Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by Eddy Deegan »

Martin Walker wrote:Oh, and knowing how 'correct' you like to be Eddy, I've just manually corrected the spelling of every post title in this two-page thread from 'Bache' to 'Bach' - hope you don't mind ;)


Gosh, I'm quite shocked I missed that! Thank you Martin :thumbup:
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by Arpangel »

It was a book that got me interested in music, when I was about nine, it’s called "A Portrait Of Bach" by Jo Manton.
It’s a very simple book written for children, but it portrays such a magical and inspiring view of the Bach family life, after I read it I knew I had to get as many Bach recordings as possible, and it all started. And that was when I bought my first ever record Johann Sebastian Bach "Organ Works" on the Music For Pleasure label.

https://www.discogs.com/Carl-Weinrich-Bach-Organ-Recital/release/494589

My second musical mile stone was to be in five years time, when I would ad Switched On Bach to my collection.
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by arkieboy »

Not got round to listening to this before.

I keep a copy of Willard's transcriptions for Bach's Lute Suites handy - torturous with my reading capability but I find few things quite as satisfying as working on these beautiful pieces of music, even if only the intermediate ones are within my performance reach.

I frequently bemoan the lack of dynamics in the approach many classical players take to these tunes having inhabited some of them and imagining what they could be - this is not a criticism I would throw Stephanie Jones' performance here. Bravo!

The boxiness of the sound I think is down to the instrument - it is a pretty small body in comparison with a modern classical, together with a very white soundboard which, if it were spruce, would give a more strident treble than the more common cedar. The clarity you get from that combination suits the music well I think - you certainly wouldn't want a blooming bass end obscuring the way the themes move across the fretboard.

My classical has a spruce top, chosen for this exact reason.

I have Pinnock's recordings of the Brandenbergs on period instruments and the thinness of the sound similarly suits the complex material by allowing the individual parts to be distinct.

Nowhere near steeped in this kind of music to understand (and possibly disagree) with received wisdom on these matters, but this sounds nigh-on perfect to me.
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by Albatross »

Just in case anyone was wondering, here is the link to the luthier that made the guitar (if it hasn't already been mentioned) https://www.tulacek.cz/
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by Arpangel »

God knows what mood I was in that day, but I like it now, sounds good, she’s got it, very delicate, expressive performance.
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by Exalted Wombat »

She is giving it a bit of the Eva Cassidy treatment isn't she!

Here's Bream performing the same piece.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZLVKDfYZHVc
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by OneWorld »

Eddy Deegan wrote:Today I came across this superb rendition of a Bach Fugue, originally written for violin, played by Stephanie Jones on an acoustic guitar.

I've seen a lot of fancy shredding, powerful rock performances, stunning solos and so forth over the years but I don't think I've ever been as impressed with the artistry of a guitar performance as I was watching this.

Stephanie Jones isn't a name I'd seen before, but I'm sure some of you must have.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5EM6t3iHK1Y

Maybe it's the pianist in me but I thought the performance, dynamics and expression combined to produce a feel that hit the spot perfectly.

I have been an admirer of Stephanie's for sometime now, as you say, she hits the spot, there are legions of classical guitarists on YouTube, and there's nothing wrong with that, in fact I think it is great that whilst so much music is made electronically, the organic alternative is still alive and well, and that young people such as Stephanie represent the continuing interest. One of my favourites of hers is, a modern piece that really gets the best out of the classical guitar...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7UwA8zvDcho
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by OneWorld »

Logarhythm wrote:
Arpangel wrote: Also, this...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HEbi-7tPaqo

Perfectly formed.

Agreed - an absolutely sublime piece of music :thumbup:
I stumbled across this a couple of years ago and keep coming back to it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JNEnzNHTkd8

I came across this rendition of the Chaconne some years (I trawl YouTube obsessively and the amount of exemplary music never fails to amaze me) and I think version, by John Feeley's is the best of those performed on the guitar. When first hearing it on the guitar I wonder how it could have been done on the violin, seeing as to a great extent it is not a chordal instrument, but anyway, done on the violin, as intended when written is an equally impressive piece of music and that middle bit just knocks me out, whether on guitar/cello or whatever. I do like this version on two cellos.......

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Y1vJYUokbc
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by OneWorld »

Arpangel wrote:
J S Bach was a working man, for the church, organist, choir master. I don’t think he ever composed for kings and queens, I’m certain in fact.
Beethoven, Mozart, now that’s a different story.

Brandenberg Concertos? OK not quite Kings and Queens but I think a prince or two was on the roster, that said, the Brandenbergs were written to order, the sort of thing Bach would knock out in between sets!
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by Arpangel »

OneWorld wrote:
Arpangel wrote:
J S Bach was a working man, for the church, organist, choir master. I don’t think he ever composed for kings and queens, I’m certain in fact.
Beethoven, Mozart, now that’s a different story.

Brandenberg Concertos? OK not quite Kings and Queens but I think a prince or two was on the roster, that said, the Brandenbergs were written to order, the sort of thing Bach would knock out in between sets!

The Brandenbergs, yes, fantastic, my favourite pieces of music for most of my childhood, along with the St Mathew Passion, that was, until I heard the Wendy Carlos renditions of Bach, my world changed forever, and they are the only versions I can listen to now.
I can’t think it would be be easy though, to equal the intensity and emotion of that Chaconne on a synthesiser, impossible I’d say, completely, we’ve come a long way, but there’s still more than a long way to go, to achieve violin level of expression, on an electronic instrument.
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by forumuser840717 »

Much as I like this, and many other guitar versions of Bach pieces (I'm a big Julian Bream fan!), my favourite in string pluckers playing Bach would be the mandolin player, Chris Thile. Imo, he's one of the most impressive musicians I've ever heard in any genre.

JS Bach: Sonata No. 1 in G minor BWV 1001 (I. Adagio 00:08, II. Fugue: 4:26, III. Siciliana: 08:46, IV. Presto: 11:49)

I first came across him when a friend took me to see the bluegrass band Nickel Creek in the US in about 1995 when they were all still teenagers. Their technical abilities were amazing, particularly Thile, and as they grew and matured they just got better, both technically and musically.

His interpretative abilities and engagement with whatever he's playing are at the highest level of understanding and musicianship. It's not just the absolute technical mastery of his instrument but a feel for the music that's rare to find. The technique is always serving the music rather than just wafting about on its own account like so many guitar widdlers.

He's also one of the most personable, least pretentious, and most 'attitude'-free people I've ever met; his love of music shines though in his personality and playing. Whatever genre(s) he's in.

A few more bits:
JS Bach: Partita No.1 in B minor, BWV 1002

I'd love to hear a better recording of this: Paganini Caprice No.1

Bit of improv with Jon Brion captured on a bonus track from a DVD of Step Brothers

Punch Brothers Live at House of Blues - yes, he sings too! (WARNING - Contains banjo!)

This might be better than the original version they recorded in 1999/2000 Nickel Creek - When You Come Back Down (Livecreek Performance)

Apologies for the digression - now back to the advertised programme :beamup:
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by OneWorld »

Arpangel wrote:
OneWorld wrote:
Arpangel wrote:
J S Bach was a working man, for the church, organist, choir master. I don’t think he ever composed for kings and queens, I’m certain in fact.
Beethoven, Mozart, now that’s a different story.

Brandenberg Concertos? OK not quite Kings and Queens but I think a prince or two was on the roster, that said, the Brandenbergs were written to order, the sort of thing Bach would knock out in between sets!

The Brandenbergs, yes, fantastic, my favourite pieces of music for most of my childhood, along with the St Mathew Passion, that was, until I heard the Wendy Carlos renditions of Bach, my world changed forever, and they are the only versions I can listen to now.
I can’t think it would be be easy though, to equal the intensity and emotion of that Chaconne on a synthesiser, impossible I’d say, completely, we’ve come a long way, but there’s still more than a long way to go, to achieve violin level of expression, on an electronic instrument.

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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by OneWorld »

OneWorld wrote:
Arpangel wrote:
OneWorld wrote:
Arpangel wrote:
J S Bach was a working man, for the church, organist, choir master. I don’t think he ever composed for kings and queens, I’m certain in fact.
Beethoven, Mozart, now that’s a different story.

Brandenberg Concertos? OK not quite Kings and Queens but I think a prince or two was on the roster, that said, the Brandenbergs were written to order, the sort of thing Bach would knock out in between sets!

The Brandenbergs, yes, fantastic, my favourite pieces of music for most of my childhood, along with the St Mathew Passion, that was, until I heard the Wendy Carlos renditions of Bach, my world changed forever, and they are the only versions I can listen to now.
I can’t think it would be be easy though, to equal the intensity and emotion of that Chaconne on a synthesiser, impossible I’d say, completely, we’ve come a long way, but there’s still more than a long way to go, to achieve violin level of expression, on an electronic instrument.


Your experience parallels mine. In general I liked the more popular classical music tunes, but being brought up in an unmusical household, I wasn’t exposed to a wide variety of music, but on a visit to the record library one day, I came across that album cover, showing the massive moog, with Wendy (well Walter then) and thought to myself, that’s got to be worth a blast, whatever it is. From that moment on I stepped into musical adulthood, I came of age and my interest went beyond whatever was top of the pops at the time. I think my next Great Leap Forward was Tomita and Snowflakes are Dancing, by this time I spent every Saturday afternoon in the music shops drooling over synths, and ironically enough, electronic music was my introduction to classical music!
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Re: Stephanie Jones playing a Bach Fugue on an acoustic guitar

Post by Martin Walker »

OneWorld wrote:I have been an admirer of Stephanie's for sometime now... One of my favourites of hers is, a modern piece that really gets the best out of the classical guitar...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7UwA8zvDcho

That's my favourite of hers too - SO much dynamic and tonal variation throughout.

Beautiful expression! :clap::clap:

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