James Todd, principal cellist of the Arapahoe Philharmonic in Denver, makes a crossover from classical music to his own original compositions on his debut album, Quiet Beauty. The music naturally bears a heavy classical influence, but it also reflects its name in being calm and melodic. Todd frequently overdubs several celli, creating his own chamber orchestra in which the instruments harmonize with each other and with William Morse's piano. Todd gives prominent credit to Morse, putting his name on the album cover and his biography in the CD booklet. (The pianist is also music director and principal conductor of the Jefferson Symphony Orchestra in Golden, CO, holding the same posts with the Evergreen Chamber Orchestra in Evergreen, CO.) Morse is even given his own solo track, a reprise of the title tune. Quiet Beauty may be a busman's holiday for a working professional musician who felt the need to flex some otherwise unused musical muscles, but it demonstrates that there can be more of a role for the cello in music than the relatively restricted part it plays in symphony orchestras.
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AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann
feat: Bill Morse