Ume flowers blooming and the 3rd piano concerto by Bartok

On the way to a supermarket for shopping as I do once 2 days, I have found a tree with numerous scarlet colored flowers in the propery of a factory near here. It was a corner sun shined a lot. Having parked on the side of the street, I walked close to that tree. It was a ume, japanese apricot, tree. More than half of blossoms were coming out.

A close up view.

Compared with the same ume trees in our garden, this tree surely ran ahead of them. One reason of blooming early must be the location of the tree where it could enjoy a lot of warm sunray. A blessed tree. Seeing those flowers typical for the arrival of spring made my mind warmed a bit. It might not be too long before the flowers on the trees in our garden come out. 

Another news for me. I thought Bela Bartok, a hungarian composer having lived in the first half of the last century, had composed atonal music with dodecaphonism technique adopting melodies and forms from ethnic music. A critical essay on this composer  by Hidekazu Yoshida, an excellent critic of music, sadly dead at the age of 98 years in 2012, has taught me his last works had gone through that modern music age but had reached a new horizon. His swan song, the 3rd piano concerto, typically shows the point he has achieved far ahead of the dodecaphony. This work sounds serene as well as energitic. The 2nd movement has surprised me with its almost religiousness. Even though he was thought to be an atheist, he has reached a religious transparency with this work. A real surprise! He has been criticized for his style achieved in the last years of his life by those dodecaphists. But he must has believed the modern music of atonality won't realize the lively world of music in this way he has shown in this concerto. His biography tells us at the very last moment of composing this concerto, he has got fatally ill with leukemia and could not compose the last 17 bars in the last movement. His disciple has finished the music according to the sketch he had left. 

There is still such a music I have not known yet and must listen to before the end of my life as well. I would explore for such a music in the vast ocean of the music in the past as well as at the present time. What an exciting and meaningful adventure!


  1. Woke up at 5:30 and here. Saw Shun's post and now listening. Thanks for the history. And for the video. Perhaps we can connect on 7 MHz Morse this morning N.A. time. All my best Sir! Jim.

  2. Sorry for poor typing. 5:30 a.m. of course. Shin's post of course. Autocorrect got me. All the best. Jim.

    1. Hi Jim,

      I hope things are going on well for you and Diana. I was really moved by this concerto, especially the 2nd movement. Having struggled new and free form/chord in music with dodecaphony, he seemed to reach this one. Too sad it was just before he passed away. Or being his swan song, this could be so transparent and beautiful. See you on 40m. Take care.