A passion project that crosses musical boundaries, Tessa Lark’s The Stradgrass Sessions brings together some of America’s finest musicians to duet with Tessa – pianist Jon Batiste, mandolin-player Sierra Hull, double-bassist Edgar Meyer and fiddle-player Michael Cleveland – to explore the folk roots of classical music and traditional American bluegrass. It’s a heady mix, with an album a long-time in the making, which is now ready to be released on First Hand Records on 5 May. This will have you toe-tapping through the summer.
As a taster for the full album – out from First Hand Records on 5 May 2023 – here’s a video single from Tessa Lark’s album The Stradgrass Sessions. Among her various collaborators (also including Jon Batiste, Michael Cleveland and Sierra Hull), Tessa recorded two tracks with legendary double-bassist Edgar Meyer, with two movements from his 1999 Concert Duo for violin and bass. Here’s the fourth movement!
For her debut recital album on First Hand Records, violinist Tessa Lark plays solo Telemann and her own Appalachian Fantasy and is joined by pianist Amy Yang on a CD devoted to the Fantasy over 300 years. Three of Telemann’s Fantasies are interspersed by works from the classical, romantic and modern eras – Schubert, Kreisler and Ravel – and there’s a connection (by way of a shared theme) between the Schubert and Tessa’s own Appalachian Fantasy, here receiving its world premiere recording. This associated film, including an interview with producer Judith Sherman, introduces the recording which was released in September 2019.