“Music is music”. This is what Alban Berg responded to George Gershwin in Paris during the spring of 1928, as to why there was no distinction between what we consider “educated” music and “popular” music. Francesco Tristano has endorsed this quote over the last decade with his work; combining piano and synthesizer, between the scores of Johann Sebastian Bach – and also Frescobaldi, Berio,Buxtehude, Stravinsky, and Gershwin, among others – and the latest production and sequencing tools. The differences between a piano recital - or a classical score - and a technot rack are very noticeable, however, whether it is written on paper, uploaded to a computer or improvised live; music ismusic regardless of its style; electronic or baroque, dance or avant-garde. Francesco Tristano’s recordings attempt to embrace a broad spectrum too; for Deutsche Grammophon he developed programs based on Cage and Bach (“Bach/Cage”, 2011), Buxtehude and Bach (“Long Walk”, 2012), Ravel and Stravinsky in “Scandale” (2014). Then also, for the French label Infiné he has developed his own compositions where the main ingredients are rhythmic experimentation, abstract texture and a unique sensation of freedom. Although it can seem as a contradictory method, almost bipolar, in reality, there is a very direct – however tenuous - line that connects Bach with techno music; the dance rhythm, harmony and order you may find in Bach are very much alive in pop music. There is a familiar energy, and also a rigid and intense sense of groove.
On Early MusicArtists Francesco Tristano
Release Date: 02/11/2022
"On Early Music", pianist Francesco Tristano's third release with Sony Classical will be out February 4, 2022. Interspersed with his original compositions are works by some of early music’s greatest English composers and organists – Orlando Gibbons, John Bull, and Peter Philips – and one of Tristano’s greatest inspirations, Italian composer Girolamo Frescobaldi. Yet, "On Early Music" is not merely a fitting homage to this repertoire; the works are given a fresh, contemporary twist thanks to Tristano’s production skills, studio mastery, and keen eye for detail. “I wanted works by English composers, some of whom I’ve played for a long time and love, but I also wanted to continue exploring the repertoire of Frescobaldi,” he says. “He really changed the way composers wrote for keyboards.” Inspired by these greats, and their enduring works, the music he wrote for On Early Music bursts with vitality and spark. All the works featured are tonally and melodically complimentary, and while some have been faithfully reproduced, others have been re-worked and reinterpreted. “I wanted to bring something new to them,” he says. “Something original.” That led him to works that reflected another of the album’s main themes, and something he wanted to focus on and bring to the fore – the gentle majesty of sunrise. “The magic hour is very short, but the energy unleashed is unique,” he says. “This moment is often paralleled in scores of early music – at a very specific moment toward the end of a given piece, it seems as if the score is wrapped up in a harmonic sequence that determines the end of a complex development, and transitions into a soothing ending. It is both the end, and a new beginning.”