No Barriers: A Blind Man’s Journey to Kayak the Grand Canyon
Erik Weihenmayer and Buddy Levy
Thomas Dunne Books: 2017
After Weihenmayer became the first and only blind man to reach the top of Mount Everest, he decided his next adventure would be to traverse the treacherous Grand Canyon by kayak. He and Levy, a Washington State University instructor, chronicle the turbulent whitewater journey, and the insights gained by Weihenmayer and other trailblazers he has met.
Unusual Punishment: Inside the Walla Walla Prison, 1970–1985
WSU Press: 2016
Murray was an employee of the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services … » More …
88 Squared Piano Duo
Albany Records: 2015
WSU piano faculty members Jeffrey and Karen Savage are the formidable pianists of 88 Squared, a critically acclaimed piano duo. This remarkable recording of Liebermann’s music for two pianos will only add to their international reputation. Liebermann’s piano music requires keen attention to color, texture, balance, and lyricism. His ample use of counterpoint requires absolute precision between the four hands.
88 Squared … » More …
Michael Kirkpatrick ’01
The human voice is our oldest acoustic instrument and it’s still one of the most captivating. Add a few well struck strings—just a few chords even—and you have a remarkable symphony of bass, harmony, lyrics, and emotion.
This is the beguiling formula of Michael Kirkpatrick ’01. He’s a troubadour, both self-described and according to the 2014 Telluride Troubadour Competition, which he won. Performing some 150 dates a year from his Fort Collins, Colorado, base, he writes his own tunes and for the most part plays all … » More …
Greg Duncan ’98
New Origins Records, 2012
The Latin-themed recording is one of the great subgenres of jazz, going back at least as far as Duke Ellington’s “Caravan” and running through the likes of Dizzy Gillespie’s “Manteca” and the Getz/Gilberto collaboration that brought “Girl from Ipanema” to hi-fi consoles across the land. Greg Duncan is stepping up with his own contribution, marshaling an Illinois Arts Council grant and Kickstarter funding to bring us an … » More …
Yarn Owl, Montaña Y Caballo, 2011
Tyler Armour ’10, Tim Meinig ’10, Ted Powers ’09, and Javier Suarez ’10
For fans of earthy, Northwest indie-folk in the vein of Seattle’s Band of Horses and Fleet Foxes, Pullman’s own Yarn Owl delivers a lush and satisfying debut. Montaña Y Caballo, the band’s first full-length album, was recorded in a barn just south of Moscow, Idaho, and every song evokes the varied scenery of the Pacific Northwest. The … » More …
Charles Argersinger, 2010
I have long admired Dr. Argersinger’s work so I was eager to hear his new CD, L.A. Rendezvous. Argersinger (a retired WSU music professor) is a consummate composer of contemporary art music and a superb jazz arranger and composer, so it was no surprise that the album exhibits a high level of craftsmanship. What did surprise me is the variety of instrumental and vocal selections featured on the album.
The CD consists of … » More …
“The heartbeat is the basis of rhythm.”
For 40 years, Washington State University alumnus John Elwood has followed that beat to create music and instruments.
Making something from nothing, to share with others, is his delight, he said. He carves wood into a variety of instruments. He also makes “canjos” – a take-off of a banjo made from string, a solid wood neck and a can. The can from Cougar Gold – a cheese made at the WSU Pullman creamery – is a local favorite
To learn more about Elwood, his music and the canjo, watch the video.
Spark & Shine Records, 2010
Insistently local, yet tapping into a national legacy of country and blues rock, Massy Ferguson’s second album Hard Water travels the back roads of Washington and treacherous paths of relationships with guitar, drum, and organ-driven songs.
Dave Goedde ’92, Adam Monda ’94, and Jason “J” Kardong ’94 team up with Ethan Anderson and Tony Mann to play the Seattle-based band’s country-tinged rock reminiscent of The Jayhawks, Bruce Springsteen, … » More …
John Elwood, a maker of fine musical instruments and a 2001 graduate of Washington State University, crafts banjos from WSU cheese cans (like the iconic Cougar Gold).
Watch John play his “canjo” below and read more about his work in the spring 2011 issue.
Cougar fight song played on the canjo.
“Shortnin’ bread” played on the canjo (listen for the lyrical twist).
In addition to canjos, John plays folk music and creates whimsical and beautiful instruments like the goblin dulcimer … » More …