John Bucchino Improvises Classic Show Tunes for Disc of Piano Music, "On Richard Rodgers' Piano"

News   John Bucchino Improvises Classic Show Tunes for Disc of Piano Music, "On Richard Rodgers' Piano"
Composer and pianist John Bucchino is heard playing his own intuitive, sometimes jazzy, piano arrangements of Richard Rodgers classics — performed on Richard Rodgers' Steinway piano — on a new recording aptly titled "On Richard Rodgers' Piano."

On the Art Food Music label, the 12-track disc includes "Do Re Mi"/"The Surrey With the Fringe on Top," "My Favorite Things," "Isn't It Romantic," "Edelweiss," "My Romance," "It Might As Well Be Spring," "The Lady Is a Tramp," "Where or When," "You Took Advantage of Me," "If I Loved You," "My Funny Valentine" and "Something Good." The disc is now available.

The piano was built in 1938, according to liner notes, and the keys are unusually weighted, making the instrument somewhat challenging or frustrating to players not used to it. A half-century of the most beloved tunes of American theatre were thought to be born on the keyboard.

"Since I play purely by ear and by instinct," Bucchino writes of his 2003 recording sessions, "none of these was written down or even (with the exception of the basic structure of 'My Favorite Things') pre-meditated. We'd turn on the machines and for a couple of hours I'd call out one Rodgers title after another and improvise wildly different versions as the spirit moved me."


John Bucchino's songs have been recorded and performed by Judy Collins, Barbara Cook, Michael Feinstein, Art Garfunkel, Patti LuPone, Yo-Yo Ma, Audra MacDonald, Liza Minnelli, The Boston Pops, The Los Angeles Philharmonic, and many others in venues that include Carnegie Hall, The Hollywood Bowl, The Sydney Opera House and The White House. He was honored as recipient of the 1997 Johnny Mercer Songwriter Award, the 1998 Songwriters' Fellowship Award, the 1998 ASCAP Foundation Richard Rodgers New Horizons Award, the 2000 Second Stage Constance Klinsky award and The Gilman & Gonzalez-Falla Commendation Award and, in 2001, The Jonathan Larson and Kleban Awards. He has written songs for the musicals The Artist at 40, Urban Myths and Lavender Girl, which was part of the evening of musicals known under the title, 3hree.


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