Conlon Nancarrow (above) died on August 10 1997. György Ligeti rated him as the most important composer of the second half of the twentieth century, saying: "For me it's the best music of any living composer today".
Personally I have found the new MDG Scene releases of Nancarrow's Player Piano Studies recorded on a Bösendorfer Grand with a 1927 Ampico Player Piano Mechanism very rewarding, and my header photo from 1950 is taken from volume 1 of that excellent series. There is an fine biography of Nancarrow by Jürgen Hocker, but it is, alas, only available in German. The extraordinary jazz-like music of Conlon Nancarrow will be familiar to many of my readers. But if you don't know it there is a real discovery awaiting. Follow these two paths to Kyle Gann's Nancarrow web resources and book, and then watch a video by Tal Rosner. This uses Nancarrow's music arranged for two pianos by Thomas Adès, who is video artist Tal Rosner's partner .
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