Chardash (Czardas) performed by Lev Weksler

This is an interesting approach, a highly edited rendition for two basses by arranger Lev Weksler. I’m not certain what exactly he’s done here. But there are obviously several takes edited together. Some of them I suspect were played slower and then sped up (rendering a somewhat more “digital” or “synthetic” sound).

I’m sure there will be some haters, but still worth hearing and thinking about.

Zigeunerweisen with Lauren Pierce and guitarist Andy Bell

Lauren Pierce and guitarist Andy Bell break out Zigeunerweisen again in this one.

Also, great example of a mid/side microphone set up. I’ll probably refer to this one in the music technology section eventually. The bottom mic has a figure 8 pattern and is collecting the “sides” of the sound while the top mic is collecting the “mid” or center channel. It’s a great technique for capturing stereo sound.

Kicho performed by Irina-Kalina Goudeva and ensemble

Irina-Kalina Goudeva runs the double bass solo in this quality video and audio production (Camille Cottagnoud on the camera and Samuel Dématraz editing). James Crabb on accordion and Søren Elbech is on solo violin.

Also, Ensemble International:

  • Violins I: Federico Pivato (co-soloist), Ruslan Apostolov
  • Violins II: Marc Liardon (solo)
  • Pascale: Servanckx-Delporte (solo), …

Just Before the War with the Eskimos

A composition by Aaron Holloway-Nahum for Double Bass, two violins and custom cast bronze bells.

In this recording:

  • Jakub Cywinski, Double bass
  • Eloisa-Fleur Thom, Violin
  • Ed McCullagh, Violin
  • Tom Lee, percussion
  • Darren Bloom, conductor

The piece premiered  premiered at Limewharf, Dec 2014. It was commissioned by the  Change Ringing Ensemble.

You can see some sketches of the composition at Holloway-Nahum’s website.


Angel of Dusk, 1st Movement performed by Risto Vuolanne

Risto Vuolanne performs the first movement of Einojuhani Rautavaara’s “Angel of Dusk” with Orquesta Sinfónica de Galicia.

One of the things I really like about this is how lyrical the bass solo is in contrast to the dissonance and rhythmic punctuation from the orchestra. Just a great combination.

Also some great timbres from blending percussion and harp.

When I found this online I knew it was solid when I saw that none other than Joel Quarrington had complimented the performer and conductor in the YouTube comments!

Leap of Faith (Matthew Kline) performed by Matthew Kline

Another dose of awesome from the Fresh Inc festival and Matthew Kline.

There’s a beep that goes off part way through that reminded me of this one time I saw Kronos doing Black Angels and in the middle movement, when everything is all quiet and peaceful, an older woman in the audience’s phone rings and then the woman answers it and proceeds to have a short conversation with the caller.

The beep in this, however, isn’t quite so intrusive. Perhaps owing to the steady-rhythm nature of the work. Hell, maybe it was planned or a general feature of the Racine Art Museum. Either way, enjoy this dose of bass textures.

Bass & Kalimba assemblage by Olivier Babaz

Here’s an interesting augmentation of the double bass: an attached kalimba (aka “thumb piano”). Olivier Babaz gives us his rendition of Paul Desmond’s “Take Five” while also playing a shaker with his foot, one-man-band style.

Augmenting the instrument in this way obviously opens up tons of interesting possibilities for acoustic performance in the same way that pickups opens up opportunities for electronic performance.

Not sure I’d permanently mount a kalimba on my bass, but this is pretty interesting!

Cave: for solo double bass, live electronics, and interactive video (Jazer Giles) performed by Salvatore Macchia

Here is a recording of the world premiere performance of Cave: for solo double bass, live electronics, and interactive video. This is a pretty heavy Max/MSP/Jitter thing. Disclaimer: I used to study with Macchia and it’s fun to hear the control he brings to a piece like this, where it could probably just as easy disintegrate into noise he keeps it musical. Fun sounding and and looking piece.