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New Release From Kurt Rosenwinkel, “Berlin Baritone”

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Berlin Baritone finds Kurt Rosenwinkel exploring the new sonic possibilities of the baritone guitar through solo improvisations.

Heartcore Records’ newest release available December 2, 2022

Berlin Baritone is a uniquely intimate release, even in Rosenwinkel’s prolific discography, as listeners get to hear Rosenwinkel discover the timbral world of his new instrument with reverence and curiosity. In this stripped-down and intimate recording, you can hear just how deep and intuitive Rosenwinkel’s playing is. His taut harmonic inventiveness is still intact, as is the tenderness of his touch, and his improvisational instincts are so sharp they feel almost indistinguishable from composed pieces. It’s as close as many of us will get to hearing Rosenwinkel play for you in his home, unguarded and reveling in the joy of playing his guitar. 

Kurt Rosenwinkel’s Berlin Baritone available December 2, 2022

The album opens with “Peace Please”, a short and plaintive improvisation that showcases Rosenwinkel at his most delicate and minimalist. There’s “Mellow D”, a breathtaking meditation on counterpoint that owes as much to Bach as George Van Eps. But of course, as much as Rosenwinkel has studied the music of others, he is of course, at this point in his career, most like himself, and his own sensibilities shine bright in the dense otherworldly harmonies of “Zarathustra” and the pianistic chord clusters of “Life of a Flower”. 

Kurt Rosenwinkel: “When the instrument provides such a deep world of sound and beauty I find it is easy to lose myself in the music. I find the deeper range of the baritone to be more satisfying on its own than a normal guitar. It is a bit harder to play compared to a regular guitar. But that just leads to different musical things… I think the one who really inspires me on this instrument is definitely George Van Eps. He played a seven-string guitar with that deep bass sound.”

Header Photo: Aleks Končar


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