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James Taylor performs a surprise show during the 2015 Newport Folk Festival

James Taylor performs a surprise show during the 2015 Newport Folk Festival at Fort Adams State Park on July 25, 2015 in Newport, Rhode Island. James Taylor with Nick Halley, percussion, keyboard, backup vocals, Kate Markowitz, backup vocals, Kim Taylor, backup vocals, Jon Suters, Bass.
(July 24, 2015 – Source: Taylor Hill/Getty Images North America)

Nick records with Old Man Luedecke and Tim O’Brien, new CD to be released in June

From Old Man Luedecke, on his new recordingLuedeckeSession2015:

“Very exciting news round here is a new album in the works. We’ll get it out by June in time for the festivals this summer. 2 weeks ago tonight I picked up Tim O’Brien and his lovely gal Jan at the airport in Halifax quite late for an inspired week of music making in a beautiful cabin I built by hand on my land. Can’t wait to share the results. My first recording project I’ve done at home and the first that required a backhoe to clear a road through the snow to get the studio gear in. Exciting. Look for it on True North records sometime in June or July, inshalla.”

Photo credit: John Adams, Stonehouse Sound Music Production

Look out for the new Capella Regalis recording!

CR-CD_Cover-V03The debút CD featuring Nick’s men and boys choir (5 years old this season) is coming out this fall.

“My Eyes for Beauty Pine” (the title taken from the first track – Herbert Howells’s stunning setting of that text) is a recording in the old-school vein: about 25 minutes in length; 6 tracks in total.

If, like Nick,  you’re a sucker for things like liner notes and beautiful packaging, the physical thing will be available for purchase for $10 at

It will also be online at the various standard spots.

It is quite beautiful.

Müller sings the Evangelist in Bach’s St. Matthew Passion Chapel Choir performances

Rufus Muller

CHRONICLE HERALD – ANDREA  NEMETZ  ARTS  REPORTER   Published  April  3,  2014  -­  4:34pm


When it came to creating The Evangelist for Bach’s St. Matthew Passion, Rufus Müller had a wealth of material to draw on.


“My style as an evangelist is my father’s style in the pulpit,” says Muller, born in Kent, England, to a German father who was an Anglican priest.


“It felt like it was second nature. He was a very amusing and arresting preacher.”


The tenor, who sang in church choirs from the age of six, will be the Evangelist when the Chapel Choir of the University of King’s College, under the direction of Paul Halley, presents the dramatic masterwork for solo voices, double choir and double orchestra on Saturday at Saint John’s Anglican Church in Lunenburg and Sunday at All Saints Cathedral in Halifax. Both shows are at 4 p.m.


Also featured are Ensemble Regale, the boy sopranos of Capella Regalis, Dion Mazerolle as Jesus, Tyler Duncan as Pilate, counter- tenor Daniel Taylor, soprano Helene Brunet, mezzo-soprano Sarah Myatt and tenor Marc Molomot.


Müller estimates he has performed the role of the Evangelist at least 100 times, in locales including Lucerne, Munich, Toronto, Calgary, New York, London, Birmingham, Goteborg, Stockholm, Copenhagen, Dortmund, Bordeaux and Washington, D.C. A New York Times review said Muller “gave the strongest theatrical performance of a Bach Evangelist that I have encountered, and one of the most musical.”


And if he had to choose only two pieces he would be allowed to sing for the rest of his life, it would be the St. Matthew Passion and Schubert’s Winterreise.


The St. Matthew Passion is an extraordinary story, “even if you are an aetheist,” he says, sitting in a Halifax coffee shop after a well- received master class for Dalhousie voice students.


“The way Bach sets it brings out all the humanity, the blood, guts, sex, sensuality and tactile nature of my sense of religion. The language of the chorales and arias is sensuous and physical, as well as spiritual. It combines everything.”


The role is both physically and emotionally difficult, continues Müller, noting that the piece is three hours long and that while he doesn’t sing the whole three hours, his performance doesn’t stop when he’s not singing.


“The big challenge is, the pitch is higher than in Bach’s time. It is difficult vocally with a whole set of unique challenges.


“As an Evangelist, I have to know when I’m singing lyrically and when it is purely narrative. The dynamic range is huge. It is mostly very syllabic. You never get a chance to go for a sound without being interupted by syllables. There are hardly any melismas (more sound than syllable). And it has to bounce out of nowhere with no buildup, and it gets more difficult as it goes on.”


Müller, who says he was “singing before he could talk,” at one point considered a career in acting and says he is still acting while singing.


“I’ve made it my business to work out ways to tell the story and make it as natural and compelling as possible, regardless of whether I’m in good voice.”


The charming singer performed with Symphony Nova Scotia in Handel’s Messiah in 2006 and in Handel’s Ode To St. Cecilia at St. Andrew’s United Church in Halifax in 2003.


This will be his first time performing with Halley, and in both Lunenburg and at All Saints Cathedral, and he says the St. Matthew Passion will be done in an almost semi-liturgical way.


“I like the idea of doing it as a devotion, as well as just a performance.”


Müller was a choral scholar at New College, Oxford, and had been planning to study modern languages before deciding on music. He speaks six languages, which helps in his career as a recitalist, including English, German, French, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese, and jokes he can also say “I’m an opera singer from London” in modern Greek.


Müller has lived in New York since 1992; he moved there to study with Thomas LoMonaco. He is associate professor of music at Bard College, New York.



Presented by: The Chapel Choir of the University of King’s College under the direction of Paul Halley

When: Saturday, St. John’s Anglican Church, Lunenburg; Sunday, Cathedral Church of All Saints,

Halifax. Both shows, 4 p.m.

What: Story of Christ’s Passion, using the

narrative from the Gospel of St. Matthew and texts by Bach’s librettist, Picander. Scored for solo voices, double choir and double orchestra

Featuring: Rufus Müller, Evangelist; chamber orchestra Ensemble Regale led by David Greenberg including players from Halifax, Montreal, Toronto and New York; the boy sopranos of Capella Regalis and soloists from Canada and the United States including Dion Mazerolle (Jesus), Tyler Duncan (Pilate), Daniel Taylor (countertenor), Hélène Brunet (soprano), Sarah Myatt (mezzo soprano), and Marc Molomot (tenor)

Tickets: Lunenburg — $10 student, $25, $30 at the door. 634-9994. Halifax — $15 student, $30, $45 priority, $100 patron. or 422-1270 ext. 261.