Judging by recent news-reports, it would appear that the relationship between Jay Electronica and his lover Kate Rothschild has intensified.
According to the UK’s ‘Daily Mail,’ the US rapper has “moved into a new flat a stone’s throw from Kate’s home” in Kensington, West London and “introduced her to his mother.”
The couple first hit the headlines some weeks ago after it was revealed that the 30-year-old heiress of the Illuminati banking dynasty had been involved in an extra-marital affair with Electronica for a year. Her husband, Ben Goldsmith, the son of the late billionaire financier and tycoon, Sir James Goldsmith, was reportedly arrested at their home in early June 2012 on suspicion of actual bodily harm after the couple argued over explicit texts and emails that she and the Hip Hopper had been sharing. Goldsmith was later released without charge and subsequently announced he was filing for divorce on the grounds of adultery. Their children continue to live with Kate at the home they once shared as husband and wife.
Their very public split even spilled on to ‘Twitter’ in the days following the estranged couple’s parting of the ways. Goldsmith wrote: “(Kate) has hired ’Project Associates Ltd.’ to fix her reputation (bit late surely?). How about focusing on her devastated children?” Some days later, Kate hit back at Ben‘s comments in a quick succession of ‘Twitter’ messages and also answered some of the critics who sympathised with her husband. She wrote, “Ben in a rational mood would be first to say my devotion to my children is unshakeable. I am with them now, as I always am. Our marriage went bad a few years ago and none of you have any idea what I went through along with my husband. Then we separated for a while. Anger and bitterness following that time led to a very one sided story being deliberately released in order to shame and hurt me.” She also added that Electronica had “saved my life in many ways and I am eternally grateful to him.“ In response to a ’Twitter’ reader who wrote, “imagine if you’d been cheated on,” she replied, “I have, several times.” Kate also claimed that the media had been given “false and inaccurate information” regarding her split with Ben. Justifying her ‘Twitter’ attack, she wrote, “if this makes one or two of you think twice next time before lynching on the basis of tabloid gossip then it was worth the outburst.” Some days later however, both she and Ben distanced themselves from the ‘Twitter’ feud in a joint-released statement that read, “we are both deeply saddened that our marriage has ended after nine years. It is a matter of regret that, at a time when our emotions and those of our friends have run high, things have been said in public which should have been kept private. We accept our share of responsibility.”
However, the truce didn’t appear to last long. Electronica entered the fray with his very own public attack on ’Twitter,’ branding Goldsmith a “f*****g hypocrite“ a week or so later:
Some commentators have credited Electronica with ‘breaking up an Illuminati union,’ given that Kate’s and Ben’s marriage was also a merging together of descendants from two of the wealthiest and influential families on the planet. The fact of the matter is though, the marriage may have come to end, but the couple share three young children who carry both bloodlines and also ancestors originating at least as far back as the 1800s. Indeed, there are mutual links between the two dynasties that stretch even further. For example, both families established their fortunes in banking in Frankfurt during the 16th and 18th century and both hailed from the city‘s ghetto known as, “Judengassen” (Jew Alley). At the time, the Goldsmiths were still known by their German name, Goldschmidt. It isn’t until relatively recently that this was replaced with the anglicised version which is used now. It was first adopted by Frank, grandfather of Ben and nephew of Maximilian Benedikt Hayum von Goldschmidt, who in 1878 married Minna Caroline Baroness von Rothschild, the daughter of the last remaining male in the Frankfurt House of Rothschild. After her father’s death in 1901, the couple modified their name to Goldschmidt-Rothschild. They subsequently had five children.
On further inspection, it appears the links between the two families goes back further still, to 1783, when the Rothschilds were still building on the early foundations of the monumental wealth and power that was yet to come. This was the year that a banker by the name of Solomon Daniel Goldschmidt married Gutelche Rothschild, sister of Mayer Amschel Rothschild, the man credited with founding the all-powerful dynasty. Incidentally, some researchers believe a member of the Goldschmidt family was one of the twelve prominent businessmen who allegedly attended a secret meeting organised by Mayer in 1773 and where plans were put in place to seize control of the world’s money and ultimately create a global dictatorship.
The prospect of history repeating itself again is not only possible, but (many commentators would suggest) highly probable considering that Ben’s brother, the Tory MP Zac Goldsmith, recently divorced his wife of ten years after he reportedly refused to give up his long-term affair with Kate Rothschild’s sister, Alice. However, despite his marriage having now been legally declared dead, he has recently stated he has no plans to tie the knot with his one-time mistress and soon-to-be ex-sister-in-law who he now lives with in London.
Many independent researchers and historians would argue this incestuous union between the two dynasties is born from a necessity to keep their combined financial wealth and influence from coming into close contact with the outside world.
It’s widely documented that Mayer Rothschild successfully managed to contain his large fortune within the family during the 18th and 19th century by arranging marriages, often between first or second cousins. This is the same man who it’s claimed once said, “permit me to issue and control a nation’s money and I care not who writes the laws.”
What would Old Man Rothschild have made of the circumstances surrounding Kate’s marriage breakdown and her subsequent relationship with an African/American who hails from one of the most violent and poverty-stricken areas in the USA? One can perhaps only guess.
Born Timothy Elpadaro Thedford on September 19th 1976, Jay Electronica was raised in the Magnolia Projects of New Orleans, which had a local crime rate higher than any full municipalities in the United States. The area suffered further misfortune on an almost biblical scale after it was flooded in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in 2005. This has led to redevelopment work on the old site and it has since been re-named and re-branded, ‘Harmony Oaks.’ Ironically, the financing for this project originated from Goldman Sachs, the notorious investment-banking firm which many researchers have labelled an unofficial outlet of the Rothschild family and working secretly as a ‘front’ on it‘s behalf in order to deflect any unwanted attention away from the infamous dynasty‘s machinations.
When Electronica left New Orleans at the age of 19 to pursue his music career, he reportedly lived a nomadic lifestyle travelling from city to city. He eventually gained notable attention in 2007 following the release of his mix-tape, ‘Act 1: Eternal Sunshine (The Pledge)’ on ‘MySpace.’ Since then, Jay has also appeared as a guest on various other Rappers’ singles as well as releasing his own EP, ‘Style Wars’ and two official singles, ‘Exhibit A’ and ‘Exhibit C,’ the latter of which makes references to his time living homeless on the streets of New York. In November 2010, it was announced that he’d signed to Jay-Z’s label/management company, ‘Roc Nation.’ Kate Rothschild meanwhile manages his affairs in Britain in her role as head of her very own music label, ‘Roundtable Records,’ which she set up in 2010 with former magazine editor, James Knight.
It’s claimed that it was her growing obsession with Hip Hop and the accompanying party lifestyle that contributed to the break-down in her marriage. As she began to spend more and more time in clubs and bars till the early hours of the morning checking out new bands and artists for her music-label, it’s said her husband Ben was home alone looking after their young children and growing increasingly suspicious of her relationship with Electronica.
Of course, the uncanny similarities that have been drawn between Kate’s alleged obsession with Jay and Hip Hop music and the circumstances almost 60 years earlier surrounding her great-aunt Kathleen’s fascination with American Jazz and one of it’s greatest pioneers Thelonius Monk, have already been made by a number of journalists and bloggers.
Born Kathleen Annie Pannonica Rothschild in December 1913 and nicknamed “Nica,” she was later partially erased from the family’s history and any financial inheritance when she and her husband of 16 years, Baron Jules de Koenigswater separated in 1951 and then divorced in 1956. In recent years, Nica’s story of how she traded in her marriage and a life of privilege for Jazz music, and more crucially, Thelonius Monk, has been brought to light by her great-niece Hannah Rothschild who first heard of her when she accidentally came across her name in family records. Desperate to find out more, she flew to America to meet her during the 1980s. They remained in occasional contact until Nica’s death in 1988 at the age of 74. In the years since, Hannah has documented her great-aunt’s life in a book and BBC documentary. However, her mission to un-lift the lid of mystery from this most enigmatic of Rothschild women initially proved difficult. Nica’s five children refused to co-operate despite having originally agreed and other members of the Rothschild dynasty rejected Hannah’s phone-calls. As she herself admits, her notorious family “had to be good at keeping secrets. Secrets helped them create a great fortune.”
In a 2008 article for the ‘Jewish Quarterly,’ Hannah says Nica’s marriage to her French diplomat husband had become restrictive. She’d apparently never been comfortable living the life of an ambassador’s wife and was “becoming increasingly mesmerised by the Jazz scene.” She “found more excuses to extend their regular trips to New York until, one day in 1951 she decided to stay. She told Stanley Crouch, the music critic, that this momentous decision was inspired by Thelonius Monk’s record ‘Round Midnight,’ which cast a spell on her and inspired the start of a new life.”
In a recently recovered ‘lost’ interview, Nica recalled how this song captivated her and set her off on her journey to becoming a ‘Baroness of Jazz.’ She said, “it was in the late 1940s. I was on my way back to Mexico where I was living with my husband and family at that time. On my way to the airport, I stopped off to see my friend Teddy Wilson. He said, ‘have you heard this record, Round Midnight?’ Well, I’d never even heard of Thelonius. He said, ‘you can’t leave without hearing it,’ and he galloped off somewhere to get the record. I couldn’t believe my ears. I’d never heard anything remotely like it. I made him play it twenty times in a row, missed my plane, and never went back to Mexico. But you see, I didn’t meet Thelonius until two years after that in 1954. I heard that he was playing in Paris, so, I got on a plane and I got there just in time to hear his first overseas concert, and I went backstage afterwards. And (Jazz pianist/composer) Mary Lou Williams introduced me to him. But we hung out for the rest of the time he was there. We had a ball for about a week.” In fact, they were almost inseparable from that moment on until Monk’s death 28 years later.
Speculation regarding the exact nature of their relationship and whether the two were ever sexually involved continues. Speaking in May this year on the eve of the release of her book, ‘Baroness: The Search for Nica the Rebellious Rothschild,’ Hannah said, “I asked every single person who was close to them who was still alive: ‘Look, did you see any touchy feely stuff?’ – for want of a better expression. And everybody said ‘absolutely not, it wasn’t like that.’” Indeed, Thelonius’s wife didn’t seem too concerned that her husband was spending most of his time with Nica. Hannah said Nellie Monk “had suffered incredible penury and hardship through her husband not actually earning any money” and “was frankly quite delighted when this rich, you know, woman appeared with a chequebook and a fabulous Bentley and you know, absolute unstinting devotion… I think they weren’t too bothered that she was so passionately keen on supporting him.”
In his book, ‘Thelonius Monk: The Life and Times of an American Original,’ author Robin Kelley claims that Nica and Nellie were friends. He also writes about the time Thelonius gave a fellow musician some advice when he approached a woman in a club they were playing in stating, “be sure that you want to have her for a girl or have her for a friend, because if you make love to a girl she ain’t gonna be your friend. Because you can have a friend like Nica’s my friend, and I wouldn’t touch her. She’s the best friend I ever had.” However, is it any wonder that their relationship continues to draw questions when certain key sources close to Nica leave the scope for imagination wide open? For example, Thelonius’s son, T.S. Monk tells Hannah during the making of her 2009 documentary ‘The Jazz Baroness’ that, “your aunt fell in love with my dad. I have no doubt about that. She was profoundly moved by his music and his personality – he was a good looking cat.”
The music Thelonius Monk helped to pioneer in the 1940s and 1950s was known as ‘Bebop.’ Although it came out of 1930s ‘Swing’ music (which was not only danceable but popular), this new style was it’s antithesis; designed specifically to be listened, not danced to. It was improvisational and unpredictable, for example, the rhythm section of a Jazz band playing Bebop wasn’t merely there to keep time, but also to interact with the soloist and provide it’s own embellishments, usually by emphasising beats and bars in a song that would’ve once been untouched. This gave the music a free-flowing feel, instead of being constrained within a specific form.
Nica championed Monk’s music and even wrote the liner-notes for his 1962 album, ‘Criss-Cross.’ Three songs from his classic 1957 album, ‘Brilliant Corners’ were written in her apartment on a Steinway piano they’d bought and she also negotiated his landmark residencies at the legendary ‘Five Spot’ café in New York.
As a pair, they became a regular fixture on the Jazz social-scene and Nica played host to some of it’s biggest musical legends in her New York hotel suites with regular late-night jam-sessions that continued well into the morning hours. She was regarded a “patron” of many prominent Jazz musicians and she was reported to have repeatedly provided them with unwavering support in their times of need. T.S. Monk recalls, “I would be hanging with Nica and we would get in the car – she’d say, ‘come on let’s go in the car, we have to go somewhere.’ And I can’t tell you how many mercy missions just short of ambulatory in their nature to save musicians’ lives in every way you can imagine – whether we were going to a pawn shop to retrieve a guy’s instrument, or going to buy groceries because someone didn’t have food, or going to the rent-office to pay somebody’s rent because they were about to be thrown on the street, or going to the hospital to visit somebody because they didn’t have anybody else to visit them, you know? Or going to help somebody get some food because their girlfriend just had a baby… I mean the list goes on and on and on. Every aspect of human existence that I saw musicians deal with, I saw them lean on Nica and I saw Nica respond.” There were times during her life when such deeds brought her much unwanted trouble and a great degree of trauma and anguish. For example, when 10 dollar’s worth of marijuana was discovered in the trunk of Nica’s car by police whilst she, Thelonius and saxophonist Charlie Rouse were travelling to a live show in 1958, she informed them the drugs were hers and assumed complete responsibility. In an age when America was still dealing with widespread racial prejudice and segregation, she sensed that she was in a better position to deal with the consequences of what might follow. According to her friend, the Jazz historian Dan Morgenstern, Nica “took the rap… because she felt that she would be able to deal with the legal problems much better than he (Thelonius). He was Black, she was not.” Nica was sentenced to three years imprisonment followed by immediate deportation. She was later released subject to appeal and a two-year legal battle followed. With the help of her illustrious family’s legal muscle, the case was eventually dismissed on a technicality.
Nica courted further unwanted controversy after the legendary Jazz musician Charlie ‘Bird’ Parker died in her hotel suite on March 12th 1955. He arrived there on March 9th physically ill and depressed. Hannah says Parker was, “on his way to a gig in Boston… his little daughter had died recently, he tried to commit suicide by drinking iodine a few weeks before. He was still taking drugs… he was broke. He was in a really shocking state, so he went to see Nica who he thought was probably one of the few people who would open her door to him. She did indeed. She got him up to her apartment, and then he was in such a terrible state that she called her personal physician… who came round. She wanted to get him into hospital… he refused. He had a fear of hospitals… so all she did was try and keep him warm, try and keep him – you know – together, give him jugs of water.” Days later, whilst watching TV, he reportedly started to choke and then died. The official cause of death was lobar pneumonia, although Hannah claims it’s been “proven” that he died due to “some kind of exploded ulcer in his guts.” He was only 34-years-old.
The death of a drug-addicted Black musician in the hotel suite of a White divorced heiress was regarded as something of a scandal within certain sections of society where gossip was rife. Meanwhile, the American Press printed various allegations on a regular basis ranging from claims that Nica was a drug user and/or a dealer and that she’d been involved in an affair with Parker. A number of conspiracy theories also surfaced; One was that Nica was involved in a relationship with Jazz drummer Art Blakey who, in a jealous rage upon discovering Parker in her suite, shot him in the stomach. There were also questions. For example, why didn’t any one call an ambulance? Why wasn’t his death reported immediately? Some have claimed that Nica killed Parker and delayed informing the authorities of his death for two days because she was busy cleaning out any evidence of drug-dealing from her suite.
When Monk’s health began to deteriorate, he too also found refuge with Nica. From the 1970s until his death from a stroke in 1982, he lived with her at her home in New Jersey. He performed his last live date in 1976 and spent the remaining years ensconced in Nica’s home lying on his bed, reading magazines and books, listening to records and watching TV as Nica and his ever faithful wife Nellie took care of him.
Bassist Al McKibbon played with Monk on his final ever tour in 1971 and later claimed that the legendary musician, who he’d known for over 20 years, hardly spoke to him the entire time. He said, “on that tour Monk said about two words. I mean literally maybe two words. He didn’t say ‘good morning,’ ‘goodnight,’ ‘what time?’ Nothing. Why, I don’t know. He sent back word after the tour was over that the reason he couldn’t communicate or play was that Art Blakey and I were so ugly.” It wasn’t rare for Monk to behave like this. Sometimes, he would become so excited that he wouldn’t sleep for three or four days in a row, pace for days after that and then withdraw into himself and stop speaking. His onetime manager, Harry Colomby recalls moments when Monk would look up to the sky and mumble to himself, meanwhile his son T.S. claims his father sometimes didn’t even recognise him. Some authors and researchers believe Monk was bipolar. Others have suggested schizophrenia. One physician has even claimed that he was misdiagnosed during a stay in hospital and prescribed drugs that may have caused brain damage. In the 1988 documentary ‘Thelonius Monk: Straight No Chaser,‘ T.S. says his father was hospitalised on several occasions with an ‘unspecified mental illness,’ and in Hannah’s BBC documentary, she mentions a mental breakdown which led to Monk being given electroconvulsive therapy – despite Nica’s protests.
Is it possible Thelonius Monk was a victim of Mind-Control? Would this explain the lack of a clear diagnosis and his frequent spells in hospital? According to the book, ‘Straight, No Chaser. The Life and Genius of Thelonius Monk’ by Leslie Gourse, the musician went missing for a week whilst on a trip to San Francisco. It later transpired he’d spent that period, apparently mute, in a psychiatric institution. Author Robin Kelley meanwhile, claims that this happened to Monk on two separate occasions.
In a 2011 article for the political newsletter ‘CounterPunch,‘ investigative journalist and author, Jeffrey St. Clair approaches the subject of MK-ULTRA when assessing the life and times of Monk and his friend, the Jazz pianist Bud Powell. He recounts the night in 1951 when both of them were busted for heroin possession by police whilst out driving. Clair claims Powell was strapped into a straight-jacket and sent to the psychiatric ward at Bellevue Hospital in New York whilst Monk was imprisoned for 60 days after failing to raise the $1,500 bail money.
Powell – writes St. Clair – was later transferred to the Pilgrim State Hospital, the “world’s largest asylum, where shrinks with scalpels were butchering brains in the name of psychiatry.” He continues:
Powell, the most gifted pianist of his time, was pumped full of the latest drugs… strapped to a gurney and his body convulsed with crippling jolts of electricity, again and again, week after week.
Everybody agreed: Bud Powell had poetic hands. Nobody hit the keys the way he did. The sound of his playing was rich and chromatic, swinging with an almost ecstatic intensity. Powell played with blazing speed but his runs were also clear and coherent. He made the piano sing. But… the psychotropic drugs and the electro-shock sessions took their toll. Powell was never the same following his release from Pilgrim in 1953. He was assigned to the guardianship of Oscar Goldstein, the owner of the Birdland jazz club. Goldstein kept Powell in a state of prison-like confinement. His system was saturated with heavy doses of the anti-psychotic drug Thorazine, which severely degraded his ability to play. Powell later wrote a song about those lonely months titled ‘Glass Enclosure.’
By 1956, Powell was a shattered man. The pianist had endured more the 100 electroshock sessions in his brief life. His friend Jackie Mclean, the stellar sax player, speculated that Powell’s doctors had subjected the musician to treatments that resemble torture more than therapy. “He was so messed up, I think they were experimenting on him,” Mclean said. It’s worth noting that at the time Powell was being put through the wringer, the CIA was secretly financing experiments in electroshock, mind-altering drugs and psycho-surgery at hospitals in the US and Canada. While there’s no evidence that Powell was a CIA research subject, some of that agency money found its way to doctors working at the two psychiatric hospitals – Pilgrim and Creedmore (in Brooklyn) – where Powell underwent long-term confinement.
Monk’s father had also been institutionalised and Nica’s was said to have been blighted with the same behavioural symptoms that Thelonius displayed, such as long manic periods without sleep when he wouldn’t stop talking followed by days when he didn’t utter a single word. Nica’s sister Miriam claims he “certainly had serious depressions when he was young.” He committed suicide in 1923 aged just 46. Incidentally, the nature of his death provides yet another uncanny parallel between the life of Nica and her younger counterpart, Kate Rothschild, whose father Amschel, hanged himself at the Hotel Paris in Bristol in 1996 at the age of 41. Both deaths were originally reported to have been due to “heart attacks.”
Although there are a number of mysteries and unanswered questions surrounding the life and times of Kathleen Annie Pannonica Rothschild, her friends, associates and confidantes are in little doubt about the influence she had, not only on the career of Thelonius Monk, but dozens of other legendary musicians in her role as Jazz patron and all-round Mistress of Mercy. Had she not have been there to feed them, nurse them, promote them, pay their bills and bail them out, would they have been as free to go about their work?
Her presence lives on in the music, despite her family‘s attempts to rub her out of existence. Thelonius wrote the song ‘Pannonica,’ which has since been described as “one of the great dedication pieces” of all time. All in all, there are thought to be over 20 songs that have been written about her including, ‘Thelonica’ by Tommy Flanagan, ‘Nica’s Dream’ by Horace Silver, ‘Nica’s Tempo’ by Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers, ‘Tonica’ by Kenny Dorham, ‘Nica Steps Out’ by Kenny Drew, ‘Theme for Nica’ by Eddie Thompson, as well as Monk’s ‘Coming on the Hudson’ and ‘Bolivar Blues.’
Another Rothschild woman immortalised in music was the 19th century French socialite and painter, Charlotte. Her father was Baron James de Rothschild, the founder of the French branch of the family. In 1832, he was introduced to the Polish composer and virtuoso pianist Frederic Chopin by their mutual friend, the Lithuanian/Prussian/Polish noble and aristocrat, Prince Antonin Radziwill. James was the son of Mayer Rothschild and the nephew of Gutelche Rothschild – who was the wife of Solomon Goldschmidt (Goldsmith). He married his niece, Betty Salomon von Rothschild in 1824 and together they established themselves as the darlings of Parisian culture. They also became major patrons of the arts, not only championing playwrights, novelists, painters and poets but composers, including Gioacchino Rossini who wrote a great deal of music for the illustrious couple on their command. They also supported Chopin. Thanks to their assistance, he was invited to play at social but private gatherings of the aristocracy and artistic and literary elite known as, Salons and also received a mass of requests for piano lessons. In 1842/43, he dedicated his ‘Ballade No. 4 in F minor, Op. 52’ to Charlotte who, according to author Tad Szulc in his book, ‘Chopin in Paris – The Life and Times of the Romantic Composer,’ was “one of his best pupils.” He also dedicated the waltz, ‘Valse Op. 64, No. 2 in C sharp minor’ to her in 1847, partly as a gesture of gratitude to James and Betty for their years of patronage.
Although universally acknowledged for his musical achievements, Szulc believes that Chopin’s influence in shaping the contours of geo-political history has been overlooked. Along with the French novelist and feminist Baroness Dudevant who was his romantic interest for ten years (better known under her pseudonym, George Sand), Szulc writes that Chopin (a reported Freemason) played a role in determining the future of France during the July Monarchy of 1830 when the Conservative government of Charles X and the House of Bourbon was overthrown and replaced with a Liberal constitutional monarchy under the rule of King Louis-Philippe who has been described by historians as a friend and supporter of the merchants and bankers. In fact, James de Rothschild put together the loan package to stabilise the finances of the new government and he was later elevated to a Grand Officer of the Legion of Honour by the king in recognition of his services. Szulc writes,
The dedication of two of his important works to Baroness Charlotte de Rothschild throws interesting light on Chopin’s special personal connections with the financial powers of France under the July Monarchy simultaneously with his – and George Sand’s – friendships with artists and radical politicians of the day. It brought the world of music and the world of business and money together in an unprecedented fashion, and, significantly, in relationships that went far beyond the traditional confines of musicians-for-hire at the beck and call of rich patrons.
Cigar-smoking Sand attracted her Leftist political friends, principally Pierre Leroux, Louis Blanc, Emmanuel Arago, and Father Lamennais, and literary figures, from Hugo to Balzac and Saint-Beuve; and personages like Lamartine, who was a poet as well as a militant politician. Finally, the “regulars” included their common friends: Delacroix, Heine, Fetis, Marie Dorval, the Viardots, and the Marlianis. There was nothing quite like it in Paris when it came to talent in all the arts, intellectual power, political position, aristocratic tradition, and enormous wealth. It was the elite of France. And it showed Chopin’s personal standing in a multitude of otherwise unrelated Parisian milieux.
In another dimension… the Chopin-Sand soirees played a remarkably important long-range role in French and European political evolution near the mid-point of the 19th century. Yet they have gone almost entirely unnoticed and ignored in this sense – or underestimated – by historians and biographers… Even Francois Guizot, the ultra-Conservative historian and Prime Minister after 1840, appeared occasionally under the Chopin-Sand roof. These soirees were a most civilised convergence of culture and politics, and arguably an important element in the broad process of shaping the century.
Chopin’s former star-pupil Charlotte de Rothschild embraced the world of the arts from a young age and later in adulthood became an artist herself earning a great deal of respect for her watercolours and landscapes. She also befriended the composer Georges Bizet whose wife Genevieve Halevy went on to marry the Rothschild’s lawyer Emile Straus after his death in 1875.
During the same period, another Charlotte de Rothschild was making her mark. She was a member of the Vienna branch of the family who married her cousin, the banker, Anselm Salomon von Rothschild in 1826. Her legacy lives on in what is sometimes described as the Rothschild family ‘musical autograph book’ (the Livre d’Or). In it, are the names of some of the world’s most distinguished composers who often visited Charlotte’s home and were asked to write either a song or piano piece for the book. Following her death in 1859, her daughter Mathilde inherited it and continued the tradition. The book includes manuscripts by Felix Mendelssohn, Vincenzo Bellini, Franz Liszt and, of course, Chopin who taught Mathilde to play piano when she was 15 years of age. The book has subsequently been passed on through the female line, being added to well into the 20th century by such talents as Leonard Bernstein. An accomplished composer in her own right, Mathilde wrote songs under the name “La Baronne Willy de Rothschild” or “Freifrau Willy von Rothschild” for singers including the Austrian soprano Selma Kurz and the opera star Adelina Patti.
The family’s Livre d’Or and some of Mathilde’s music has been brought to life in recent years by yet another Charlotte de Rothschild, this time from the British branch of the family.
A soprano of some repute, in 2010 she created a recital called ‘Family Connections’ (sometimes also dubbed, ‘A Rothschild Soiree’) that consisted entirely of songs from the dynasty’s Livre d’Or and which she has performed on numerous occasions since. The 56-year-old has toured the world, performing at major concert venues as well as Buckingham Palace and the Palace of Versailles. Earlier this year, she released her latest CD ‘Fairy Songs’ with the harpist Danielle Perrett and is due to enter the studio again soon to record all of Mathilde’s known compositions for a future double-album release. In the video below, she performs Mathilde’s ‘Les Papillons’…
Charlotte studied her craft in Austria at the Mozarteum University of Salzburg and at the Royal College of Music in London where her uncle Leopold David de Rothschild was council Chairman. In fact, this was one of many positions he held on a number of British musical institutions including the English Chamber Orchestra (President), the Music Advisory Committee of the British Council (Chairman) and the Jewish Music Institute (co-President). Born in 1927, his mother, Marie Louise Eugenie Beer was a great-great niece of the German opera composer, Giacomo Meyerbeer. As a child, he initially began his musical journey learning to play the violin, and later moved to the piano which he continued to be a student of until his death in April this year. In adulthood, he worked in his father’s bank, ‘NM Rothschilds & Sons’ and later sat as Director on the court of the Bank of England, but his love for music never waned.
He sang in the Bach Choir for almost 50 years and eventually served as Chairman and later, President. In his role as fundraiser, he helped raise money for a new opera house at Glyndebourne, gave support to the London Symphony Orchestra, the London Sinfonietta and provided scholarships for students to study at the Royal College of Music. The conductors George Solti, Charles Mackerras and Colin Davis were among his friends.
As history clearly shows, Kate Rothschild is by no means the first member of her family to dedicate her energies to music, and whilst her relationship with an African/American from a background far removed from her own has caused a certain degree of surprise in the public arena, it is by no means unique.
In the second and final instalment of this analysis, we’ll shift the focus onto Jay Electronica who’s not only accused of being an Illuminati stooge, but a member of an organisation called ‘The Nations of Gods and Earths’ which holds the view that Black people are the original descendants of the planet and that this secret has been kept from public view with the exception of a select few known as the “Five Percenters” of which Jay is said to be one. There’ll also be an examination of his music and lyrics, and hopefully (and we really do mean “hopefully“), a rare glimpse behind Kate’s record label and why she chose to call it ‘Roundtable,’ a name that conjures up esoteric/occult connotations. On investigation, there appears to be very little information freely available, as a result, ‘Conspiro Media’ has thrown caution to the wind and contacted ‘Roundtable’ via e-mail (incognito of course) to politely ask her out-right – hence why we “hopefully” expect an answer in the not too distant future (but – let’s face it – don’t hold your breath).
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