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V4: 20Th Century Foxtrots

V4: 20Th Century Foxtrots

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Gottlieb Wallisch continues his acclaimed survey of jazz-influenced piano literature. In this volume we explore le tumulte noir (‘the Black craze’) for African American music in the French-speaking countries after the First World War, taking us to Paris and Brussels where the mood was hot for dancing. This environment lured writers, composers, intellectuals and artists from all over the world, with American jazz music as the latest rage in the cafes and bistros of the day. The influence of dances from overseas spread like wildfire, taking hold amongst French and Belgian composers eager to free themselves from Germanic Wagnerism while riding the wave of popularity of hit records and cinema.


Pianist Gottlieb Wallisch’s most enjoyable, ongoing exploration of the early 20th century music and dance craze, the Foxtrot, explores works by composers from France and Belgium. Less familiar names find a place among the famous, including Auric, Ibert, and Dutilleux before the disc moves to Belgium with five ‘World Premiere Recordings’, including a powerful Jazz Fantaisie from August Louis Baeyens.

-- David's Review Corner (David Denton)

His playing throughout is powerfully, emphatically rhythmic, as suits the music.

-- Pizzicato

Praise for prior volumes in this series from The New York Times:

20th Century Foxtrots, Vol. 1: Austria & Czechia / Wallisch

While jazz-inspired music by the likes of Stravinsky and Weill has never been forgotten, the similar efforts of dozens of other composers from the same period have fallen into obscurity. Now some of those experiments are enjoying a fresh hearing. Pianist Gottlieb Wallisch’s revealing and entertaining new recording is mostly made up of world-premiere recordings of these dance-oriented works, in their piano arrangements.

20th Century Foxtrots, Vol. 2: Germany / Wallisch:

In Wallisch’s latest batch of performances there are once again some discoveries from lesser-known artists. (Multi-movement works by Leopold Mittmann and Walter Niemann are a delight to encounter.) The new album kicks off with a spirited performance of a Paul Hindemith fox trot. And this edition also includes the world premiere recording of a piano arrangement of a “Tango” by Kurt Weill.

20th Century Foxtrots, Vol. 3: Central & Eastern Europe

Past editions surprised and delighted in equal measure; this latest album on the Grand Piano label extends the streak. The repertoire is principally devoted to jazz-age classical miniatures crafted in response to the global fascination with then-new dance rhythms. There are some familiar artists in both cases (think Shostakovich and Spoliansky), but also more obscure names: Yevgeny Mravinsky (“Fox-Trot,” 1929) and Alexandre Tansman (“Tempo Americano,” 1931). Who knew? Wallisch did, for one. As did the historian Mauro Piccinini, whose erudite liner notes are another valuable part of this zesty ongoing series.


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  • Release Specifications

    • Number of Discs: 1
    • Release Date:
    • Label: Grand Piano
    • UPC/Barcode: 747313985524
    • Item Number: GP855