Bach showed that the cello can dance, but composers from Rossini to Shostakovich have favored it as an instrument of pensive reflection and brooding melancholy. The playful cover photo notwithstanding, SOLO features Yo-Yo Ma in five 20th century cello works of a serious nature, all with folk influence and all echoing at least a bit of the troubles of the times in which they were written.
Here are the first two albums from pioneer smooth jazz unit Pieces of a Dream on a single disc. Produced and mixed by the late Grover Washington, Jr., Pieces of a Dream/We Are One combine soulful, tight arrangements, spirited and inspired playing, and a canny knack for grooves, Pieces of a Dream and We Are One endure as gems of the genre.
Yo no quiero volverme tan loco is the third and last live album of Serú Girán recorded in December 1981 and released in 2000. It was recorded at the Teatro Coliseo in Buenos Aires.
Yo-Yo Ma Plays Cello Masterworks is an eight-CD box set of previously released material recorded in the 1980s and 1990s, and presumably so familiar to his fans that the package doesn't even come with a booklet. It really is a no-frills affair, right down to the thin cardboard sleeves that repeat the same photograph on the box, instead of offering original cover art. But the greatest disappointment is that only three of J.S. Bach's Six Cello Suites were included, so listeners seeking them should forego this budget package and find the complete suites, which Ma recorded twice.
Lakou Mazik is a multigenerational collective of Haitian musicians formed in the aftermath of the devastating 2010 earthquake. The group includes elder legends and rising young talents, united in a mission to honor the healing spirit of their collective culture and communicate a message of pride, strength and hope to the world. Wa Di Yo, Nou La Toujou You Tell Them, We're Still Here.