Jeff Copeland | Velena

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Classical: Chamber Music Classical: Chamber Music Moods: Type: Instrumental
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Velena

by Jeff Copeland

This album of solo guitar music features works by Leo Brouwer, Roland Dyens, Luigi Legnani's first publication, arrangements of pieces by Felix Mendelssohn, and a premiere recording of Agustin Castilla-Avila's Suite Veleña.
Genre: Classical: Chamber Music
Release Date: 

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1. Saudade No. 1
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2:52 $0.99
2. Saudade No. 2
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3:44 $0.99
3. Saudade No. 3
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6:49 $0.99
4. Terremoto Con Variazioni
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10:20 $0.99
5. Suite Veleña I
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2:14 $0.99
6. Suite Veleña II
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1:37 $0.99
7. Suite Veleña III
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1:29 $0.99
8. Suite Veleña Danza
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1:50 $0.99
9. Song Without Words
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2:22 $0.99
10. Canzonetta
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4:34 $0.99
11. Fandangos Y Boleros
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5:24 $0.99
12. Sarabanda De Scriabin
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2:44 $0.99
13. La Toccatta De Pasquini
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4:17 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
The French guitarist Roland Dyens is a uniquely gifted composer and improviser, who was born in Tunisia and strongly influenced by the music of Brazil. Since the Portuguese word saudade translates as a "longing for one's homeland," these three works may serve as homages to Dyens's three greatest terrestial influences. The first Saudade is filled with elements of early twentieth-century French music: richly voiced major-ninth chords, punctuated bass lines, and it maintains a graceful balance between twentieth-century tonalities and more traditional phrasing and expressive gestures. The second Saudade is unabashedly Brazilian, and is expertly constructed on the framework of a standard Brazilian choro, or chorinho. The final Saudade is intriguingly dark and fiery, with a flavor that evokes the music of North Africa, and instruments such as the ud and the rebab. Its introduction, labeled "Rituel," is an abstract expression of the sonorities that are to emerge and meld into the charming dance rhythm that serves as the primary motif of the piece. The energy builds and intensifies in the section titled "Fête et Final," before returning to a beautiful resetting of the main theme at a slower, reflective pace.
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A highly skilled guitarist, singer, and luthier, Luigi legnani who wrote many works for guitar. His Opus 1 is a theme and variations, with a slow introduction, and ends with a pensive larghetto, a capricious moderato, and a climactic finale. Although this work has not been frequently performed or recorded, it features all of the character and cohesion of Legnani's later works.
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Felix Mendelssohn composed no music for the guitar, but his Songs Without Words fit the personality of the instrument extremely well, matching the expressive tones of the guitar. The third movement of Mendelssohn's String Quartet Number 1, Opus 12, titled "Canzonetta," provides material for a challenging arrangement that captures the excitement and clean lines of Mendelssohn’s style. It was originally arranged by Francisco Tárrega, then altered by Andrés Segovia, and the arrangement recorded here borrows from both, while also reflecting the sleek character of the scalar violin passages.
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Leo Brouwer is a prolific composer and guitarist, and his works are frequently performed and recorded. In his Sonata for solo guitar, Brouwer presents a masterfully constructed dialog featuring musical elements that shaped and influenced his own musical style. The first movement, "Fandangos y Boleros," provides the setting for this complex discussion, and utilizes a variety of input—from rhythmic dance motives to an interaction between Antonio Soler and Ludwig van Beethoven. It is in this first movement that Brouwer most fully illuminates these elements that influenced his compositional style, and it is his unique style that allows these elements to meld into a sum that is strengthened and transformed by its parts. The second movement is a straightforward homage to Alexander Scriabin, and the final movement, "La Toccata de Pasquini," is where Brouwer allows his voice to speak above all others, unleashing a flurry of arpeggios in a climactic completion of the Sonata.
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Agustin Castilla-Ávila is an accomplished composer and guitarist from the Jerez region of Spain, and his compositions encompass a wide variety of characteristics and settings. His Suite Veleña is dedicated to Jeff Copeland, and this is the world premiere recording of the suite. The first movement begins under the tempo descriptor “Misterioso,” and introduces focused vibrations of simple opposites: the deep growl of the guitar's lowest string along with the crystalline chime of high-pitched harmonics. Thicker textures emerge, as well as short breaths of scalar passages, dancing on a variety of rhythms. The second movement compresses this energy as taught thirds and speedy triplets fly forward, almost out of control, towards an aggressive flurry of rasgueados that briefly interrupt their path. Once their wits are about them, the third movement takes over, and immediately wrestles to take them away once more. A humorous scherzo, this section of the suite continues to juxtapose thick textures against thin lines, and contains a beautiful interlude, reminiscent of a gondolier's barcarolla, resting in the middle of the chaos. As the suite continually expands and condenses thematic material, the final result is the "Danza," where all of the suite's elements are free to celebrate the harmony and order of their union. The motion is swift and relentless, free of hesitation and untethered by restraints. Motives morph, and tensions are released as the entire suite swells to its final and unwavering climax.


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