CES 2005: Telarc International built upon their CES debut last year by bringing more SACDs to the show this year along with a new site location, more staff, new SACD releases and samplers and a way to listen to all of their SACD releases.
High Fidelity Review readers will recall that Telarc experimented with a low key presence last year at the San Remo location of The Show, an audiophile flavored expo that is held at the same time as the Consumer Electronics Show. Last year, Telarc’s approach was to field a table at the back of the entrance area to the Conference Center area at The Show which offered some new SACD releases and SACD samplers for discount prices. The idea was well received by those who happened to be at The Show, and more specifically, at one of The Show’s less traveled areas.
Moving to CES and the Alexis Park
This year, Telarc International moved their booth to the CES Show itself and the Alexis Park Music Room area. Recognizing that this would bring them more interest and traffic, the firm brought along a beefed up staff led by Amanda Sweet, the firm’s Director of SACD Marketing and Rob Saslow Telarc’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing. On opening day, CES attendees were treated to the chance to chat with Dave Love, the President of Telarc’s Heads Up Jazz label as well.
Another change was the addition of two Sony CX777ES 400 disc SACD Changers courtesy of Sony Electronics that were paired with dedicated headphone amps and Sennheiser HD 600 headphones. Using the large capacity SACD changers enabled Telarc to set up two listening stations where show attendees could preview the entire catalog of Telarc Stereo and Surround Sound/Stereo SACDs at the show.
To make the process complete, the Telarc folks had a binder which contained the SACD booklets for all of the albums with a number corresponding to the number in the 400 disc SACD changer. A very clever approach to previewing and selling copies of their entire SACD catalog at the show at discounted pricing ($15 per SACD during the show)!
2 New SACD Samplers and a Web Special Offer
Starting off the new SACDs offered at the show were Telarc SACD Samplers No. 4 and No. 5 which will be in music stores on January 25th.
SACD Sampler No. 4 is another in the label’s series of “Pure DSD” Classical Music SACD discs. It features 11 selections from some of the Classical Music SACDs released in 2004 from artists including the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet, Erich Kunzel & the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, Robert Spano & the Atlanta Symphony and Chorus, and Paavo Jarvi conducting the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Also included on the Classical Music SACD Sampler are selections from the Boston Baroque’s Mozart Flute Concertos and the Turtle Island String Quartet Surround Sound SACDs which are due in stores this month and in February.
Turning to SACD Sampler No. 5, this one features selections from both Telarc and their Heads Up jazz label. Included in the 14 tracks on this sampler are selections from McCoy Tyner, Marion Meadows, Andy Narrell, Pieces of a Dream, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Spyro Gyra, Junior Brown, Hiromi, Geri Allen, The Manhattan Transfer and Tierney Sutton. In a bit of overlap with their Classical Music catalog, Sampler No. 5 also has selections from the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet and the Turtle Island String Quartet.
Taking a page from last year, Telarc is also offering the two new SACD samplers for a limited time for $30 – or a set of all 6 of their Surround Sound SACD Samplers for $70. If you were unable to attend CES and want to nab some of these samplers at an attractive price, I’d suggest visiting the Telarc web site and checking the special pricing out.
New SACDs Featuring Michel Camilo and Music of Ivan Lins
Two new Jazz and Pop Surround Sound Super Audio CDs also were debuted at CES. As with the two SACD samplers, these will be available in music stores on January 25th.
A Love Affair: The Music of Ivan Lins is a collection of 11 of the Brazilian composer’s best known compositions performed by an all star cast of musicians. The Surround Sound SACD features Sting, Vanessa Williams, Grover Washington Jr., Chaka Khan, Brenda Russell, Peter White, Freddy Cole, Dianne Reeves and many more artists. Included on the SACD is Sting’s performance of the song She Walks This Earth which won him a Grammy Award when the album was initially issued as a Stereo CD by Telarc. The tribute album was produced by Jason Miles who also performs on the disc along with Ivan Lins.
Michel Camilo’s Solo is the Jazz pianist’s 3rd Surround Sound SACD on Telarc and his first Telarc solo album. Following his popular Surround Sound SACDs entitled Triangulo (Telarc SACD-63549) and Live at the Blue Note (Telarc SACD-63574), Solo was recorded direct to DSD last May in a live session without overdubs.
According to Telarc, the SACD’s 12 selections on Camilo’s Solo album “are organized into chapters spotlighting four Brazilian gems (Francis Hime’s “Minha” and “Atrбs Da Porta,” along with Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “Luiza” and “Corcovado”), four jazz standards (Ricardel/Evans’ “The Frim Fram Sauce,” Monk’s “‘Round Midnight,” and Gershwin’s “Our Love Is Here To Stay” and “Someone To Watch Over Me”), and three new Camilo originals. The album closes with a reworking of the pianist/composer’s popular “Suntan.””
Two Pure DSD Classical Music Releases from Boston Baroque and Turtle Island String Quartet
Wrapping up the 6 new SACDs from CES, Telarc also rolled out the newest album by the Boston Baroque as well as a new release featuring the Turtle Island String Quartet. Both are newly recorded, “pure DSD” releases from Telarc. While the Boston Baroque Surround Sound SACD is also due in music stores on January 25th, the Turtle Island String Quartet is slated to be a web only release until it arrives in music stores on February 22nd.
Boston Baroque’s Mozart Flute Concertos and Jupiter Symphony features the ensemble performing Mozart’s Concerto for Flute in D Major and in G Major as well as the Jupiter Symphony on period instruments. Telarc notes that “Martin Pearlman, founder, music director and conductor of Boston Baroque, is among this country’s leading interpreters of baroque and classical music on both period and modern instruments. Hailed for his “fresh, buoyant interpretations” and his “vivid realizations teeming with life,” Pearlman has been acclaimed for more than twenty-five years in orchestral, choral and operatic repertoire from
Monteverdi to Beethoven.”
4 + Four is a new SACD which features performances by two different music ensembles – the Turtle Island String Quartet and the Ying Quartet. Telarc says that “The album is a diverse mix of classical and jazz by two of today’s most acclaimed ensembles. The initial idea for the project was spawned several years ago at a board meeting of Chamber Music America, where David Balakrishnan of Turtle Island String Quartet and Phillip Ying of the Ying Quartet happened to be sitting next to one another. Deep into an intense group discussion on expanding the definition of chamber music, Balakrishnan and Ying began a side conversation of their own. Ying says ‘If you happened to be walking by on any afternoon during a certain week in November 2002,” says Ying, “you would have seen tables and chairs all pushed aside and heard the sound of two string quartets hard at work, deeply immersed in creating a brand new repertoire.”
New Release Date for SACD of Zander & Mahler’s 1st
Also noteworthy is the news that Telarc has moved back the release date of the Philharmonia Orchestra with Benjamin Zander’s recording of Mahler’s 1st Symphony. This new album, which will be a day and date release on both Surround Sound SACD and Stereo CD has been changed from May 24th to October 24, 2005.