Ménage à Trio - Methuselah Tree

from Cello Noodles, Vol. V by Betsy Tinney

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Deep in the White Mountains of eastern California lives the oldest known tree in the world: Methuselah, a 4,852-year-old bristlecone pine. To protect it from vandalism, its specific location wiithin the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest is a closely-guarded secret. The ancient bristlecone pine tree in the cover photo might or might not be "the" Methuselah -- but in any case, it is probably at least a thousand years old (and probably several) -- which is still really, really old.

This month's piece was improvised by Ménage à Trio in response to the prompt "Methuselah Tree". This recording was made last summer on our front lawn (widely socially-distanced, because 2020). Unlike some of the more sprightly pieces Ménage has created, this piece took a more somber and slow-growing approach (after all, if you're nearly five thousand years old, you aren't going to be in a hurry).

Ménage à Trio is my string trio (with Alexander James Adams on fiddle and Sunnie Larsen on violin/viola. We improvise music in the moment, usually in response to audience prompts. Ménage is very excited to be performing together again (thank goodness for vaccinations!); our first concert in over a year will be broadcast online at 12 PM Pacific Time on Sunday, August 8, as part of Music Under the Trees 2021. Ménage's video shoot is scheduled for July 10; we'll be improvising live together onstage, with our crew and family as a small but appreciative live audience. And, we would love it if you could send us your prompts! Please email prompts to prompts@menage-a-trio.com. Our faithful Promptmeister, Shawna Jacques, will choose her favorites and call them out during our live-for-video performance on 7/10/21 (and she will not show them to us in advance!).

If you'd like to come to the concert, you can get tickets at onlineconcertthing.com; tickets are $25 (suggested) for both days & all four MUTT 2021 concerts (Betsy Tinney, Vixy & Tony, Alexander James Adams & Menage a Trio).


from Cello Noodles, Vol. V, released February 28, 2021
Music: improvised in the moment by Ménage à Trio (Betsy Tinney, Sunnie Larsen & Alexander James Adams). Recorded and mixed by Betsy Tinney. Prompt by Cade Tinney.

Cover image: Two ancient bristlecone pines grace a stark mountain hillside. The trees' expressively gnarled branches and twisted trunks (typical of bristlecone pines) are silhouetted against a soft post-sunset evening sky. Photo by Michael Ver Sprill; licensed via Dreamstime.com. All rights reserved.


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Betsy Tinney Seattle, Washington

NEW ALBUM on December 4!

Winter Greens: Carols for the Season includes all my previously released cello carols (remixed & mastered), plus a few new ones.

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