All the Rage

Bob Ostertag


“Bob Ostertag’s All the Rage turned the evening on its head with a devastating roar of gay anger. Of recent concert pieces having to do with AIDS, All the Rage seems by far the most powerful example. Mr. Ostertag’s stern, purifying gaze has swept away the sentimentality and melodrama that have compromised more famous compositions in the genre.”

Bernard Holland, The New York Times

About the album

From the liner notes by Bob Ostertag: “All the Rage was developed from a recording I made of a riot in San Francisco in October 1991, which followed California Governor Pete Wilson’s veto of a bill designed to protect gays and lesbians from discrimination… Kronos parts were developed directly from the recorded material. In some cases, this took the form of a minutely detailed transcription of the pitch inflections of the recorded sounds. In other sections, the process from tape to string parts was more complex, and the relationship between the two less obvious. Much of the peculiar sound of this music comes from the whistles that many queers carry as a basic self-defense tool, and which emerged from peoples’ pockets by the hundreds during the riot. The whistles used in performance by the Kronos Quartet are provided by Community United Against Violence, a San-Francisco-based organization which assists victims of queer-bashings.”


Kronos Quartet
David Harrington, violin
John Sherba, violin
Hank Dutt, viola
Joan Jeanrenaud, cello

Eric Gupton, reading

Produced by Judith Sherman and Kronos Quartet
Executive Producer: Robert Hurwitz

  1. All the Rage (feat. Eric Gupta)
    Libretto by Sara Miles

Released by Nonesuch Records

The Kronos Quartet’s royalties from the sale of this recording are donated to the American Foundation for AIDS Research (AmFAR).



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