With his new album Rodolfo Pérez brings us a miniature musical history of Mexico through the sound of the guitar, from Sinaloa songs to a seminal work of 20th-century guitar music, the Sonata Mexicana by Manuel Ponce, possibly the century’s first sonata for the instrument. The set also features unpublished works by Julio César Oliva and José Ángel Ramírez, which form ideal counterparts to Ponce’s masterwork.
Popular song – a crucial musical form in Mexico, a nation for which singing is very much a part of everyday life – is woven into this album’s melodies and references throughout, as well as forming the basis for Ponce’s Tres canciones populares. This is only one of the ways in which this music transports us to atmospheric Mexican locations: Oliva’s ‘Una tarde de verano’ (from Tres Instantes de Éxtasis) seems infused with the breeze of a rural Mexican idyll at sunset; the final movement of the Sonata Mexicana conjures up the colour and festivity of an urban fiesta. Meanwhile, Ramírez’s Fantasía Sinaloense allows the guitarist to showcase some of his finest feats of virtuosity.
Pérez is the ideal soloist for this set in more ways than one. Beyond his technical ability and knowledge of Mexican music history, he is closely and personally linked to the composers featured here, being the dedicatee of works by both Oliva and Ramírez, and having given the premiere of the Fantasía Sinaloense.
- Recorded in Canada and Mexico.
- A feast of melody and colour of original music for guitar from Mexico!
- This well compiled programme spans a period from 19th century romantic folk song arrangements to the mature and serious 20th century Sonatina Mexicana by Manuel Ponce.
- The Folk Song, an essential part of Mexican culture and existence, plays an all pervading part in these compositions, by Oliva, Ramirez and Ponce.
- Played with effortless virtuosity, dedication and warmth by Rodolfo Perez, one of the foremost Mexican guitarists, who is the dedicatee and close friend of both the Ramirez and Oliva, and writer of the liner notes.
- Booklet includes liner notes and artist biography.