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David Dalle
Thursday May 23rd, 2024 with David Dalle
30 for 30 with a spectacular piano transcription; Canadian, Somalian, Egyptian, Nigerian, South African funk and jazz.

We continue my year-long celebration of 30 years on-air at the mighty 93.1 with a look at 30 of the most significant albums in my musical evolution. Today's album was chosen for several reasons. 2024 marks 200 years since the composition of Beethoven's 9th symphony. It received its premiere on May 7th 1824, and its second performance on May 23rd, 200 years ago today. The premiere was an enormous triumph for Beethoven, however, by today's standards, even the standards of the last 150 years, these first performances were terribly performed. A listener today would think the premiere was a mediocre rehearsal by an amateur orchestra. We forget how this was entirely new music, radically different from anything else to that point, which was very complicated and difficult to perform, being performed by a makeshift orchestra of professionals and amateurs with only a couple of full rehearsals. However, audiences of the day could see through the limitations of performance to the genius and grandeur of the music. We heard a seminal recording (for me) on my first show of the year (can listen here, today we hear the symphony in Franz Liszt's spectacular solo piano transcription. Liszt transcribed all nine of Beethoven's symphonies, but the 9th was the last one he did. He had transcribed it for two pianos. Then, for solo piano, only transcribing the first three instrumental movements. He believed the Ode to Joy finale could not be rendered for only two hands, and the two piano version was the best he could do. He later relented, and completed the solo transcription. When I first heard this recording, in the late 90's, long after the 9th had sealed itself as my favourite music, I was astonished, gobsmacked. This was the whole symphony, choral finale included, on piano. Spectacular, miraculous! It was common practice in the 19th century to make piano transcriptions of orchestral works. Without radio and recordings, transcriptions remained the best way to disseminate orchestral works. Most transcriptions were really piano reductions, for people to familiarize themselves with the orchestral music. Liszt transcriptions, however, were true translations. No one else approached Liszt's complete understanding and mastery of the piano and he developed many ingenious techniques to make the piano transcription true to the spirit of the orchestral originals. This is music to be performed, to be listened to, with the same awe and grandeur of the original! Liszt made this transcription in 1863, while living his tripartite life in Rome (annually he would spend one third of the year in Rome, one third in Weimer, and one third in Budapest) with a rundown upright piano, which was missing a couple of keys! We hear the French pianist Cyprien Katsaris' 1983 recording. He recorded all nine symphonies, and they were reissued on Teldec in 1996, when I discovered them. The 30 for 30 albums we've heard so far (in order of appearance): 1. Lustmord "The Monstrous Soul" Side Effects 2. Ludwig Van Beethoven/Berliner Philharmoniker, Herbert Von Karajan et al. "Symphony No. 9" Deutsche Grammophon 3. Doudou N'Diaye Rose "Djabote" Realworld 4. Julius Eastman/Lutoslawski Piano Duo with Joanna Duda, Mischa Kozlowski "Unchained" Dux 5. The Master Musicians of Jajouka featuring Bachir Attar "Apocalypse Across The Sky" Axiom 6. Ustad Bismillah Khan & Party "Shehnai Recital" EMI India 7. Franz Liszt/Claudio Arrau "12 Etudes d'exécution transcendante" Philips 8. Ludwig Van Beethoven transcribed Franz Liszt/Cyprien Katsaris "Symphony No. 9" Teldec
Note that the National Arts Centre Orchestra performs the 9th every 3-4 years, and they are performing it again this June as the final concert of their 2023-2024 season. Alexander Shelley conducting. The 9th is joined by two new compositions on the program which sound very intriguing to say the least! ᓂᔭ niya (I Am), by Cree composer Andrew Balfour was commissioned as a companion piece to Beethoven’s 9th.
Symphony No. 9 in d minor Op. 125 transcription for solo piano
Ludwig Van Beethoven transcribed Franz Liszt/Cyprien Katsaris - Symphony No. 9 - Teldec
Next set begins with a new release from Toronto's Dun-Dun Band led by guitarist Craig Dunsmeir. Their new album is a mix of afrofunk, experimental jazz, and minimalism, with some trance sessions!
No. 20 (Once Raw: The Aging G)
Dun-Dun Band - Pita Parka, Pt. I: Xam Egdub - Ansible Editions Canadian New
Well their name reminded me of Somalia's Dur-Dur Band...
Daradaa Muxibo
Dur-Dur Band - Mogadisco - Dancing Mogadishu from 1972-1991 - Analog Africa
Salamat - Nubiana - Piranha
Slow Bones
Tony Allen & Hugh Masekela - Rejoice - World Circuit
One of my favourite singers, Kassé Mady Diabaté died on May 24th, 2018, thinking of him a lot this week.
Ko Kuma Magni
Kasse Mady Diabate - Kirike - No Format
Wonnim A Bisa
Black Masters Band - Essiebons Special 1973-1984 - Analog Africa
Interactive CKCU
Hey David, how’s it going? Just let you know. I am assuming in respect to you and all the people out there listening

2:30 PM, May 23rd, 2024
THANKS for 9th Symphony today! My Mom would writhe with joy. A long time ago, when I was busy discovering what we now call progressive rock and afro-fusion (and turning her on to some), she gave me a box set of all 9 symphonies. Otto Klemperer / Philharmonia Orch, which I still have in loving care. Believe you have played this multiple on this program. FANTASTIC recording. This coming Saturday would have been her birthday. The 9th will be played "robustly loud", as it so deserves. Likely also Madama Butterfly and/or Carmen, The Rite of Spring, Bartok... "Go big or go home" stuff... Peace.

2:31 PM, May 23rd, 2024
David Dalle (host)

2:31 PM, May 23rd, 2024
Lisa P
Awesome piano version. Really enjoying it right after listening to Doug’s excellent rock show before yours. Thanks also for the research and notes about Liszt found this transcription.

2:42 PM, May 23rd, 2024
Lisa P
and NOT “found”

2:45 PM, May 23rd, 2024
David Dalle (host)
Thank you!

2:46 PM, May 23rd, 2024
See you on Thursday everybody bye respect to the host

3:59 PM, May 23rd, 2024