BROWNS IN BLUE

  • Rachmaninoff/Anderson: 18th variation from Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini for five pianos
  • Debussy/Anderson: Clair de lune arranged for six hands, one piano
  • Anderson: Fantasia on "Dives and Lazarus" - Tone Poem for Five Pianos (based on music by Vaughan Williams and Sibelius)
  • Taylor/Anderson: "Everybody Loves Somebody" arranged for five pianos and voice (The 5 Browns, pianos; Dean Martin, voice)
  • Collaborations with Gil Shaham, Chris Botti, and Dean Martin
  • Music by Saint-Saëns, Piazzolla, Brahms, Schubert, Chopin, Novacek, Grieg, and more

Buy the album on amazon.combarnesandnoble.com, or iTunes.

CONSIDERATIONS FOR LISTENING

Rachmaninoff/Anderson: Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini
 1) 18th Variation (arranged for five pianos)

What would the 18th variation sound like if Rachmaninoff had arranged it for five pianos himself? In creating this arrangement, I tried to emulate the pianistic textures that were characteristic to Rachmaninoff's compositional style. Can you hear a little of the third concerto? Some of the two-piano suites? What about the film Somewhere in Time?


Debussy/Anderson: Suite Bergamasque
4) Clair de lune (arranged for one piano / six hands)

It was a unique challenge arranging Clair de lune for six hands at one piano. Clair de lune is remakable for its transparent, atmospheric sounds. Six hands at one piano, on the other hand, sound best when playing dense passages that utilze the entire range of the piano. My solution: use Paul Verlaine's poem as inspiration while embellishing Debussy's original. Here are four lines from Verlaine's "Clair de lune" from his Fetes Galantes in my own translation:

The still moonlight, sad and beautiful,
Brings dreams to the birds in the trees
And makes the fountains sob of ecstasy,
Tall, slender fountains among the marble statues.

9) Anderson: Fantasia on "Dives and Lazarus" - Tone Poem for Five Pianos

"Dives and Lararus" is a folk tune made famous by Ralph Vaughan Williams' "Five Variants on 'Dives and Lazarus.' The Church of Latter-Day Saints also transformed the tune into a hymn and set it to lyrics by William W. Phelps. My composition is a musical setting of this Mormon hymn, "If you could hie to Kolob." As you listen, consider the questions posed by the lyrics:

("Hie" means "to go quickly;" "Kolob" is where the gods live.)

If you could hie to Kolob in the twinkling of an eye,
And then continue onward with that same speed to fly,
Do you think that you could ever, through all eternity,
Find out the generation where Gods began to be?

Or see the grand beginning, where space did not extend?
Or view the last creation, where Gods and matter end?
Me-thinks the Spirit whispers, "No man has found 'pure space,'
Nor seen the outside curtains, where nothing has a place.'"

The works of God continue, and worlds and lives abound;
Improvement and progession have one eternal round.
There is no end to matter; There is no end to space;
There is no end to spirit; There is no end to race.

There is no end to virtue; There is no end to might;
There is no end to wisdom; There is no end to light;
There is no end to union; There is no end to youth;
There is no end to pristhood; There is no end to truth.

There is no end to glory; There is no end to love;
There is no end to being: There is no death above.


14) Taylor/Anderson: Everybody Loves Somebody (arranged for five pianos and voice)

This track was a lot of fun to compose. Let loose and enjoy listening to five pianos dance around the legendary vocals of Dean Martin.