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awake at the funeral (2008)

Classical music picked on jazz too much, so rock came over and smacked it one but good.

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During the Summer of 1996, only a few months before his death, the late Allen Ginsberg put together a set of poems on the theme of New York, as suggested by Elodie Lauten for a musical setting. The poems he selected, from Cosmopolitan Greetings 1986-1992, Collected Poems 1947-1980, and White Shroud Poems 1980-1989 are highly autobiographical and reveal some of his most intimate thoughts. Waking in New York is scored for baritone, soprano and mezzo soprano, percussion, double bass, string quartet and flute. The music closely follows Ginsberg's own flow of mental associations, which act as triggers of rhythm changes and key modulations. Visit Elodie Lauten on the web at http://www.ElodieLauten.net.

- "Despite the formality of its cantata-like structure, Waking in New York is certainly one of the most intimate large-scale vocal works ever written.(...) This is a large work for Lauten, but large works have become her metier; her recent Deus Ex Machina Cycle for singers and baroque ensemble was 100 minutes long ... Waking in New York's hovering harmonies, gentle but relentless momentum, and chantlike melodies remind one of another great vocal work, from the 1920s: Erik Satie's Socrate, based on the last words of Socrates.(...) It's worth remembering that Socrate was one of Frank Zappa's favorite pieces. Born in Paris, daughter of the jazz dummer Errol Parker, Lauten seems a legitimate heir to Satie's imperturbable aesthetic."

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