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starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

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starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by bal on Sun Nov 27, 2011 6:23 pm

Hello everyone,
my bliss is usually in rock and jazz and the blues, but i have recently been listening to music thro headphones as my main rig is boxed up until my new home is ready. I was listening to a compilation disc, and there was one orchestra piece, and i was dumb struck that i was very moved by the music. Some how i never felt anything but irritation at classical music thro my main system, but perhaps the increased intimacy of the headphone experience was giving me a new dimension or path to the emotion contained in the classical piece..?

So i went out to rock corner in bangsar and boy... i was so intimidated by the choices available there that i did not buy anything. sigh... too scared to make an expensive mistake.

Could any one here suggest a couple of easy emotionally available full orchestra cd's for a rank new-bie to classical music, who is now wanting more? Something well recorded and available locally? If you could actually give the title, composer, orchestra leader and label and where to buy it would be absolutely great. If you have something you want to sell off yourself that you think is appropriate for a beginner, would be good too. Any ideas about which Pavarotti cd you would suggest is his best as well?

I'm thinking one of the beethoven symphonies or new year vienna concert ones but not sure which ones to get. I presume that just as in rock or jazz, artists have good, so-so and bad albums, so it is in classical & i just do not want to make a mistake and let my first few classical cd purchases end up as duds.

Thanks again for sharing.

Bal. 012-3058090

bal
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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by JediSavant on Sun Nov 27, 2011 10:04 pm

If you like Rock, then it's a good idea to go with Beethoven's 3rd, 5th and 7th Symphonies, and the 5th Piano Concerto.

Bach's Cello Suites are also good if you're into Jazz and Pop as much of those genres owe tribute to the melodies of Bach.
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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by cmboy on Sun Nov 27, 2011 10:33 pm

Have a few albums both LP & CD which I enjoy once a while.

Hooked on Classics Louis Clark.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hooked_on_Classics

Best sounding for me.

Any album from Ancient Academy of Music conducted by Christopher Hogwood.
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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by bal on Sun Nov 27, 2011 11:14 pm

many thanks cmboy. Jedisavant, any particular recordings you feel are better for those particular pieces you mentioned?

many many thanks again guys!

Bal

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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by cmboy on Sun Nov 27, 2011 11:22 pm

Albums from Telarc label? Erich Kunzel? Lots of audiophiles seem to have at least one or more of these.

Then there's lots of vintage classical albums from Decca label, mainly LP's. mostly from UK. The CD issues...errrrrr.
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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by JediSavant on Mon Nov 28, 2011 12:26 am

For the Beethovens I'd suggest anything conducted by Karajan or Bohm, concertos played by Barenboim or Brendel.

For Bach and the Cello Suites, Yo Yo Ma is a grand cellist indeed...

Labels are important when it comes to LPs but most recent CD issues are ok in my opinion. Don't forget we're in Malaysia and some of the top labels are not readily available at decent prices.
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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by ARTESUANO on Mon Nov 28, 2011 5:49 am

Hi Bal,

If you like full orchestra, go for what JediSavant mention like Karajan, Karl Bohm & also Carlos Kleiber. Since you are into jazz, I suggest to get this album under Telarc entitled Jacques Loussier plays Bach which I think you will like it even it a classical piece but play in jazz style.
My advice to you is don't simply buy any classical music as there are so many out in there but Malaysia market for classical are very limited & to listen to classical music, one need to feel the full orchestra & the sound staging that been play out like you are setting inside the concert hall.
Most of the local CDs are remastered & when you listen to it, it lost most of the sound staging.
If you looking for good classical music, go to Mid Valley Rock Corner Garden side (2nd floor) look for this old guy by the name Bob. He know most of the classical & jazz music but he is now work part-time (go on weekend) as age catching up. Tell him what type of classical music you are listening & he sure can recommend you some good one.
Hope this will help. Cheers!

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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by WongKN on Mon Nov 28, 2011 12:43 pm

Bal,

The 'Hooked on Classics' recommendation seems to be very good as it is a compilation medley of some of the most popular pieces and if I remember correctly, separated by genre (hooked on dances, etc). Also they pick the most melodious portion of the piece to form the medley. A lot of classical music has been used for popular commercial jingles and even in some movies and TV shows. E.g. the famous Dublin Moore violin challenge in 'Unfaithfully yours' is Czardas by Monti. Then of course the 'Lone Ranger' TV show is another good example. So using Hooked on Classics, you identify the tune which 'floats your boat' (so to speak), then you can zoom in on this piece and can narrow down on performer, conductor, label, etc. All lot also depends on how you want the piece to be played. Telarc tends to have their performances a bit dynamic while others can be more subdu'ed. That would be for you to enjoy exploring. Classical music is a huge world of wonderful enjoyment waiting for you to explore.
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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by cmboy on Mon Nov 28, 2011 1:24 pm

At one point of time I liked this Hooked on Classics albums, I bought multiple copies, earliest on LP, then on CD's, earliest RCA Japan pressing to US pressing to some EU, all used copies except for the Japan pressed. There was a rare CD boxset gold discs of HOC I,II,III together with another "The Baroque Connection -Wendy Carlos" aka Hooked on Classics IV. Got that too, which I treasure highly.

This entire boxset,like the HOC 1, gives a very wide insight to most popular classical music. LP or CD, whichever suits my mood, they're all timeless classics for very easy listening sessions.
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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by WongKN on Mon Nov 28, 2011 2:10 pm

One thing about using Hooked on Classics to select the classical piece one wants to listen to in its entirety is that HOC picks the most melodious and famous portion of the piece and the actual original piece will not always be like that. E.g. Orpheus in the Underworld is the original piece for the famous can-can music. But the famous part forms maybe 10% of the whole OITU piece. Similarly, Ode To Joy which is the most legendary portion of Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 comes in quite a bit after the start of the 4th movement. Or Also Sprach Zarathustra, which is the source for the famous organ piece in 2001 A Space Odyssey, that part is only in the beginning, maybe 5% of the whole ASZ.

But whatever it is, classical music is a great world of fascination and wonderful music to be discovered and enjoyed. I hope we can share more on this great genre of music.
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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by bal on Mon Nov 28, 2011 2:19 pm

So i went out this morning and did some shopping... picked out Reference recodings 30th anniversary sampler and 2002 new years concert seiji ozawa wiener philharmonic K2mastering.... really excellent.

Thanks guys for all your input! Much appreciated!

Bal

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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by cmboy on Mon Nov 28, 2011 2:29 pm

One matter is that every conductor and arranger interprets any piece of classical music in their own unique manner. For example, one most popular and widely heard and played tune is Pachelbel's Canon in D. I've come across numerous renditions by different orchestras. The Timing, beat and pace all differ to a large degree. Ultimately it depends on yourself which one you tend to like most.

Speaking about Seiji Ozawa, I happen to have the recorded DVD video of his spree at New Years Day 2002. A real joy to watch!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wfB3sUlS0Ck

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xToFOzD0M8E&feature=related

I always think there's maximum involvement and enjoyment watching these live classical performances on video! Never discount this avenue. Hi fidelity sound isn't always the matter.
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Re: starting out on classical music... a few good albums?

Post by bal on Mon Nov 28, 2011 6:32 pm

Food for thought Cmboy. I'm thinking of putting up a LCD tv in the new music room once the home is done for just this purpose.

This is great... itchying to buy more classical soon...!! lol!

many thanks again guys. Hope you all had a lovely looong restful weekend.

Bal

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