Classical Music Anyone?

Black Swan

Abord the Yorikke!
Over 1000 posts
#1
I must admit that I do not know classical music very much.
I have a brother who played the piano when I grew up, and when I hear a classical piece, I usually have heard it and know it enough to follow. But as far as knowing what to buy, I get overwhelmed.
I usually prefer a single instrument such as violin, cello or voice, but I would like to get into it a little more.
What are your favorite classical pieces?
 
#2
Oh, so many. Here are a few, from accessible to downright bombastically pretentious:

Bach Brandenburg Concertos
Vivaldi The Four Seasons and L'estro Armonico
Barber Adagio for Strings
Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique
Rossini La Gazza Ladra
Tchaikovsky Souvenir de Florence
Janacek String Q #1, The Kreutzer Sonata and String Q #2, Intimate Letters
Schoenberg Verklarte Nacht
Elgar Concerto in E minor - Jacqueline du Pre, 'cello
Stravinsky Le Sacre du Primtemps and Firebird Suite
Bartok The Wooden Prince

Most all of Anton Webern and Alban Berg along with the 20th century Polish school: Szymanowski, Penderecki and Lutoslawski. All of Beethoven's String Quartets. Every Haydn Symphony. Even the simple ones from back in the early days.

Almost none of Mozart. Requiem is good, but may not be exclusively Mozart's.
 
#4
Now that I've actually read your initial post more closely, I didn't really adress your preference, that for single instruments. I don't go for that style too much, and I'm not big on piano in classical music, but Beethoven's piano works aren't exactly fluff.

Another interesting piano (solo) piece is Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition. The more commonly-heard version is Maurice Ravel's orchestration of the work. That, or Emerson, Lake and Palmer, of course. ;)
 

mjp

Keep my good eye on the beat
Moderator
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#6
If you like a single instrument try chamber music. They are typically quartets and quintets that feature a "solo" instrument playing off the melodies.

As far as which composer to go with, Mozart was the master of the quartets and quintets to my ears. Like Purple Stickpin, I'm not big on piano pieces, but Mozart has string and wind quartets that will break your heart ( for example).

So between Purple Stickpin's no Mozart and my all Mozart all the time, you should cover all the bases. ;)
 

Black Swan

Abord the Yorikke!
Over 1000 posts
#10
That is something that I have , The Bach suites for cello by Anner Byslma.
Very beautiful.

I am not so crazy about piano either, like Chopin or Liszt. It reminds me too much of the sunday roast beef dinner and the sad scoop of vanilla ice cream. The next day was school, with the catholic nuns and their fucking oak clackers. I spent most of the recess on my knees for being insolent.

I am really trying to widen my appreciation for classical music.

I do like Mozart's sonatas, that's what my brother played endlessly, and remember Bramhs in a beatnik kind of way, because of Françoise Sagan.
 
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roni

Over 5000 posts
#11
"Dieses Video enthält Content von Sony Music Entertainment. Es ist in deinem Land nicht mehr verfügbar."
= "This video has content by Sony Music Entertainment. It is not available in your country."

Thank you, international copyright laws!




_________________________


BlackSwan:
I don't want to slide too much into my usual drunken long posts, but since you were so kind to claim in public, I'd look better than Richard's picture shows, I'll try to give you the very best advice I possible can:


1. (solo piano)
If there's only ONE solo-instrument-piece one should know, it is GLENN GOULD plays BACH: GOLDBERG VARIATIONS (recorded 1955! - after that, you might like to surprise yourself by listening to Gould's interpretation of it in 1981!)


2. (solo piano)
If you like the interpreter after the previous: GLENN GOULD plays BACH: 'Art of the Fugue' - CONTRAPUNCTUS XIV (unfinished). Try it while taking a hot bath after a hard day. (not sure on which record this is available in Canada.)


3. (piano-concerto - which means: a smaller orchestra than with a symphony, playing together with a solo-instrument, in this case a piano)
This one is Very 'romantic' but I like it a lot and am not alone: SERGEJ RACHMANINOW (spelling?): Piano-concerto #2.
Very Best interpretation I know of: Vladimir Ashkenazy: Piano; André Previn: Conductor.



4. (violin-concerto - which means as above: a smaller orchestra together with a solo-instrument, in this case a violin)
JOHANNES BRAHMS and PETER TCHAIKOVSKY (sp?) - both have only composed One violin-concerto, so there's no number. (There are a lot of good interpretations around. My favorite is DAVID OISTRACH (or OISTRAKH) on the violin.)



All these been chosen for your love of solo-instruments.


Yet, there is One piece of classical music, of which I think it will Always GET somebody, if he/she's able to enjoy classical music At All.
And if it does Not get one - classical music might not be their thing or ever become.


5. (symphony)
BEETHOVEN #9. The killer, the blast, the musical piece to have on the island.
BUT be aware: NEVER listen to a Bad version of it! I mean it! This is MOST IMPORTANT!
Even if it sounds strange: the interpretation does matter - a Big lot!

In this case, I clearly vote for:
HERBERT von KARAJAN - 1963.
DO NOT go for Karajan's other recordings! (esp. after his version of 1984, you would be so much dissappointed and curse me! Watch out for the right versions!)

next Best:
Wilhelm Furtwängler 1951.

I can also imagine Georg Solti doing it Great! But have never heared a version of his.
Leo Bernstein did okay too, 1989 in Berlin (on occation of the fall of the wall). As did Kurt Masur 1975. (yes, I do have all these and some others of the same symphony.)
But go for the BEST: Karajan 1963! It's the thing!



P.S.:
from My experience - it is always a good idea to read a bit (or listen on the radio) about the piece you are going to hear and the composer before you do. You can much easier slide into his world if you did. (and if you do not despite of that: you'll know even more, that this particular guy isn't your.)
 
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hoochmonkey9

Art should be its own hammer.
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Over 5000 posts
#12
1. (solo piano)
If there's only ONE solo-instrument-piece one should know, it is GLENN GOULD plays BACH: GOLDBERG VARIATIONS (recorded 1955! - after that, you might like to surprise yourself by listening to Gould's interpretation of it in 1981!)

2. (solo piano)
If you like the interpreter after the previous: GLENN GOULD plays BACH: 'Art of the Fugue' - CONTRAPUNCTUS XIV (unfinished). Try it while taking a hot bath after a hard day. (not sure on which record this is available in Canada.)
ditto all that, and would like to add a related title:

cover_784.jpg
 

d gray

tried to do his best but could not
Founding member
Over 1000 posts
#13
1. (solo piano)
If there's only ONE solo-instrument-piece one should know, it is GLENN GOULD plays BACH: GOLDBERG VARIATIONS (recorded 1955! - after that, you might like to surprise yourself by listening to Gould's interpretation of it in 1981!)

2. (solo piano)
If you like the interpreter after the previous: GLENN GOULD plays BACH: 'Art of the Fugue' - CONTRAPUNCTUS XIV (unfinished). Try it while taking a hot bath after a hard day. (not sure on which record this is available in Canada.)
hey roni i've been listening to that this week. one of my fave artistes.

there's a great live cd of him playing the goldbergs at the salzburg festival
in 1959.

i have a bunch of gould bootleg cd's of live stuff that are amazing as well.
 

roni

Over 5000 posts
#14
d gray: I do have the Salzburg-live-recording too. It's interesting to have this between the 2 well known poles. (Though from a creative p-o-v I don't really relate to it.)

Of course, I would never ask anyone to do something illegal and send me bootlegs of anything. Never!

My private email-addy is mail@roni2000.de by the way.
 
#16
I've got three recordings of Beethoven's 9th, and the one that stands out for me is Karl Bohm and the Weiner Philharmoniker, 1970. I've got a Furtwangler from 1942, which is taken at a furious tempo, which works at times but fails at others. Also, the recording is weak, as one might expect.

I also have a Karajan/Berliner Philharmoniker from 1977, which apparently isn't 1963, but at least it isn't 1984.
 

hoochmonkey9

Art should be its own hammer.
Moderator
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Over 5000 posts
#17
cliched maybe, but Vivaldi's Four Seasons is a must. I like Nigel Kennedy's version.

f_1771566.jpg


and all of Sibelius' Symphonies, but especially Symphony No.2 in D Major major, op. 43. great ending.

yjyjjyssky.jpg
 

David

Over 500 posts
#18
Bach Fourth Brandenburg Concerto, last movement is what got me into classical music as an adolescent and Glenn Gould's Bach playing. The last movement of the 4th Brandenburg sent me into orbit. Then Stravinsky's Le Sacre Du Printemps, the American composer Roy Harris' Third Symphony, Mahler Das Lied von der Erde, Beethoven 9, Brahms Third, Mozart Jupiter Symphony, Shostakovich Symphony 10, Mozart Haffner Symphony. Sibelius. I also like the early English composers like William Byrd, Gilles Farnaby, Orlando Gibbons. Beethoven E-major Piano Sonata, Op. 109. Beethoven String Quartet "Grosse Fuge".
 

roni

Over 5000 posts
#19
hooch:
yes, Vivaldi's 4 seasons is clichée, but there's NO DOUBT they Are Great!

And Nigel Kennedy Was important for popularizing (is this an English word?) classical music. I have some of his recordings and they are beautiful. (esp. like his violin-concerto by Tschaikowsky.) Only, in most cases I know interpretations by others, who move me more.


Then: I don't know that particular 'Brahms-CD' - but have a CD by Glenn Gould, where he plays Beethoven and I don't find it bad - but He Himself stated so often, that he can't relate to the classics (e.g. Beethoven) or the romantics (e.g. Schumann) or to the later court-music (e.g. Mozart) - I just don't want to listen to him, playing something he doesn't like. To me, he is the ONE-And-Only-interpreter of Baroque, esp. Bach. But I don't trust him otherwise.

He's the man for Bach! Now and forever.
But when I want to listen, say, to a piano-concerto by BEETHOVEN, I'd prefer ALFRED BRENDEL at any time!



ps:
I have exactly the same box of Sibelius-Symphonies and like it a lot!
 
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d gray

tried to do his best but could not
Founding member
Over 1000 posts
#20
it's ridiculous that gould would record music he admits that he hates - it sure shows in the results. those late mozart sonatas are horrible and unlistenable.

when he was younger his interpretations of the 'classics' were way less
mutated/mutilated

i have some very early live performances of him playing beethoven concertos and a mozart
and the brahms d minor concerto etc that are electrifying.
much better (i think) than his studio recordings. he was incredible live even
though he hated doing it.

roni do you want me to send you a list of what i've got?

this one's great. and not a bootleg.

bisbiscd3234.jpg
 

ROC

It is what it is
Over 1000 posts
#21
I have tastes in classical music that I appreciate most people don't share. A lot of what one likes or dislikes is heavily influenced by context. If you see the new Scorsese film Shutter Island, keep your ears open for some new music. This may open some new doors into classical music for you.

1. Fog Tropes, for brass sextet, fog horns & tape
Composer Ingram Marshall (1942 - )
Date Written 1982

2. Symphony No. 3: Passacaglia - Allegro moderato
Composer Krzysztof Penderecki (1933 - )
Date Written 1988-1995


3. Music for Marcel Duchamp, for prepared piano
Composer John Cage (1912 - 1992)
Date Written 1947


4. Hommage a John Cage
Composer Nam June Paik (1932 - 2006)
Performer Nam June Paik

5. Lontano, for orchestra
Composer Gyärgy Ligeti (1923 - 2006)
Date Written 1967

6. Rothko Chapel: [Excerpt]
Composer Morton Feldman (1926 - 1987)
Date Written 1971

7. Cry
Composer Churchill Kohlman
Performer Johnnie Ray [Vocal] (Voice)

8. On the Nature of Daylight
Composer Max Richter (Composer) (1966 - )
Performer Max Richter [Composer]

9. Uaxuctum: The Legend of the Mayan City Which They Themselves
Destroyed for Religious Reasons: 3rd Mo
Composer Giacinto Scelsi (1905 - 1988)
Date Written 1966

10. Piano Quartet in A minor (incomplete)
Composer Gustav Mahler (1860 - 1911)
Date Written circa 1876

11. Christian Zeal and Activity, for chamber ensemble
Composer John Adams (Composer) (1947 - )
Date Written 1973

12. Suite for Symphonic Strings: Nocturne [as used in the Motion Picture
Shutter Island]
Composer Lou Harrison (1917 - 2003)
Date Written 1936-1960

13. Lizard Point
Composer Michael Beinhorn
Performer Brian Eno

14. Hymn II, for cello & double bass
Composer Alfred Schnittke (1934 - 1998)

15. Root of an Unfocus, for prepared piano
Composer John Cage (1912 - 1992)
Date Written 1944

16. Prelude - The Bay [as used in the Motion Picture Shutter Island]
Composer Ingram Marshall (1942 - )

17. Wheel Of Fortune
Composer George David Weiss (1921 - )

18. Tomorrow Night
Composer Hank Thompson (1925 - 2007)

19. This Bitter Earth / On the Nature of Daylight [as used in the Motion
Picture Shutter Island]
Composer Clyde Otis (1925 - 2008)
 
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Gerard K H Love

Appreciate your friends
Over 5000 posts
#24
I hope you two aren't arguing.

R.O.C. I'm glad you posted that list of music. I was wondering about newly written classical type music. Now if I can just get a music link?

I try to listen to classical music regularly as some of it can be an excellent sedative. The few radio stations that play it tend to play a lot of opera which grows on you.
 

Johannes

Founding member
Over 1000 posts
#25
How about John Cages

[This video is unavailable.]

Remember: "If John Cage could get one thousand dollars for eating an apple, I'd
accept $500 plus air fare for being a lemon."

(Women, p.170)

Seriously I like Schuberts Impromptu in G flat major D899 No.3 played by a lot!
 
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Johannes

Founding member
Over 1000 posts
#27
When I first read about "4'33" I thought, wow, that's hilarious and great!

But after watching it, it wears thin pretty fast. Like a book full of blank pages or a canvas with nothing on it and etc. etc.

Exploring the limits of an art form like that, as worthwhile or not that might be, always seemed more thrilling to me in theory than in practical experience. It's like you want to say after 30 seconds, okay, okay, I get it, now can we move on the real part of the evening?
 

Gerard K H Love

Appreciate your friends
Over 5000 posts
#29
I would have been very uncomfortable there, in the audience, because I am usually gassy and my stomach would have been very distracting to the audience.
 

ROC

It is what it is
Over 1000 posts
#30
Remembering Cage just for 4:33 is like remembering Bukowski just for The Fiend (for example).

The context of that piece and the career of one of 20th centuries great musical minds should not be glossed over so lightly.

Listen!
 
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