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From : “The Simple Tribute CD 2009” | CD Universe | CD Baby | | Lofish Productions Inc. – 6 West 28th street, New York, NY 10010


Press Release


Press Release "Simple Tribute CD - Iman Prabowo | Lofish Productions Inc. New York 2009

"... I’ve been asked to write the liner notes for his first CD by Iman Prabowo, a remarkable young guitarist from Indonesia. Which brings me to one of Greenberg’s Laws, a simple axiom the truth of which will immediately become apparent to the listener: ‘With enough talent, you can do anything!’

Proof of this may be seen in the opening track. Claire was one of those top ten hits, for Gilbert O’Sullivan in the’70s. Iman’s joyously buoyant interpretation of the music, as brilliantly arranged for classical guitar, is by David Qualey, about whom much more will be said later.

Close to You is, of course, again a 1970’s song—as popularized by the Carpenters—that has become staple at weddings ever since. The arrangement is again by Qualey.

Santa Cruz and Opus 22 are original compositions by David Qualey, a wonderful guitarist, arranger and composer who came of age during the Golden Era of the classical guitar (c. 1965-1975) and was unsatisfied with the standard classical guitar canon of the time. He supplemented his repertory with innovative stride bass settings of pop hits such as Claire and Close to You, as we have seen.

Qualey was decades ahead of his time in such arrangements; unable to reach a wide enough audience in the U.S., he moved to Germany around the time Claire and Close to You were top ten tunes, and he resides in Germany to this day.

Santa Cruz is a rich and lovely tribute to the town, written in 1971. His Opus 22, on the other hand, is a much more recent and ravishingly beautiful composition, mainly in the form of a tremolo study. From its opening statement of the haunting theme, to the closing harmonics that embellish the piece with exquisite taste and skill, Opus 22 is an unforgettable musical experience.

Frederic Hand, another brilliant guitarist/composer of Qualey’s generation, likewise felt constrained by the traditional vocabulary of the Spanish guitar but expanded it by combining his rich knowledge of Elizabethan music (studied with Julian Bream on Fullbright Scholarship), as well as American jazz. The result of this has been a remarkable series of masterpieces written over the last four decades that immensely enrich classical guitar literature. Perhaps the first of these was Elegy for a King. Written in the wake of the traumatic events of 1968, while Fred was still a student at Mannes College, Elegy is a tribute to Martin Luther King in a style that can be described as Dowland meets Maurice Ravel’s Pavane pour Une Infante Defunte.

Sabda Alam, is a song written by Chrisye, one of highly respected Indonesian musicians. The song was a one of the greatest hits in Iman’s homeland back in the late 1970s. The transcription for guitar is by Michael Gan.

The Prelude, Fugue and Allegro, BWV 998, represent not only the keystone of J.S. Bach repertory transcribed for classical guitar, but are also among its most beautiful and demanding works, especially the fugue. Note particularly the lovely subject that rises to the surface of the fugue again and again like a bubble of happiness. The allegro, on the other hand, is a roller coaster of a ride requiring terrific technique. Generally transcribed one halt-step lower to dropped D tuning for classical guitar, Iman has restored the piece to its original E flat by means of a capo on the first fret.

The program ends with Indonesia Pusaka by Ismail Marzuki, a composer when Indonesia was still colonized by the Dutch and sung almost as an anthem by Indonesian schoolchildren. The piece serves, then, as a closing tribute-- this time to his homeland... "

by Mark Greenberg from The New York City Classical Guitar Society (NYCCGS) August 2009

*From : “The Simple Tribute CD 2009” | CD Universe | CD Baby | | Lofish Productions Inc. – 6 West 28th street, New York, NY 10010


The Simple Tribute CD 2009
Lofish Productions Inc. New York 2009

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The Simple Tribute CD 2009
Lofish Productions Inc. New York 2009