Thursday, March 28, 2013
Alec Wilder (University of Illinois Press), by Philip Lambert
Although not widely recognized today, Alec Wilder’s songs were sung by Tony Bennett and Frank Sinatra and performed by Keith Jarrett and Kenny Burrell. His compositions for the concert hall combined jazz with classical; he worked as an arranger and wrote scores for documentary filmmaker Jerome Hill. Wilder’s life and career are thoroughly summarized by Baruch College music professor Philip Lambert, who finds the composer’s love for Bach was balanced with an openness to anything that caught his ear. He “took pleasure in testing the limits of traditional categories and prejudices,” leaving him vulnerable to falling into the cracks.