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Choros Review, Eugene Weekly
Craig Einhorn, Choros
RELEASED: 2005, Unicorn Productions
GENRE: World music
"A down-and-dirty way for Americans to get a feel for choro," writes Craig Einhorn in the notes to his new CD, "is to drink two beers rather quickly and sing 'Give My Regards to Broadway.'" The Brazilian music form choro is derived from Euro-dances such as polkas and waltzes, loosened up by African slaves, and literally means "to cry" in Portuguese. What Einhorn means is that, like everything that comes out of Brazil, from bossa nova to forro to bikini bottoms on the beach, it swings.
Not all classically trained guitarists can pull this off, which is why some performances of the most famous choros, those written by Heitor Villa Lobos, can sound stiff in the wrong hands. But Eugene's Einhorn (who also overdubs electric bass and various percussion) has the touch, and with advice from Edson Oliveira and assistance from Kenny Sokoloff, Joaquin Espinoza, and Samba Ja's Brazilian-trained Jake Pegg on various percussion instruments, has put together a rich yet intimate survey of music by 20th century Brazilian and Argentine composers, including Villa Lobos, Baden Powell, and the famous "Tico-tico no Fubá" popularized by Carmen Miranda and Walt Disney. A treat for fans of guitar and world music. — Brett Campbell
Norwegian Review Ragnar Soberg, Ostlendingen/Hamar Dagblad.
Read by appr. 85.000 in south/easthern Norway
6 stars (out of 6)
Real feelings and good melodies
There is much junk on the Internet, but once in a while one shoots the golden bird. I was seeking after Mason Williams, who went right to the top with the instrumental "Classic Gas" on acoustic guitar back in 1967. "Craig Einhorn" came up, and surprising he has made "Obras" with Mason Williams as a composer on five works and a rhythm guitarist on one.
Craig is from Oregon, far in the Northwest USA, and is so well educated in classic acoustic guitar, that it could very well be done, dry and boring like much academic music. "Obras" is exactly the opposite.
The five compositions of Mason Williams include the beautiful "Classic Gas", without the outdated band from the original version, is the backbone of an album void of dry academic performance, but is packed with real feelings and good melodies.
Craig also takes with him a very pretty version of Don McLean's "Vincent", a concerto of Vivaldi, something plain and pretty of Lawrence M. Long and Frederico Torroba, and rounds it off with his own "Romanza del Desierto"; it should last from here to eternity and some more.
If you like classic guitar, try this one! You will probably not find it in the nearest record store. Neither at Statoil.
Curious? Write to EINHORN@EFN.ORG, and there you will meet the guitarist himself. That he will appreciate.
By: Ragnar Søberg
This article by Brett Campbell appeared in the "Eugene Weekly" in December 2001
Craig Einhorn Obras (2000), Unicorn Productions Guitarist and LCC faculty member Craig Einhorn has been a valuable addition to the music scene. On this delectable, Spanish-flavored album, Einhorn is abetted on many selections by local legend Mason Williams, five of whose songs, including the still-stirring "Classical Gas," appear here. But "Riding the Low Moon" and "Flamenco Lingo" by Williams are just as compelling, thanks in part to Art Maddox's lucid arrangements for an accompanying chamber ensemble composed of local luminaries, conducted by Maddox.
A small group also performs on Einhorn's engaging arrangement of Vivaldi's famous lute concerto in D, with Einhorn adding Baroque-style ornaments and overdubbing guitar, mandolin (in a continuo role) and an agave drum he made himself. Einhorn's solo selections are performed with his usual precision and flair; they include an appealing contemporary Brazilian choro and contemporary Spanish and American works, including attractive originals by Maddox and by Einhorn -- a melancholy romanza. Einhorn's warm guitar makes a perfect accompaniment to a gathering around the fire.