Mattias Jacobsson's Debut Album Highlights Aristocrat of Instruments

Monday, September 17, 2012

In an age when bombast and spectacle seem to rule contemporary culture, the Spanish guitar stands out as a subtle, aristocratic instrument. In the last few years, a handful of young guitarists have risen to champion its qualities, including Montenegro’s Miloš Karadaglić, China’s Xuefei Yang and Sweden’s Mattias Jacobsson.

The latter artist has just released his debut album, “Invocación,” which is devoted to the great 19th-century guitarist-composer Francisco Tárrega.

Like his contemporaries, Jacobsson grew up far from the cultural epicenter of Spanish guitar. He was born and raised near Stockholm, Sweden, and at age 18 he moved to New York to study with Sharon Isbin at the Juilliard School. Yet he has an innate feel for the music of Tárrega, who established the guitar as a "serious" instrument, with more than 80 original works and over 100 transcriptions (Tárrega is also famous, or infamous, for his Gran Vals, which formed the Nokia ringtone that was ubiquitous a decade ago).

Tárrega adopted several of Chopin’s compositional formats, such as the prelude, mazurka and waltzes and also transcribed several of Chopin’s own works in these genres. Not coincidentally, he became known as “the Chopin of the guitar." The guitar can evoke in these pieces a softer and more sensitive character. Jacobsson presents these side by side with Tárrega’s efforts in the forms, allowing direct comparison.

Also featured here are some Tárrega favorites including the irresistibly sentimental Recuerdos de la Alhambra (Memories of the Alhambra), Capricho Arabe and Lagrima.

Mattias Jacobsson, guitar
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Comments [6]

Disgruntled from Brooklyn, NY

Requiring listeners to click "Like" as a condition to hear featured music feels like extortion.
I don't like being extorted.
I don't like WQXR's manipulative FB approach to inflating "Like" statistics and like the station less than before.

A disgruntled contributor.

Sep. 22 2012 07:54 PM

I am with the above/below Love the music not interested in the fb maze

Sep. 22 2012 04:03 PM
Eileen from New York

I have one thing to say...............Shame On You, QXR, this is discrimination! Music should be available to All, even though I am on Facebook that should not be a pre-requisite for all music!

Sep. 22 2012 01:46 PM
Raul R Nunez from NYC

I totally agree with the two previous statements, WQXR is trying too hard to please a segment of listeners by adopting a pedestrian populist attitude. For the marketeers @ WQXR,let it be known that this segment is NOT the one who contributes financially to support the station. You will be missed.

Sep. 21 2012 06:31 PM
Rose Marie Wilson from Wantagh, NY

I second Abigail Hourwich's statement! Some of us choose not to belong to these social networks, for many reasons. I am fed up with being excluded from various activities, such as contest entries, coupons, free samples, or free downloads, due to not having a Facebook membership!!! It is blatant discrimination in my opinion, and I will not support any organization that discriminates against me by this means. Downloads used to be available to all listeners and WQXR website subscribers, and should continue to be. You would do well NOT to incur the ire of your LIMITED fan base.

Sep. 21 2012 06:20 PM
Abigail Hourwich

I am disappointed and annoyed that the download is only available to users of Facebook. I have no desire to entire the morass of Facebook. In future if you only want to reach a segment of your audience, please specify that downloads are only available to Facebook users.

Sep. 21 2012 03:46 PM

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