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Garrett McQueen is a professional bassoonist turned arts activist. With the help of his friend Scott Blankenship, the two explore what it looks like when the so-called “classical” genre meets music, conversations, and cultures from outside of the concert hall. Continue Reading >>
Garrett McQueen is a professional bassoonist turned arts activist. With the help of his friend Scott Blankenship, the two explore what it looks like when the so-called “classical” genre meets music, conversations, and cultures from outside of the concert hall. << Show Less
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Opus 161 - "Radical Haus" ★ Support this podcast ★
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Opus 161 - "Radical Haus" ★ Support this podcast ★
Opus 160 - Glory to Glorzo ★ Support this podcast ★
Opus 159 - "Beyoncé and You" There are many contemporary choral arts institutions that prioritize the "traditional" repertoire - the Southern California-based Choral Arts Initiative is not one of them. Artistic Director Brandon Elliott joins Garrett (55:00) to talk about their new album, the power of entrepreneurship, and his unique view of diversity. Scott and Garrett share their favorites from Beyoncé's latest album, discuss the latest misstep by the Aspen Music Festival, unpack a fundraising call from the Metropolitan Opera, and lots more.

Playlist:

David Ibbett - Black Hole Symphony (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=liiB5QZycNc)
Sergei Prokofiev - Symphony No. 6 (perf. SWR Symphonieorchester, Thomas Søndergård: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7G7XajHW1MI)
Young Dolph, Key Glock - Aspen
Beyoncé - CUFF IT
Beyoncé - CHURCH GIRL
Beyoncé - PLASTIC OFF THE SOFA
Beyoncé - AMERICA HAS A PROBLEM
Jeffrey Derus - "Kennedy Meadows"
Jeffrey Derus - "Journey Into Yourself"
Anthony Davis - "Audubon Ballroom"

More:

Brandon Elliott: https://www.brandon-elliott.com
Choral Arts Initiative: https://www.choralartsinitiative.org
Desus and Mero Break Up: https://www.vulture.com/2022/07/desus-and-mero-break-up-victor-lopez-manager.html
Black Hole Symphony: https://www.wgbh.org/news/arts/2022/07/22/black-hole-symphony-translates-the-sounds-of-black-holes-into-orchestral-music
Minnesota Orchestra Names Thomas Sondergard as Music Director: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/07/28/arts/music/minnesota-orchestra-thomas-sondergard.html
Aspen Music Festival Flies Swastika: https://slippedisc.com/2022/07/aspen-festival-flies-swastikas-in-the-sound-of-music/
Opus 158 - "We Love You, Brother" Pulitzer Prize-winner Jennifer Higdon is one of America's busiest composers, and her catalogue is even more vast than many people realize. She joins Garrett (49:00) to talk about the Pulitzer win, her late brother, and the influence of East Tennessee on her musical identity. Scott unpacks "The Price of Luck" and highlights a one-man band; Garrett celebrates Tower of Power and offers a critical look on a historic conductor hire, and the guys spend the finale raising awareness about the potential connections between shows of equity and white supremacist organizations.

Playlist:

MFSB - "The Sound of Philadelphia"
Bootsy Collins & Friends - "We're Gonna Party Today"
Aidan Ramsay - "Five Dreamscapes" for solo piano
Gustav Holst - 'Mars' from "The Planets" (perf. Seattle Symphony/Jonathon Heyward: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3hZa3nZCxJo)
Tower of Power - "Some Days Were Meant For Rain"
Josh Dion - Studio Live Session
Jennifer Higdon - "Dark Wood"
Jennifer Higdon - 'Roaring Smokies' from "Concerto 4-3"
perf. Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong

More:

Jennifer Higdon: http://jenniferhigdon.com
The Price of Luck: https://van-magazine.com/mag/classism-in-classical-music/
Five Things to Know About Jonathon Heyward: https://www.msn.com/en-us/music/news/five-things-to-know-about-jonathon-heyward-the-bso-e2-80-99s-newly-appointed-music-director/ar-AAZR3M6?fbclid=IwAR2bbCUm0qI7L9Pj-CEx-OOm9PvtJaLWnDrCFm6diICHax3bEhJrtyBCZrk
American Renaissance: https://www.amren.com/about/
Opus 157 - "Here, Bullet" Inspired by the viscerally provocative poem, "Here, Bullet" by Brian Turner, the art song of the same name by composer Kurt Erickson is, among many things, a plea for western classical arts spaces to directly address gun violence. This composition inspired multi-disciplinary artist Will Chase to write a screenplay, which will be the foundation for an upcoming short film. Both Kurt and Will join Garrett (1:02:00) to unpack the inspirations and challenges of this work, along with its context within the framework of "classical" music. Scott highlights a work by Phillip Glass and cites excerpts from "Stuff White People Like", Garrett addresses opera's latest use of blackface, and the guys talk "big steps" in the finale.

Playlist:

Jackson 5 - "Never Can Say Goodbye"
Gil Scott-Heron - "Whitey On the Moon"
The Church - "Under The Milky Way"
Abel Selaocoe - "Qhawe" (Performance Excerpt: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zhFgeNW6D1g)
perf. Angel Blue - "Peculiar Grace" (from "Fire Shut Up In My Bones": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fsmXYt9C4UA)
Phillip Glass - "Sons Of The Silent Age"
Supaman - Improv Freestyle (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8PTuf2E8hl8)
Kurt Erickson - "Here, Bullet"
John Coltrane - "Giant Steps"

More:

Kurt Erickson/"Here, Bullet": https://www.kurterickson.com/catalogue/here-bullet
"Here, Bullet", by Brian Turner: https://www.poetryinternational.com/en/poets-poems/poems/poem/103-14245_HERE-BULLET
"How the murder of George Floyd impacted music-making in Minneapolis and across the globe": https://www.classicfm.com/music-news/george-floyd-murder-music-making-minneapolis/
"Soprano Withdraws From Opera, Citing ‘Blackface’ in Netrebko’s ‘Aida’": https://www.nytimes.com/2022/07/15/arts/music/angel-blue-anna-netrebko-blackface.html
"Stuff White People Like": https://stuffwhitepeoplelike.com
Opus 156 - "Leading with Compassion" Kelly Hall-Tompkins is a professional violinist and multi-disciplinary entrepreneur whose love for music, coupled with her grandmother's loving spirit, inspired Music Kitchen: the pioneer organization to bring top classical music artists in concert into homeless shelters. Kelly talks with Garrett (1:02:00) about Music Kitchen's origins, the impact it's had on patrons, and how we all can change the world by leading with compassion. Scott celebrates Maestro Jeri Lynn Johnson and Joe Rainey, Garrett highlights the music of Reena Esmail and Flutronix, and the guys unpack the week in news, social media, and advocacy.

Playlist:

Joe Raposo - "The Electric Company" Theme
Gracie's Corner - "Counting Coins"
Ludwig van Beethoven - Symphony No. 2 "Finale"
Ben Harper and The Innocent Criminals - "In The Colors"
Joe Rainey - "bezhigo"
Reena Esmail - Charukeshi bandish
Ofra Haza/Eden Riegel - "Deliver Us"
perf. Kelly Hall-Tompkins & Mark O'Connor - Double Violin Concerto (Mark O'Connor): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pwONXB2Ke-k
Kamala Sankaram - "Hooking In" (Music Kitchen Virtual Premiere and Behind the Scenes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ABrA0QXY5EI)
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu - "Candy Candy" (perf. Flutronix: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zMUjsbh13o8)

More:

Music Kitchen: http://www.musickitchennyc.org/about.htm
Jeri Lynne Johnson Featured on MSNBC: https://www.msnbc.com/know-your-value/career-growth/she-was-told-she-didn-t-look-maestro-so-conductor-n1296979
Racial Acoustics: https://between.substack.com/p/racial-acoustics?sd=pf
Ohio lawmaker wants to teach the Holocaust ‘from the perspective of the Nazis': https://www.jpost.com/international/article-702341
Nathalie Joachim Speaks: https://twitter.com/NathalieJoachim/status/1545766497326333952?s=20&t=ZyENI_TTB1-k5J5uM6zmpw
Opus 155 - "On The One" One of the biggest challenges for living composers today is getting music played by orchestras, but Akron-based music creator Eriq Troi focuses on his gift, utilizing digital technology to fuse the sounds of funk, Western classical, and more. He joins Garrett (1:05:00) to talk about his process, his own discovery of Black orchestral musicians, and his early inspirations. Scott turns to the music of Eric Ewazen, Garrett celebrates Mason Bates, and the guys unpack the week's news in police brutality, gun violence, and arrest warrants.

Playlist:

Usher - NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert (excerpt)
Khruangbin - NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert (excerpt)
Megan Thee Stallion - NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert (excerpt)
perf. Limmie Pulliam - "Si pel ciel" from Verdi's Otello (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rUoIZF25v0k)
ALA.NI & Adrian Younge - "Lament for Emmett Till"
perf. Jisu Jung - "Northern Lights" by Eric Ewazen (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zzw9pvsVjYk)
Mason Bates - "Desert Transport" (perf. Boston Modern Orchestra Project)
Eriq Troi - "A Woman's Touch"
Eriq Troi - "You Are Loved"
Eric Ewazen - Sonata for Trumpet and Piano

More:

Artist Profile on Limmie Pulliam: https://www.musicalamerica.com/news/newsstory.cfm?storyid=50609&categoryid=2&archived=0&fbclid=IwAR11b2e2HN7yFMx5Ed-oibnZoDU5BcLUHVLTY8C8kPBu_iWTJrQotaPszgc
1955 Arrest Warrant in Emmett Till Case Is Found in Court Basement: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/30/us/emmett-till-carolyn-bryant-arrest-warrant.html
JAYLAND WALKER KILLING REIGNITES CALLS FOR POLICE REFORM: https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2022/07/jayland-walker-killing-police-reform
Police Department Used Images of Black Men Holding Guns as Target Practice: https://www.vice.com/en/article/4axdp9/detroit-police-black-men-shooting-range-targets
Opus 154 - "What Is American" Applauded by The Washington Post as “a perfect encapsulation of today’s trends in chamber music,” and by The New Yorker as “independent-minded,” the GRAMMY nominated PUBLIQuartet’s modern interpretation of chamber music makes them one of the most dynamic artists of their generation. The ensemble's Jannina Norpoth and Curtis Stewart join Garrett (1:00:00) to unpack the music and inspiration behind their latest album, "What Is American". Scott continues his Pride Month-inspired musical picks with a work by Angela Morley, Garrett highlights orchestral music by Janelle Monáe, and the guys unpack the latest, including Opera America's scathing report on racial diversity, the recent decision made by SCOTUS, and more.

Playlist:

Technotronic - "Pump Up The Jam"
Luigi Boccherini - Minuet
Leonard Bernstein - "Mambo" from 'Symphonic Dances from West Side Story'
Blue Lu Barker - "Don’t You Make Me High"
Malcolm X - "Stop Begging The White Man For A Job - CREATE Your Own Job!" (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tXE-TpGLFac)
Janelle Monáe - "BaBopByeYa"
Angela Morley - Theme from "Dallas"
Angela Morley - "Harlequin" for Clarinet and Strings
perf. PUBLIQuartet - Improvisations on Antonin Dvorak's String Quartet No. 12
perf. PUBLIQuartet - "Black Coffee"
arr. Jorah the Andal - "Chirrut Îmwe" Suite (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBRI93pizlo)

More:

PUBLIQuartet: https://www.publiquartet.com/bio
Recovering Women’s Music From the Great Migration: https://www.sfcv.org/articles/feature/recovering-womens-music-great-migration
Opera’s Lack of Diversity Extends to Offstage, a Study Shows: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/23/arts/music/opera-diversity.html?fbclid=IwAR0zU8fn18M9KLrG9k_ZDjw4hEtopU0VoefYDB5WBo-2elyNEfrkIUUuuEE
Field-Wide Opera Demographic Report: https://www.operaamerica.org/media/afsfdynw/demographicsreport_final_6-21-22.pdf
Opus 153 - "The Barrel" Orchestral percussion is usually only featured from the back of the stage, but Third Coast Percussion is changing the concert experience by bringing percussion to the front. Garrett chats with Sean and David (1:00:00) from this unique quartet to unpack their new album, "Perspective", and to get their thoughts on musical entrepreneurship, collaborating with today's most famous composers, and more. Scott honors the music of Aldous Harding, Garrett shares his favorite tracks from Drake's new dance album, and the guys cover the dissolution of the San Antonio Symphony, the many musical moods of Yo-Yo Ma, and more.

Playlist:

Bananarama - "Cruel Summer"
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Sonata for Bassoon and Cello
perf. Yo-Yo Ma - "Appalachian Waltz" (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hInHB-J0lJQ)
Silk Road Ensemble feat. Yo-Yo Ma - "Summer in the High Grassland"
Daniel Bernard Roumain - "Lecolion Loops: after Uti Vår Hage"
Frank Ticheli - "Alamo Gardens"
Drake - "Calling My Name"
Drake - "Tie That Binds"
Aldous Harding - "The Barrel"
Prince - "Old Friends 4 Sale"

More:

More on Third Coast Percussion: https://www.thirdcoastpercussion.com
Lecolion Washington Collaborates with Yo-Yo Ma: https://www.bostonglobe.com/2022/06/17/arts/with-little-help-his-friend-yo-yo-ma-stages-surprise-pop-up-nubian-square/
San Antonio Symphony to Dissolve Amid Labor Dispute: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/06/17/arts/music/san-antonio-symphony-bankruptcy.html
Aldous Harding Interview: https://www.gpb.org/news/2022/04/11/the-masked-singer
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