This week's picks include a new, American take on the Four Seasons and the stateside debut of the Dominican "duque" of bachata.
Philip Glass – Violin Concerto #2, The American Four Seasons (Orange Mountain Music)
His operas and film scores get most of the limelight, but Philip Glass has continued to write symphonies and concertos. His new recording features the "Violin Concerto #2," subtitled "The American Four Seasons." It was written for violinist Robert McDuffie as a companion piece to the famous Vivaldi Four Seasons. Unlike the Vivaldi, though, Glass doesn’t tell us which movement corresponds to which season – preferring to let each listener come up with their own interpretation. - Picked by John Schaefer
Joan Soriano – El Duque De La Bachata (Iaso Records)
Joan Soriano is a rising star of bachata, the guitar-driven music that caught fire in the Dominican Republic during the 1960s. Soriano’s brand of bachata is a bit rootsier than what you might hear in a New York bodega -- perhaps because he has played with many godfathers of the genre. And on his American debut, Soriano stakes his claim in that royalty as a duke with an album called “El Duque de la Bachata.” - Picked by Joel Meyer