Isaac Albéniz – Suite espanola No. 1, Op. 47: No. 5. Asturias (Leyenda) (arr. for guitar)
Listen beautiful relax classics on our Youtube channel.
Wed, 03/15/2023 – 12:57
Spain, 1881–1973, active France
Man with a Guitar, 1915, printed 1929
Graphic Arts Council Fund in memory of Sigbert Marcy
Els Quatre Gats was a favorite gathering space for the Catalan modernists as the19th century flowed into the 20th. The original iteration of the café, located in Barcelona’s Gothic Quarter, only lasted from 1897 until 1903 but in this brief span bustled with creative exchanges fueled by copious amounts of absinthe. It was here in 1899 that a 17 year old Pablo Picasso staged his first public art exhibition. The eager young artist also designed signage, menus and other ephemera for Els Quatre Gats, a space frequented by a circle of artists he admired, including the Spanish composer Isaac Albéniz. Whether the two men interacted directly is hard to know but it’s likely their lungs circulated the same smoky café air on occasion. Like Picasso, Albéniz’s work tapped into his Spanish heritage and he wrote “Asturias (Leyenda),” for the piano in a phrasing that mimicked Andalusian flamenco guitar. The specific recording of “Asturias (Leyenda)” that we have paired with Picasso’s Man with Guitar, transposes the music back to its source of sonic inspiration in an arrangement for guitar. This is a nod to Picasso, who returned to the subject of the guitar time and time again, perpetually transforming this instrument so central to Spanish music, into new forms.