September 13, 2014

Recordings of conductor Eric Leinsdorf

The conductor Eric Leinsdorf had a distinguished career, from conducting at the Met as a young man around 1940, to leading the Boston Symphony Orchestra in the 1960s. Leinsdorf did a large amount of recording, of opera as well as symphonic works. For one reason or another, a good number of these recordings are out of print. We will look at the work of this neglected conductor.


September 06, 2014

Full Frequency Range Recordings

What does the sound of a 1943 German submarine have to do with the sound of a recording of Stravinsky's ballet Petrouchka released in England in 1947? However unlikely, there is a connection, and the connection is the phrase "Full Frequency Range Recording," coined by the British Decca recording company in the mid 1940s. We'll hear more about that  submarine and also Petrouchka and the sound of other early FFRR recordings. 


August 30, 2014

Recordings of conductor Rafael Fruehbeck de Burgos

The famous Spanish conductor Rafael Fruehbeck de Burgos passed away recently. He was known widely as a guest conductor of orchestras worldwide, and his specialties were Spanish music and the Romantic classics of the 19th century. We will hear this famous conductor in recordings of the music of Isaac Albeniz and Joaquin Rodrigo.


August 23, 2014

Recordings of early music by Archiv Produktion

One of the pioneers in the recording of early music was the Deutsche Grammophon company, which established the subsidiary label, Archiv Produktion, in 1948. These silver-labeled records attempted to present early music in the most authentic form possible. The records were accompanied with the most detailed documentation I have ever seen on any recordings. The first discs, in 1948, were of Bach organ music played by Helmut Walcha, a star of the label for 30 years.


August 16, 2014

Recorded legacy of Richard Strauss

Richard Strauss was born 100 years ago. Strauss was not only one of the most famous composers of the 20th century, he was also one of the most renowned conductors. He was thus in the almost unique position to conduct on records definitive performances of his own works. We will assess the recorded legacy of Richard Strauss' musical heritage.


August 09, 2014

Open-air music

Summertime is the time for outdoor concerts, and also a time for the music to go light. We'll look back at such past masters of the pops concert as Arthur Fiedler with the Boston Pops Orchestra,  and also check out some famous summer concert venues.


August 02, 2014

Gabrieli Compositions

 Andrea Gabrieli and his nephew Giovanni were organists and music directors at the Cathedral of St. Mark in the days of Venice's glory, from the late 16th century to the early 17th century. They wrote multi-voiced compositions for the great cathedral in Venice, and over the past decades, performers have tired to record and duplicate the original sounds of their splendid pieces in the same cathedral or other locations.  We will hear some of these records. 


July 26, 2014

Seattle Symphony Recordings

One of the orchestras to emerge on the national scene during the early years of the CD was the Seattle Symphony Orchestra. With Gerard Schwartz as conductor, this orchestra on Delos CDs issued a number of outstanding performances, especially of American composers such as Howard Hanson. This orchestra and label showed yet once more the power of recordings in establishing a national, if not international, reputation. 


July 19, 2014

Favorite Encores

Most performing musicians have a store of encores to play after the serious music of the concert or recital is over. A good encore is usually short, has immediate appeal, and most of the time a change of pace and mood from what has gone before. We'll play some of the favorite encores of famous violinists, from the days of Fritz Kreisler, to the today of Gil Shaham.


July 05, 2014

Leonard Slatkin and the St. Louis Symphony

In 1979, the conductor Leonard Slatkin began a 17-year tenure as music director of the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra. During those years, Slatkin and that orchestra issued a series of recordings that raised the St. Louis ensemble to the ranks of one of the ten best orchestras in the U.S. Due to the decline in classical recording, that feat may not be duplicated in a very long time. We'll sample some of their recordings.


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Classical 24 Music Playlist

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