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Amazon's Sharon Isbin Store

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  • Buy a CD from our World, Folk, Classical or Jazz stores to purchase Songlines Music Awards 2015 CD for £3.99. Here's how (terms and conditions apply)

Product details

  • Performer: Sharon Isbin
  • Composer: Antonio Ruiz-Pipó, Toru Takemitsu, Egberto Gismonti, Ernesto Lecuona
  • Audio CD (4 Oct. 1999)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Teldec
  • ASIN: B00002DEUI
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 168,867 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Virgillo
  2. Cancion
  3. Danza No. 1
  4. Fantasia
  5. Black Is The Color Of My True Love's Hair
  6. Darling Cora
  7. Putney Hymn
  8. Finale
  9. Londonderry Air
  10. Agua E Vinho
  11. Romanza
  12. Brisas Del Torbes
  13. Canto Siboney
  14. Preludio No. 6: Dolor
  15. Recuerdos De La Alhambra
  16. Four Songs: Of Sting And Honey - Tomorrow - Jerusalem Of Gold - Spy Girl
  17. One Day In May
  18. You Have Set My Star
  19. Varre Vento
  20. Dedicatoria

Product Description

Product Description

This recording has received high critical acclaim from music magazines throughout the world. Isbin is one of the world's finest classical guitarists and this excellent recording is sure to give pleasure to thousands of music lovers. Titles are: 'Virgilio'


This disc is obviously aimed at the world-music audience, if one judges from its title and the subtitle, "Folk-Inspired Music for Guitar." But that shouldn't dissuade listeners interested in more serious music. Isbin has collected original pieces and arrangements from Spain, Latin America, Appalachia, Ireland, Israel, and Greece--all of them quite lovely. It's really amazing to hear, for example, the "Londonderry Air," better known as "Danny Boy," in such a sympathetic arrangement by the late Japanese composer Toru Takemitsu. She plays with such technical mastery that you wind up taking it for granted, while appreciating her songful delivery of this highly varied program of music, which was mostly first intended for the human voice. The uncommonly attractive booklet, including photos of Isbin as a world traveler, is another asset to this fine program, as is Teldec's realistic recorded sound. --Leslie Gerber

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mr Bee on 23 Aug. 2014
Format: Audio CD
I'm not always a fan of Ms Isbin's recordings but this one is oustanding: I purchased it some years ago but keep coming back to it. Unlike 'Journey to the Amazon' where the addition of percussion detracts from some established classical guitar pieces (and the pieces with saxophone are somewhat bland) this is all solo guitar: the opening Lauro piece here shows that she can point rhythms perfectly without assistance. The album theme is Isbin's travels around the world (the CD booklet photos illustrate this) and the subtitle is 'folk inspired music', but this is not a folkie or folksy collection. There are a variety of national styles represented (Greek, Israeli, Spanish and several Latin American countries) but the different styles do not jar: JW Duarte's Appalachian Dreams suite offers spiky and pungent arrangements of folksongs. Where pieces are known from other guitarists' playing (Ruiz-Pipo, Tarrega, Lauro, Theodorakis), Isbin is their equal and she is well-served by the quality of recorded sound.

The other Isbin recording I'd recommend is her New York Aranjuez with Serebrier conducting (Rodrigo, Villa-Lobos & Ponce : Guitar Concertos) - other recordings of those favourite concertos may be as good but none are better.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 25 reviews
29 of 29 people found the following review helpful
Still a dream ... 25 Dec. 2004
By Daniel J. Rose - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This has long been my favorite classical guitar recording, and I just put it on again after hearing another recent favorite recording ("Reflections of Spain") played by David Russell, who is perhaps the most gifted contemporary guitarist on record. I was inspired to do so by Russell's performance of the "Cancion y Danza No. 1" by Antonio Ruiz-Pipo, which though quite excellent, I knew right away was quite different from Isbin's take on the same piece.

First, let me say, I hope that they are good friends, because they are both landmark musicians and worthy "competitors." Both clearly play with absolute love for both the music and the instrument. In short, I prefer Isbin's recording of the Pipo "Danza," even though, overall, Russell's playing is technically cleaner and more facile (but not by much). (Across his entire CD, I recall barely any string noise from Russell, where as Isbin manages a mere dozen or so clear such imperfections across her entire and ample CD; big deal).

I think the thing that draws me to Isbin in this piece (and her CD, in general) is her incredible variety of rhythm, attack, and tone color, all of which combine to give an impression of near perfect balance between spontaneity and precision. She has a way of taking time without the slightest sense of delay or heaviness. This is probably because her tempo never changes, only the rhythm around it, which is a classic hallmark of rhythmic mastery. This means that she hears and feels, both deeply and objectively, every moment of "sound and space" (notes and rest) from beginning to end, like an unbroken line painted across a master's canvas. Combined with this, she uses the space between her bridge and finger board to elicit the most amazing contrasts in tone color (one of the great contributions of Segovia to the art).

Russell plays with equal mastery of rhythm and attack, perhaps aided by the remarkable sonic depth built into his guitar. While he makes maximum use of that wonderful guitar sound, he is somewhat less dramatic in his changes of volume and tone color between phrases, aiming for a more consistent and lyrical quality, certainly another aim of mastery in itself, but there in lies the difference. Still, his sharp shaping of phrases, especially in his choice of Spanish music on his entire CD, with that impeccable technique behind it, weaves a spell all its own.

So, even though Russell's is among the finest pure Spanish musical CDs available, and one of my favorite in that genre (musical realm), I still have to give my nod to Isbin's multi-national effort for its unmatched ability to conjure, especially today, the most sublime dreams of a better world.
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
Astoundingly Subtle Performance 5 July 2004
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Audio CD
Sharon Isbin's fame is well-deserved, and she has spent many years learning the exacting technique of the classical guitar so that any style of performance from Bach to Brazilian makes 'sense' under her fingers. What a remarkably poetic player. For those of you who love the instrument, you will hear no one perform with as much depth, grace, expression as Isbin does.
Sharon Isbin is all musicianship and brilliance, she has clearly built her reputation upon impeccable performances both live and in recording. Her craft in Dreams of A World is multifold- she initiated the commissioning of works such as the Duarte piece, developed transcriptions and arrangements, created a lush, emotional 'program' that progresses from one work to the next in a highly organic fashion.
If you are looking for high-speed pyrotechnics, Isbin is absolutely capable of this, and plays the most demanding pieces of the classical guitarist's repertoire. The current album is virtuosic in her nuanced and coloristic passages, and the music calls forth the greatest delicacy from the instrument. Both of these types of performance are well within Isbin's range. Witness her Bach recordings, orchestral recordings, contemporary and 'classic' pieces of the canon of guitar works. She embraces the very highest values of the instrument and brings to stage and CD an artful awareness of prescisely what each musical work requires in order to shine. Overplaying can be as dull as underplaying - Isbin does neither. In her hands each work shines and is truly a gem of multifaceted musical pleasure.
For those music lovers who know the guitar and its possibilities, you will realize that the instrument is in the hands of a prodigy-turned-international player who is one of a kind not only in her generation, but for several generations. Why is it no surprise that Segovia, the composer Rodrigo, and numerous luminaries of the classical guitar world have given her their ultimate compliment - full and unconditional support? She deserves the accolade -- it is in her hands - listen to it here on this CD, and find the heart of the music - you'll recognize the heart and spirit of each piece immediately through Isbin's performances.
Listen to this work, and explore Isbin's entire opus and repertoire. She brings into the world beauty beyond what was known before - that is her gift.
I hope you're decide to make this CD your gift - to yourself and to others.
I am a composer -- to my ears, this music is heartwrenchingly gorgeous, and it comes to life through the performer's hands.
Isbin's performances are a life lesson- those who seek depth and profundity through music will find it here.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
Dreams with raw emotions. 24 Jan. 2005
By Benelita T.C .E - Published on
Format: Audio CD
This is one of my all time favorite CD. When critics call Sharon Isbin the "Monet of the guitar" or the "preeminent guitarist of our time" they only begin do justice to her mastery of the instrument. On this CD my favorite pieces are Agua E Vinho, Cancíon y danza for guitar, Recuerdos de la Alhambra. They are superbly played; they are flawless, passionate ,very moving. I cannot help feeling transcend when listening to Dreams of a World. Ms. Isbin does more than play nice music from all over the world; in this CD she shares her heartfelt dreams of a world.

I highly recommend Dreams of a World.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
"Dreams of a World": A Dialogue... 28 Mar. 2005
By Rivka - Published on
Format: Audio CD
I was introduced to Ms. Isbin's music this winter during a trip when a friend had "Dreams of a World" on for 3 days straight, dawn to dusk. Typically, after listening to the same CD twice, one gets bored or annoyed. Yet, this was not the case; on the contrary "Dreams of a World" warmed us up --it was delicately beautiful. Ms. Isbin employs an astonishing pallet of colors, which she blends with unprecedented technical mastery and imaginative nuances throughout her oeuvre.

Cancion y danza for guitar, Agua E Vinho Mahar and Yerushala'im shel zahav are pieces which can easily be overly sentimental and languorous. Ms. Isbin keeps a pleasant balance between the melancholy in her phrasing, the underlying dynamism of her voice

and the warm character of the pieces. I can only recommend Dreams of a World to anyone in search of high quality music played by an artist, not merely a technician.
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
An Elegant Journey Around The World 8 July 2004
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Audio CD
From the moment I put this CD on my player to the time the CD ended, I was transfixed. This CD is such a delight to the ears, that it is difficult to put into words the emotions experienced while listening. I attended a NY Philharmonic performance several weeks ago with guest soloist Sharon Isbin. Her live performance was mesmerizing. She did an encore performance of "Recuerdos de la Alhambra" which took my breath away. The NY Times reviewer called it a "...virtuoso encore...". How wonderful that this piece appears on Dreams of a World. A CD that will transport you around the world with the flavors of outstanding compositions interpreted by a musician who is one of the greatest living classical guitarists today. Do yourself a favor and experience the magic.
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