Hyperion Records

Columbia 'Caprice américain', RO61 Op 34
1859; published in New York in 1860

'Gottschalk: Piano Music, Vol. 1' (CDA66459)
Gottschalk: Piano Music, Vol. 1
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'Gottschalk: The Complete Solo Piano Music' (CDS44451/8)
Gottschalk: The Complete Solo Piano Music
Buy by post £38.50 CDS44451/8  8CDs Boxed set (at a special price)  
Track 11 on CDA66459 [5'49] Last few CD copies remaining
Track 11 on CDS44451/8 CD1 [5'49] 8CDs Boxed set (at a special price)

Columbia 'Caprice américain', RO61 Op 34
This exuberant treatment of Stephen Foster’s My Old Kentucky Home is among Gottschalk’s most appealing works. Its catchy tune and rhythmic bounce stay in the mind for days. Although it sounds easy, it is an exacting piece to play, needing a left hand of machine-like accuracy and not a little stamina to cope with the athletic leaping of the accompaniment, punctuated by coruscating runs in the treble. With the finishing post in sight, Gottschalk piles on further pianistic pressure requesting, in tempo, left hand jumps of two octaves. Columbia, in this writer’s experience, is the earliest example of what was later to be called ‘stride piano’, a style developed in the 1930s.

from notes by Jeremy Nicholas © 1990

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