Aaron Larget-Caplan | New Lullaby

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Classical: Contemporary Kids/Family: Lullabies Moods: Solo Instrumental
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New Lullaby

by Aaron Larget-Caplan

Contemporary music mini-narratives in sound that venture into the territory of dream state. Colorful, lush, soothing, real. "Mom, this is the music I want to fall asleep to for the rest of my life." – 5 year old
Genre: Classical: Contemporary
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1. Lynn Job: The Sixth Night
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2:49 $0.99
2. Jonathan Feist: Leaky Roof
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1:27 $0.99
3. Jonathan Feist: No Time
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2:22 $0.99
4. Francine Trester: My Darling's Slumber
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3:07 $0.99
5. Scott Wheeler: Nachtlied
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4:19 $0.99
6. Kevin Siegfried: Cradle Song
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3:19 $0.99
7. Mark Small: Descent To A Dream
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4:32 $0.99
8. Nolan Stolz: Lullaby For Sam
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3:20 $0.99
9. Carson Cooman: Unfolding the Gates of Dawn, A Morning Lullaby
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3:53 $0.99
10. John McDonald: You Are Alone To Sleep, Op 430
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2:46 $0.99
11. David Vayo: Berceuse
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7:01 $0.99
12. David Leisner: Disturbed, A Lullaby
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4:32 $0.99
13. Song Softly Sung, In Trying Times
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3:50 $0.99
14. Ryan Vigil: Shhhh
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5:22 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
"Mom, this is the music I want to fall asleep to for the rest of my life."
– 5 year old

"New Lullaby is a beautiful, perceptive, and evocative performance that earns and deserves your rapt appreciation. Most of all, however, it felt to me like a courageous exploration of a mood or a state that is rarely identified, and these days all-too rarely enjoyed: attentive peacefulness. "
– Glenn Kurtz, author of Practicing, A Musician's Return To Music

NEW LULLABY COMPOSER NOTES:

1- The Sixth Night by Lynn Job
I completed “The Sixth Night” on my 50th birthday (May 27, 2009): it is constructed in 50 measures with an incomplete cadence at measure 27. Considering creation, the title reflects my underlying contemplation of mankind’s idyllic and peaceful first night’s slumber in the Garden of Eden, with Psalm 4:8 as the thematic idea: “I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.” – Lynn Job
• www.BuckthornStudios.com

2- Leaky Roof by Jonathan Feist
The pitter-patter of rain on your rooftop might be a relaxing sound to you, but when your old roof leaks—particularly in your three-year-old’s bedroom—it is actually quite stressful. This lullaby was written about two weeks following a December 2008 ice storm, which left my house without power, heat, and water for six days. Finally, the power came back up, and we returned home, ice storm refugees no more. I composed “Leaky Roof” late at night to calm my own nerves, hoping that my son, Forrest, wouldn’t be awoken by a new drip. – Jonathan Feist • www.JonathanFeist.com

3- No Time by Jonathan Feist
“No Time” was originally conceived a few years ago, when my first son Merlin was born, and I left it unfinished for a long time, unable to bear thinking about it. He arrived early, and was incarcerated in a Massachusetts General Hospital incubator for a couple of weeks, waiting to get big enough to come home. The first night I returned to my house to sleep, by myself, was the loneliest I have ever been. Six years later, I am pleased, finally, to have had this opportunity to render it into a usable form. – Jonathan Feist • www.JonathanFeist.com

4- My Darling’s Slumber by Francine Trester
The melody to "My Darling's Slumber" is loosely derived from an inversion of the melody to Stephen Foster’s folk lullaby, "Slumber My Darling." That is the reasoning behind the inverted title as well.
The Foster melody is one that I grew up with and have always found comforting and beautiful. It was the first material that came to mind when Aaron approached me about his New Lullaby Project. As a Professor of Counterpoint, I'm often teaching inversion and other forms of motivic manipulation. So, under that influence, I began to wonder what possibilities inverting the Foster might bring...
The meter and harmony of my lullaby is independent of the Foster, and much of the melodic material is unrelated to the inversion as well. So perhaps the derivation is only somewhat relevant to the listener. But for me, the Foster provided a starting point, a comforting place of return and reimagining. – Francine Trester • www.FrancineTrester.com

5- Nachtlied by Scott Wheeler
The title “Nachtlied” is meant to suggest night and darkness, as well as the tender, erotic playfulness that is often present in Goethe’s poetry. I have on occasion discussed German literature and history with the dedicatees of this work; Catherine studied at the University of Munich and George was in the U.S. Army Signal Corps. - Scott Wheeler • www.ScottWheeler.org

6- Cradle Song by Kevin Siegfried
After my son was born in 2006, I distinctly recall how our lives became enveloped in song. Having a newborn seemed to draw out this primal urge to sing as a means to soothe, to communicate, to entertain, and, of course, to coax our baby to sleep. “Cradle Song” was sketched out one afternoon during my son's naptime. The tender and folk-like melody is offset by a delicate and dreamy section in the upper register of the guitar. - Kevin Siegfried • www.KevinSiegfried.com

7- Descent to a Dream by Mark Small
"Descent to a Dream" explores those moments before one slips from consciousness to sleep. The opening theme is peaceful, like the calm felt as we review the day with eyes closed. The second section remains calm and develops melodic fragments with slightly more animation than the opening. That flows into a transition built on the whole-tone scale—a sound many have used to portray the dream state. The next section is an agitated setting of the opening melody over a bass ostinato in 11/16 meter. As the dream state overtakes, the logic of everyday life experience is cast aside and fantastic ideas and connections that don't go together in our waking moments seem real. After the climax of that section with loud strummed chords, the first two sections of the piece are reprised before a coda that treats thematic fragments meditatively over a repeating bass line and hypnotic arpeggios. Finally, a progression of four long chords signals the drift into deep sleep. – Mark Small • www.SmallClementeDuo.com

8- Lullaby for Sam by Nolan Stolz
Composed during the summer of 2008, “Lullaby For Sam” has a song-like introduction followed by a section of scalar restlessness. It concludes with a dream-like passage of hypnotic harmonics. – Nolan Stolz • www.NolanStolz.com
Premiered at the New School of Music, Cambridge, MA, January 2009

9- Unfolding the Gates of Dawn, A Morning Lullaby by Carson Cooman
Though lullabies are usually thought of as “night music”, this lullaby is for the morning. The piece opens with a series of upward, sweeping gestures that build in intensity. Though at first they seem like an introduction, this is the principal material, which becomes combined with the songs of morning birds. The slow, final section is simply a prolonged, peaceful cadence — a gentle sigh of anticipation. – Carson Cooman • www.CarsonCooman.com

10- You Are Alone To Sleep, Op. 430 by John McDonald
Based on “Grandmother’s Lullaby,” this piece is a little fantasy on a tune that was passed from Frances Goose to her granddaughter Joan Swallow. Joan is a Southern Cheyenne woman from Geary, Oklahoma, and is known as a singer who performs at revivals, funerals, & church services. Her work has been transcribed and discussed by Virginia Giglio in Southern Cheyenne Women’s Songs (University of Oklahoma Press, 1994). “Grandmother’s Lullaby” is borrowed, changed, and harmonized in this solo guitar lullaby, but the melody hopefully remains remarkable in its use of only four tones. An introduction and conclusion (borrowed from a manuscript of mine that Aaron Larget-Caplan saw framed and hanging above the photographer Susan Wilson’s sink) formalize the setting. The title, a free translation of part of the Cheyenne lullaby text, suggests the “isolation of the baby in a peaceful place of sleep within the surrounding, waking world.” (Giglio, p.46). The guitar chords I chose to decorate the tune perhaps reveal the discomforts and potential threats of the waking outside world, and should awaken (albeit gently) our own fears and feelings of isolation. – John McDonald • www.JohnDMcdonald.com

11- Berceuse by David Vayo
It is a great pleasure to take part in Aaron Larget-Caplan's New Lullaby Project. I hope that the simple, almost naive tenderness of "Berceuse" will strike a chord with all of us who have been loved as children or loved a child as adults. – David Vayo • www2.iwu.edu/music/faculty/vayo.shtml

12- Disturbed, a Lullaby by David Leisner
A lullaby interrupted, or a lullaby in a disturbed state of mind that can never quite relax, or both. Either way, this is a lullaby for a troubled time. At its beginning, a floating phrase, with eight long notes and octave displacements, is repeated as two more long-note phrases, one with three notes and one with six, are added one at a time, resulting in an increasingly dense counterpoint. The vertical materials then unravel horizontally with increasing speed and disturbance. This is followed by a return to the dense counterpoint, as it reverts to the simplicity of the opening, ending with a statement of the first phrase in harmonics and a simpler rhythm - the closest the piece gets to a conventional lullaby. Written in December 2006. – David Leisner • www.DavidLeisner.com

13- Song Softly Sung, in Trying Times by Eric Schwartz
A simple, lyrical attempt to put my own spin on the "lullaby". I wanted to create something warm, rough, and slightly haunted. I imagine a dark room in a dirty apartment, and a television set gone to snow... - Eric Schwartz • www.MySpace.com/EricJSchwartz

14- Shhhh by Ryan Vigil
I was pleased when Aaron mentioned this project to me for two reasons. First, having gotten so much out of former collaborations with Aaron I looked forward to the opportunity of working with him again. Second, the request for a lullaby was one that did not require me to alter my general musical sensibility, since I tend to prefer soft, unobtrusive music. I decided to eschew the harmonic possibilities of the guitar, and treat it solely as a melodic instrument. I also decided that I would only employ harmonics. Three of the guitar’s strings are re-tuned in order to give the performer access to a wider variety of natural harmonics. I like the idea that a lullaby is a piece of music existing on the edge of consciousness. From a functional point of view, the ideal lullaby is one whose ending is never heard. Accordingly, I hope this piece possesses a certain fleeting, ethereal quality. – Ryan Vigil


Reviews


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Donna Ricci

New Lullaby
Most performers would like to hear that listeners to their CD's were electrified, hanging onto every last note. In the case of Aaron Larget-Caplan's CD, New Lullaby I tried earnestly to do that, I was so taken with the first few selections. However, on the first listening I wasn't able to, because, well, I FELL ASLEEP!! Yes, me, the "it takes two hours to even wind down" insomniac fell off to sleep before the end of the third selection. Since then I have tried to keep my eyes and ears open but the charm of each of these delightful new works succeeds in its intent, to send the listener off to a blissful slumber with magical music inviting their dreams in. Thank you Aaron, and thank you to all the composers for creating a marvelous addition to the classical guitar repertoire.
Donna Ricci

Sarah T

Musical Treasure!!
What's so amazing about this album is the RANGE . . .of expression, transporting the listener through the gamut of emotion and imagery . . all presented with exquisite poetry and grace. The album is the perfect combination of ever shifting worlds of fantasy, and underlying peacefulness of the intimate, masterful playing by Mr. Larget-Caplan. It is indeed a treasure-album of multi-faceted jewels of musical poetry. BRAVO!!!

Sarah T

Musical Treasure!!
What's so amazing about this album is the RANGE . . .of expression, transporting the listener through the gamut of emotion and imagery . . all presented with exquisite poetry and grace. The album is the perfect combination of ever shifting worlds of fantasy, and underlying peacefulness of the intimate, masterful playing by Mr. Larget-Caplan. It is indeed a treasure-album of multi-faceted jewels of musical poetry. BRAVO!!!