By dint of inspired leadership and a Rockefeller grant in the mid-1950s, the Louisville Orchestra realized an unparalleled project to commission and record more than 100 new compositions; most of these were issued on LP on the orchestra's own First Edition label. Through the ensemble's new partnership with the entrepreneurial Sante Fe Music Group, these long-out-of-print recordings are being remastered and reissued on CD. The latest disc demonstrates the scope of Louisville's achievement by juxtaposing key works by American composers of different generations—Aaron Copland, Elliott Carter, and Charles Ives by way of a William Schuman arrangement—with a piece by Italian modernist Luigi Dallapiccola. Each is valuable, particularly Carter's breakthrough work—
Vocalist Shemekia Copeland led the field at the 2003 W.C. Handy Blues Awards, collecting three trophies during the ceremony last night (May 22) at Memphis' Orpheum Theatre. Copeland's Alligator album "Talking to Strangers" was named blues album of the year and contemporary blues album of the year, and the singer was named contemporary female artist of the year.