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Re: R.I.P. George Winston

R.I.P. George Winston
June 09, 2023 12:20PM

His December album was one of the “Christmas” albums I didn’t mind hearing when I worked at record stores during college winter breaks. Sentimental but it was kinda nice.

It could also be argued that Windham Hill was an amazingly successful "indie" label; built an entire parallel marketing and distribution mechanism. And they did the Downy Mildew records, so there is a Trouser Press linkage!
Re: R.I.P. George Winston
June 09, 2023 03:46PM
I admired Winston's skill, though I can't say I was ever taken in by any of his music. But he did found his own label called Dancing Cat, and one of the first things he put out was a mindblowing (for me in the late 80s) record by the great New Orleans pianist Professor Longhair, who mentored Dr. John and was/is one of those unsung influences on blues and jazz keyboardists alike. So thanks to Winston for that.

Windham Hill got eclectic by the early 90s - they even had a jazz subsidiary at one point. The great Billy Childs was introduced to the world through them. Timbuk 3 was also on WH near the end of their career.

And a lot of WH's eighties records - particularly the solo guitar and synth records - have been cited by modern practitioners as influential.
Re: R.I.P. George Winston
June 10, 2023 12:16PM
Michael Toland Wrote:
> Timbuk 3 was also on WH near the end of
> their career.

Jules Shear made a record for the WH subsidiary High Street as well.
Re: R.I.P. George Winston
June 10, 2023 05:38AM
There was another new age label called Private Music, which had on it's roster many of the big names in the genre....Yanni, Suzanne Ciani, Tangerine Dream, Ravi Shankar (!)...hell, even Ringo Starr released an album or two on PM...my favorite artist on that label was Andy Summers, one of my fave guitarists of all time, I hope to see him on his tour this summer. He released 4 albums and they are all gems, the first consisting of gorgeous sonic wallpaper till his last two albums which are heavily jazz-influenced. PM was then absorbed by RCA in 1996, I believe.

Shame to see George Winston pass, I thought his seasonal albums (Summer and Autumn in particular) were lovely.
Re: R.I.P. George Winston
June 11, 2023 08:27PM
I’ll admit I’ve been listening to his stuff since I read about his passing (sadly an all too common occurrence). Obviously he had technical chops but more importantly I think he had a skill for capturing a mood, a setting, a season, etc

Windham Hill was a label that absolutely has an aesthetic mindset… releases with similar album covers, similar musically. I’ve gone through Windham Hill phases in my record collecting because of that. And from experience can tell you that you likely won’t find anything like Eno or Laraaji there.

BUT, if you can remember visiting an artsy gift shop in the 90’s, and the music they were likely playing because that music reminds you of the person you were with, or how contented you should’ve been but weren’t, or how clueless you really were as you strolled through that gift shop then compared to now….

….if THAT’s what you’re looking for in a musical experience, Windham Hill may have JUST what the doctor ordered.
Re: R.I.P. George Winston
June 12, 2023 11:27AM
Windham Hill founder William Ackerman was heavily inspired by John Fahey and "American primitive guitar," but somehow he took most of the blues out of that sound.
Re: R.I.P. George Winston
June 12, 2023 12:47PM
George's December album has long been a mainstay of our Yuletide music collection. Rest in peace, George, and thanks.
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