The Beatles, Mozart, Swedish jazz and Michelangeli
This month Steinway & Sons Spirio focuses on some of the most enduring music of the 20th century — namely from the best-selling band of all time, the Fab Four from Liverpool, The Beatles.
The group’s impact across the musical universe — from leading the British invasion to their innovative songwriting to the album eclipsing the single to recording techniques still used in-studio today — simply cannot be overstated. We are delighted to offer stylish arrangements of some of The Beatles’ hits for Spirio. We also spotlight the wunderkind of the 18th century, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart; a fine jazz pianist from Sweden; and Steinway immortal Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli.
Aside from being the most popular (and prolific) Pop groups of our time, The Beatles delivered music and melodies that transcend genres and generations. The Spirio catalog has their music played by pop, jazz and classical artists. It’s easy to hear the classical connection when David Osborne blends “Here, There and Everywhere” with Bach’s “Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring,” but it’s pure jazz when Ramsey Lewis takes the same tune and mixes it with another Beatles tune, “And I Love Her.” In addition to a group of new Beatles tracks this month, we have also added tunes from two other pop legends, each strongly influenced by The Beatles: Elton John and Billy Joel. Among these is the belated addition to the essential Spirio playlist, Piano Man.
There are many works by Mozart that point to his genius — the finales of the Jupiter Symphony and Act II of The Marriage of Figaro, the Clarinet Concerto, et cetera. But his works for solo piano are an especially intimate view into his art, partly because Mozart, himself, was a virtuoso on the instrument. This month we add four more of his Piano Sonatas to the spirio catalog as part of our ongoing effort to bring his complete piano music to spirio listeners.
The Swedish pianist and composer Jacob Karlzon is a fine jazz pianist whose original works display influences from many sources while remaining grounded in his exceptional improvisational skills and Scandinavian heritage. The solo piano works he has created especially for Spirio highlight his jazz pedigree but embraces pop as well, with compelling arrangements of music by U2, Coldplay and Tears for Fears.
Finally, this month we invite you to hear and see one of the great Italian pianists of the last century, Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli. Our featured Spirio-sync video this month is his performance from 1962 of Chopin’s much-loved Berceuse. It is a marvelous illustration of the touch and technique of a great master of the piano.