Dvorak / Gruenberg / Pacifica Quartet - American Voices | RECORD STORE DAY
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The multiple Grammy Award-winning Pacifica Quartet continues it's highly acclaimed recording series that explores the sounds of America with an album comprising string quartets incorporating elements of American folk music and spirituals by Anton Dvorak, Florence Price, and Louis Gruenberg, plus a new work by James Lee III.Praised by The Telegraph as "nothing short of phenomenal," Pacifica is known for it's "remarkable expressive range and tonal beauty" (New York Times). With a career spanning nearly three decades, Pacifica has established itself as the embodiment of the senior American quartet sound.Dvorak's String Quartet in F Major, Op. 96, "American" draws influence from the colorful sonic world of his American experiences; from the American spiritual, indigenous folk songs, to sounds evocative of American songbirds and rhythms reminiscent of American trains.Florence Price was inspired by Dvorak's focus on American folk music in his "New World" Symphony, and while her String Quartet No. 1 in G Major does not explicitly reference specific folk influences, the origins for many of her original melodies and musical colors can be traced directly to the folk songs that she heard in her native Little Rock, Arkansas. Louis Gruenberg, influenced by his time as a student in New York City when Dvorak served as director of the National Conservatory, wrote Four Diversions for String Quartet, Op. 32 infusing the traditional string quartet with the quintessential sounds and style of Prohibition-era America.Praised by The Washington Post for his "bright, pure music," James Lee III's Pitch In for quartet and children's choir - receiving it's world premiere recording - features Chicago's Uniting Voices conducted by Josephine Lee. The work incorporates American folk motifs and pentatonic scales echoing the essence of American Spirituals and Dvorak's "American" Quartet; Pitch In is set to Sylvia Dianne Beverly's poem of the same title that addresses global poverty and food insecurity, urging listeners to act.In recognition of the subject of James Lee III's work, 25% of the revenue from the first year of Cedille's direct sales of CDs (i.e., through the Cedille Records website) of American Voices will be donated to the Greater Chicago Food Depository.