Recent Addictions

3 Dec

The last months were packed and exciting. In August and September we played in Europe with the trio. Also in September I was playing solo and teaching in Israel, then in Belgium. In October we recorded our next trio album in New York, to be released in 2012 – more about that soon. Then November brought concerts in Germany, and the exciting solo show in Tel Aviv with Alon Oleartchik as a special guest. But what was I doing in my spare time? The (somewhat partial) answer is found below:

1. Mozart’s widely celebrated Quintet in G minor, for 2 violins, 2 violas and cello. I could probably listen to the first movement  repeatedly forever. Good thing the next movements are so enchanting so I can bring myself to move on.

By the way, I have an old score of this piece, that I bought who knows where and when. Now that I can read a bit of German, I saw that it used to belong to a dentist called Kadish, who must have been a German-speaking amateur  musician, and that he performed it twice, in 1921 and 1923.

2. Elsa Morante‘s novel, La storia. One of the most profound novels about World War 2.

3. Charles Rosen’s book, The Classical Style. Takes you by the hand through the musical worlds of Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven.

4. Michael Brecker’s solo on John Coltrane’s Transition, from Hancock, Brecker and Hargrove’s Directions in Music. It’s a tour de force demonstration of how all you need for a great solo is one idea. Well, that and the ability to expand and develop it masterfully.

In order to balance all this culture, you have to eat something.

1. If you’re in Tel Aviv I highly recommend Eyal Shani’s Miznon. It’s something like Gourmet in a pita. The minute steak is great.

Miznon, Ibn Gabirol 23

2. One of my favorite italian restaurants in New York City is kind of a best-kept secret. Bring cash, they don’t take credit cards. And don’t miss out on the Tiramisu.

Celeste, 502 Amsterdam Ave.

3. I think I’ve found the best three restaurants in Düsseldorf. These are all amazing:

Toxotis, Kaiserswerther Straße 402. One of the best greek places I’ve ever been to is surprisingly in this west-german city – I swear. I took Haggai and Ziv here after our concert at hofgarten in August and they couldn’t believe it. Get the lamb chops and thank me later.

Robert’s Bistro, Wupperstraße 2. An old establishment. The menu supposedly hasn’t changed for decades, and in this case that’s a good thing.

San Leo, Wallstraße 31. Probably the best Italian around. I thank drummer and friend Peter Weiss, a veteran Düsseldorfer, for the tip. Highly appreciated.

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