Pedacinhos do Céu

by Jake Schepps

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Round Window Radio February 2017
Pedacinhos do Céu
By Waldir Azevedo

This month’s release is one of my favorite chorinhos written by the great Brazilian composer Waldir Azevedo. He played cavaquinho, which is a small mandolin-sized instrument that is tuned like a banjo. Over the past decade, I have played a lot of music that is unique on the banjo, taking a small lateral step in music and finding myself in terrain that is completely new, without a script for how a banjo fits into the situation. Choro is one of those areas, yet finding Waldir’s work has been a real treat. His compositions, all gems, fit neatly on the banjo, and chock full of cool ideas outside the bluegrass tradition. Choro is a deep well and a gorgeous tradition of music. Learning a new folk idiom is similar in some ways to travel— shining a bright light back on one’s culture, norms, and language. Working on this music with its complex rhythms and detailed melodies has enriched my understanding of the banjo, and affected much of the music I play, not to mention greatly expanded my listening ears. I hope you enjoy it too.

It is an incredible honor to play with what I am calling the “Round Window Revue.” Bill Kopper is a guitar hoss and Carl Dixon is a polymath when it comes to Brazilian percussion, with a deep, deep knowledge of the tradition. I have had the fortunate opportunity to make a lot of music over the years with the powerful fiddler Enion Pelta-Tiller. The indomitable Eric Thorin is part of the revue and spent time with us in the studio in January, yet not on this track. We have gotten to play a lot of music together since that first Round Window session back in December 2015, with more to come.

Inspired by the title, “Pedacinhos do Céu,” (meaning “Little Pieces of Heaven,”) the artwork features a mind-boggling photo from the Hubble Telescope.

If you are enjoying these monthly tracks, please let friends know on social media, email, or word of mouth about Round Window Radio. Price is now only $3/month, and you get all hours and hours of adventurous string band music.

credits

released February 3, 2017

Jake Schepps: 5-string banjo
Enion Pelta-Tiller: 5-string violin
Bill Kopper: 7-string guitar
Carl Dixon: pandeiro

Produced by Jake Schepps
Composed by Waldir Azevedo
Recorded January 10, 2017 at eTown Studio, Boulder, CO
Engineered by Justin Peacock
Mixed by Justin Peacock
Artwork by Duncan Burke

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Jake Schepps Boulder, Colorado

Jake Schepps has made a name for himself as a banjo renaissance man, an artist with not only an adroit touch on his instrument but an intrepid, imaginative vision for contemporary stringband music. Based in Boulder, Colorado, he leads the Jake Schepps Quintet, playing longform classical works written for string band, music by Bela Bartok, and of course some good ol' bluegrass. ... more

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