The always reliable Pliable tells me that Charles Griffin’s Sequenza21 blog From the Faraway Nearby: An American Composer in Latvia was chosen blog of the week (or some such) by no less than The Times in London.  He couldn’t find a Times link online and neither can I but if someone comes across it, pass it along.  Maybe this will encourage Charles to do a second post.

My copy of the Gramophone Awards 2006 arrived by post this week and I was somewhat bemused to discover that my local radio station, WQXR – The Classical Station of the New York Times, has now created (at considerable marketing expense, I expect) a sub-category called The 96.3 WQXR Gramophone Awards 2006, selected by a committee of worthies like Frank J. Oteri, Alex Ross, Greg Sandow, a couple of guys from Gramophone, and “members of the Programming Department of WQXR.”

The winners are all highly commendable, if a little predictable–Peter Lieberson’s Rilke Songs on Bridge; Osvaldo Golijov’s Ayre on DG, and Steve Reich’s You Are (Variations) on Nonesuch.  There was also a special recognition award for Mark Morris.

My question for the distinguished panel is this:  Have “members of the Programming Department of WQXR” ever scheduled any of the winning CDs to actually be played–in whole, or in part–on the station?  Frankly, I doubt it, with the possible exception of the Lieberson which they might have played late at night or on weekends when they thought nobody was listening.  Here’s a typical playlist.

Anybody want to be the main Sequenza21 New York reviewer of live concerts?  We can get a couple of free tickets to most concerts here in town but so far finding someone (or two) who wants to cover new music in New York the way Jerry Zinser does Los Angeles, has been difficult.   

For example, I’d love to have a marthon blogger who could go to all three nights of Joe Rubinstein’s Keys to the Future Festival of contemporary piano music and write about each of the concerts and give us a sense of what’s new and exciting in new piano works.  No money now, but if you’re really good at it, who knows? 

Speaking of someone who is really good, I just noticed that Steve Smith is now doing some concert and CD reviews for the New York Times.  (Maybe, he’s been doing it for awhile but I just noticed).  Nice work, Steve.

3 thoughts on “Sunday Morning Coming Down”
  1. Awards are for horses, not music. Would be great if any classical music station in NYC would air any of our releases … it just ain’t gonna happen! The classical music promotion industry (critics, magazines, radio, etc.) in NYC seems a bit too concerned with awards and the creation of “stars”. Gramophone has yet to review any of our John Cage releases. I guess they consider Cage’s music as “been there, done that” while still continuing to review and endorse crappy recordings of the standard orchestral repertoire (Beethoven, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Mahler) on a regular basis.

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