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Bela Fleck and Edgar Myer

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Bela Fleck and Edgar Myer

Bela Fleck and Edgar Meyer performed “an acoustic evening” at the California Center for the Arts in Escondido on Sunday, November 20th 2005 at 6:00pm, in the Concert Hall. The program consisted of original works by Mr. Fleck, who plays the banjo, and Mr. Meyer, who plays the bass, and some classical selections as well. (The pieces included some from their recently released duo, “Music For Two”) In this paper I will focus on the classical renditions of Johann Sebastian Bach’s “Three part invention No.10 in G Major , and Peter Tchaikovsky’s “Melody in E-flat”.

Johann Sebastian Bach was born, in 1685 in Eisenach, into a musical family and he received his first instructions from his father. But his father passed away in 1695, so Bach moved to Ohrdruf, to live with his older brother Johann Christoph, who he studied the organ from. Bach’s first permanent job’s were as an organist in Arnstadt (1703-1707) and Muhlhausen (1707-1708). After that, Bach was employed by Duke Wilhelm Ernst of Weimar from 1708-1717. During this time Bach composed many of his best organ compositions. Bach’s style was influenced by his study of many Italian compositions. (Especially Vivaldi concertos) From 1717-1723, Bach was the music director for the Prince Leopold of Cuthen. During which there was no need for church music, so his works were primarily for instrumental solo or ensamble, to be used as court entertainment or for instruction. (Among those was the “Brandenburg Concertos”) In 1723, Bach was appointed cantor at the St. Thomas Church and School, and Director of Music for Leipzig, positions which he retained for the rest of his career. During his first six years in Leipzig (1723-1729) Bach’s most impressive compositions were his cantatas (Four year cycles) and the St. John and St. Matthew Passions. In 1729-1739 and 1739-1741, Bach was Director of the Leipzig Collegium Musicum. (an organization which had been founded by Telemann in 1704.) During Bach's last decade (the 1740s), he completed or revised several

large-scale projects which he had started earlier. (For example: The Well

Tempered Clavier, vol. II, and The art of Fugue.) In the 1740s, Bach made various journeys, most notably to the court of Frederick the Great in 1747. He continued a lively interest in the building of organs, and kept informed about the latest developments in the construction of harpsichords and pianofortes. In 1750, Bach

died in Leipzig and is at St. Thomas’s Church.

Peter Tchaikovsky was a Russian Composer of the Romantic era. He was

born in 1840, in Kamsko-Votkinski, Russia. He began piano lessons when he was only five years old. He obtained an excellent general education at the School of Jurisprudence and was a civil servant before entering the St. Petersburg Conservatory from 1862 to 1865. In 1866, he was appointed professor of theory and harmony at the Moscow Conservatory, established that year. During his puberty at the School of Jurisprudence, Tchaikovsky discovered his sexual attraction to adolescent boys leading some to labeling him a homosexual. Greenberg then claims that as he matured to manhood, this evolved into Pederasty, a speculative accusation that is seriously doubted by most researchers.

Just nine days after the first performance of his Sixth Symphony, Pathйtique, in 1893, in Saint Petersburg, Tchaikovsky died.

Bela Fleck was born and raised in New York City, he began his musical career playing the guitar. But early in the 1960s, while watching the Beverly Hillbillies, the bluegrass sounds of Flatt and Scruggs stuck in his young brain. (Earl Scruggs’s banjo style hooked Bela’s interest immediately.) It wasn’t until his grandfather bought him a banjo in September of 1973 that it became his full time passion. Bela was exposed to a wide variety of musical experiences while living in NYC, which encouraged experimenting with bebop and jazz on the banjo. After highschool, Bela moved to Boston to play with Jack Tottle’s tasty Licks. Unfortunately The Tasty Licks broke up and Bela spent the summer on the streets of Boston playing with bass player Mark Schatz. From there, Bela went on a wide range of touring with different people; a more popular example is the Fleck tones. What made them so interesting was how Bela put several musical sounds together with his banjo, a string quartet, his Macintosh computer, and also a more jazz based combo. After that, Bela financed his own self-titled CD, which attracted the folks at Warner Brothers Nashville. (The album was Grammy nominated) Bela still tours with the Tones, and they have shared the stage with Dave Mathews Band, Sting, Bonnie Raitt and the Grateful Dead. They have also made several appearances on the

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