Selected Songs (1895-1921) by Charles Ives
Born in Danbury, Connecticut on 20 October 1874, Charles Ives pursued what is perhaps one of the most extraordinary and paradoxical careers in American music history. Businessman by day and composer by night, Ives's vast output has gradually brought him recognition as the most original and significant American composer of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
This collection of Ives art songs is taken from 114 tunes that the composer had printed up, at his own expense, and then sent to a long list of musicians, critics and libraries. There are art and parlor songs such as had been popular at the end of the 19th century, arrangements of hymns, peaceful lullabies, serious and comic songs. While some of the more atonal, harmonically adventurous and pianistic would not lend themselves for the medium of voice and guitar adaptations, many of the simpler and more direct ones work well on a very intimate level.
Although they have been placed in an order that flows well from one to the other, they could certainly be performed as individual art songs in a concert setting.