The Other Side 8pm-10pm 7/14/20: Maestro Ennio Morricone

Written by on July 13, 2020

This Tuesday 7/14/2020 from 8-10PM on The Other Side: Maestro Ennio Morricone

– A Tribute to the maestro, featuring as much of his classic other sideian film music as I can fit into 120 minutes. OK who am I fooling, I can barely scratch the surface of his voluminous musical output, but I’ll do what I can and hope you’ll tune and join me. and only on KVMR FM Nevada City.



Morricone, passed on to the other side a little over a week ago at the vibrant age of 91. For those curious to know more I’ve included some excerpts from composer John Zorn, taken from a recent New York Times article where he shares some very kind and caring thoughts about the maestro below.

Ennio Morricone Was More Than Just a Great Film Composer
excerpts from an article by John Zorn “Ennio Morricone was more than one of the world’s great soundtrack composers — he was one of the world’s great composers, period. For me, his work stands with Bach, Mozart, Debussy, Ellington and Stravinsky in achieving that rare fusion of heart and mind. Dare we compare the five notes of his famous “coyote call” in “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” with the four opening notes of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony? Morricone’s music is just as timeless.

Morricone, who died on Monday at 91, has been an influence and an inspiration since I first encountered his work as a teenager in 1967. “The Ecstasy of Gold” from “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” hit me with the same power as modernist masterpieces like “The Rite of Spring,” Ives’s Fourth Symphony and Varèse’s “Arcana”; it shares their complex rhythmic invention, unique sound world and lush romantic sweep.Embracing the soaring lyricism of his Italian heritage, Morricone’s gift for song was extraordinary. He was one of those musicians who could make an unforgettable melody with just a small fistful of notes. His meticulous craftsmanship and ear for orchestration, harmony, melody and rhythm resulted in music that was perfectly balanced; as with all master composers, every note was there for a reason.Having roots in both popular music and the avant-garde, Morricone was an innovator, and he overcame each new challenge with a fresh approach, retaining a curiosity and childlike sense of wonder. He was always open to trying new sounds, new instruments, new combinations — rarely drawing from the same well twice.

He was a man of integrity who did not suffer fools gladly. Stories of his responses to inane directorial suggestions are legend, including one of my favorites: “In the history of music, nothing like that has ever happened — nor will it ever happen.” He lived a relatively simple life in a beautiful apartment in Rome, waking as early as 4:30 in the morning, taking walks and composing at his desk for hours on end. He traveled little.

What needs to be understood is that Morricone was a magician of sound. He had an uncanny ability to combine instruments in original ways.

Morricone is best known for his film work, but we must never forget his large catalog of “absolute” music — his classical compositions. There the music comes straight from his heart.

Many composers wonder, and may even worry, if their work will live on after they are gone — if their contribution will be remembered and their music treasured. Morricone need have had no such fears.”

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