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The place to see what's new at the Sarah Lawrence College William Schuman Music Library. Updated by Music Librarian Charlotte E. Price.
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Ah, I forgot about this one…

Animation by Eleanor Stewart.

14 plays
Herbie Hancock,
Takin' Off

Continuing on our Herbie Hancock kick is Hancock’s debut album, “Takin’ Off" (Blue Note, 2007). Watermelon Man was a big hit, and helped propel the album to its success. With Freddie Hubbard on trumpet, Dexter Gordon on tenor sax, Hancock on piano, Butch Warren on bass, and Billy Higgins on drums, how could it not be?

We’ll be posting Hancock’s radical reworking of his piece on Head Hunters later, so keep an eye out for that. But in the meantime, check out this album at the Music Library - this reissue features alternate takes of some tracks, as well.












Fun Story: My director kept telling me and my tenor sax buddy to play softer. No matter what we did, it wasn’t soft enough for him. So getting frustrated, I told my buddy “Dont play this time. Just fake it” 

Our Band Director then informed us we sounded perfect. 

To my readers: “p” means quiet, “pp” means really quiet. I’ve never seen “pppp” before haha.

On the contrast, “f” means loud, and “ffff” probably means so loud you go unconscious.

I had ffff in a piece once and my conductor told me to play as loudly as physically possible without falling off my chair…

Me and my trombone buddies had “ffff” and he sat next to me and played so hard that he fell out of his chair.

The lengths we go for music.

Okay yeah so I play the bass clarinet and the amount of air you have to move and the stiffness of the reed means it only has two settings and that is loud and louder, with an optional LOUDEST that includes a 50% probability of HORRIBLE CROAKING NOISE which is the bass equivalent of the ubiquitous clarinet shriek.

One day, when I was in concert band in high school, we got a new piece handed out for the first time, and there was a strange little commotion back in the tuba section — whispering, and pointing at something in the music, and swatting at each other’s hands all shhh don’t call attention to it. And although they did attract the attention of basically everyone else in the band, they managed to avoid being noticed by the band director, who gave us a few minutes to look over our parts and then said, “All right, let’s run through it up to section A.”

And here we are, cheerfully playing along, sounding reasonably competent — but everyone, when they have the attention to spare, is keeping an eye on the tuba players. They don’t come in for the first eight measures or so, and then when they do come in, what we see is:

[stifled giggling]

[reeeeeeally deep breath]


The entire band stops dead, in the cacophonous kind of way that a band stops when it hasn’t actually been cued to stop. The band director doesn’t even say anything, just looks straight back at the tubas and makes a helpless sort of why gesture.

In unison, the tuba players defend themselves: “THERE WERE FOUR F’S.”

FFFF is not really a rational dynamic marking for any instrument, but for the love of all that is holy why would you put it in a tuba part.

This is the best band post 

Everyone else go home

Oh man, so I play trombone, and we got this piece called Florentiner Marsch by Julius Fucik, and we saw this


which is 8 fortes. We were shocked until,


that is 24 fortes who the fuck does that

Who does that?

This guy. Take a good look - that is the moustache of a man with nothing to lose.

Julius IdontgivaFucik

More like Julius Fuckit

(via anonemouse)

2 plays
Herbie Hancock,
Fat Albert Rotunda

Adding to our Herbie Hancock collection, we recently received the album Fat Albert Rotunda (Warner Bros, 1969). Originally composed to accompany the TV special “Hey, Hey, Hey, It’s Fat Albert,” this was later released as its own album.

Hancock makes a lot of use of soul music instead of traditional jazz, and the result is a very funky record. Stop by the music library and check it out.


What does an opera librarian do?

How about a band librarian?


National Poetry Month Resources: LL Cool J

"No Frontin’" lyrics by 2014 Rock Hall nominee LL Cool J, from the LL Cool J Notebook.


Check out this groovy quantification of how these important people spent their days!


A staved blackboard is a dangerous thing.


Fado singer in Portuguese night club, Lisbon, 1946, by Toni Frissell

Interested in fado? SLC has a lot of streaming fado albums!

(via leadingtone)

We’ve been posting clips from our latest new CDs, so take a look:

  • Aden Nti Na Merenna W’ase sung by The Divine Healer’s Church: Nima Assembly from I Have My Liberty! Gospel Sounds from Accra, Ghana" (Dust to Digital, 2011)
  • Glory, Glory Hallelujah performed by Chester Davis & Congregation; Compton Jones & Group; Furry Lewis in Sorrow Come Pass Me Around: A Survey Of Rural Black Religious Music (Dust to Digital, 2011)
  • Zine Mlih (Sublime Beauty) performed by Mohamed Bergam in Kassidat: Raw 45s from Morocco (Dust-to-Digital, 2013)
  • Mushtaq (I’m Yearning) performed by Soni Ahmad in قة، في اند قمبس : رو 45س فرم يم>ن, Qat, Coffee & Qambus: Raw 45s from Yemen (Dust-to-Digital, 2013)
36 plays
Sigvards Klava: Latvian Radio Choir,
Rachmaninov: Vespers

This new album of Rachmaninoff’s "All-Night Vigil" (Ondine, 2012)album is breathtaking, and made me wordless. So I’m going to borrow NPR’s fine writeup of it:

In 1915, just two years before the Russian Revolution, Sergei Rachmaninov wrote the breathtaking All-Night Vigil, a high-water mark for Russian Orthodox choral music. But the work had a short shelf life as the Bolsheviks cracked down on religion. These days, recordings of the work abound, but this new version by the Latvian Radio Choir and conductor Sigvards Kļava is among the best. There’s no orchestra, just voices, yet Rachmaninov applies terrific coloristic and orchestral effects. In one section, sopranos ring out like tolling church bells. And here, listen for the rich, symphonic layering he gets with groups of voices shining like rays of light through stained glass.

Check out the whole CD at the SLC Music Library



Janel Kinlaw, a librarian at NPR, and Trevor Muñoz, an associate director at the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities will be answering your questions about preserving old technology at 3 p.m. ET on Reddit.

Ask them anything. 

Archivists are my heroes. —Lars

Need research help? Need help finding a CD for a dance or theatre piece? Ask us!

From the NY Phil Facebook (although you should also check out their tumblr, nyphil):

The beautiful “Moonlight” from Britten’s Four Sea Interludes, conducted by Leonard Bernstein. To see his personal score free in the New York Philharmonic Digital Archives, go to