Wednesday, November 13, 2019

John Sebastian's recording of the Harmonica Concerto

One of Villa-Lobos's happiest late works was the Harmonica Concerto, commissioned by John Sebastian. Lisa Peppercorn reminisces about her visit with Villa-Lobos while he and John Sebastian worked on the Harmonica Concerto.
It was one of my joys to work with John and Villa-Lobos during the writing of the Concerto. The composer sat at the huge semi-circular desk with a pot of black thick coffee, several cigars and ashtrays all around working on several compositions at once, while watching a TV at intervals. All the time wearing a hat...

A fine recording was made with Sebastian, released on LP by Heliodor, but no commercial CD was available for a long time. That means that eBay & used record stores became the source for this version. So it's great to hear about this re-mastering by Curt Timmons at Klassik Haus, available on CD, FLAC or MP3.

I've commented before about this work being especially well represented with recordings. With the new Naxos disc things are better than ever!