Having listened to the work of Florence Price, performed by the amazing Dr. Karen Walwyn, I am perplexed. I had not heard music that made me ponder as much as this. There are obviously no lyrics, but the notes tell a story in a language I did not know I understood until now. From the Prelude, I am met with an upbeat tune that cascades to a lower tone and repeated this motion. I remember closing my eyes and letting my creativity go wild while listening, I remember being carried to a place of comfort, but while there, I felt as if my comfort wasn’t safe. As the piano cascaded, I then envisioned someone taking my comfort away as if someone were taking a blanket from a baby. Being able to portray these very complex feelings through notes alone is a gift, one that Price and Dr. Walwyn possess in abundance.
There was no shortage of complex scenarios created by music while listening to this CD; it was an absolute journey. From the feeling of walking down the street, confused as if Price didn’t recognize her home in the track “In the land of cotton”, to the Very upbeat, happy-go-lucky track that is “Joy in June”, and my personal favorite “Child asleep”, where price seems to have written a reflective, almost prayer-like track that sounds like it is being played by someone hiding from something, or someone. Even tracks like “Arkansas Jitter”, create an almost mischievous feeling that reminds me of an old western bar scene. Price’s Range is phenomenal, and Dr. Walwyn’s performance of her pieces was quite the same. This CD is a must-listen.