Just Strings

Just Strings
Just Strings Trio

John Schneider: Adapted Guitar II; Rebekah Raff: Partch's original Kithara I (1938); Gene Sterling: Diamond Marimba

(photo by Robert Hale)

Just Strings Recording

Architecture Studio, Los Angeles (2014) T.J. Troy: percussion Alison Bjorkedal: harp. Recording session for MicroFest Record's Just Strings.

“An interlink of splendid musicians, playing fine new tunings, in new pieces, by young and new composers... a true garden of delights”

—Lou Harrison

Just Strings is a unique ensemble that specializes in the performance of music in Just Intonation. This ancient system of tuning produces acoustically pure intervals which results in much sweeter consonances and more disturbing dissonances than in our modern system of tuning called Equal Temperament. In a musical world that has foregone tonality in search of new means of expression (atonality and electronic music, etc.), the pure intervals of just intonation provide composers with a refreshing new palette which can include the musical styles of the past as well as new possibilities for the future. Since their formation in 1991 to perform the music of Lou Harrison and Harry Partch, they have gone on to commission and premiere works by Larry Polansky, Mamoru Fujieda, John Luther Adams, Mari Takano, Sasha Bogdonawitsch, Garry Eister and others.  In 1995 they toured Japan under the auspices of the American Embassy's prestigious Interlink Festival, giving three weeks of concerts and lectures on new music. They have performed for Chamber Music in Historic Sites, the LA County Museum of Art, UCLA's Partch Centennial Celebration, Sacramento's Festival of New American Music, Minnesota Public Radio’s American Mavericks, the Songlines series at Mills College, the Gordon Getty Concerts at the Getty Center, and WNYC’s New Sounds. In 2004, Just Strings made their Disney Hall debut premiering Harry Partch’s Bitter Music.

Their CD Just West Coast was CD Reviews "CD of the Year" in 1994, & inducted into Fanfare’s “Classical Hall of Fame” (2003), their recording of Sasha Matson's The 5th Lake was released by New Albion Records, Just Guitars (2003) appears on Bridge Records, while Lou Harrison’s music por Gitaro (2008) is on Mode Records.

Just Strings in Cncert

Casals Hall, Tokyo (1995)

“World-class tribute....Just Strings managed their exotic gadgetry with appealing skill.... ”

—Alan Rich, LA Weekly

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“Just Strings performs with such elegance and élan as to put one's reservations quite beyond the pale... A delight, a treat, and, for those who care, an education (or a basis for debate).”

—Fanfare