New CD of Pianola Music by Rex Lawson
By Malcolm Cole
In MMD 990623 (23Jun99):
I mentioned a new CD of pianola music released by the pianola Institute
under its Aeolus label. The CD has now been reviewed in the October
edition of Gramophone magazine by Lionel Salter, one of the UK's
leading music critics.
The review is the very best one could have wished for Lionel Salter
tells us to forget everything one has heard pro or contra about
reproducing pianos and says that the rolls are specially made for the
pianola directly transcribed from the scores and interpreted by a
virtuoso Rex Lawson.
He says that every nuance of pace and dynamics, every contrast of
internal levels every emphasis or agogic accent has been supplied by
the hands and feet of the player who is a first-class musician with a
detailed understanding of the scores. Lionel Salter is very
enthusiastic particularly about the performance of movements from
Pineapple Poll which he says are sparklingly buoyant and great fun.
What is so important about his review is that it has taken the art of
playing the pianola seriously and in a mainstream music magazine given
the best boost to the foot pedaled player piano for a long time.
Those of us who are amateur pianolist's and aspiring musicians can take
heart that for once the instrument we love is being given serious
critique with positive results. I look forward to further CDs by the
The CD is available from:
Fenny Compton Wharf
Warks CV33 OXE.
The price of the CD is GBP 10 including post and packing and its number
The Player Piano Group, London.
[ For those in the US interested in this CD, it may be worth checking
[ the follow up article published the next day:
[ The URL in that article is now obsolete, but this URL is a
[ good one (as of today): http://www.otherminds.org/Pianola.html
[ Happy Listening
(Message sent Thu 14 Oct 1999, 14:59:26 GMT, from time zone GMT+0100.)