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Rec. Quartet: ||Consort With a Swing (Red Rose Rag, Fig Leaf Rag Etc.)|
|Publisher:||EMI Music Publishing Ltd||Publication:||ISBN 086175 100 0|
Red Rose Rag, composed by Percy Wenrich (1880-1952), arranged by Hugh Blake
I first heard "Red Rose Rag" being played by The Christopher Whitehead Girl's School Worcester Recorder Ensemble, directed by Glenis Cole at the Waldschule, Schwanewede in April 1982. This inspired us in The Schwanewede Recorder Consort to also take it into our repertoire in due course.
Of all the rags listed in these pages, "Red Rose Rag" is probably the easiest and is well-suited to beginners. A common fault is to play it too fast, youthful enthusiasm is sometimes hard restrain - or they just want to finish it quickly! The performance notes stress that it should be played airily, not too legato with the syncopated notes lightly stressed.
Fig Leaf Rag, composed by Scott Joplin (1868-1917), arranged by Hugh Blake
This version of "Fig Leaf Rag" is much easier than that of Christa Sokoll's no doubt being at players of intermediate proficiencies or beginners. Along with Red Rose Rag it was very much played by The Schwanewede Recorder Consort, Blue Monday and Blue Tuesday as ideal introductions into Scott Joplin's world. The performance notes stress that it should be played airily, not too legato with the syncopated notes lightly stressed.
It was also played reluctantly by Quartettino who in the main, considered in to be somewhat infra dig and should not be taken seriously.
"Fig Leaf Rag" has been recorded by:
Quartettino on "Recorder Memories: Quartettino"
The Yale Blues, composed by Collie Knox and Vivian Ellis , arranged by Philip Evry
"The Yale Blues" is a very happy piece of medium difficulty which was regularly played by the Blue Monday and Blue Tuesday consorts. The tenor and bass have a pretty quiet time of while the descant and two trebles (playing mostly thirds) battle it out at the top.. It has lovely long passages where you can really swing.
Bach Goes to Town, composed by Alec Templeton (1909-1963), arranged by Brian Davey
This trio "Bach goes to town" (Prelude and Fugue) is probably the most difficult of the four works in "Consort With A swing" with its many grace notes as well as the top Fs and Bbs required of the treble. The bass part is a lot of fun however. I very much like the contrast between the somewhat sombre Prelude and the gay Fugue. Brian Davey has arranged this work such that the bass part can be played by either tenor recorder which makes for close harmonic texture or the bass recorder which gives a greater sonority.
Experiments by myself with Blue Monday in the use of both bass and tenor for the bass part were a failure. Instruments playing in unison an octave apart may sound good with an Ulster Flute band but sound a little odd when done with recorders!