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Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: BornOnTheBayou ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:01

RobertJohnson Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> My favs are Bach, Rachmaninow, Brahms, Mahler.

Gustav Mahler wrote several nice compositions but his very best works, IMO, are Symphonies 9 and 10. These are immortal masterpieces of incredible scope.

Symphony 9 selections: Hands down my favorite rendition is Bruno Walter conducting the Wiener (Vienna) Philharmonic in January 1938. World War II was mounting and the "Dread" of this performance is just palpable. Also Walter and Mahler were long-time friends and I think Walter just "got" Mahler better than maybe any other conductor. This gem is still available on EMI.

As Mahler's Ninth is a slightly greater piece than his Tenth, I guess that would make Walter's Mahler9 the very best Mahler ever recorded.

Another superior rendition of #9 is Herbert Von Karajan conducting the Berlin Philharmonic on Deutsche Grammophone.

As for Symphony #10, there's a masterful version by Simon Rattle conducting the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. Also on EMI, you'll love it!




"It's just that demon life has got me in it's sway..."

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Date: January 1, 2006 22:04

This is the best classical radio station I've ever heard. It's number 7 on the link for streaming:

[www.live-radio.net]

"The wonder of Jimi Hendrix was that he could stand up at all he was so pumped full of drugs." Patsy, Patsy Stone

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: BornOnTheBayou ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:10

ChelseaDrugstore Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> > PS One man who often gets overlooked undeservedly
> so IMO is Bruckner.


Truer words were never spoken... Bruckner is so uneven, but when he's "on" he has such scope. He's sort of "overlooked" because of his personal problems but that shouldn't detract from the greatness of at least a few of his compositions.

One of his very best: Check out Bruckner's Symphony 9, Bruno Walter conducting the Columbia Symphony Orchestra. Available on Sony Classical... a masterpiece.

And don't miss Bruckner's Symphony #7, Von Karajan conducting the Vienne Philharmonic... this was the great conductors FINAL PERFORMANCE, and so fitting as he championed Bruckner when alot of other conductors shied away from him.

"It's just that demon life has got me in it's sway..."



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2006-01-01 22:46 by BornOnTheBayou.

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: ChelseaDrugstore ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:14

Oh yes, that is indeed one good question. Just reading your words about Toscanini is driving me crazy. One of my alltime favorite books is the "The Great Composers" by the famous NYT music critic Harold Schonberg. He had a gift for writing about these men. Never too dry, and always very knowledgeable in the theoretics. It made me want to go out immdeidtaley and get everything by the composer of the chapter. I got more Schuhmann, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Hugo Wolf only on his recommedation LOL Oh yes and Brahms too.
What is the 'real' Beethoven? You're right. It's only ever a subjective question and answer. To ME the real B might be the genius master of melody and chordings. I myself have never taken much part in the idea of Beethoven as the angry, desperate piano ppounder. Listening to Symp. 6, 7 and 8 completely denies that whole belief.You obviously know a good bit about last century's music. I am trying to learn more. That is exactly what I trying to discover more of: the way a conductor interprets a piece. What sets one conductor apart from another.

"...no longer shall you trudge 'cross my peaceful mind."

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: BornOnTheBayou ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:16

gaigai Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Bartók! Listen to his 2. violin concerto. Or
> anything. A genius.

Just my opinion, Bartok is a bit uneven but his very best work is "Music for Strings, Percussion, and Celesta"... this is the one piece where he got it all together and wrote an overwhelming masterpiece.

For a tremendous rendition, check out: Sir Neville Marriner conducting the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields, John Ogdon on piano, john Wilbraham on trumpet. A superior recording on London/Decca.

"It's just that demon life has got me in it's sway..."

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: Leonard Keringer ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:20

haven't yet delved into classical.....just wondering....what are some of your favorite classical orchestras?

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: ChelseaDrugstore ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:24

Bartok bends and twists the music part of my brain. I know the recording you speak of Bayou.
Leonard, the US orchestras are IMO very much at the forefront. Surprisingly. There is a Symphony Orchestra in (I think) Cleveland of all places thaty does some great work. Bayou would prbably know.

"...no longer shall you trudge 'cross my peaceful mind."

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: BornOnTheBayou ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:29

GENIUSES, often not mentioned, who belong on any list of the "greatest" classical composers:

Claude DeBussy... along with Maurice Ravel, really the "Van Goghs" of classical music. Interesting that impressionist revolutions in both painting AND music occured in France. His very best stuff: La Mer, Berceuse Heroique, Noctures, and Preludea'l Apres de un Faun, brilliant stuff. Also fabulous: Rhapsodie, and Danses Sacre et Profane

Maurice Ravel... a genius with such masterpieces as Bolero, Pavane pour un infant, and Daphnis et Chloe. You could also add La Valse to the list.

Ralph Vaughan-Williams... genius of the 20th Century. with such incredible compositions, in order of my preference: Symphony #4, Lark Ascending, Fantasia Greensleeves, Fantasia Thom Tallis, Symphony 5, Symphony 3, and the Flos Campi Suite.

Felix Mendlessohn: His brilliant Symphony #3 Scottish is his very best, and among the best symphonies by any composer, but Piano Concerto 2 and Symphony 4 Italian are magnificent also.

Gustav Holst: Really superb and unusual stuff like The Planets, Lyric Movement, and the Fugal Concerto place him among the greats, IMO.

Alexander Borodin: Brilliant Russian composer with such great stuff as the Polovtsian Dances, the Steppes of Central Asia, his SYmphony #2 and the Prince Igor Overture...

just to name a few.







"It's just that demon life has got me in it's sway..."

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: Leonard Keringer ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:29

ChelseaDrugstore Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Bartok bends and twists the music part of my
> brain. I know the recording you speak of Bayou.
> Leonard, the US orchestras are IMO very much at
> the forefront. Surprisingly. There is a Symphony
> Orchestra in (I think) Cleveland of all places
> thaty does some great work. Bayou would prbably
> know.
>
> "Keith - The Walking Bestower of Street Cred"


thanks Chelsea.....now that you mention it....years ago my friend mentioned the Cleveland orchestra as being highly regarded...and he was into someone named Toscanini (not sure of the spelling)

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: BornOnTheBayou ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:39

Leonard Keringer Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> haven't yet delved into classical.....just
> wondering....what are some of your favorite
> classical orchestras?

The greatest orchestras ?? It really depends a bit more on the CONDUCTOR but the following symphony orchestras are just consistently great: Berlin, Vienna, London. The BBC Symphony Orchestra has alot of great stuff. Chicago is pretty good, the Royal Philharmonic is good... Cleveland has been great.

For string concertos, the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields is fantastic.

BUT... if you can only pick one, I think it has to be Berlin. The German people just have that "extra culture" for classical music. and their greatest conductor, the incomparable Herbert Von Karajan... too bad he had detractors who tried to "bring him down" in a bunch of Nazi witch-hunting... the greatest conductor who ever lived, IMO, this guy could interpret ANYBODY... he was the "Sinatra" or "Elvis" of classical music.






"It's just that demon life has got me in it's sway..."

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: Leonard Keringer ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:42

appreciate the info BornOnTheBayou......you certainly sound like a veteran of Classical

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: Rockman ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:50

Maestro/conductor Michael Tilson Thomas comments on the Stones





ROCKMAN

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: ChelseaDrugstore ()
Date: January 1, 2006 22:56

I appreciate your writings here Bayou. I also love Debussy very much. I equate him with watercolors. The vagueness.. from the turn of the century also Stravinsky. More than in any other music I find the musci changes geographically. Don't love the British composers much, even handel early on was imeediately anglified.
Italians are so good at what they do. Those operas are a totally different animal from the german powerhouses, but they feed another side of the soul.
The Germans are brilliant. I agree on Mahler. 9th and 10th are music for the heavens. I have made much effort to get to know as much as possible about Mahler the man too because he was so interesting, so sad, and lived at such a crucial time in Europe. The use of his Adagio of the 5th of is probably the best use of music ever in film. (Visconti uses it in "Morte a Venezia")
I wonder if you had a chance to listen to the Lieder by Hugo Wolf. His output is very small but powerful.

"...no longer shall you trudge 'cross my peaceful mind."

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: Some Girl ()
Date: January 1, 2006 23:08

BornOnTheBayou Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
>
>
> Mozart's work is uneven, I think because THERES SO
> MUCH OF IT... it's like this guy pumped out more
> stuff... but there are a few gems:
>
> 1) Moz' very best work is his Piano Concerto 24(KV
> 491).


I think Mozart's Piano concertos 20 & 21 are even better than 24.
I'm also crazy about his 40th & 25th symphonies. Haven't heard anyone ever mention the 25th but I love it.


Is anyone here a fan of Gershwin? Not so much "classical" but still...



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2006-01-01 23:09 by Some Girl.

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: BornOnTheBayou ()
Date: January 1, 2006 23:23

Some Girl Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> BornOnTheBayou Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
>>
> Is anyone here a fan of Gershwin? Not so much
> "classical" but still...
>
>

Gershwin, IMO, was sort of a "bridge" between classical and jazz compositions.

As we rolled into the 20th Century, it became progressively more expensive for a composer to focus on huge symphonies, and to keep a large orchestra together... and with the automobile and mass transportation options increasing, so did entertainment options... and the public just lost interest in complicated symphonic arrangements in favor of lighter, simpler "fast food" music.

When's the last truly great symphony that was ever written ?? Probably some of Vaughan-Williams or Britten's stuff, and that's over 50 years ago.



"It's just that demon life has got me in it's sway..."



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2006-01-02 01:55 by BornOnTheBayou.

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: Koen ()
Date: January 2, 2006 01:48

Bonus question: What did Beethoven's wife used to say in bed?

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: uz2bstoned ()
Date: January 2, 2006 08:12

I listened to a program on Paganini recently. He was a really gifted musican. The first "rock star" really. He was the Hendrix of the violin apparently. he could move his wrists in all sorts of abnormal postions due to some syndrome he suffered. he also was the first payer to memorise his music. he amazed crowds by appearing on stage like a gothic monster and played his violin without reading. Unheard of at the time. Some of his pieces are amazing. he could make the violin sound like a horn section and some of his pieces have strong rock stlye "riffs". Pretty cool

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: BornOnTheBayou ()
Date: January 2, 2006 21:34

I was rummaging through Tower Records the other day, picking up a couple of old Mahler Dutton Monos...

I got to thinking about this thread... especially about the poster comparing Toscanini's sound to more "mainstream Beethoven"...

And I was thinkings there's like 4 CENTURIES OF MUSIC in this room... and it's gonna basically wither away prolly unless it's "re-worked" or "re-modernized"...

Even generation there's some guy who comes thru and tries to "relate" classical masterpieces to the young generation (like Ben Zander in Boston, for example)... but does it ever really have traction ?

Maybe it would be better off to let "modern composers" like Springsteen or Kiedis take a shot at it... Roger Waters has that opera he tried to do... maybe these guys are the "NEW TOSCANINI'S"... I know that's a stretch but if there aren't some new Tosca's stepping up, putting an "appealing modern edge" on this music where's it going to end up ?

The right pieces are just blisteringly great music, the most intricate stuff ever written with every emotional roller coaster you can imagine, but I don't think it's selling very well in 2006 unfortunately.

"It's just that demon life has got me in it's sway..."



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2006-01-02 21:37 by BornOnTheBayou.

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: TooTough ()
Date: January 2, 2006 21:42

Koen Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Bonus question: What did Beethoven's wife used to
> say in bed?


Nothing, he couldn´t hear it.

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: Koen ()
Date: January 2, 2006 23:16

TooTough Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Koen Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > Bonus question: What did Beethoven's wife
> used to
> > say in bed?
>
>
> Nothing, he couldn´t hear it.
>

LOL - but not the answer I had in mind smiling smiley

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: bassplayer617 ()
Date: January 3, 2006 00:34

On von Karajan, the Berlin Philharmoniker, and Wagner -- the best-sounding classical CD I have is a 1984 digital recording of themes from Tannhaeuser, Tristan und Isolde and der Meistersinger. Majestic, beautiful and LOUD. I love it.

I've bought a few "budget" classical CDs, and I've learned that one must be careful -- the amount of amateurish-sounding and poorly recorded pieces thrown out is just astounding.

My formal education in the classics is sorely lacking, but I hope to rectify this as I mature and attempt to verse myself on the "essentials".

More on Wagner -- I also have a CD of "Highlights from The Ring" recorded by the New York Philharmonic and conducted by Zubin Mehta. This was actually a brave endeavor, as Wagner is not regarded well by the Jewish community. For Mehta to do this took some courage, and he is careful to remove some of the bombast of pieces like "Siegfried's Funeral March", with its obvious Teutonic overtones.

On 20th Century composers, I admit a fascination with Samuel Barber, who served in the US Air Force during WWII. Apart from the famous "Adagio for Strings" as used in the movie "Platoon", he has some other tone-poems that I like very much, including "Essay no.1 for Orchestra" and "Music for a Scene from Shelley op. 7".



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 2006-01-03 00:57 by bassplayer617.

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: BornOnTheBayou ()
Date: January 3, 2006 00:58

bassplayer617 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
>>
> I've bought a few "budget" classical CDs, and I've
> learned that one must be careful -- the amount of
> amateurish-sounding and poorly recorded pieces
> thrown out is just astounding.
>
> My formal education in the classics is sorely
> lacking, but I hope to rectify this as I mature
> and attempt to verse myself on the "essentials".

Yo BP...

You just can't go wrong starting with a couple of great reference books:

1) The Penguin Guide to Recorded Music (or Guide to Classical Music), it's about as thick as a phone book and has exhaustive review of all recordings of every composer you can think of...

2) The Gramophone "Good Guide" or something like that... Guide to Good music or something....

That's really where I started... and there's at least one more that I can't recall right now...

ANYWAY, it's really best to focus on only those recordings that are highly ranked in both sources...

I started when you could RETURN the CD's to Tower... I returned so many to them after listening. Also, if you have a good Classical collection at a local library you can go listen to them there.

Otherwise it's kind of expensive, you just have to hold your nose and buy a highly rated piece by a particular composer...

Alot of CD's will have more than one recording like two Beethovens or a Beethoven and a Mozart, for example... so you can get more bang for buck that way...

But with all the classical recordings there is just ALOT of insipid stuff... you have to move the chaff to find the wheat...

Want a Great place to start ?? Try FullHouseTraders' list below:

[www.fullhousetrader.com]

I'm pretty confident that you'll like at least 80% of this stuff and really go nuts over at least half of it. But again, study your Penguin to find the best recordings of each.

FWIW, I dived into classical because I just reached the limit for Rock N Roll...how many times can you listen to the Stones and CCR and Dylan ?? We need something NEW...

Jazz and Classical really give those outlets.

Full House Trader also has a great Jazz listing, you have to back-page to their diversions page.



"It's just that demon life has got me in it's sway..."

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: bassplayer617 ()
Date: January 3, 2006 01:17

Many thanks, Born on the Bayou. It just so happens that my local library DOES have a good collection of classical CDs, and this has been an immense help. My office is located with walking distance of the best library in the state of West Virginia, in downtown Charleston, and I spend many lunch hours browsing. Through the resources available there, I can get just about anything I want. As I am also an avid military historian, access to International Library Loan is a priceless asset.

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: Koen ()
Date: January 3, 2006 01:53

BornOnTheBayou Wrote:
> 1) The Penguin Guide to Recorded Music (or Guide
> to Classical Music), it's about as thick as a
> phone book and has exhaustive review of all
> recordings of every composer you can think of...
>
> 2) The Gramophone "Good Guide" or something like
> that... Guide to Good music or something....


Both are on Amazon for a 'buy both for less' deal: [www.amazon.com]

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: BornOnTheBayou ()
Date: January 3, 2006 02:42

Another Guide I was thinking of is the Rough Guide to Classical Music... they usually only list the top 2 or 3 recordings of each composer. whereas Penguin goes into exhaustive detail of every last recording around...

BUT, it's really those recordings that they all agree on that are your best bet.

And, if you don't like the composer, it doesn't matter how good the recording is, or how good the conductor or musicians are...

For example, I'm just not a major Chopin fan... honestly never heard any composition by him that can hold my interest. So even the "best" recording isn't going to be worth buying.

"It's just that demon life has got me in it's sway..."

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: Koen ()
Date: January 3, 2006 02:57

While browsing at Amazon, I saw a few other 'guide books", one from NPR and this one: [www.amazon.com] grinning smiley

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: ChelseaDrugstore ()
Date: January 3, 2006 05:13

Since you guys are checking on books re. a Classical Education I just want to mention this book once again by Harold Schonberg "The Great Classical Composers". It sounds much like the one Bayou talks about. Another good one.

"...no longer shall you trudge 'cross my peaceful mind."

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: BornOnTheBayou ()
Date: January 3, 2006 05:20

Koen Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> While browsing at Amazon, I saw a few other 'guide
> books", one from NPR and this one:


That's not a bad "getting started" book...

The challenge is pretty daunting... to "wade" through 4 Centuries of classical music... some of these composers are unbelieveably prolific (Mozart, for instance)... where the &^%$# do you start ???

The ODDS ARE that unless you have some kind of guide, you will start with something insipid, because there's just SO MUCH STUFF and, like rock or jazz or country, it isn't all great...

So, you stumble on some CD's that aren't that interesting and tell yourself "I really don't care for this" and not pursue it to find the gems.

So these guides are a great place to start... especially if there's a public library with alot of CD's available where you can "listen before you buy".

"It's just that demon life has got me in it's sway..."

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: barking paul ()
Date: January 3, 2006 12:31

Yes, I agree with BornOnTheBayou above, it can seem a bit overwhelming at first,about the advice on getting started.

Here in the UK there are a couple of nationwide radio stations, one from the BBC known as Radio 3, and a commercial station Classic FM. The former is probably not a good starting point, tends to appeal to those with considerable knowledge.

Try instead Classic FM, make a note of the pieces you like, and then check them against the many cheap classical music CD compilations available to buy, or borrow them from a local public library. These commonly feature excerpts from a symphony or opera for example, and give a good overview of the different styles.

At this initial stage it doesn't matter much as to which orchestra or soloist is performing, so don't be put off by some unfamiliar names, just give it a try.

I've been a Stones fan for 30+ years, a classical music fan for around 20+ years, all music gives pleasure (in varying degrees of course), if you only listen to one type then you're missing out on some great sounds.

Re: Completely OT: I Love Classical Music
Posted by: RobertJohnson ()
Date: January 3, 2006 14:33

BornOnTheBayou Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> RobertJohnson Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > My favs are Bach, Rachmaninow, Brahms,
> Mahler.
>
> Brahms wrote a number of symphonies, but far and
> away his best is Symphony #1, it just grabs you
> from the opening...
>
> If you want an incredible rendition, look no
> further than Herbert von Karajan conducting the
> Berliner Philharmonic on Deutsche Grammophone.
>
> Brahms' other very interesting work, IMO, is Piano
> Concerto #1. A tremendous version is Clifford
> Curzon on piano behind the London Symphony
> Orchestra, George Szell conducting. This was
> recording in Kingsway Hall in May 1962 and is one
> of Decca's "Legendary Performances" series, and
> deserves to be.
>
>
>
>
> "It's just that demon life has got me in it's
> sway..."


A legendary rendition of Brahms symphonies, unmached until today I think, is the one with Bruno Walter, one of the greatest conductors. It was produced in the '50 I think.

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