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John Williams interview on Steinway & Sons website


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3 hours ago, Muad'Dib said:

 

Come on! This is TOTALLY an action cue:

 

 

Some of his concert works are more accesible than others, I personally like a lot of them in their different terms. Like I *love* the Scherzo for Piano which a lot of people here find quite "noisy", but I also love Highwood’s Ghost, which I find quite accesible and very evocative. 

 

I also adore Rounds, which explores the Guitar in a such a fantastic fashion, Soundings which has a bit of everything in terms of how accesible it is (it starts very experimental and it ends jery jubilee-like, in what we associate more typically with Williams' music), the Viola Concerto with that lovely duel between the Timpani and  the Viola; and lastly the Essay for Strings comes to mind, which is very film-music-y to my ears, particularly in its second half.

 

That's what I like about his concert works, you got a bit of everything!

 

Tortan definitely jumps out to me as one of his most accessible pieces in his concert ouevre. That thing is fun.

 

The final movement of the Horn Concerto is also refreshing in terms of featuring an original, tonal, long-lined melody outside of his film work. I was kinda gobsmacked when I heard it, totally deserves an audition into any self-respecting JWFan's memory bank.

 

 

I agree with Nick that the distinction Williams is making between his "commercial" work isn't snobbery but just a matter of expectation. I don't think we have to fear that John Williams isn't authentically a crowdpleaser at heart. He would not be planning to do another Indiana Jones movie at 90 if he wasn't. You can see it in his face when he conducts Jurassic Park or the Imperial March. He finds this stuff delicious, probably more than a lot of composers.

 

But sometimes if you're a foodie you get sick of ice cream, even from Rome's finest gelaterias. Sometimes even the absolute greatest handmade slice of New York pizza from Brooklyn's legendary Dom DeMarco isn't what you're looking for. And you just want to indulge in some delicacy you've never tried, even if the rest of the world rolls their eyes and spits it out. Even if you do too!

 

But never forget Anthony Bourdain's review of Waffle House, the routinely mocked American restaurant chain beloved by southern rednecks:

 

Quote

It is indeed marvelous. An irony-free zone where everything is beautiful and nothing hurts. Where everybody, regardless of race, creed, color, or degree of inebriation is welcomed. Its warm yellow glow, a beacon of hope and salvation, inviting the hungry, the lost, the seriously hammered, all across the south, to come inside. A place of safety and nourishment. It never closes, it is always, always faithful, always there for you.

 

I love to think John Williams dearly hopes these words could also apply to his Star Wars main title, right down to that warm yellow glow.

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Looks like this is fairly recent:   https://www.steinway.com/news/features/owners/john-williams   Short, but lovely!

Wow, I found the ad I was thinking about by googling. As it turns out, it wasn't about Steinways or pianos at all, but rather about JVC stereo systems! But the faint memory of Williams sitting behind

Like Williams said in the interview, his concert works and film works form a symbiotic circle, what happens to one of them will affect the other. You must understand this.

13 hours ago, Thor said:

 

Alas, no. My dad recently threw away all his National Geographics, as my parents are moving to a smaller place, so can't really check. It was one of my earliest introductions to his appearance too -- or at least right around the time I saw his face on the internet for the first time. The magazine issue itself, however, was from the 70s or 80s.

Yes it was definitely 70s. Oh well, I I'll try to figure it out myself. Thanks. 

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On 5/6/2021 at 10:50 PM, Fabulin said:

It sure can be a hard pill to swallow for sure that Williams doesn't really want to compose music like his "commercial" works.

 

In light of the conversation that went before i'd rather say the whole idea reeks of musical illiteracy. To expect a composer to provide you the kind of clap-along release in an evolving concert piece like when Indiana Jones is saved by british riflemen at the end of Temple of Doom, it's insulting. Leave that to Fourth of July celebrations with the US Army marching band with fireworks and stuff. 

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On 5/7/2021 at 9:49 AM, Muad'Dib said:

 

Come on! This is TOTALLY an action cue:

 

 

 

Which is another piece that was inspired by William Walton...
 

 

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