associate professor of jazz studies and double bass
Currently on my CD platter are Side by Side with Duke Ellington, Johnny Hodges and others (Wendell Marshall on double bass), Rush Hour by Joe Lovano (composed, arranged and conducted by Gunther Schuller), Count Basie Swings - Joe Williams Sings, Naima featuring the Cedar Walton Trio with guests Clifford Jordan (Sam Jones on double bass) recorded live at Boomers, and Mar Azul by Cesaria Evora and her band. Memorable recordings that have stayed in my head over the past few months include: The Complete Capital Recordings of Art Tatum (Slam Stewart on double bass), Charlie Haden & Pat Metheny's Beyond the Missouri Sky, and The Kansas City Sessions featuring Lester Young.
In terms of research and development interests, I've been looking for the KC Sessions for some time now. Besides Lester Young on tenor saxophone, Freddie Green on Guitar and Jo Jones on drums, it features bassist Walter Page. There is a cut recorded in 1938 entitled Pagin' the Devil which features Page playing the melody.
This is one of the first recorded examples of solo jazz double bass. Mark Dresser and Stefano Scodanibbio are two "new music" bassists that I've recently become familiar with and am interested in checking out. Concentrated reading for me usually occurs when I'm out of town, in airplanes or on tour buses. Books I've most recently read include Dance of the Infidels: A Portrait of Bud Powell by Francis Pandras, Effortless Mastery by Kenny Werner and The Art of Happiness by the Dalai Lama and Howard Cutler. I'm just starting a novel by Richard Rodriguez entitled Days of Obligation: An argument with my Mexican Father.
MARLENE RALIS ROSEN
associate professor of singing
My mainstay for listening is Richard Goode's recording of Beethoven sonatas. And lately, I've also been listening to Eleanor Steber's recording of Samuel Barber's Knoxville Summer of 1915. Both are sublime; the best there is.
I'm reading Corelli's Mandolin by Louis de Berniéres. It's a magical piece of writing: very complex and fascinating.
I've become interested in many 20th century works: Ligeti Etudes and Corigliano's Etude-Fantasy, which some of my students want to learn. For pleasure, I enjoy great chamber music of all eras. I recently enjoyed the Beaux Arts Trio playing Arensky. My 6-year-old daughter thinks she owns the family CD player so I am getting to know The King and I and the Dixie Chicks, whether I like it or not.
I just finished reading Tuesdays with Morrie, and am now reading See Jane Win, which is about raising successful daughters. I'm also addicted to cookbooks of all kinds - not to follow recipes but to stimulate my imagination for my own improvisations.
professor of viola
I enjoy all kinds of music, but especially string recordings from 1900-1940. Back before the widespread distribution of recordings, national and individual styles were more distinct than today's "homogenized" performance. Listening to old recordings opens my eyes to new (often pleasurable!) perspectives of music making. Recent finds include the well-burnished yet exciting Milstein recording of the Tchaikovsky concerto, and the fresh recordings (from the 1920s) of the Ravel and Debussy Quartets by the Capet Quartet.
I often read the Bible for direction and inspiration. My other reading is eclectic: sometimes for "betterment," often for fun. I am always enriched and in awe as I read the "classics" (a recent example is Crime and Punishment). In the fun category, I especially enjoy the finely crafted wit of P.G. Wodehouse (a favorite is Leave it to Psmith) and the modern-day storytelling of Jan Karron (At Home in Mitford).