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In the manner of...

Bridge Records

Trombonist Mark Davidson and pianist Viktor Valkov met in San Antonio in classical music circles. They've stayed in touch over the years, and now are both in Utah, where they recorded their brand new release, "À la manière."

Davidson says, "During the pandemic, we wanted to do a project together. This is the result of the efforts of two great friends who wanted to collaborate on a project of music they're really passionate about."

Of the music they chose, he says this stuff is "not recorded too often, but really relevant and accessible music that we just felt like needed to be heard more."

Of the demanding piano parts, Valkov says, "This project presented a whole array of interesting problems for me." Music written for orchestras and chamber ensembles doesn't always translate to a single piano, after all.

Valkov also mentions an original piece they commissioned for the album: "Counterplay," by Utah composer Luke Dahn. "We thought it would be interesting to include a brand-new piece in the album, and also, as Mark had in mind, to contribute to the trombone repertoire."

With superb engineering and production that expertly brings forth two terrific musicians' performances, something tells me this album will do just that, and more.

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Barry Brake is a composer, jazz and classical pianist who has been a part of San Antonio's music scene for decades. You can find his musings and musical exploits online here: http://barrybrake.com/