind of music with orchestration or written-out, composed music.  Strictly speaking, the term Classical refers to a period of orchestral music preceding the Romantic period.)

I, like my friend who suggested the theme, find myself listening to more 20th Century composers in the autumn.  I have a strong association with this season and the likes of John Cage, Steve Reich and Terry Riley. I think it’s because of the many days I would study at UMKC’s Miller Nichols Library, listen to these composers in my headphones, and watch the turning leaves through the giant windows.

At any rate, enjoy this week’s show.

  1. “In the Name of the Holocaust” – John Cage (Daughters of the Lonesome Isle/?/1945)
  2. “IV – Deciso” – Kronos Quartet (…songs are sung/Nonesuch/2007)
  3. “Spring Flowers in the Moonlit Night on the River” (arr. Sun Yiqiang) – Lang Lang (Dragon Songs/Deutsche Grammophon/2006)

Radio Free Raytown – Episode #60 (10/29/10)

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Rotation (5/30/10)

Poor Old Lu: Scott Hunter, Jesse Sprinkle, Nick Barber and Aaron Sprinkle

I’ve been re-evaluating Poor Old Lu’s The Waiting Room this week. It’s not one of those records I was into 15 years ago and was just curious as to how well it stands up today. Katy got it to review (I think?) just before we got married, but I was never into it.

Poor Old Lu was a Christian band in the nineties, and its members have continued to play important roles in the music industry. It reunited to record The Waiting Room (and play some tour dates, if I remember correctly) in 2003. It then broke up again.

I wasn’t really a fan of the band until its two mind-blowing releases: the Straight Six EP in 1995 and (its dark and final album) A Picture of the Eighth Wonder in 1996. This comeback record just didn’t do it for me in 2003, but I wonder if my expectations were to blame? I kinda like The Waiting Room now.

Alright, so my rotation this week, in no particular order.

8.  Olivier Messiaen’s L’Ascension – Polish Radio Orchestra (Naxos/2000)

7.  Music From Big Pink – The Band (Capital/1968)

6.  Imperial Bedroom – Elvis Costello (Columbia/1982)

5.  “You Lost the Starlight in Your Eyes” – Hammock (independent/2010)

4.  Early Music – Kronos Quartet (Nonesuch/1997)

3.  Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Harold Arlen Songbook – Ella Fitzgerald (Verve/1961)

2. The Waiting Room – Poor Old Lu (Tooth and Nail/2003)

1.  Old Angel – Lost Dogs (Lo-Fidelity/2010)

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