is a really enjoyable piece, and I couldn’t wait until I recorded
When I heard it performed, it felt complete, bringing together
so many nuances and melodies. Carlo
Domeniconi must’ve been truly
My interpretation of the music is of course based on
various encounters with “classical” Arabic
music. And I was also influenced by different interpretations by Christopher
Kanengiser and Thibault
Cauvin. Each one of these great guitarists
brings an interesting musical idea of how it should be played. A very interesting
approach to the piece was by the American guitarist Andrew
Leonard. Andrew's version is
quite a contrast in speed and suspense. Slower than usual in the beginning, then
the real Presto storms in with so much control. And of course, Carlo Domeniconi
mind this at all. He suggests for the piece to be played freely, with the musicians’ own
artistic choice as long as the Turkish flavour is maintained throughout.
I came across Koyunbaba about six weeks ago. I started
by learning the Moderato and Presto, guided by Christopher Parkening’s recording.
Then progressed into the Mosso and Cantabile. But I wasn't enjoying the Cantabile
as much as the others.
My first performance of the complete Suite was last week
at the Wednesday Lunchtime Concerts organised by Ms. Isobel Ferrier at St
James’ Anglican Church, and it turned out really
good. While on the 3rd movement, I began to realise that the Cantabile was just
as lovely, but it needed time to simmer in my mind.
However, the making of this recording tended to get frustrating at times, especially
performing the whole Suite without any mistakes. I did few takes and it was especially
frustrating when I was going very well throughout the whole thing until I slip
a note on the second last page. Ahhhr! Take it from the top maestro.
But on a special night, I made it through and
I was quite happy with my achievement.
But then again, another take to fine-tune some bits wouldn’t
have hurt. But I hope you enjoy it for now.
Imagine yourself surrounded by a desert at night-time, sipping black tea around
a wild campfire and listening to tales, old legends and myths while a oud player
plucks his heart out, with music going on and on, almost hypnotising. That’s
Koyunbaba for me.