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October 23, 1968 - Image 2

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The Michigan Daily, 1968-10-23

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Page Two

WerinPSrinv nrtnhPr ) T gFR

THE MIC HI AN DAILY

THE MiCHIGAN DAILY

yr C-.' '..j 7eU~ , V'..De..I'.'LI

i

records

Angel's Victoria and Victoria's Spanish songs

By R. A. PERRY
The Angels love Victoria de Los Angeles, for whenever the
Spanish soprano decides to bequeath us another of her progra-
matically interesting and vocally sumptuous recitals, the producers
at Angel records box the presentation in the most luxurious man-
Der.
With her new "Songs of Andalusia" (SFSL-36468), comes a
thick booklet notable not only for its tipped-in color plates but also
for its full historical and musical annotations by Jose Lamana.
Senor Lamana is Director of the Ars Musicae, a group of Spanish
musicians who accompany Miss de Los Angeles on original Ren-
aissance instruments such as rottas, rebecs, krummhorns, sackbuts,
sordunes, and finger cymbals. They provide a sympathetic and
aurally fascinating backdrop to the soprano's renditions of songs
that stem from the Moorish, Sephardic, and Christian inhabitation
of Spain during.-the 13th to 18th centuries.
In the Sephardic songs, one is hard pressed to discover qual-
ities separate from the Moorish songs which follow, and' indeed
the Hispanic Jews thoroughly adapted Moorish and Spanish forms
and flavor; Jewish musicians (those irrepressible artists) were of-
ten found playing in Christian churches until decrees forbade it.
Sephardic communities in Aragon and Castile had forgotten He-
b1"ew and read their holy books in Spanish. Their songs are espec-
ially fascinating for this melange of influences.
Whimsical "villancicos" (carols) and somewhat graver "ro-
mances" stem from anonymous popular poems of chivalry and were
codified in a Palace Song-book in the late fifteenth century. In
the sixteenth century, the vihuelo de mano - a cross between lute
and viol - was especially popular and writers for the instrument
transcribed polyphonic works of their time for the voice and vi-
huela accompaniment. Miss de Los Angeles and the Ars Musicae
have indeed performed a boon to the music lover by giving voice
to- these long silent manuscripts.
It has been written that Victoria de Los Angeles's voice no
longer commands the perfect pitch and beauty it once had; on the
evidence of this recital of Andalusian songs, I can only say that if
deterioration has begun,- it is not apparent here. Her voice may not
be as free as before; that is, it may require more conscious control,
but this great soprano still can float long lyric lines and shade
phrases- with the most subtle artistry. Her upper registers remain
pure as well.

Angel has scored a record triumph on all counts except one,
and that debit involves the engineering of sound. The microphone
is far too close to the singer, and whenever she reaches even a
mezzo-forte, the sound distorts, not greatly, but enough to make
one wince. The quality of sound, unusual for Angel, really should be
considered before purchasing this treasure of Spanish songs.
From across the world comes another premiere recording: the
Violin Concerto No. 2 of Dmitri Shostakovitch. Shostakovitch had
run afoul of Russia's artistic censors many times, and in this pres-
ent work, written in 1967, he seems to have tried to offend no one.
I have listened to the work six times since receiving the disc and
still can not decide whether the concerto is beautiful or boring.
Not much happens in the piece. Against a somner orchestral
curtain of sound (shorn of all winds except ]French horns) the vio-
lin moves quietly, like a leaf on a still pond, for two, movements. In
the first movement the violin part consists of shorter motifs, and
the singing quality of the instrument only truly arrives in the noc-
turnal second movement. In the rondo of the third movement some
action and synamic variation are heard, but such efforts are mini-
Mal. Each movement contains a cadenza, that of the third move-
ment being the most developed but still, to my ears, of meager mu-
sical content or even virtuosic interest.t
David Oistrakh certainly elicits every shade of feeling to be
found in the violin part, but variation in color is quite slight. This
is a, work that undoubtedly does not reveal its complete bounty im-
mediately, but just how rich its bounty is only time will tell. A fair
performance of the composer's Sixth Symphony completes the
record and the Melodiya/Angel sound is excellent.,(SR-40064)
* * *
Organ fanciers will be pleased to note that a new recording of
Widor's Organ Symphony No. 5 has arisen to replace the aging
Westminster disc. This is the mad, rambling, romatic, infuriating,
boring, beautiful, inspired, and silly piece that includes that famous
Toccata wedding recessional (Lynda Bird used it, no less) and tech-
nical hurdle for aspiring organists.
Richard Ellsasser plays the gargantuan organ at the Hammond
Museum in Gloucester, Mass., an instrument so big (10,000 pipes!)
that certain registers sound miles off; this does lend itself to mar-
velously exciting swell effects. Ellsasser tackles the Toccata slower

SGC threatens sit-in over
Newell incorporation delay.
(Continued from Page ' poiration proposal is different from
the wrong papers." the vice presi- the one the Regents considered in
dent said. April,
Mrs. Newell had requested more,. M-s. Newell doesn't understand
information on the incorporation anything about our incorporation
proposal when she refused to re- proposal," Koeneke charged. "s
lease the SGC appropriation, vice president for student affairs
Council members said they gave she has neglected her duty to keep
her a brief explaining incorpora- informed on this matter."
tion at a meeting last Friday.-_
The controversy began last week '
when Mrs. Newell blocked Coun- Elections topic
cil's appropriation to form SGC to c
Inc. Formation of the corporation
is a key step in Council plans for of ADAfa le it n n a
financial flexibility and financial ''A J G ~ t
independence from University con- (Continued from Page 1)
"Mrs. Newell is making a gross ation, Dr. Edward Pierce, a form-
mistake," said SGC president er co-chairman of the local Citi-
Michael Koeneke after yesterday's zens for McCarthy group, sug-
meeting. "The administration has gested liberals vote for neither of
neve usd ths m tho to eto our th°' three presidential candidates.
never used this method to veto our"I'm going to stick a McCarthy
programs. She's violating this good sticker on my ballot," Pierce said.
faith agreement." "The national Democratic p a r t y
Under a Regental bylaw, the stinks," he added.
vice president for student affair Pierce denounced the Vietnam
may veto SGC legislation.r-keesw- war and American foreign policy
ever, SGC "broke ties" with the in general. "We act arrogantly. We
Office of Student Affairs in 1968 have got to stop. The war, must
and has since then refused to end."
recognized this veto power. "I am disillusioned with Amer-
In discussions on incorporation ica," Pierce added.
Mrs. Newell has constanttly re- He compared support for Hum-
ferred to the adverse reaction the phrey in 1968 to the liberal back-
Regents had to SGC's proposal last ing President Johnson received
April. in 1964. "If we in this room had
However, SGC Executive vice refused to go along with that then
president Robert Neff said yes- maybe we wouldn't be in this war
terday' that the current incor- four, years later," Pierce reasoned.

From the enclosed booklet
than does Biggs on his French organ music record (Biggs is, to use
an apt phrase, out of sight) and he is less accurate in his timing,
but in general he presents an excellent performance of this musical
curio. It is all captured in full, bass-rich sound by the Nonesuch
engineers (H-71210) and presented at a bargain price.

V

Arlo is good, Arlo is bad, Arlo is confusing

M

By LITTLE SHERRI FUNN
Motorsickle Expert r
Arlo Guthrie is worth getting
mad at.
He's just released his second
album, Arlo (RS 6299), and it's
at once more disappointing. than
Alice's Restaurant, more mad-
dening than Alice's- Restaurant
and better than Alice's Restau-
rant.
But before we get to that,
let's back up a minute.
I ,imagine that I would like
very much for Arlo Guthrie to
move in next door to me. He's a
gentle, almost sweet kind of,
guy if you have ever met him,
and I'm sure he'd have some-
thing funny to say to me as we
went down to our respective

mailboxes in the morning.
He'd be witty, occasionally
subtle, and once in a great
while a genius of a neighbor,
which incidentially is also the
story of his album.
Alice's Restaurant w a s n't
much of an album. The Cosby-
esque title song involves the kind
of comedy that is quite boring
after two listenings. I suppose
that a fanatic Arlo fan could
argue that Guthrie's essential
honesty and gentleness are never
boring and I can see that point,
but "Alice's Restaurant's Mas-
sacre" is just too damn long and
thin to waste time on after you
know enough to recite at par-
ties.
The rest of his initial album
was taken up with infinitely.
mediocre songs. The two possible
exceptions were "Chilling of the
Evening," which featured Arlo's
best use of sidemen on an album
characterized by lousy use of
sidemen, and "The Motorcycle
Song." The latter was a plea-
sant ditty along the melodic
lines of "Massacre," but backed
up and ruined by the most ob-
noxious electric guitar ever rec-
orded.
As a whole then, Alice's
Restaurant definitely showed us
that the young fellow had talent,
that he was capable of an oc-
casional worthwhile song, and
that he had a good voice, maybe
even a great voice.
But what it also showed us
is that Arlo was not ready to
make an album. He has not
grown mature enough artistical-
ly to realize when to stop ar-
ranging or when not to thrust
his -own material.
But I decided to give his sec-
ond album a real chance because
I detected in Arlo, both live and
on record, a valid talent, a ta-
lent that we should reckon with.

And that's why Arlo is such
a disappointment. I have ap-
parently expected too much from
him.
This latest album is certainly
superior to his first in all ways,
but that doesn't seem to mean
very much. Gone is the silly kid
with the napkin, and here is the
reflective young man squashing
a cop for peace, tninking about
what it all means, and asking
for "the strength to go on."
"The Motorcycle Song" that
was mentioned earlier was sal-
vaged from the , first album,
added to a monologue of "Mas-
sacre" nature, and used to kick
off the second.
It is a nice song to sing to
yourself while you walk -down
the street, but as in "Massacre"
that's about it (what makes it
anything' at all is "I don't
want to die"). Again, the for-
mat is pleasant, but still a little
too thin to sustain a long last-
ing humorous effect.
Guthrie includes another talk-
song-ditty at the close of the
albumy called "The Pause of Mr.
Clause" which he has used in

ayor John Lindsay
and
;ressman Mary Esch'
LK ABOUT THE ISSUES

and FBI a little tiresome, it too
can be amusing.
The rest of the album is Arlo
Guthrie singing, and that's
what he should stick to because
he can be brilliant.
He makes ° a strong case for
his singing of-other people's ma-
terial, something he does far too
infrequently, with his rendition
of Ernest Tubb's "Try Me One
More Time," which is fantastic
and the only non-original tune
on the record. He captures a
great deal of Tubb's country fla-_
vor on the song, with a back-up
piano that is delightfully pure
Nashville.
(Also, if you can, dig up Tubb's
original "Walkin' the Floor Over
You" which is on some obscure
country collection and check out
how much Arlo sounds like the
young Tubb.)
It seems that if Guthrie would
choose his album material more
carefully, leave out some of his
own stuff aritd do other people's,
he could put out a great
album. That's part of the reason
why he is so maddening. We get
the ssnse that he could do so

worthy of note are "Wouldn't
You Believe it" and "Medita-
tion (Wave upon Wave)." The
former is a tight, well-conceiv-
ed song which, to an extent,
shows that Arlo can indeed
write in a mature fashion.
"Meditation" may not stand
up over a long period of time,
but the memory I have of him
weaving this song at Newport
last summer is too strong, and
I have to say I love it. It should"
be listened to when you feel in-
nocent.,
And, unfortunately, that's
about it. The rest of the songs
are in the Restaurant bag and
forgettable.
So Arlo's come farther down
the road. He's learned not to
overuse his sidemen, live, 'any-
way, and he's learning more
and more about subtlety. He

has yet, however, to discover the
material that he is at home with CO
and that is a tragedy.
As I said before, he-has been
recorded too early in his career.
He should have had more time TAI
to kick around as an unknown,
sorting out what' was his and
what wasn't, and learning a lit-
tle more about the kind of slobs
who really are policemen and
FBI creeps. Maybe then he could
have developed a little more
depth. FRIDA
But he is progressing and
that's valuable. And he's worth
getting mad at because he is
not going fast enough and when
he does he will be brilliant.}
Now all we can do is wait for
his third album and hope it is
what we know he can do. Be-
cause when he gets it -all to-
gether, we're going to need him.

hor
4

*

kY, OCT. 25 ,

2:30 P.M.

Arborland Parking

Lot

FREE BUSES FROM THE UNION
AND MOSHER-2:15 P.M.

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his club act for quite some time much better if he would only use
and, although I sometimes find his head.
his overkill regarding the cops Two other cuts on the album
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Diag TODAY"E
HOMECOMING 1968 SCHEDULE.

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Arlo

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HELD
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Shows at
1-3-5-7-9 P.M.

vq

CINEMA I1
Cincinnati Kid
STEVE McQUEEN
Dir. Norman Jewison
("IN THE HEAT
OF THE NIGHT")
Fri.-Sat.-Oct. 25-26

Program information - 5-6290
HIGHEST RATING!
{AN ARTISTIC ACHIEVEMENT!" - N.Y. Daily News

0 the PAUL NEWMAN pr o fic
rachel.
__ che
,W L6*~ u 'I~ M FOR~
Nu1coLorOREINs.sEVI WSIW

Thursday, October 24
12:00-5:00 P.M.-ALUMNI REGISTRATION
Alumni Association Office,
Michigan Union
8:30 P.M.-DIONNE WARWICK WITH
SCOOPEY MITCHELL in concert
University Events Building
Crowning 'of Homecoming Queen
Friday, October 25
12:00-5:00 P.M.-ALUMNI REGISTRATION
Alumni Association Office,
Michigan Union
3:20 P.M.-PARADE
7:15 P.M.-PEP RALLY PROCESSION
South University at Walnut to
Baseball Field
7:45 P.M.-PEP RALLY at Baseball Field
9:00 P.M.-;DANCE featuring The Byzantine
'Empire and The Fox
IM Building

Saturday, October 26
8:00 A.M.-JUDGING OF HOMECOMING
DISPLAYS
9:00-12:00 A.M.-ALUMNI REGISTRATION
Alumni Association Office,
Michigan Urion
9:15 A.M.-TUGE-OF-WAR
Island Park
9:30 A.M.-LACROSSE with Notre Dame
at Ferry Field
10:00 A.M.-MUD BOWL
Sigma Alpha Epsilon House
11:00 A.M.-CHARIOT RACE
Diag
1:30 P.M.-HOMECOMING FOOTBALL
GAME
Michigan vs. Minnesota
4:00-6:30 P.M.-ALUMNI RECEPTION
Honoring Dr. Hazel Losh
Alumni Assembly Hall,
Michigan Union
After the Game-RUGBY-Notre Dame -
4:30 P.M.-LITTLE LeMANS
Phi Kappa Psi House
Extraordinaireoci
8:30 P.M.-BILL COSBY WITH THE PAIR
ETRAORDINAIRE in concert
University Events Building

.1
AW]
't.

I

Next: "BARBARELLA"

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-Aud. A

id req

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NATIONAL GENERAL. CORPORATION
FOX EASTERN THEATRES 2
FH VILIBGE
375 No. MAPLE RD.-769-1300
HELD OVER
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MN LIUE Vii
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BELLE
JOUR
with
CATHERINE DENEUVE
* Thursday *
T RUMPHANT
All the detalsf1
were.. , iii

NO 2-6264

I

TICKETS FOR BOTH CONCERTS are still available
Busses will be provided from North Campus to
the University Events Building for both concerts

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