Krzysztof Penderecki rehearsing at the Konzerthaus Berlin, Berlin, Germany, Nov. 23, 1997.
(Archie Kent/ullstein bild/Getty Images)
Krzysztof Penderecki rehearsing at the Konzerthaus Berlin, Berlin, Germany, Nov. 23, 1997.
(Archie Kent/ullstein bild/Getty Images)
Remembering Krzysztof Penderecki and Joe Diffie, Ghost of SXSW, Struggling Record Stores, Thundercat...
Matty Karas (@troubledoll), curator March 30, 2020
quote of the day
An artist should not go one way only. It's like in a maze, a labyrinth—you can't move in a straight line. You have to go left, right, maybe two steps back, then search forward. That's what it's like in the life of the artist.
Krzysztof Penderecki, 1933 – 2020
rant n' rave

Stay. The. F***. At. Home. In the past 36 hours, Covid-19 has taken the lives of JOE DIFFIE, the beloved honky-tonk throwback who was a staple of '90s country radio, and ALAN MERRILL, a journeyman rocker and songwriter whose name you may not know but whose work you certainly do. JOHN PRINE has been hospitalized since Thursday and "his situation is critical," his family says. TOM RUSH announced Sunday he has tested positive. Make them angels from Montgomery and stay the f*** at home if you have even the slightest choice... KRZYSZTOF PENDERECKI, as it happens, got a negative test result for the virus shortly before he died Sunday after a long illness. Penderecki was one of the 20th century's great composers, a musical visionary and a bridger of worlds. A certain type of rock and electronic musician has always been drawn to his work, as has a certain type of filmmaker, usually for the avant-garde—and deeply emotional—compositions from early in his career in which, under the influence of early electronic music, he manipulated strings almost beyond recognition. The effect could be haunting; WILLIAM FRIEDKIN made good use of his music in THE EXORCIST, as did STANLEY KUBRICK in THE SHINING. But Penderecki eventually turned his back on his early work in favor of a Romantic style. "How long can you do it?" he once said of his titanic and groundbreaking "THRENODY FOR THE VICTIMS OF HIROSHIMA." "If you go one step farther, you will destroy the instrument. I almost did." He never quite got cozy with strings and other orchestral instruments in more traditional settings, though; he invented at least one new instrument, the tubaphone, and wished that engineers would come up with others. It was long past time, he thought, for new tools. He was acclaimed in later years for his compositions for the human voice, which he called "the most beautiful instrument ever created," while actively reaching out to humans both inside and outside the classical academy. "Listening to classical music is like reading philosophy books; not everybody has to do it," he told a Polish interviewer. "Music is not for everybody." And yet he went out of his way, repeatedly, to bring it to more people than many of his peers. RIP... Good citizens: RIHANNA (let's up that to *great* citizen) has donated $5 million to coronavirus relief efforts through her CLARA LIONEL FOUNDATION, as well as donating badly needed personal protective equipment to New York State... JAMES TAYLOR and his wife, KIM, gave $1 million to MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL HOSPITAL... MARIAH CAREY, BILLIE EILISH, the BACKSTREET BOYS and DEMI LOVATO were among the performers in IHEARTRADIO's "LIVING ROOM CONCERT FOR AMERICA" fundraiser Sunday night on FOX, which was formatted as a series of INSTAGRAMISH home performances, complete with guest appearances by TIM MCGRAW's and BILLIE JOE ARMSTRONG's dogs, and which was adorable... Elsewhere in isolation, TIERRA WHACK collaborates with ALANIS MORISSETTE via sample, and MICHAEL STIPE collaborates with the NATIONAL's AARON DESSNER via laptop... RIP also RAY MANTILLA, JAN HOWARD, BOB ANDY, GERARD SCHURMANN and CY TUCKER.

Matty Karas (@troubledoll), curator

March 30, 2020