Jeremy Pelt’s Griot and 700 on Igor

Unless I am missing something, Griot by Jeremy Pelt is the first true follow-up to Arthur Taylor’s Notes and Tones, where a celebrated African-American jazz practitioner interviews other celebrated African-American jazz practitioners. These interviews stand in stark contrast to conventional profiles run by white-dominated organizations. Recommended: order here.

Thanks to Evan Haga for inviting me to write 700 words on Igor Stravinsky for Tidal, a kind of “who was Stravinsky” for the uninitiated. It was an easy assignment; Evan also did a good job with the final edit.

While working on the essay, I posted my top 10 Stravinsky list on Twitter. In chronological order:

1. The Rite of Spring
2. Les Noces
3. Pulcinella
4. Symphonies of Wind Instruments
5. Octet
6. Oedipus Rex
7. Symphony in Three Movements
8. The Rake’s Progress
9. Agon
10. Requiem Canticles

People complained most about Firebird and Symphony of Psalms not making the cut, but what can I say, there’s no accounting for taste. (They do get a mention in the Tidal overview.) I doubt Pulcinella would make most lists (a lot of it is a fairly straight transcription of old Italian themes) but that work is a personal touchstone, and certainly a thoughtful example of how to do a makeover just right.