Here comes The White Album, solo piano!

First coffee not enough this morning, need second cup. I’ll probably need a third. And a fourth. Today I go and check out Steinway & Sons’ new midtown digs, where I’m scheduled to do more recordings for their amazing new SPIRIO technology. It allows for recording and playback, and easily is the most accurate digital “player piano” technology I’ve experienced. Then I plunge into a new project that just spontaneously combusted a few days ago. On Monday January 19th at 6:00 PM I’m going to play the entire Beatles White Album solo piano at the Cornelia Street Café.

Yes, you heard right. The White Album. All 30 songs. I’m rearranging, revisiting, deranging, (please don’t use that clichéd word) deconstructing each song. I plan to play them in album order, but maybe not. I have no idea. So between now and January 19th I’m working to get these babies on paper and in my hands. Kind of crazy, but three years ago I did something similar with Thelonious Monk’s complete songs in one concert, and the rest is history. In any case, today I subject Back in the USSR, Dear Prudence and Don’t Pass Me By to scrutiny. The latter is really fast: imagine Beethoven’s Waldstein Sonata First Movement meeting “Bringing In The Sheaves.”

Meanwhile, I’m on cup number two and typing at the same time, as I continue to go through Sony’s new 21 CD set featuring Charles Rosen’s complete Columbia and Epic albums, all packaged in original jacket facsimiles. Much of this material is new to CD, including a fabulously clear Ravel Gaspard de la nuit that’s capped by a rocking and rolling and technically smoldering Scarbo. Obviously Rosen had VERY strong coffee before recording that one!


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