Comentário Jerry Young

Steel Alive CD recording featuring Sérgio Carolino, tuba.

One of the highlights of the past summer’s ITEC at the University of Cincinnati Conservatory of Music was the introduction of Sérgio Carolino to North America.  Although most informed euphonium and tuba players around the globe already knew his name and reputation, few players on that side of the Atlantic had enjoyed the opportunity to experience directly what their colleagues in Europe have enjoyed for a number of years. The recording Steel Alive won the Chamber Music/Large Ensemble category of ITEA’s 2008 Roger Bobo Recording Awards—and it is only one of several recordings that feature Mr. Carolino’s amazing artistry. An outstanding piece of work from top to bottom, it soars to an entirely different level when you realize that each of the performances represented here is a live performance. This is a lesson in artistry and musical/mental focus from which we can all profit.

This CD consists of an eclectic array of music that displays Carolino’s artistry and versatility. Three of the works on the disc are familiar to serious tuba players everywhere—Jim Self’s Duh Suite (for two tubas and drums, written for and recorded by Dennis AsKew and Kelly O’Bryant), Thierry Caens’ Mr. C., written for Mel Culbertson, and Jerry Grant’s Time Cycles, written for and recorded by Jim Self.

It’s wonderful to have a new recording of all of these special pieces, each with a different artistic “take” from that heard on earlier recordings. The performance of Time Cycles is my favorite on the album and makes me want to tackle this piece more than ever! The Jorge Salgueiro cONCERTO fOR Tuba & Brass Band is incredibly exciting. The work was composed in 2006, and I believe that Carolino’s performance in Cincinnati was the American premiere of the work. The performance on this recording is inspiring—the work has a bit of “film music” appeal to it, and Carolino’s playing engages the listener in that spirit. His performances of Michael Davis’ Eagles Landing and Miles Davis’ All Blues as well as his own composition DidjiriTUBAzz underscore the versatility of this great artist.

Kudos to the National Youth Band of Switzerland under the direction of Robert Childs, the Portugese Youth Symphonic Brass Ensemble under the direction of Joålo Paulo Fernandes, Anne Jelle Visser, Thomas Rüedi, and the Estardalhaço Brass Band for their amazing performances along side Mr. Carolino.

The fact that this recording won the Bobo Award should tell any reader of this publication that this is a recording that you must have in your collection. There were many worthy entries in this category, the recordings by all the finalists were outstanding, and the panel of adjudicators represented some of the best “ears” in our profession. Your tuba CD collection is definitely incomplete without this recording. When Sérgio Carolino comes to your part of the world to present a concert or master class, you must be there!

~Jerry Young, University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire


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