Sunday, September 30, 2007

This week's column:
Setzer's in a classical by himself

Sometimes I find myself wondering, what is it about me that I can’t truly appreciate classical music? Is it a gene thing? Did Mozart make a rude gesture at me during a past life? As a small child, was I frightened by an oboe? It’s a mystery.

Regardless, I can’t seem to listen to it for more than a few minutes at a time without my mind wandering and my vision starting to glaze over — sort of like when I try to listen to BBC Radio on NPR, which on more than one occasion has caused me to almost drive into a ditch. Not that I don’t think classical has its time and place, such as during that scene in “Die Hard” when they open the giant safe. I’m not a complete philistine.

So I admit my curiosity was piqued when I heard that the Brian Setzer Orchestra would be releasing an album made up entirely of big-band swing versions of famous classical compositions. I mean, just the concept alone raises a lot of questions, such as: If you listen to it closely enough, will you be able to hear Leonard Bernstein angrily smacking on the top of the coffin with his baton?

For the rest of this week's AT LARGE by Peter Chianca, click here.

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