It has been a terrific honour to have William George and Michael Strutt record two of my songs for tenor and guitar, False Morning and The River-Lip, for Redshift Records’ upcoming CD release, East. The songs were written specifically for this recording project in 2014. They are set in English to Edward Fitzgerald’s translations of poetry by the iconic Persian polymath, Omar Khayyam. The songs have also been arranged for piano and tenor, and for piano and baritone. They were premiered in February 2015 at the New York Festival of Song (NYFOS) by pianist Michael Barrett and baritone Shea Owens, and were described as “beautiful” by Wall Street Journal music critic, Allan Kozinn.
Before the phantom of False morning died,
Methought a Voice within the Tavern cried,
When all the Temple is Prepared within,
Why nods the drowsy Worshiper outside?
And this reviving Herb whose tender Green
Fledges the River-Lip on which we lean–
Ah, lean upon it lightly! for who knows
From what once lovely Lip it springs unseen!
Entitled East, the CD includes music by seven composers, and also features performances by composer/guitarist John Oliver. The featured works are inspired by Asian and Middle-Eastern themes. Stay tuned for more information, and the official release date.
Performers: William George, tenor; Michael Strutt, guitar; John Oliver, guitar
Chinese Gardens – Alec Roth
Two Chinese Songs** – Marga Richter
3 Moon Songs of Li-Po* – William George
The Basho Fragments* – Keith R. Cole
Do not go gentle into that good night* – Lou Warde
2 Omar Khayyam Songs* – Iman Habibi
Unseen Rain** – John Oliver
**Premiere recording of guitar arrangement
TK454 © 2017 Redshift Music