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Take Five With...

Take Five With Diane Nalini

By Published: May 27, 2007
Also, when I write both words and music for an original song, usually the melody comes first for me. However, working with the Bard's words meant that the flow and phrasing of his words had to dictate melody. This was a really fun challenge because it imposes a different kind of constraint on your composing. I enjoyed the process very much, although this was not my first time setting poetry to music. I had done Tennyson's "Cradle Song on the previous album, Tales... My Mama told me and have also set a couple of Garcia Lorca poems (not recorded) to music.

Because I painted all the illustrations for each page of song lyrics, I felt very connected to the entire presentation side of the project too. And all the musicians on this album are long-time collaborators and dear friends of mine, many of whom I've known and made music with for fifteen or sixteen years, so it had a great "family feel to it too.

Did you know... I don't have a driver's license! I grew up in Montreal, a city with great public transport, and then lived in Oxford, England, for seven years, a small city which is very easy to get around in by bicycle. I'm quite proud of not owning a car, as it really reduces my carbon footprint. But I do want to get a license, just for emergencies... Some day, when I have a moment to spare...

CDs you are listening to now: Nancy Wilson & Cannonball Adderley, Nancy Wilson & Cannonball Adderley (Capitol); Joel Miller, Mandala (Effendi Records); Michael Jackson, Thriller (Epic)—just bought this on CD (25 years after buying the LP, still rocks!); Amy Winehouse - Back to Black (Island Records); Aaron Copland & His Contemporaries, The Choir of New College - Edward Higginbottom conducting (Avie).

Desert Island picks: Duke Ellington Orchestra, Far East Suite (Bluebird); Billie Holiday, Live at Carnegie Hall (Verve); J.S. Bach, St. John's Passion - Choir of New College (Naxos); Alison Krauss + Union Station, Live (Rounder Records); Gilberto Gil, Acoustic, (Atlantic Jazz).

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