MIC's Listen to Norway series continues with Sigmund Groven's 'Philharmonic Harmonica'
The harmonica is both the most common and everyday of instruments and the most complex and exclusive. The latter facts refer to the chromatic harmonica, which is perhaps the single instrument with the least number of professional players in the world. The masters of the chromatic harmonica can be counted on one hand, the late Tommy Reilly the greatest of all, and his pupil Sigmund Groven arguably the leading living player today. Groven is a very well known and beloved musician in his homeland Norway. His musical career is diverse and his musicianship versatile. He has played all styles and in every context imaginable. Internationally he is acknowledged as a unique soloist; he has performed across the globe and collaborated with leading composers, musicians and institutions. One of his latest projects was with legendary Beatles producer George Martin. Despite an extremely comprehensive career, and innumerable recordings, the present record is Groven’s first album of original works for harmonica and orchestra. It features contributions ranging from Darius Milhaud to contemporary composers. Originally written for harmonica, the pieces emphasise the characteristics of the instrument and fully display the mastery of Groven’s playing.