Frederick Jacobi: Chamber Works
Liner Notes   Cat. No. NWCRL146     Release Date: 2010-05-01

Lyric Art Quartet: Fredell Lack, violin; George Bennett, violin; Wayne Crouse, viola; Marion Davies, cello;
Irene Jacobi, piano; Louise Rood, viola

"My conscious aim," Frederick Jacobi once said, "has been to write music which is clear, definite and concise: I am an anti-obscurantist. I am a great believer in melody; a believer, too, that music should give pleasure and not try to solve philosophical problems. I believe that art and craft have much in common and that art, to be valid, must be more than the manifestation of a passing mode: in short, that there are some eternal values which transcend period and tune."

More informally, he admonished a colleague: "Don't think that everything which sounds complicated is necessarily profound, nor that everything which sounds pleasant is necessarily superficial."

Jacobi's String Quartet No. 3, composed in 1945, and given its first performance that same year in San Francisco, by the Budapest String Quartet, is a shining example of the emergence of the composer's aims. The Quartet, a combination of the formal and the rhapsodic, is a reflection of Jacobi's own personality. He was never confined to a stylistic strait jacket; he followed no particular school, but was an eclectic in the most positive sense of the word. Always aware of the most recent musical developments, he used only that which seemed the best and most expressive.

The Ballade was written for violinist Eudice Shapiro and the composer's wife, Irene Jacobi in 1942. It has been described by the Musical Leader as "a work of unusual beauty and color, somewhat impressionistic in treatment . . . written expertly for both violin and piano . . . (it) should be received with gratitude by the many violinists looking for new, well-written violinistic and effective music." It encompasses a broad sweep, a large range of lyricism—both ardent and tender, yet virtuosic.

A year before writing the Ballade, Jacobi completed another solo work, the Fantasy, for viola and piano. Also a virtuoso piece, in one movement, it was written for violist Louise Rood and Mrs. Jacobi. The Fantasy is an introspective work, darker than the Ballade. There is power and turbulence here, resolving into the composer's inevitable mood of romance and lyricism. A highly compelling and engrossing work, it builds inexorably to a rich and powerful climax. Both compositions are rhapsodic but tightly unified. In each case the composer successfully reveals the qualities of each instrument.



This title from the CRI LP back catalog has been carefully transferred from the original master tape, and is now available from New World Records as an on-demand CD (CD-R). It can also be downloaded in MP3/320, FLAC and/or WAV format(s).

We have preserved the original CRI LP catalog number for this title, preceded by the prefix NWCRL, to distinguish previously unavailable back catalog titles from those later reissued by CRI on compact disc.

***Please note that the newly-digitized CRI LP titles are priced at $12.99 (multiples excepted) and are not included in any of the special offers.***

Lyric Art Quartet

Frederick Jacobi: Chamber Works

MP3/320 $9.99
FLAC $9.99
WAV $9.99
CD $12.99

Track Listing

String Quartet No. 3: I. Allegro ma non troppo
Frederick Jacobi
Buy
String Quartet No. 3: II. Andante espressivo
Frederick Jacobi
Buy
String Quartet No. 3: III. Scherzo: Presto
Frederick Jacobi
Buy
String Quartet No. 3: IV. Allegro ma non troppo
Frederick Jacobi
Buy
Ballade for Violin and Piano
Frederick Jacobi
Buy
Fantasy for Viola and Piano
Frederick Jacobi
Buy