The music of composer John Carbon –
Expressive works of beauty and originality
Composer John Carbon has received wide acclaim for his original yet communicative musical voice, with works that are characterized by melodic richness, poetic expression and an original tonality.
John Carbon studied composition at Rice University and at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where his teachers were Thea Musgrave, Paul Cooper, and Peter Racine Fricker. With a catalogue of works which includes three full-length operas, Marie Laveau, Benjamin, and Disappearing Act, along with over 70 choral, orchestral, vocal, and chamber works, Carbon’s music continues to gain prominence due to an increasing number of high-profile performances and recordings. John Carbon has a special flair for the virtuosity and drama needed for concertos and has completed works in this genre for clarinet, violin, viola, piano, and double bass. more
“… in the Madeleines, we hear the excellence of the piano recording, rich and full, with a clear top, enabling each and every textural elucidation of Graff's to shine forth. … The final piece is the twelve-movement Astro Dogs (“Twelve Zodiacal Pieces,” 2019). … Dogs are assigned according to three methods: esoteric astrology, traditional (sun sign) astrology and finally the composer’s own impressions of canine character traits. Perhaps that is why “Bichon Frise” ends up as a sort of unpredictable scherzo, a dog known for its unpredictability; a terrific performance by Graff here. "
“… There is a wistful improvisatory, almost Chopinesque feel to the opening ‘Mémoire triste dans un café’, and a darker, more funereal nostalgia in ‘François et ses yeux dangereux’, … The final piece, ‘Madeleine déteste les devoirs’, on the other hand, has a driving rhythm, with disobediently boisterous hints at children’s songs. The three Impromptus, … are dreamy and again nostalgia features highly, particularly in the wandering second. The third however is much livelier … Astro Dogs … are great little character pieces..."