Ars Longa Vita Brevis

Artist: Nice
Label: Immediate
Catalog#: Z12 52020
Format: Vinyl
Country: United States
Released: 1968-11
A1 America 6:20
A2 2nd Amendment  
A3 Daddy Where Did I Come From 3:45
A4 Little Arabella 4:20
A5 Happy Freuds 3:27
A6 Intermezzo From The Karelia Suite 6:03
A7 Don Edito El Gruva 9:12
B1 Ars Longa Vita Brevis - Symphony For Group And Orchestra:Prelude 19:53
B2 1st Movement Awakening  
B3 2nd Movement Realization  
B4 3rd Movement Acceptance "Brandenburger"  
B5 4th Movement Denial  
B6 Coda-extension To The Big Note  

Arranged By [Orchestra], Conductor [Orchestra] – Robert Stewart
Arranged By, Producer – The Nice
Engineer, Other [Consultant] – Don Brewer (2)
Liner Notes – Keith Emerson, Lee Jackson (2)
Photography By [Cover Photo And X-rays Of The Nice] – Gered Mankowitz


Distributed by CBS Records Inc.
US release date February 1969

Strawberry Bricks Entry: 
With David O'List gone, Keith Emerson firmly took charge of The Nice. It should be no surprise then that their second effort finds the trio diving deeper into the classical music realm to further flaunt Emerson's keyboard histrionics. Their six-minute rendition of Leonard Bernstein's "America," from the musical West Side Story (recorded while O'List was still with the band), was released as a single and nearly reached the UK Top 20 in July. Whether this was based on musical merit or controversy is another story: The Nice drew sharp criticism from Bernstein after they burned an American flag during their Royal Albert Hall performance of the number. Bad taste was one of the band's unfortunate legacies; in fact, the interminable "Daddy Where Did I Come From" actually attempts to explain the obvious! But the big switch in direction on the album is witnessed in Jean Sibelius's "Intermezzo from ‘Karelia Suite'." It's this deconstruction of classical music that would become the band's enduring legacy, and heavily influence legions of progressives, English, Italian and otherwise. The second side found Emerson and company (more or less) extending J.S. Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 into mammoth proportions. The first movement is interpreted with a drum solo from Brian Davison, while the second benefits from a contribution from a lingering O'List. The third section adds orchestration from Robert Stewart, while the fourth is dominated by Emerson's organ soloing. Ultimately the issue is interpretation versus appropriation. The album's title Ars Longa Vita Brevis translates to "Art is boundless, life is short." Whatever your verdict, here The Nice laid the foundation for much of prog rock.
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