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Question: What Do Children With Disabilities,
Rachmaninoff, Bill Evans, Cole Porter,
The Gershwins, Irving Berlin, Jeff Bridges,
The Middle East, The Star Spangled Banner,
Odd Meters, And Award-Winning
Minnesota Poetry Have In Common?
Solitude includes unique interpretations of odd-metered originals based on melody fragments by children with disabilities, including my daughter Rosie; original poems by Minnesota Book Award winner and sax player Richard Terrill over variations on Rachmaninoff and Bill Evans; music from cinema; Broadway standards; international rhythms; and historical pieces.
The first television performance of the Larry McDonough Quartet, recorded by Baby Blue Arts at Minnesota Connection in Edina, Minnesota, for viewing on public television stations around the country, and on line at http://www.babybluearts.com. LMQ performs two pieces first released on the Simple Gifts CD, two new ones penned by McDonough, and one holiday song.
A compilation of performances of McDonough’s original pieces and arrangements of jazz for high school jazz ensemble, orchestra, and concert band.
“Larry McDonough’s long-awaited new recording serves up divergent delights, from a reconstructed holiday chestnut to inside-out renditions of jazz standards, from harmonically and rhythmically altered traditional melodies to a trio of original tunes. With a feathery touch that recalls Bill Evans but with more fingers and a unique approach to time that makes the most worn carol or standard a new adventure, Simple Gifts proves to be anything but “simple”—but, for those fortunate enough to hear this music, it is indeed a gift.”
--Andrea Canter, Jazz Police
Dedicated to the memory of Paul and Sheila Wellstone, Marcia Wellstone Markuson, Mary McEvoy, Tom Lapic, and William McLaughlin, it benefits Wellstone Action, a tax-exempt organization formed to carry on their work.
It includes original music, as well as arrangements of jazz, popular, religious, and historical music in different times signatures and harmonies, such as "Amazing Grace" and "My Favorite Things" in 5/4, and "We Shall Overcome" (with vocals) and "Star Spangled Banner" as jazz ballads.
"Contemplative, but with a certain intensity that kept my ears perked. Larry's touch and choice of harmonies reminds me of standing outside on a clear, cold night and looking up at the stars." John Ziegler, KUMD Radio Program and Music Director.
Drummer Chaz Draper joined McDonough in Off Beat in 2002, with “A Rose for Two” being their first public duo performance, recorded live at the new Weber Music Hall on the Duluth Campus of the University of Minnesota and broadcast live on KUMD Radio. It includes A Rose for Two in 5/4, based on melodies written by children with disabilities using Fingersteps software developed by drummer Danny Moffatt. McDonough’s daughter Rosie wrote the A section melody, Moffatt’s children Patrick and Jennifer wrote the B section melody, and McDonough layered them over shifting minor harmonies and 5/4 meter.
"All Blues" from "Tuscarora: Short Stories for Jazz Piano" was reissued on the compilation and sampler CD, which benefits KUMD FM Radio 103.3 FM, Duluth.
Larry McDonough and his first group, Off Beat, performed arrangements, titled Off Beat: Jazz Classics in New Meters. McDonough has taken jazz classics and put them into different time signatures, changing the rythmn and feel of the tunes. Off Beat's maiden voyage was broadcast live on Cooking at the Dakota on Jazz88, KBEM 88.5 FM Radio on July 30, 2001. Selections include Cantaloupe Island in 7/4 (Hancock), Small Steps (McDonough), Adagio for Strings (Barber), Linus and Lucy (Guaraldi), and Take the 5A Train in 5/4 (Ellington).
St. Paul jazz pianist Larry McDonough released his CD of solo piano jazz, titled "Small Steps," on the Marx Music label. The original CD release party filled Dakota at Bandana Square in St. Paul, Minnesota with up to an hour wait to get in. A second party, family show and jazz education session in February at filled Dakota with adults and children.
In "Small Steps," McDonough performs unique arrangements of jazz classics (Miles Davis' "All Blues", Chick Corea's "Crystal Silence," and "Nature Boy", first performed by Nat King Cole and later George Benson), pop classics ("Linus and Lucy", Eric Clapton's "Layla", and The Beatles' "Good Day Sunshine"), as well as original pieces "Small Steps" and "Coreatown."
Larry McDonough performing selections from "Small Steps," and McDonough performing some of the "Off Beat" arrangements in a duo with Phil Holm on trumpet on NewsNight Minnesota on Twin Cities Public Television.
"Some very cool music.... Off beat jazz classics,' just 4/4 music isn't good enough for [McDonough].... 5/4 and 7/4 ... have fun with it.... I love this 5/4 [Take the 5A Train']. Do some more!" Lou Harvin, NewsNight Minnesota, TPT Public Television Chs. 2 & 17, St. Paul.
The title track of "Small Steps," written by McDonough, recently was reissued on the compilation and sampler CD, "Oasis Jazz Instrumentals."
McDonough appears on jazz fusion band Bozo Allegro's second CD, "Relentlessly Cheerful."