Titanic DOUBLE BASS
"Taken as a whole, this is a fascinating disc, well worth hearing for Daly’s outstanding lyricism and command of his instrument" THE ART MUSIC LOUNGE—© 2018 Lynn René Bayley
“Daly’s ‘Titanic’ Double Bass Impresses” THE ART MUSIC LOUNGE—© 2018 Lynn René Bayley
The inspiration for this album was a centenary tour I did in 2012 to commemorate the great tragedy that was the sinking of the Titanic. I was playing a solo arrangement of a piece my Great Uncle had played on the deck of the Titanic as it departed Ireland, its last ever port of call. The response was so overwhelming that I knew I had to record it and even more so as it had never yet been recorded.
As things progressed I decided also to record some other pieces from the double bass solo repertoire which were my personal favourites, and which had been much loved by audiences over the years in recital. Schubert’s exuberant Arpeggione sonata was an easy first choice as was Henry Eccles’ charming Italianate styled sonata. I could not fail to include something by my personal double bass hero (and arguably greatest bassist of all time) Domenico Dragonetti. Finally, I did not want to miss an opportunity to add to the double bass solo repertoire and so commissioned a new piece from the marvellous Irish composer John Kinsella, who has composed an extraordinarily inventive and descriptive piece for solo bass, using the ‘Erin’s Lament’ air as its inspiration.
“his mastery of his instrument is never in question” THE ART MUSIC LOUNGE—© 2018 Lynn René Bayley
Jesper Svedberg, cello
Jesper Svedberg joined the B.S.O. as Principal Cello in 2011. Jesper is a member of the Kungsbacka Piano Trio, which took first prize in the 1999 Melbourne International Chamber Music Competition. The trio regularly performs in the Wigmore Hall and in 2003, the trio made their Carnegie Hall debut. They have also performed at many major European Concert Halls including the Concertgebouw and the Vienna Konzerthaus. As a soloist, Jesper has performed with orchestras including the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony, and the Copenhagen Philharmonic. Jesper plays a rare 1699 Grancino cello, loaned by the Järnåker Foundation.
Paul Turner, piano.
“Turner...impressed with a spectacular performance, demonstrating his astonishing abilities as an accompanist” (Surrey Advertiser). A widely experienced recitalist, Paul Turner specialises in chamber music, having worked with eminent musicians throughout his career, such as Michael Collins, Nicholas Daniel, Maria Ewing, Caroline Dale, Sarah Walker, Alexander Baillie, Sarah Markham, Patricia Rozario, Ruggero Raimondi, Jack Brymer, Jane Eaglen, Barry Tuckwell, Lisa Nelsen, Thomas Carroll and Elizabeth Watts. His prize-winning studentship culminated in the Queen’s Commendation for Excellence and the Peter Pears Accompaniment Prize, adjudicated by Pears himself. He studied with John Streets and Geoffrey Parsons, and is an elected Associate of the Royal Academy of Music (ARAM). “superlative in every way - wonderfully sensitive, with a very wide tonal palette” (Oxford Mail)
Review March 2018 'THE ART MUSIC LOUNGE' —© 2018 Lynn René Bayley
David Daly, principal bassist of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, here presents his debut solo disc after more than 100 CDs as an ensemble player. The album was inspired by a centenary tour he made in 2012 to commemorate the sinking of the Titanic, on which his great-uncle Eugene was a passenger (and musician, playing the bagpipes). Indeed, it begins with the tune that Eugene played on the deck of the ship, the traditional Irish tune Erin’s Lament.
Daly has a rich tone but appears to play, at least in this opening track, with straight tone. Nonetheless, he bends the notes in appropriate Irish fashion and gives the music great feeling. I was also very impressed by Paul Turner’s pianism. Perhaps because of the sad nature of the event being commemorated here, I also found his performance of the Eccles sonata (also played with ahistoric straight tone) somewhat sad in demeanor, but his mastery of his instrument is never in question. Daly can surely make his instrument “sing,” and that in itself is a miracle. He never gets bogged down in the “heavy” bass sound one hears from so many other performers on this instrument.
By contrast, the Dragonetti duo for bass and cello is very lovely music, played with tenderness and feeling. John Kinsella’s musical tribute to the Titanic disaster, 15th April 1912, is by contrast a remarkable and fascinating piece of music, even taken on its own merits apart from the emotional connotation. But then, I’ve long admired some of Kinsella’s work in other settings, so this wasn’t that great of a surprise to me. Kinsella’s pacing and shaping of the music, quite apart from the technical demands he makes on the instrument, keep one riveted while listening, and Daly plays it with tremendous feeling as well as a superb technique. This is clearly one of the great highlights of this album!
Daly’s performance of Schubert’s “Arpeggione” Sonata is, I feel, successful more for the amount of feeling that he puts into the music than for the transcription. He does an excellent job of trying to lighten his instrument’s tone, but the lower pitch tends to make the music a bit heavier than I liked. In addition, I felt that, perhaps, his desire to project lightness created a less dynamic reading of the score. Nonetheless, it is an interesting performance, and Turner’s piano accompaniment goes a long way towards lightening the mood. I also noted that Daly played with a light vibrato in the second movement, which helped immensely.
Taken as a whole, this is a fascinating disc, well worth hearing for Daly’s outstanding lyricism and command of his instrument.