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Dip Your Ears, No. 124 ("get happy")

available at Amazon
"get happy",
Rodgers, Berlin, Gershwin et al.,
Jenny Lin
Steinway & Sons
[Release date 30.10.12]

A new release by Jenny Lin – a long time ionarts favorite in Shostakovich and Mompou (Best Recordings of 2011) and various clever piano exotica – is always something to delight about. Even when it is ‘only’ one of “virtuoso show tunes for piano”, titled Get Happy… I suppose.

Hodge-podge releases of light virtuoso piano tunes aren’t up my alley in the first place, but they can be when they’re a little more diverse than Richard Rodgers up and down, Irving Berlin, enriched with fluffy Gershwin. I very much prefer Michael Sheppard’s such collection, which includes Rodgers’ “The Carousel Waltz” and “My Favorite Things” and Earl Wild and Stephen Hough transcriptions, just as “Get Happy”, but also Barber and Bolcolm and Crumb. That’s no fault of Lin’s wholly amiable playing, but it’s hard to not think that her talents are wasted on an album of hotel-lobby pianism, presumably meant for us to say: “Play it again, Jenny”. But on second thought: Could you play something else, please?