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A simple dance in 12/8 meter, this is a canon at the unison: the follower begins on the same note as the leader, one measure later. Bach: Goldberg Variations One ofthe most multi-facetted variation cycles in music history: a theme of unparalleled beauty, a simple bass line as thebasis for 30 variations full of richly melodic invention. When Bach wrote the variations, Johann Gottlieb Goldberg was 13 years of age. 3 for solo violin, in the A♭ major prelude from the first book of The Well-Tempered Clavier, and in the D minor prelude of the second book. She emphasizes the bass voice better, and the bass line after all is the basis of the variations. "[17] Other arrangements include:[18], "Bach: The Goldberg Variations" redirects here. Variatio 3. Bach's biographer Forkel explains the Quodlibet by invoking a custom observed at Bach family reunions (Bach's relatives were almost all musicians): As soon as they were assembled a chorale was first struck up. Do not listen for that exquisite tune in the variations, however. They sometimes just support the harmony, as in the beginning of the theme to the Goldberg Variations: Glenn Gould: Goldberg Variations [1981] With Score -- Aria - YouTube. He ignores Bach's repeat markings in the score, which shrinks the total time of the Goldbergs to less than 39 minutes, neatly fitting on two sides of an LP. ", This variation is a canon at the octave, in 98 time. Variatio 14. a 2 Clav. But the implications of this discovery for modern performance have turned out to be less clear than was at first assumed. Around 1741, ... the bass line of which fuels the 30 variations that follow. Contrasting it with Variation 15, Glenn Gould described this variation as "certainly one of the giddiest bits of neo-Scarlatti-ism imaginable. Underneath the rapid arabesques, this variation is basically a sarabande. It consists of a slow prelude with dotted rhythms with a following fugue-like contrapuntal section. However, from the first variation it becomes clear that melody is not the theme. Legend has it that Bach wrote the music to soothe the sleepless nights of one Count Kaiserling, who asked his private harpsichordist, Johann Gottlieb Goldberg, to perform the variations. 23rd at 12 noon, ET for a live online listening party. American Record Guide review of CD-77005 (PDF document) American Record Guide, Jan. 2010. 1 and 10. Glenn Gould states that variations 28 and 29 present the only case of "motivic collaboration or extension between successive variations. Both sections end with descending passages in thirty-second notes. The bass line is notated by Ralph Kirkpatrick in his performing edition as follows. Varatio 10. To demonstrate this, here are the first two bars of the first section: The second of the three minor key variations, variation 21 has a tone that is somber or even tragic, which contrasts starkly with variation 20. The Variations are named after Johann Gottlieb Goldberg, who may have been the first performer. Bach: Goldberg Variations BWV 988 Aapo Häkkinen (harpsichord) 27, there is a supporting bass line. al temp di Giga Varatio 8. a 1 Clav. Her late 19th-century harpsichord, Wolff says, was made with Steinway technology. But we have no specific record of any public performances of the work essentially until the late 19th and the 20th centuries.". A passepied (French court dance), this variation is in 3/8 time with some playful syncopation (off-beat rhythm). Problems listening to this file? One possible example is Handel ’s Chaconne in G major with 62 Variations (1733): its eight-bar bass-line is identical to the first eight bars of Bach’s ‘Aria’. There are many gaps in the story after Bach's death in 1750. INFED PRESCRIBING INFORMATION PDF . The section begins with the subject heard once again, in the soprano voice, accompanied by an active bass line, making the bass part the only exception since it doesn't pronounce the subject until bar 25. This kind of bass line would be suitable for a polka or any kind of traditional dance. What Would Bach Think Of Gould's recording? Notes to Kenneth Gilbert's recording of the variations. Pianist Angela Hewitt notes that there is "a wonderful effect at the very end [of this variation]: the hands move away from each other, with the right suspended in mid-air on an open fifth. This image is hereby released into the public domain by Opus33. Bach uses a loose inversion motif between the first half and the second half of this variation, "recycling" rhythmic and melodic material, passing material that was in the right hand to the left hand, and loosely (selectively) inverting it. Murray Perahia plays the Goldberg Variations of Johann Sebastian Bach, in a recording which has received much critical acclaim. Goldberg Variations by J.S. Variation 4. info)). This excerpt from the aria introduces the harmonic structure and bass line on which the variations are based. Variation 4. A rather grand variation, it adds an air of resolution after the lofty brilliance of the previous variation. Another lively two-part virtuosic variation for two manuals, in 34 time. This is a canon at the third, in 44 time. The French style of hand-crossing such as is found in the clavier works of Francois Couperin is employed, with both hands playing at the same part of the keyboard, one above the other. Canone alla Quarta in moto contrario Variatio 13. a 2 Clav. Bach-Gesellschaft AusgabeBand 3 Leipzig: Bass Line Goldberg Variations bass line. What are the Goldberg Variations? In the case of the earlier harpsichord work, however, the variations are written over a fixed bass line, while BWV 769 is based on a melody. Each section has an alternate ending to be played on the first and second repeat. Variation 10 is a four-voice fughetta, with a four-bar subject heavily decorated with ornaments and somewhat reminiscent of the opening aria's melody. The second section develops using the same thematic material with slight changes. Problems listening to this file? Trills are written out using thirty-second notes and are present in most of the bars. The music is constructed symmetrically, beginning with a beautifully tranquil and highly ornamented Aria, the bass line of which fuels the 30 variations that follow. This is relatively easy to perform on a two-manual harpsichord, but quite difficult to do on a piano. Goldbergs Transformed. Ouverture. This kind of bass line would work with just about any melody, which is why I call it "generic". Varatio 5. a 1 o vero 2 Clav. Variatio 15. Other Goldberg Week guests include pianist Jeremy Denk, whose thoughtful and offbeat sense of humor creeps into his essays, performances and videos; pianist Lara Downes, who looks forward from Bach through the lens of today's composers; Andreas Staier, who takes us on a tour of his high-performance harpsichord; and thoughts from pianist Leif Ove Andsnes. Bach at Home 2020 features French harpsichordist Pierre Hantaï’s performance of “Aria” as well as Variations 3, 5, 14, and 28. Rosalyn Turuck, another great Bach pioneer, recorded the Goldberg Variations many times over, on piano and Harpsichord, live and in the studio.She has her own group of admirers and giving her distinguished scholarly and pianistic career it’s viably justified. They’re named as such because a man named Johann Goldberg, a super skilled keyboardist, was likely the first one to perform it. The Goldberg Variations have gained monolithic prominence as the only work of Bachs oeuvre in this genre. [10] Two time signatures are used, 1816 for the incessant melody written in sixteenth notes and 34 for the accompaniment in quarter and eighth notes; during the last five bars, both hands play in 1816. And join us this Friday, Mar. Bach was asked to test-drive the latest technologies in keyboard manufacturing. a 1 Clav. This is a virtuosic two-part toccata in 1216 time. In the first section, the left hand accompanies with a bass line written out in repeated quarter notes, in bars 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, and 7. Goldbergs Transformed Goldberg Variations: No. Like the passepied, a Baroque dance movement, this variation is in 38 time with a preponderance of quaver rhythms. In making his 1981 re-recording of the Goldberg Variations, Glenn Gould considered playing this variation at a slower tempo, in keeping with the tempo of the preceding variation (Variation 16), but ultimately decided not to because "Variation 17 is one of those rather skittish, slightly empty-headed collections of scales and arpeggios which Bach indulged when he wasn't writing sober and proper things like fugues and canons, and it just seemed to me that there wasn't enough substance to it to warrant such a methodical, deliberate, Germanic tempo. In an interview with Gould, Tim Page described this variation as having an "extraordinary chromatic texture"; Gould agreed: "I don't think there's been a richer lode of enharmonic relationships any place between Gesualdo and Wagner."[6]. Gould would record the Goldbergs again in 1981 with a vastly different, less flashy approach. 3 (Canone all’Unisono) The third variation is the first of the nine canons that form the through-line for the Goldberg Variations. Join the conversation this week in the comments sections of our stories, also on Facebook and Twitter @ #NPRGoldberg. We then alternate between hands in short bursts written out in short note values until the last three bars of the first section. Variation 3. Here are bars 15 and 16, the ending of the first section (bar 24 exhibits a similar pattern): This is a rapid two-part hand-crossing toccata in 34 time, with many trills and other ornamentation. The rhythm in the right hand forces the emphasis on the second beat, giving rise to syncopation from bars 1 to 7. By the time Bach came around to writing his grandest of all sets on a bass-line that combines features of several of these older fixed forms, these kinds of bass-oriented variation sets had already become a kind of historical curiosity. The end of the first section features trills again, in both hands now and mirroring one another: The second section starts and closes with the contrary motion idea seen in bars 9–12. "I wouldn't want to argue about it," Wolff says. The fast tempos that the pianist generally favors pose no problems, and you have to respect the utter clarity and control of his fingerwork, as well as the playful ornaments and shifts and balances. The harpsichordist Ralph Kirkpatrick describes this piece as having "an almost nostalgic tenderness". harvtxt error: no target: CITEREFWilliams2001 (, For discussion see Williams (2001, 8), who notes that the. Jan 12, 2016 - bass line goldberg variations - Google Search a 1 Clav. However, "despite the Italian terminology [giga], this is a [less fleet] French gigue." Nützlich. Varatio 2. a 1 Clav. Variation 10 is a four-voice fughettawith a four-bar subject heavily decorated with ornaments and godlberg reminiscent of the opening aria’s melody. One, later nicknamed the “Black Pearl”, wanders through a galaxy of uncanny harmonies. Bach in Leipzig.". The aria and 30 variations known as the Goldberg Variations reflected Bach's return to his earlier fascination with the clavier and contrapuntal composition. Thus, variation 3 is a canon at the unison, variation 6 is a canon at the second (the second entry begins the interval of a second above the first), variation 9 is a canon at the third, and so on until variation 27, which is a canon at the ninth. In his notes to the 1955 recording, Gould says the Sarabande’s bass line is “pregnant with promise.” So was Dinnerstein, when she learned the piece. The variations found just after each canon are genre pieces of various types, among them three Baroque dances (4, 7, 19); a fughetta (10); a French overture (16); two ornate arias for the right hand (13, 25); and others (22, 28). See media help. Each repeated section has alternate endings for the first or second time. But it’s a question of degree, style, taste. Finally, as encore, the Aria from the Goldberg Variations, perhaps still the piece most associated with Schiff, left us hoping for better times with a foundation as solid as that of its ever-resilient bass line. ... no such return can have a neutral Affekt. Varatio 4. a 1 Clav. In 1955, at age 22, Canadian pianist Glenn Gould signed a recording contract with Columbia Records and recorded the Goldberg Variations. The variation is in 68 meter, suggesting several possible Baroque dances. Both features (ornaments and leaps in the melody) are apparent from the first bar: the piece begins with a transition from the G two octaves below middle C, with a lower mordent, to the G two octaves above it with a trill with initial turn. Watch it now. The Goldberg Variations were originally written for harpsichord. Every third variation is a canon — the melody of each is laid over itself, as in "Row, Row, Row Your Boat" — with the additional complication that the pitch difference between the melodies rises from a canon in unison up to the canon in ninths. ", When Bach's personal copy of the printed edition of the "Goldberg Variations" (see above) was discovered in 1974, it was found to include an appendix in the form of fourteen canons built on the first eight bass notes from the aria. Williams sees this as a sort of polonaise. It's a piece so moving, so anguished—and so uplifting at the same time—that it would not be in any way out of place in the St. Matthew's Passion; matter of fact, I've always thought of Variation 15 as the perfect Good Friday spell."[6]. This variation is another two-part virtuosic toccata. This variation is a slow, gentle and richly decorated sarabande in 34 time. bass line. The melody of the Aria with which the work opens and closes is never repeated within the thirty variations. a 1 Clav. Williams, marvelling at the emotional range of the work, asks: "Can this really be a variation of the same theme that lies behind the adagio no 25? The news that the world’s most famous and bankable classical pianist Lang Lang has turned his attention to Bach’s Goldberg Variations has raised a few eyebrows. This is the first of the hand-crossing, two-part variations. Recordings today typically clock in between 60-80 minutes. Variation 10 is a four-voice fughettawith a four-bar subject heavily decorated with ornaments and godlberg reminiscent of the opening aria’s melody. In the second section, Bach changes the mood slightly by introducing a few appoggiaturas (bars 19 and 20) and trills (bars 29–30). Digital image of the notes made with Sibelius 4 by Opus33. Kahane and the Calidore played the bass line that is the subject for the variations, then played a handful of Bach’s “puzzle” canons found at the back of an original score of the Goldbergs that turned up in the mid-1970s. He apparently was a very gifted kid. Most of the closing bars feature trills in one or both hands. "[6], This is a canon at the sixth in 22 time. This ternary pattern—canon, genre piece, arabesque—is repeated a total of nine times, until the Quodlibet breaks the cycle. He was a student of Bach's son, Wilhelm Friedemann in Dresden, but he also took lessons with J.S. Thirty variations, framed by the aria on which bass line is being varied: the aria opens and closes the set. It may have even been Bach's way of saying "I can do much better than you.". Gould's recording is brilliantly fast, precise and transparent. It is speculated that the number 14 refers to the ordinal values of the letters in the composer's name: B(2) + A(1) + C(3) + H(8) = 14. Who were some of the first Goldberg champions? More over, the number of notes of the bass line as theme is also equal to them. The variations are all based on the compelling bass line of the Aria and the Aria itself is repeated at the end of playing the thirty variants. Saint Petersburg: Planeta Musiki, This page was last edited on 1 January 2021, at 19:51. Most of the melody is written out using thirty-second notes, and ornamented with a few appoggiaturas (more frequent in the second section) and a few mordents. But the basic idea is just to provide a foundation. : Andante Variatio 16. Stereo/Multichannel Hybrid. There is something of a dividing line after variation 15, and the piece ends as it begins, with the return of the Aria. [citation needed]. When the “Goldberg” Variations were published in 1741 as Book IV of the Clavier-Übung, it was simply as “an aria with different variations for harpsichord with two manuals.” The keyboard virtuoso and composer Johann Gottlieb Goldberg (1727-1756) had his name attached to the work in 1802, when Johann Nikolaus Forkel published his groundbreaking biography of Bach. Canone alla Quinta. ", Bach turned his set of 30 variations into a deeper, much more sophisticated showpiece that Handel's. The piece is based on a descending scale and is in 38 time. The aria is a sarabande in 34 time, and features a heavily ornamented melody: The French style of ornamentation suggests that the ornaments are supposed to be parts of the melody; however, some performers (for example Wilhelm Kempff on piano) omit some or all ornaments and present the aria unadorned. This variation is a two-part toccata in 34 time that employs a great deal of hand crossing. This gradual fade, leaving us in awe but ready for more, is a fitting end to the first half of the piece. On one level, it's simply a beautiful keyboard work, and on another, it's a Rubik's Cube of invention and architecture. Lang’s bass line is stronger and he sometimes emphasizes the bar lines, a bit too much in the declaratory variations as No. The opening aria is a highly ornamented Sarabande. This is an amazingly strong interpretation, and the best that I have heard. It begins with the hands chasing one another, as it were: the melodic line, initiated in the left hand with a sharp striking of the G above middle C, and then sliding down from the B one octave above to the F, is offset by the right hand, imitating the left at the same pitch, but a quaver late, for the first three bars, ending with a small flourish in the fourth: This pattern is repeated during bars 5–8, only with the left hand imitating the right one, and the scales are ascending, not descending. Also common Variatio 6. In 1974, when scholars discovered Bach's own copy of the first printing of the Goldberg Variations, they noted that over this variation Bach had added the heading al tempo di Giga. As with all canons of the Goldberg Variations (except the 27th variation, canon at the ninth), there is a supporting bass line. Classical - Instrumental. Variatio 1. a 1 Clav. The Goldberg Variations, BWV 988, is a work for harpsichord by Johann Sebastian Bach, consisting of an aria and a set of 30 variations. With his Armani suits, love of playing to the gallery and adoration for flashy piano showpieces, Lang Lang might seem absolutely the last person who should touch this lofty piece. Landowska played an instrument far from what Bach would have recognized. In his book The Keyboard Music of J. S. Bach[5] the scholar and keyboardist David Schulenberg notes that the discovery "surprised twentieth-century commentators who supposed gigues were always fast and fleeting." Pianist Rudolf Serkin took up the Goldberg Variations in the late 1920s, but Polish harpsichordist Wanda Landowska was the first to record the Goldbergs in the early 1930s. Wolff maintains the legend isn't true. Perhaps the most inventive composer of bass lines was J. S. Bach. ", Glenn Gould said of this variation, "It's the most severe and rigorous and beautiful canon ... the most severe and beautiful that I know, the canon in inversion at the fifth. Canone alla Sesta. The others remain unknown. This two-disc set begins with a precise, but still musical, harpsichord performance of Bach's Goldberg Variations by Céline Frisch. It is specified for two manuals and features large jumps between registers. Hands cross at bar 13 from the upper register to the lower, bringing back this syncopation for another two bars. The Italian composer Busoni prepared a greatly altered transcription for piano. [9] This variation is a canon at the seventh in 44 time; Kenneth Gilbert sees it as an allemande despite the lack of anacrusis. At the end of the thirty variations, Bach writes Aria da Capo e fine, meaning that the performer is to return to the beginning ("da capo") and play the aria again before concluding. Handel, in 1733, published an aria with 64 variations. English: The bass line of Bach's Goldberg Variations, as annotated by Ralph Kirkpatrick. Johann Sebastian Bach's Goldberg Variations has become an iconic monument in Western music. a 1 Clav. Eine Person fand diese Informationen hilfreich. This is the only canon where two manuals are specified not due to hand-crossing difficulties, and the only pure canon of the work, because it does not have a bass line. New to Bach's delightfully intricate and huge keyboard piece? ", "But I think the origin goes back to an idea Bach got from Handel. As Ralph Kirkpatrick has pointed out,[3] the variations that intervene between the canons are also arranged in a pattern. Williams writes that "the beauty and dark passion of this variation make it unquestionably the emotional high point of the work", and Glenn Gould said that "the appearance of this wistful, weary cantilena is a master-stroke of psychology." Greco's main site. Please, please make a donation upon watching this streaming. A canone all’unisono (canon in unison), the variation includes features a supported, ground bass built around a simple dance rhythm. Bach uses close but not exact imitation: the musical pattern in one part reappears a bar later in another (sometimes inverted). The Goldberg s 30 variations, framed by the Aria theme, are not elaborations on a tune as one normally would expect, but are variations on the bass line or harmonic progression that underlies the Aria theme. Bach. al tempo di Giga, Variatio 12. a 1 Clav. This variation consists mostly of heavy chords alternating with sections of brilliant arpeggios shared between the hands. The player might ornament it a bit here and there with some rhythmic variations or by adding some passing notes. Like Variation 12, it is in contrary motion with the leader appearing inverted in the second bar. The set of variations can be seen as being divided into two-halves, clearly marked by this grand French overture, commencing with a particularly emphatic opening and closing chords. For the Glenn Gould album, see. It is in 34 time and usually played at a moderately fast tempo. This is the first of the “arabesques”: hand-crossing, two-part variations. The composition consists of 32 discrete parts: an opening aria followed by 30 variations and completed with a coda performance of the opening aria. Five composers are being commissioned to each write three variations using the chords, bass line and other compositional ideas from Bach’s Goldberg variations. Moreover, Schulenberg adds that the "numerous short trills and appoggiaturas" preclude too fast a tempo. The sixth variation is a canon at the second: the follower starts a major second higher than the leader. One line Varatio 7. a 1 o vero 2 Clav. This is another two-part hand-crossing variation, in 34 time. (Repeats omitted.) "After this Glenn Gould recording," Wolff says, "the Goldberg Variations really had become a household word.". The variations are based on the same Aria bass, but it's only eight measures long. And Bach thought that 'This is a wonderful idea to have many variations on such a promising ground bass. We'll play and discuss Glenn Gould's 1955 recording of the Goldberg Variations with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Tim Page (a friend of Gould's) and Washington Post classical music critic Anne Midgette. Canone all'Unisuono, Variatio 6. a 1 Clav. The latter are instead built upon the underlying bass and the progression of chords or harmonies which it implies. The ground bass on which the entire set of variations is built is heard perhaps most explicitly in this variation (as well as in the Quodlibet) due to the simplicity of the bass voice. Every third variation in the series of 30 is a canon, following an ascending pattern. Around 1741, Bach published a long and complicated keyboard piece, calling it Aria with diverse variations for a harpsichord with two manuals (keyboards). "Polonaise und Quodlibet: Der innere Kosmos der Goldberg-Variationen" in, Velikovskiy, Alexander (2021). At the time, the piece was considered esoteric and a risky choice for a debut recording. "We do have a copy of just the Aria in the hand of Anna Magdalena Bach, Johann Sebastian's second wife, who was a singer," Wolff says. "I think a good harpsichordist on a good instrument would present the piece just as well as a pianist thinking about the stylistic requirements, using very little pedal and so forth, but making the best out of the piano sound and creating the kind of transparency that Bach's polyphonic designs require. No, this set of 30 imaginative variations on the “Fundamental Bass” of the Aria that bookends them was not written for the piano, but Perahia’s delicacy of touch, subtle use of dynamic shadings, clarity of line in the canons and Fughetta, and effortless virtuosity demonstrate that the anachronistic instrument doesn’t have to overpower the music within the notes. Between the canons are variations are different patterns, including a fughetta, French overture, Baroque dances, and ornate areas. Probleme spielen diese Datei? Specified for two manuals, it involves rapid hand-crossing. Bach's cosmos leadsthe listener through facets of human feeling into undreamt-of breadth. Its melody is made to stand out by what has gone on in the last five variations, and it is likely to appear wistful or nostalgic or subdued or resigned or sad, heard on its repeat as something coming to an end, the same notes but now final. This variation features four-part writing with many imitative passages and its development in all voices but the bass is much like that of a fugue. "She apparently wanted to play the piece, and it probably wasn't copied by her until the late 1730s. The challenge of composing a piece of considerable length (4590 minutes depending on how frequently the repeats are played) on top of a single bass line has been superbly met here. This is a simple three-part contrapuntal piece in 24 time, two voices engage in constant motivic interplay over an incessant bass line. Disc.Reviews. [citation needed], A note-for-note repeat of the aria at the beginning. a … She was a pioneer of the harpsichord revival who went on to teach in Berlin, Paris and the U.S. She made several recordings of the Goldbergs. Slightly more active than in the series of 30 variations into a deeper, much more sophisticated that! 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Is hereby released into the public domain by Opus33 this gradual fade, leaving us in awe but for... Galaxy of uncanny harmonies want to argue about it, '' Wolff,! Contrary motion with the clavier and contrapuntal composition passages in thirty-second notes and are in! First assumed as the only work of Bachs oeuvre in this genre supporting line... Three bars of the aria at the fifth in 24 time, the work essentially until the canon! Strong contrast the third, in 98 time '' of the work opens and the. Interpretations of the variations that are together known as the Goldberg variations '' redirects here dance... Needed ], this is a four-voice fughettawith a four-bar subject heavily decorated with ornaments and somewhat of. Pattern in a recording which has received much critical acclaim instrument far from what Bach have! 29 present the only work of Bachs oeuvre in this genre a 1 Clav the,. Bach: the follower starts a major second higher than the leader appearing in. 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Previous canons each repeated section has an alternate ending to be played on the first or second.! Aria ’ s melody dance-like three-part variation in der Reihe der 30 ist ein,! On which the work essentially until the Quodlibet breaks the cycle, Gottlieb... Last canon of the opening aria some years earlier characteristic rhythm in the series of 30 is a fughettawith! Implications of this variation ( pictured ) more active than in the series of 30 variations, every variation... Everything comes together well fast, precise and transparent they proceeded to jokes which were in! All is the first and second repeat hand crossing experience to hear it both ways not theme! 27, there is no aesthetic difference between the hands both ways 's recording of work! To do on a thirtytwo-note bass line digital image of the Goldberg variations second time four-bar subject decorated... Sometimes inverted ) has pointed out, [ 3 ] as follows variations! Landowska famously described this variation is basically a sarabande household word..! Which the variations are different patterns, including a fughetta, French,... Most inventive composer of bass line after all is the basis of the work during 's! Leaving us in awe but ready for more, is a supporting bass line variations are! Subject intact, changing the rest the theme neutral Affekt,... the line... Fughettawith a four-bar subject heavily decorated with ornaments and godlberg reminiscent of the set a simple dance also to! Hand crossing perhaps the most important examples of variation form and recorded the Goldberg variations Johann! Of uncanny harmonies and somewhat reminiscent of the piece is based on a bass! Into 32 measures 2021, at 19:51 12/8 and the more traditional recordings.

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