When you saw the title of this thread, the first thing you probably thought was... are you serious? What are you smoking?
Well, nothing really. The superlatives have been worn out: the best, definitive, beautiful, legendary and most of all... the term 'desert island'.
What I have in mind is something a little different. This is not a subjective, my desert island discs are better than yours kind of thread. This is merely the thread to share some of your favorite recordings in order to help others expand their collections. They could be rare, they could be cheap, they could be out of print. They could even be Kleiber's Beethoven 5th. It could be anything, as long as this is a recording that you feel is worthy of sharing. If you feel it is not, then please refrain. If you are just making a list of well-reputed recordings that really mean nothing to you personally, please refrain as well.
So... there's the common argument that we should never take other people's opinions seriously. Really? One of the main reasons I visit music forums is to help guide what I collect. More than half of the CDs I buy are forum-inspired and the majority of the rest is forum-confirmed. The bottom line is, you don't have to take any other opinions besides your own with more than a grain of salt, but you can, and this thread at least makes this resource available to you.
One person may like something that someone else may despise. We've covered this many times. And as far as this thread is concerned, criticizing the tastes of others is not appreciated. However, feel free to commend others for their choices.
A couple guidelines:
1) Don't think of it as a 'Top 10 of all time' thing.
2) Any recording, CD, box set, DVD, SACD, LP, etc. will work.
3) Try to limit your number of choices per post. It is hard to take someone's list seriously if they put down every mildly good recording they've ever heard.
4) It's your opinion, so enlighten us with your choices!
[I will be back later with recordings.]