Lutoslawski String Quartet for Solo Drumset (1997)

by Curt Newton

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    Based on Witold Lutoslawksi's String Quartet (1964), arranged for solo drumset and performed by Curt Newton.
    I loved this composition, and the Arditti Quartet performance, from the first moment I heard it. The overall arc of the composition, the way the parts slid moved back and forth between tight synchrony and improvisational polyphony, the brilliance of different motifs. I started messing with various sections as practice prompts, almost like etudes. That was awesome. I wanted more. Ordered the score, studied it closely, and realized ... I COULD DO THIS WHOLE THING on drumset. Several months later, one performance only at this comfy local venue. That was it. My son Gus was 6 months old, can be heard babbling and cooing in quiet moments on the recording...settled into deep parent mode for many years.
    Fast forward 20 years, starting to rebuild some solo repertoire. With the Eric Hofbauer Quintet, we've just completed a several year sequence of performing and recording Eric's improvisor arrangements of several 20th Century masterworks: Stravinksy's Rite of Spring, Messaien's Quartet for the End of Time, Ives' Three Places in New England, and Ellington's Reminiscing in Tempo. Seemed a good time to dust off this ol' Lutoslawski, a retrospective, my first foray into translating classical repertoire onto drumset. Hope you enjoy!
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released June 25, 2017

Recorded April 25, 1997, at the Bookcellar Cafe, Cambridge MA.
Recording engineer: Peter Warren
Barely mastered on my home Audacity and earbuds


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Curt Newton Boston, Massachusetts

Curt Newton (b. 1963) has performed jazz and improvised music across the U.S., Canada and Europe and recorded over 30 CDs with some of contemporary music's leading figures including Ken Vandermark, Joe Morris, Nate McBride, Pandelis Karayorgis, Jorrit Dijkstra, Eric Hofbauer, Charlie Kohlhase, Steve Norton, and Dave Bryant. ... more

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