Question on Brahms Symphony CD

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knotslip
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Question on Brahms Symphony CD

Post by knotslip » Wed Aug 29, 2007 9:40 am

Well,

I've been at it for several weeks now listening to all kinds of classical music and getting a taste for what I like and don't like. I've been hearing a lot of hoohaa about this guy named Brahms so I think it is essential that I go give him a listen. So far, I have listened to and really like the following composers works (at least what I have heard of them) :
Aaron Copeland
Dvorak
DeBussy
Mozart
Beethoven
Tchaikovsky
Korsakov - Scheherazade only
Holst - The Planets

As for Brahms, I was considering getting this CD as a start so I could listen to all of his symphonies. Please tell me if this is a good representation - and if not, maybe recommend a better palce to start.

http://www.arkivmusic.com/classical/alb ... m_id=72504


Thanks in advance.

Heck148
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Re: Question on Brahms Symphony CD

Post by Heck148 » Wed Aug 29, 2007 9:46 am

knotslip wrote: I've been hearing a lot of hoohaa about this guy named Brahms so I think it is essential that I go give him a listen.
Thanks in advance.
Remembering way back to my introductions to classical music, i recall Brahms being a bit tough at first, it took awhile. Other composers, such as the ones you've listed, are much more immediately appealing....

you may find it to be completely otherwise, but what I'm saying is give Brahms some time - the wonders of his music are not quite so obvious as with other composers...so don't be discouraged if something doesn't jump right out at you...it will.

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Post by Ken » Wed Aug 29, 2007 9:51 am

There are varying opinions about Karajan's take on Brahms, with some believing that his version of the Second is one of the best, while his First is a bit disappointing. I'm in the latter camp; I feel that his performance of the First is too effete for my liking.

Furtwängler is considered by many to be the best reader of the Brahms symphonies. I've heard his versions of the First and Fourth and they simply blow me away, even considering the poorer recording quality of his time. You might want to look into this box set; I have heard it is very good and when I make my next Amazon order it'll be included in the package.
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Post by Barry » Wed Aug 29, 2007 9:56 am

I agree that Furtwangler's Brahms, especially the first and fourth symphonies, should be heard by everyone at some point. But I wouldn't recommend it as an introduction to this music.

Better to start with something in stereo and at least somewhat middle-of-the-road in terms of interpretation. That Karajan set may or may not wind up being a favorite down the road, once one gets to know the music and has heard various interpretations. But it should be fine as an introductory set, regardless. The Berlin Philharmonic are one of the great orchestras and this repertoire was their bread and butter. And Karajan doesn't do anything too radical.

You might also want to look into this one (not to mention his great chamber music): link

As an aside, Karajan really did go full throttle with savage intensity in a few of the live Brahms performances of his that I've heard tapes of. He was safer in the studio.
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Post by Ken » Wed Aug 29, 2007 10:16 am

Barry Z wrote:Better to start with something in stereo and at least somewhat middle-of-the-road in terms of interpretation. That Karajan set may or may not wind up being a favorite down the road, once one gets to know the music and has heard various interpretations. But it should be fine as an introductory set, regardless. The Berlin Philharmonic are one of the great orchestras and this repertoire was their bread and butter. And Karajan doesn't do anything too radical.
Good point. The Klemperer Brahms Symphonies often get good reviews, and I enjoy his take on the First. It does seem to be a more middle-of-the road approach that Furtwängler's Romantic postwar reading. It's another option if you're looking for a big-name maestro in stereo for a reasonable price.

I truly wonder how Brahms himself preferred his symphonies to be played. He left very little evidence about his personal preferences in things like texture and tempo, despite his at times confusingly specific tempo indications: "Allegretto Grazioso (Quasi Andantino)".
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Post by jbuck919 » Wed Aug 29, 2007 10:39 am

"Hoohah about a guy named Brahms." There's my rib-tickle for the day. Brahms is the greatest composer chronologically after Beethoven, and those here who don't think so can go to h... I mean would at least place him in the top three.

Again, I would recommend the library, if you have one with a CD collection. Figure him out for yourself from the selections that are available--you cannot go wrong.

When I was in college starting to major in music, we were given a list of suggested listening. At the time I was naive enough to need such a thing. One name--Brahms--was conspicuously missing, and it took a graduate student who almost had an apoplexy in the department office to set it straight.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
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Post by Barry » Wed Aug 29, 2007 10:47 am

jbuck919 wrote:"Hoohah about a guy named Brahms." There's my rib-tickle for the day. Brahms is the greatest composer chronologically after Beethoven, and those here who don't think so can go to h... I mean would at least place him in the top three.
I actually do agree with you on that. The problem, as far as your concerned, is when I place Bruckner number three, behind Beethoven and Brahms :wink: ; at least on my subjective list of personal favorites.
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Post by moldyoldie » Wed Aug 29, 2007 11:53 am

My 2¢...introduce yourself to the Brahms symphonies via the lean & mean, relentless, and orchestrally precise performances of George Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra. Perhaps complement that with the aforementioned Klemperer set, whose impeccable sense of orchestral balance and musical architecture clarifies Brahms' thick textures and long melodic lines. These are the ones which "opened my ears" after hearing several less-than-lucid performances. Karajan's '60s recordings are usually preferred to his latter digital set; in fact, his opening to the First I would describe as well-nigh perfect! However, the playing does turn somewhat smoothshod and satiny as the symphony progresses.

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Post by knotslip » Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:00 pm

Great. Thanks for the recommendations. I will go to the library and see if they have some Brahms CD's I can check out. That is probably a better way to get acquainted with it before purchasing anything. It sounds like Brahms is an acquired taste - at least more so than the other composers I listed. I left off Prokofiev and Grieg in the list of what I have heard and liked.

I have yet to hear many of the popular compsers still, like schubert, schumann, mendelssohn, Haydn, Mahler, Handel, Paganini, Rachmaninov, Saint Saens, Shostakovich, Sibelius (I have a few pieces by him but haven't listened to them yet), Strauss, Stravinsky and Wagner...And I'm sure many more. Whew, thats a lot of listening. :-)

For now, I'll continue to listen to the above and delve into Brahms a bit to see if it appeals to me at this time.

Thanks for all the comments and recommendations...They are appreciated. And glad I could get a laugh out of JBuck. :-)

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Post by knotslip » Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:04 pm

Speaking of Bruckner - is he a major composer? Should he also be on my list of popular composers?

Thanks!

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Post by jbuck919 » Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:08 pm

moldyoldie wrote:My 2¢...introduce yourself to the Brahms symphonies via the lean & mean, relentless, and orchestrally precise performances of George Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra. Perhaps complement that with the aforementioned Klemperer set, whose impeccable sense of orchestral balance and musical architecture clarifies Brahms' thick textures and long melodic lines. These are the ones which "opened my ears" after hearing several less-than-lucid performances. Karajan's '60s recordings are usually preferred to his latter digital set; in fact, his opening to the First I would describe as well-nigh perfect! However, the playing does turn somewhat smoothshod and satiny as the symphony progresses.
Bruno Walter's interpretations are also classic, and more recently I borrowed (from the library, so I follow my own rule even after all these years), the set of the Staatskapelle Dresden.

The thing about the Brahms symphonies is that it is almost pointless to make specific recommendations. As great as they are, unlike the symphonies of many other composers, they play themselves. A competent band under a competent conductor would have to work hard to mess them up. I have to imagine that this feature was at least unconsciously (in a Freudian sense) intentional on the part of Brahms, who famously sweat blood over the issue of writing a symphony in the first place.

I would consider sound fidelity for those who care about it to be the only issue in choosing among the dozens of excellent sets.

Here is a Brahms anecdote related in the excellent biography by Jan Swafford: One of the last performances of his own work that he heard was the Fourth Symphony. He was already sick unto death and barely capable of acknowledging the applause, but the house, knowing what they were about to lose, gave him a shattering ovation including things flying into the air.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

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Post by david johnson » Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:15 pm

knotslip wrote:Speaking of Bruckner - is he a major composer? Should he also be on my list of popular composers?

Thanks!
sure

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Post by jbuck919 » Wed Aug 29, 2007 12:24 pm

david johnson wrote:
knotslip wrote:Speaking of Bruckner - is he a major composer? Should he also be on my list of popular composers?

Thanks!
sure
You will find different opinions about Bruckner here. Mine is notably jaundiced, even though I've tried and tried again. Listen for yourself and decide. In spite of what just posted, most listeners would not put him in the top drawer.

I think I've posted this before, but to redeem Bruckner, he was by reputation the greatest organist of his time, as were several other famous composers (Bach, obviously, then Mozart and Mendelssohn). But he wrote nothing of importance for the instrument, unlike his slightly later compatriot Reger who was not himself a great organist. He was in some respects a talented fool who thought that there was a major league when he was stuck in the minor ones.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

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Post by diegobueno » Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:03 pm

knotslip

Bruckner is definitely worth your while, but I would explore Brahms first.

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Post by Barry » Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:29 pm

jbuck919 wrote: Here is a Brahms anecdote related in the excellent biography by Jan Swafford: One of the last performances of his own work that he heard was the Fourth Symphony. He was already sick unto death and barely capable of acknowledging the applause, but the house, knowing what they were about to lose, gave him a shattering ovation including things flying into the air.
That might be my favorite classical music story. They always run it, with a bit more detail, in the stagebill when the Philadelphia Orchestra performance the fourth, and it never fails to turn my eyes moist.
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Post by Corlyss_D » Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:37 pm

knotslip wrote:Speaking of Bruckner - is he a major composer? Should he also be on my list of popular composers?

Thanks!
If you like him, that's where he belongs.

He wouldn't make my top 200, but that doesn't say anything about how you should feel about him.
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knotslip
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Post by knotslip » Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:46 pm

Yep, not asking if I should like him...just wondering if he is significant enough to warrant checking out...

I find it strange that some composers are so popular that even non-classical music folk kow about them, like Mozart, Beethoven and Bach - but then there are all of these others that were just as significant that no one knows about until they get into this genre of music. That is why I ask because i have found several significant composers that i would have never thought to listen to...Some examples are Sibelius, schubert, schumann...and more that don't start with an S :-)

Thanks for the comments...

---Any reason for why the above is the case? What did Beethoven, Bach and Mozart do that the others didn't to gain such notoriety and publicity - even today?

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Post by Corlyss_D » Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:50 pm

knotslip wrote:Yep, not asking if I should like him...just wondering if he is significant enough to warrant checking out...
Absolutely. Especially if you like him.
---Any reason for why the above is the case? What did Beethoven, Bach and Mozart do that the others didn't to gain such notoriety and publicity - even today?
Advertisers use their tunes a lot, especially if they are aiming for a certain demographic (upscale, high-income, older, well-educated, i.e., the type that are likely to have heard the music before and pay attention to an advertiser that would use them).
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Post by jbuck919 » Wed Aug 29, 2007 2:04 pm

Barry Z wrote:
jbuck919 wrote: Here is a Brahms anecdote related in the excellent biography by Jan Swafford: One of the last performances of his own work that he heard was the Fourth Symphony. He was already sick unto death and barely capable of acknowledging the applause, but the house, knowing what they were about to lose, gave him a shattering ovation including things flying into the air.
That might be my favorite classical music story. They always run it, with a bit more detail, in the stagebill when the Philadelphia Orchestra performance the fourth, and it never fails to turn my eyes moist.
Brahms was not the last important composer, but he was the last of an Olympian breed that we shall never know again. To have known him in his own lifetime, even though he was famously irrascible, would have been the privilege of several lifetimes. And you know, while he had many courtiers, including Dvorak, Strauss, Mahler, and Schoenberg, he did not have many friends. I wonder what would have happened if some ordinary person like myself had offered him a cigar one day (though I do not smoke myself) and sat down with him over a cup of coffee. He only met Schumann approximately that way, you know.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

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Post by jbuck919 » Wed Aug 29, 2007 2:32 pm

Febnyc wrote:
jbuck919 wrote:Brahms was not the last important composer, but he was the last of an Olympian breed that we shall never know again.
Arrrggh, cough, choke, gasp, etc.
Exactly what Debussy "said" before he caught his breath.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

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Post by Wallingford » Wed Aug 29, 2007 4:21 pm

SAWALLISCH.

Now there's an entry out of left field, I know.....he's gotten mixed notices for his early-stereo set of the symphonies. But I was reared on this set, and can't say it did me any harm. Sure, he was just rebuilding the Vienna Symphony at the time, but his efforts apparently paid off.

It should still be easily obtainable, on a Philips twofer.
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Post by Heck148 » Wed Aug 29, 2007 6:53 pm

moldyoldie wrote:My 2¢...introduce yourself to the Brahms symphonies via the lean & mean, relentless, and orchestrally precise performances of George Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra.
Szell/CO is a fine set. other great ones are Toscanini/NBC, and Solti/CSO

any of the three would be excellent starters...I don't reccommend HvK for much of anything....too smooth, glossy, rounded off...

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Post by Ken » Wed Aug 29, 2007 7:36 pm

Wallingford wrote:SAWALLISCH.

Now there's an entry out of left field, I know.....he's gotten mixed notices for his early-stereo set of the symphonies. But I was reared on this set, and can't say it did me any harm. Sure, he was just rebuilding the Vienna Symphony at the time, but his efforts apparently paid off.

It should still be easily obtainable, on a Philips twofer.
This was my first Brahms set and I found it to be adequate, though I wish his tempi were a bit more adventurous on the Second and that his strings were a little more detailed in the First. I otherwise enjoy the set and still listen to it fairly regularly. His Fourth, though not overtly dramatic, is very fresh-sounding. We can even hear the triangle well in the "Allegro giocoso"! ;)
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Post by Chalkperson » Wed Aug 29, 2007 9:41 pm

Toscanini on Testament...
MacKerras on Telarc...

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Post by Mischa » Thu Aug 30, 2007 4:07 am

To get an impression of Furtwängler's Brahms approach you can watch a snippet of the 4th on youtube (rehearsal from 1948 in London).

His Brahms is great, a similar approach of the 4th is Carlos Kleiber with the VPO.

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Post by Yi-Peng » Thu Aug 30, 2007 10:02 am

Might it please you that I can recommend the sets by Abbado and Mackerras? Abbado's set is an ideal balance of drama and lyricism, but he does not present Brahms in an overly-slushy way. Mackerras offers a lean texture and a propulsive drive that I think might suit your purpose.

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Post by knotslip » Thu Aug 30, 2007 1:04 pm

Thanks to everyone that gave recommendations. I will be taking a trip to my public library this week to see if they have any of these recommendations.

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Post by jbuck919 » Thu Aug 30, 2007 1:13 pm

Yi-Peng wrote:Might it please you that I can recommend the sets by Abbado and Mackerras? Abbado's set is an ideal balance of drama and lyricism, but he does not present Brahms in an overly-slushy way. Mackerras offers a lean texture and a propulsive drive that I think might suit your purpose.
May I be one of the first to welcome you here? We are not sufficiently international, and huge parts of the world that might love classical music are underrepresented. Please post as often as you wish or are able to.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

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Late thoughts

Post by DCDare » Sat Sep 01, 2007 4:51 am

Although this string has probably run most of its course, I had a few additional thoughts on what I was reading.

I am fairly new as a listener of classical music and I found Brahms immediately accessible, but more by his chamber music than his symphonies. My first Brahms piece was the symphony set of Solti/CSO and I felt impressed by them or something else difficult to describe; but I did not feel that I was moved, delighted, or something else that I had previously found right away in Mozart and Beethoven. I returned to those pieces though, and they are amazing. But I had to hear them through the prism of his chamber pieces, like the sextets, string and piano quintets. And I believe that the reason for this has to do with the other questions that my fellow new listner had.

I think that the lyricism that Mozart and Beethoven have is not as pronounced (and only slightly, its there, definitely) in the symphonies of Brahms. It is the tune in the theme that advertisers use, as Corlyss mentioned. I hear the tunes in children's toys and advertising and in cell phone rings, etc. We are inundated, aurally, by the themes that we can sing and hum - perhaps what new listeners find more accessible, because they come from other music mediums that are established this way. Rock, country, and Jazz for example are all structured around songs.

I was thinking that this concept could be extended to Bruckner, who I am personally struggling with liking at the moment. I had a Professor in college who was/is a huge fan of Bruckner and that is where I had first heard of him. This person did not recommend Bruckner to me first though, before I listened to classical music at all. He probably thought that I should hear Bruckner through Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, and Brahms. He actually did recommend some of their music first. I will continue to give Bruckner a chance, as I may have started in the wrong place with his 5th symphony and with Harnoncourt/VPO as well. My understanding is that the 4th and 7th are more in the current repertoire of today's symphonies. (not that it has to be, etc.)

The last note on my point of lyricism is Schubert. Here is a composer whose name sounded familiar when first heard, but I wouldn't have said that I had heard any of his music. But now that I know him, I hear his themes used for adverstisements, etc. Compared with Brahms symphonies, I found Schubert's immediately accessible. He didn't seem like an extension of Beethoven as much as a contemporary at first listen. But in any case, I feel that, in hindsight, I liked him immediately for this lyricism or the "tunes" found in the themes of his works.
the above post is written by a person new to classical music, please take it with the necessary amount of salt to season it.

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Re: Late thoughts

Post by jbuck919 » Sat Sep 01, 2007 1:23 pm

DCDare wrote:Although this string has probably run most of its course, I had a few additional thoughts on what I was reading.
Etc.
I don't think you need to apologize for anything, for your post shows a level of thoughtfulness that can only be called admirable. I'm not going to say one argumentative or sanctimonious word, just "welcome."

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

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thank you for the welcome

Post by DCDare » Sat Sep 01, 2007 4:21 pm

Thank you for the welcome. After reading the Bruckner string a moment ago, I think I understand your post. That string provided me with a lot of information, but more questions as well. I will leave those for another time, when things are less "testy" on the subject of Bruckner.

Am I completely off on my lukewarm feeling for the Zimmerman/Ozawa BSO recording of the Liszt concertos? I liked the Totentanz recording better, but since this is the only recording of these pieces I ever heard, perhaps its not the performance.

David
the above post is written by a person new to classical music, please take it with the necessary amount of salt to season it.

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Post by Corlyss_D » Sat Sep 01, 2007 4:29 pm

Welcome to our new members, Yi-Peng and DCDare. Kick your shoes off and set a spell. Post early and often.

DC - If you wait for things to be less testy, we may never see you again. So don't be shy. It probably never gets any better than it is right now.
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Re: thank you for the welcome

Post by Chalkperson » Sun Sep 02, 2007 1:52 pm

DCDare wrote: Am I completely off on my lukewarm feeling for the Zimmerman/Ozawa BSO recording of the Liszt concertos? I liked the Totentanz recording better, but since this is the only recording of these pieces I ever heard, perhaps its not the performance.

David
Not at all, I think this cd is very overrated, Zimmermann is good but the Orchestra sounds like it's stuck in the mud...the Lang Lang/Eschenbach disc of Beethoven Conceros is the same, great soloist but lousy conducting...as for a better Liszt discs...try Richter, Brendel or this new, and very good SACD

FRANZ LISZT
Piano Concertos Nos. 1 & 2; Totentanz
Arnaldo Cohen (piano)
São Paulo Symphony Orchestra
John Neschling BIS- 1530(SACD)

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Post by knotslip » Tue Sep 04, 2007 12:41 pm

First, thanks to all for the great comments and suggestions.

DCDare - No problem coming in a little late - you posted some very helpful comments and suggestions.

I think after reading through all of the posts that I will change direction a bit and hold off on exploring Brahms for now. He seems to be a composer that I might enjoy more after getting acquainted with other composers first. There is by no means any shortage of things to explore after all.

I checked and my library has a VERY limited selection of classical CD's to check out. I'd say less than 30 total and mostly popular stuff like Beetoven's Fifth. So, I am stuck buying based on recommendations and listening to short samples on the net.

I think I will explore Schubert, Tchaikovsky and Rachmoninov next. I still have much to listen to by composers I've already purcahsed pieces by but I also want to keep exlporing new composer's music. Schubert, Tchaikovski and Rach seem to fit well with Dvorak and most of the pieces that I've enjoyed so far. I've no idea where to start with Schubert- maybe another post...but I plan to start with rach's 3 piano concertos and Tchaikovsky's ballets.

Thanks again for all ofthe great posts...I'll be posting for some Schubert recommendations soon.

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Post by Jack Kelso » Fri Sep 14, 2007 12:54 am

jbuck919 wrote:"Hoohah about a guy named Brahms." There's my rib-tickle for the day. Brahms is the greatest composer chronologically after Beethoven, and those here who don't think so can go to h... I mean would at least place him in the top three.
O Lord have mercy! I mean, I praise Handel, Beethoven and Schumann, too. It's as dangerous to prejudice someone "for" as it is "against" a composer.

John, please give Knotslip a break and release him from your Brahms-sling. Face it: No sensible musicologist places Brahms in the "top 3" (forget the nursery rhyme, "The Three B's"). Great workmanship also needs consistent inspiration as well.

I enjoy Brahms' symphonies, Violin Concerto, 2nd Piano Concerto (and quite a few other works of his) immensely....but he's got his share of "clunkers", too....and my knowledge of his works is very large.

Admittedly, there's something about Bach and Brahms fans that enjoy building ivory-towers in Paradise for their guys. I'm not familiar with this phenomenon with Handel, Mozart, Beethoven or Schumann....

Tschüß!
Jack
"Schumann's our music-maker now." ---Robert Browning

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Post by jbuck919 » Fri Sep 14, 2007 2:39 am

Jack Kelso wrote:
jbuck919 wrote:"Hoohah about a guy named Brahms." There's my rib-tickle for the day. Brahms is the greatest composer chronologically after Beethoven, and those here who don't think so can go to h... I mean would at least place him in the top three.
O Lord have mercy! I mean, I praise Handel, Beethoven and Schumann, too. It's as dangerous to prejudice someone "for" as it is "against" a composer.

John, please give Knotslip a break and release him from your Brahms-sling. Face it: No sensible musicologist places Brahms in the "top 3" (forget the nursery rhyme, "The Three B's"). Great workmanship also needs consistent inspiration as well.

I enjoy Brahms' symphonies, Violin Concerto, 2nd Piano Concerto (and quite a few other works of his) immensely....but he's got his share of "clunkers", too....and my knowledge of his works is very large.

Admittedly, there's something about Bach and Brahms fans that enjoy building ivory-towers in Paradise for their guys. I'm not familiar with this phenomenon with Handel, Mozart, Beethoven or Schumann....

Tschüß!
Jack
You are the Johny-come-lately to this thread, Jack. Exiisting Brahms is with exceedingly few exceptions beyond reproach. I am misguiding no one. Geb es auf.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

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Post by Jack Kelso » Fri Sep 14, 2007 3:04 am

jbuck919 wrote:
Jack Kelso wrote:
jbuck919 wrote:"Hoohah about a guy named Brahms." There's my rib-tickle for the day. Brahms is the greatest composer chronologically after Beethoven, and those here who don't think so can go to h... I mean would at least place him in the top three.
O Lord have mercy! I mean, I praise Handel, Beethoven and Schumann, too. It's as dangerous to prejudice someone "for" as it is "against" a composer.

John, please give Knotslip a break and release him from your Brahms-sling. Face it: No sensible musicologist places Brahms in the "top 3" (forget the nursery rhyme, "The Three B's"). Great workmanship also needs consistent inspiration as well.

I enjoy Brahms' symphonies, Violin Concerto, 2nd Piano Concerto (and quite a few other works of his) immensely....but he's got his share of "clunkers", too....and my knowledge of his works is very large.

Admittedly, there's something about Bach and Brahms fans that enjoy building ivory-towers in Paradise for their guys. I'm not familiar with this phenomenon with Handel, Mozart, Beethoven or Schumann....

Tschüß!
Jack
You are the Johny-come-lately to this thread, Jack. Exiisting Brahms is with exceedingly few exceptions beyond reproach. I am misguiding no one. Geb(sic!) es auf.
No problem, John----but keep some of the hype down, it's more effective that way. I'm not the only one who has problems with Brahms' "inspiration" sometimes (but only compared with Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert and Schumann). However, the Violin Concerto and symphonies are right up there with the best---by anyone!! :)

Others will decide through experience for themselves if certain works or movements are inspired or manipulated.

Good listening!

Jack
"Schumann's our music-maker now." ---Robert Browning

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Post by Philoctetes » Fri Sep 14, 2007 9:58 am

For Brahms's Symphonies: Szell, Kubelik, Barenboim, and Walter. Those are the ones I enjoy the most.

For Brahms's Piano Concertos: Gilels with Jochum

For Brahms's Violin Concerto: David Oisktrakh

For Brahms's Organ Music: I enjoy the Naxos disc quite a bit.
"And the wife looks at her husband one night at a party, and loves him no more.
The energy leaves the wine, and the minister falls leaving the church."
Bly

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Brahms.

Post by nadej_baptiste » Fri Sep 14, 2007 4:42 pm

I'm not sure about 1-3 (I think Klemperer does a great 1, though many people are turned off by his slow tempi...), but if you're going to hear Brahms' 4th, find Carlos Kleiber conducting it. I think you can find it on Deutsche Grammophon.
--Kamila

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Re: Brahms.

Post by Jack Kelso » Tue Sep 18, 2007 12:09 am

nadej_batiste wrote:I'm not sure about 1-3 (I think Klemperer does a great 1, though many people are turned off by his slow tempi...), but if you're going to hear Brahms' 4th, find Carlos Kleiber conducting it. I think you can find it on Deutsche Grammophon.
Yes!---Kleiber for the 4th! His is right up there with Walter. Really a shame he didn't get to the other three (not to mention the Schumann symphonies).

Jack
"Schumann's our music-maker now." ---Robert Browning

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Re: Brahms.

Post by Barry » Tue Sep 18, 2007 12:15 am

Jack Kelso wrote:
nadej_batiste wrote:I'm not sure about 1-3 (I think Klemperer does a great 1, though many people are turned off by his slow tempi...), but if you're going to hear Brahms' 4th, find Carlos Kleiber conducting it. I think you can find it on Deutsche Grammophon.
Yes!---Kleiber for the 4th! His is right up there with Walter. Really a shame he didn't get to the other three (not to mention the Schumann symphonies).

Jack
Kleiber may not have made another Brahms symphony commercial recording, but there is a DVD of him conducting the 2nd live with the VPO and it's sensational. I actually like the live work by him I've heard more than his DG studio recordings.
"If this is coffee, please bring me some tea; but if this is tea, please bring me some coffee." - Abraham Lincoln

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http://www.davidstuff.com/political/wmdquotes.htm
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Re: Brahms.

Post by nadej_baptiste » Tue Sep 18, 2007 12:27 am

Jack Kelso wrote:
nadej_batiste wrote:I'm not sure about 1-3 (I think Klemperer does a great 1, though many people are turned off by his slow tempi...), but if you're going to hear Brahms' 4th, find Carlos Kleiber conducting it. I think you can find it on Deutsche Grammophon.
Yes!---Kleiber for the 4th! His is right up there with Walter. Really a shame he didn't get to the other three (not to mention the Schumann symphonies).

Jack
OH I wish he would have done Schumann!!!!!!!
--Kamila

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Re: Brahms.

Post by nadej_baptiste » Tue Sep 18, 2007 12:29 am

Barry Z wrote:
Jack Kelso wrote:
nadej_batiste wrote:I'm not sure about 1-3 (I think Klemperer does a great 1, though many people are turned off by his slow tempi...), but if you're going to hear Brahms' 4th, find Carlos Kleiber conducting it. I think you can find it on Deutsche Grammophon.
Yes!---Kleiber for the 4th! His is right up there with Walter. Really a shame he didn't get to the other three (not to mention the Schumann symphonies).

Jack
Kleiber may not have made another Brahms symphony commercial recording, but there is a DVD of him conducting the 2nd live with the VPO and it's sensational. I actually like the live work by him I've heard more than his DG studio recordings.
Have that DVD -- incredibly moving and powerful performance. Never (or so rarely) have I seen or heard musicians give themselves so fully to a piece of music...
--Kamila

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Re: Brahms.

Post by Chalkperson » Tue Sep 18, 2007 11:01 am

Barry Z wrote:Kleiber may not have made another Brahms symphony commercial recording, but there is a DVD of him conducting the 2nd live with the VPO and it's sensational. I actually like the live work by him I've heard more than his DG studio recordings.
The look of pure joy on his face whilst Conducting should be seen by all, here is a man truly happy in his work...

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Post by knotslip » Tue Sep 18, 2007 12:04 pm

I ended up ordering the following along with the box of Beethoven's piano sonatas :

1 "Dvorák: Symphony No.9" (Bernstein)
Antonin Dvorak; Audio CD; $6.97

1 "Schubert: Greatest Hits" (To see what I like)
Julius Levine; Audio CD; $6.97

1 "Rachmaninov: Piano Concertos Nos. 1 - 4"
Sergey Rachmaninov; Audio CD; $14.99


1 "Schubert: Symphonies Nos. 8 "Unfinished" & 9 "The Great""
Franz Schubert; Audio CD; $7.97

1 "Mendelssohn: A Midsummer Night's Dream" (price)
Felix Mendelssohn; Audio CD; $4.97

After reading many of the posts here, I felt I should hold off on Brahms. I plan to order a box of Mozart piano sonatas and continue with Schubert, Schumann and Tchaikovsky for now. I'm also looking into some Shostakovich (spelling?) symphonies based on recommendations from another thread. There is no shortage of music to explore - just a shortage of funds for buying it. I still have Mahler, Sibelius, Mendelsohnn and others (incuding Brahms) to hear and a plethora of music by composers that I now know I like, to buy. I still have several works by Dvorak to purchase. jeesh!

What is the DVD you guys are referring to here? Maybe I will purchase it as my introduction to Brahms.

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Post by Chalkperson » Tue Sep 18, 2007 12:46 pm

knotslip wrote:What is the DVD you guys are referring to here? Maybe I will purchase it as my introduction to Brahms.
There are four DVD's of Carlos Kleiber Conducting Orchestral Music..

Brahms No.2 Mozart No.36
Beethoven Nos. 4+7
Schubert Nos.3+8
Beethoven Carolian Overture Brahms No.4 Mozart No.36

Two Vienna New Years Day Concerts
1989-1992

Two Versions each of...
Johann Strauss - Die Fledermaus
Richard Strauss - Der Rosenkavalier

and finally..
Bizet - Carmen

There is also an Itaian DVD that includes Rehearsal Material but I have never been able to find a copy...

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Re: Brahms.

Post by Barry » Tue Sep 18, 2007 2:33 pm

Chalkperson wrote:
Barry Z wrote:Kleiber may not have made another Brahms symphony commercial recording, but there is a DVD of him conducting the 2nd live with the VPO and it's sensational. I actually like the live work by him I've heard more than his DG studio recordings.
The look of pure joy on his face whilst Conducting should be seen by all, here is a man truly happy in his work...
I agree, which is why I find it bizarre when I read that he hated conducting and only did it when he needed the money.
"If this is coffee, please bring me some tea; but if this is tea, please bring me some coffee." - Abraham Lincoln

"Although prepared for martyrdom, I preferred that it be postponed." - Winston Churchill

"Before I refuse to take your questions, I have an opening statement." - Ronald Reagan

http://www.davidstuff.com/political/wmdquotes.htm
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2pbp0hur ... re=related

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