June 8, 2010

SWEET & J-LO:

Zuill Bailey: Tiny Desk Concert (Tom Huizenga, 6/04/10, NPR: Tiny Desk Concert)

There's something about the rich and resonant sound of the cello that connects with many people. Perhaps it's because the instrument is the closest, they say, to the human voice.

That was certainly true when Zuill Bailey picked up his cello to play this lovely impromptu concert behind Bob Boilen's desk, here at NPR Music's Washington, D.C., headquarters.

Bailey doesn't play just any old cello. Yes, it is old — very old — but it's also special, built by the renowned Venetian maker Matteo Goffriller in 1693. That means Johann Sebastian Bach was all of 8 years old when Goffriller slapped on the final layer of shellac.

The instrument is unusually large, with a tawny orange hue, and one of only two Goffrillers which can boast an intricately carved Rosette under the fingerboard. And its sound? A full, round, burnished tone that pours forth with remarkable volume.

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 8, 2010 11:16 AM
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