Baroque-A-Nova is more or less made out of some of the compositional scraps left over from the writing of Classical Gas. Allan Blye (my comedy writing partner on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour) and I wrote it in Sept of 1967. It was originally designed to be a number sung a cappella on The Comedy Hour by The Smothers Brothers & Simon & Garfunkel. Tom Smothers & I were big fans of Simon & Garfunkel & using voices in an instrumental style (no words, just sounds) was a popular form making the rounds in pop music circles in those days, so we worked up a tune to do on the show. Creating original musical ideas for guests to perform with Tom & Dick, was one of our specialties.
However, for one reason or another, it never got performed. I recorded the Babassa-Nova (with voices) on my first album for Warner Bros., The MW Phonograph Record. I later adapted it for guitar and orchestra & recorded it as Baroque-A-Nova on Ear Show, my 2nd album for Warner Bros. Al Capps did the original arrangement, and it was a Grammy nominee for Best Orchestral Arrangement for 1968.
In 2003 Alfred Music produced a music book of my instrumental compositions, a collection of (11) solo guitar pieces & (7) ensemble & Baroque-A-Nova for violin & guitar was included. The guitar is not just accompanying the violin, they both have featured roles, so it is a true duet.
This version, assembled for the music book, was a combination of classical guitar played by Eric Hamilton & classical violin by Hollis Taylor. Hollis arranged the violin part based on elements from the orchestra score, and her own ideas.
Hollis & I played a lot of gigs together. She was the violin/fiddler in my “Of Time & Rivers Flowing” concerts & we had a folk/pop/country/classical hybrid trio with Bass player, Forrest Moyer for a while in the mid 90’s. (http://www.hollistaylor.com)
Eric Hamilton recorded an entire album of my music titled “Eric Hamilton Plays Mason Williams”, a CD featuring music for guitar & orchestra. (http://erichamiltonmusic.tripod.com)
Bossa Nova – means new beat, which refers to the popular new music style from South America.
The term “baroque” refers to the artworks of the Renaissance. In terms of music, from c.1600 to c.1750. My dictionary says, “Baroque music is marked by elaborate ornamentation and improvisation. Contrasting effects; tensions & climaxes.”
Baroque-A-Nova could mean “new baroque” – the idea being that it would have the precision of 17th century baroque music, but the character of a folk / pop / Spanish / Flamenco/South American hybrid.
Violin: Hollis Taylor
Classical Guitar: Eric Hamilton
Hollis Taylor recorded by Don Ross (Eugene, OR)
Eric Hamilton recorded by Brian Kutscher (The Greater Good studio – Dearborn, MI)
Re-mixed & mastered by Don Latarski (Crescent Studios - Eugene, OR), w/ Art Maddox & me.