Winter Songs: Vocal Music of Robert Paterson

by American Modern Ensemble

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    Pre-order of Winter Songs: Vocal Music of Robert Paterson. You get 4 tracks now (streaming via the free Bandcamp app and also available as a high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more), plus the complete album the moment it’s released.
    releases December 3, 2013

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CAPTCHA - I. duchenp fled
CAPTCHA - II. Henry falutch
CAPTCHA - III. youJusto nicely
CAPTCHA - IV. Voix gustroor
Winter Songs - I. Icicles Filled the Long Window
Winter Songs - II. Dark Day, Warm and Windy
Winter Songs - III. The Snow Man
Winter Songs - V. Old Story
Winter Songs - VI. Neither Snow
Eating Variations - 1. My Body, a Temple
Eating Variations - 2. The Hog
Eating Variations - 3. Even the Dyspeptic Must Eat
Eating Variations - 4. The Dietary Moralist
Eating Variations - 5. The Happy Medium
Thursday - 1. Introduction
Thursday - 2. 9:15 a.m.
Thursday - 3. 10:42 a.m.
Thursday - 4. 5:09 p.m.
Thursday - 5. 6:05 p.m.
Batter's Box - 1. Batting Practice
Batter's Box - 2. Catching
Batter's Box - 3. Rain Delay
Batter's Box - 4. At Bat


Winter Songs is the first album dedicated entirely to the vocal music of award-winning composer Robert Paterson. All works on the album are performed by the New York City based American Modern Ensemble and produced by multi-Grammy winning producer Adam Abeshouse. Each work features combinations of voice, flute, clarinet, violin, cello, piano and percussion. The featured vocalists are some of the finest in North America, including Jesse Blumberg, Robert Gardner, Nancy Allen Lundy, David Neal and Dimitri Pittas.

The works on this album are inspired by a variety of diverse subjects, and in many cases, use unconventional texts. CAPTCHA, the first work on the album for tenor and piano, uses reCAPTCHA texts for each movement. CAPTCHA stands for Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart, and CAPTCHAs (or in this case, reCAPTCHAs) consist of combinations or real words and gibberish words. Selected reCAPTCHA texts were used for all of the movements.

WInter Songs for bass-baritone and chamber ensemble consists of settings of winter-themed poems by A. R. Ammons, Billy Collins, Robert Creeley, Wallace Stevens and Richard Wilbur. Eating Variations for baritone and chamber ensemble is a setting of poems by New York City-based poet Ron Singer, and is a sendup on food faddism. The texts for Thursday for soprano and piano consist of fictitious answering machine messages, and Batter's Box for tenor and piano is a series of texts inspired by legendary New York Mets baseball catcher Mike Piazza.


releases December 3, 2013

Produced by Adam Abeshouse
Performances by the American Modern Ensemble
Executive Producer: Victoria Paterson for American Modern Recordings
Engineered, edited, mixed and mastered by Adam Abeshouse
Winter Songs, Eating Variations and Thursday recorded June 9-11, 2011 at the Academy of Arts and Letters, New York, NY, USA
Batter’s Box recorded June 12, 2012 and CAPTCHA recorded April 25, 2013 at Westchester Studios
Assistant Engineer for Academy Sessions: Andy Ryder
Rehearsal Studio: Ayers Percussion
Percussion Rental: New York Percussion Service
Piano Rental: Klavierhaus
Piano Technician: Ed Court
Album Package & Booklet Design: Pat Burke
Winter Photos: Dennis O’Brien



all rights reserved


American Modern Recordings New York, New York

American Modern Recordings (AMR) specializes in recordings of contemporary classical music, with an emphasis on music by living American composers. AMR is also the house label for the American Modern Ensemble (AME) and its affiliated ensembles. Our albums are critically-acclaimed and top-sellers on Amazon, CDBaby, iTunes, and everywhere recordings are sold. ... more

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Track Name: CAPTCHA - V. Secretary metadon
V. Secretary metadon

Secretary metadon
she cartell
AND usedmeni
admitted splense

WILLIAM workorse
octache barbarous
rapedat treason
thou Crustop

lawastty REBECCA
courcte expression
operations naturE
TIRESOME ostpter

Petsra has
orsrans charcoal
Pesistri charcoal
heckdin soul

orypeue Robert
Wslykmi Robert
oongled ROBERT
idDirct ROBERT
apparently cDumber
Inviews thee

ranentri pronounces
SEVEN atthats
respecting tusMore
uropley END.

Texts by CAPTCHA (2012-13) via Project Gutenberg.
Arranged by Robert Paterson. Texts in the public domain.
Track Name: Winter Songs - IV. Boy at The Window
IV. Boy at the Window
Richard Wilbur

Seeing the snowman standing all alone
In dusk and cold is more than he can bear.
The small boy weeps to hear the wind prepare
A night of gnashings and enormous moan.
His tearful sight can hardly reach to where
The pale-faced figure with bitumen eyes
Returns him such a god-forsaken stare
As outcast Adam gave to Paradise.

The man of snow is, nonetheless, content,
Having no wish to go inside and die.
Still, he is moved to see the youngster cry.
Though frozen water is his element,
He melts enough to drop from one soft eye
A trickle of the purest rain, a tear
For the child at the bright pane surrounded by
Such warmth, such light, such love, and so much fear.

Boy at the Window from Things of This World, Copyright © 1952 and renewed 1980 by Richard Wilbur, reproduced by permission of Houghton Miffline Publishing Company.
Track Name: Thursday - 6. 6:15 p.m.
6. 6:15 PM

Hi honey, it’s Tess:
it’s three o’clock here
so it must be six where you are...
I just opened the mail and I love your picture...
You look so beautiful!
I’m sending you a...I’m sending a surprise.
I love you, call me when you get home,
it’s just me and the cat tonight...
Track Name: Batter's Box - 5. Postgame Interview
5. Postgame Interview

You always ask yourself,
“What could I have done differently?”
There’s plenty I could tell you —
there was a curve in the third
that I really should’ve hit,
there was that slider in the sixth
that I should’ve stopped.
But sometimes the game
doesn’t go your way,
there’s things you can’t control:
We worked hard, and today,
that’s as good as we could do.
Sure, I wish
I could’ve walked to the mound
after that last out,
knowing I called all the right pitches,
knowing I left an imprint on the game.
I don‘t know if I can say that today.
Ask me again tomorrow.

Sometimes, I think
the only thing that keeps me going
is coffee and Advil.
But the rest of the team,
they’re feeling strong.
And they’re still thinking on their feet,
you know?
Mentally, the season beats the hell out of you,
it’s like the feeling you get after
running a marathon,
but doing it everyday.
It takes a toll.
So you learn, you gotta completely
minimize your mistakes.
We haven’t been doing that,
but we can,
if we work hard,
from now through October,
because the World Series is for people who are doing,
not for people who think they’re due.

Yeah, thanks...
Honestly, we really don’t know
what’s gonna happen to him,
nobody does.
But we’re getting some tests back.
I’m going over there now,
take my mom out for some supper.
He keeps saying,
he’s gonna see me in the Series,
and I want to believe him.
The bottom line is,
whatever else happens,
I gotta keep playing.
I’ve worked too hard to get here.
I know this can be gone
as easily as it comes.