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Album Review: Skyline Firedance
David Lanz
Cover image of the album Skyline Firedance by David Lanz
Skyline Firedance
David Lanz
1990 / Narada
Disc 1 (Orchestral Works) 45 minutes
Disc 2 (Solo Piano) 40’11”
Review by Kathy Parsons
Skyline Firedance is my favorite David Lanz album ever, and I have ‘em all! It’s very hard to believe that this double album was released twenty years ago - long before I thought to write reviews - because I remember listening to it in my car and being absolutely blown away. I had seen Lanz in concert at least once before this album was released and loved his live performance, but that and his previous albums did not prepare me for this one. There is still very tangible excitement in the music that is downright contagious. When the sheet music book was available at Lanz’s next concert, I bought two copies and stayed up most of the night playing the music. I shared the second book with my most advanced student, who wanted a copy, so I probably bought five and started teaching this music to my advancing students. The excitement I felt (and still feel) with this music started to electrify my students and they in turn blossomed because the music is easier to play than it sounds - especially the faster songs. I have copies that are held together with tape because they were so heavily used, and I wish I had a dollar for every copy I sold to students. Anyway, I digress, but that should give you an idea of why I love this music so much. One thing that still surprises me about the recording is that I actually prefer the orchestrated disc to the solo piano one. That’s probably because I play all of the music from the solo version and the orchestrated one gives the pieces a little different dimension. Almost all of the songs are now Lanz classics - “Vesusius,” “Dark Horse,” his gorgeous arrangement of “Nights In White Satin,” “Dancing On the (Berlin) Wall,” etc. I do remember feeling stunned to hear someone at one of Lanz’s concerts saying that she liked his quiet, meditative music better, so if you are looking for meditation music or music to go to sleep with, this is probably not the best choice, but to hear David Lanz on “fire” and having fun with upbeat, exhilarating music, check this one out!
April 11, 2010
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