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|Tags:||contemporary classical classical string quartet instrumental soundtrack seen live experimental|
|Decades:||1980s 1990s 2000s|
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David Harrington (first violin), John Sherba (second violin), Joan Jeanrenaud (cello) and Hank Dutt (viola) formed the San Francisco, California, USA-based Kronos Quartet in 1973. Although classically trained, all of the members had catholic musical upbringings and felt that the gap between classical and popular music was becoming increasingly irrelevant. Led by the charismatic Harrington, whose idols are Bessie Smith and Beethoven, they crossed musical barriers by performing chamber music with the spirit and energy of rock, and refused to dress in the formal garb of the classical establishment. They also established a unique musical identity in several ways: by commissioning new works for the group by modern composers (Philip Glass, Terry Riley, Alfred Schnittke and John Zorn); by working with musicians from other cultures, notably on the 1992 release Pieces Of Africa, where every cut is written by African musicians; by transforming popular music (Jimi Hendrix,...