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Thread: Go-To “De-Stressing” Music

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    Senior Member Allegro Con Brio's Avatar
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    Default Go-To “De-Stressing” Music

    It's been a terrible, rotten, no-good, very bad day. You come home and you just feel like you need to turn your mind off, close your eyes, collapse into your easy chair, wind down, and tune into your "calm spot." What music do you reach for? Another way to phrase the question could be "what is your music" - the stuff that you feel was composed just to please you, uplift your spirit, and bring you to a happy place. It doesn't have to be stereotypical "relaxing" or "soothing" music.

    For me, any Bach usually does the trick. When I feel that the world is chaotic, disheveled, and noisy; he reminds me that there is meaning and order to life. But some favorite specific "de-stressing" pieces are Mozart's Clarinet Quintet and Clarinet Concerto, Schubert's Trout Quintet, and any of Debussy's piano works. I also, somewhat oddly, find Messiaen's organ works very calming.
    "If we understood the world, we would realize that there is a logic of harmony underlying its manifold apparent dissonances." - Jean Sibelius

    "Art, like morality, consists of drawing the line somewhere." - G.K. Chesterton

    "Ceaseless work, analysis, reflection, writing much, endless self-correction, that is my secret." - Johann Sebastian Bach

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    Senior Member consuono's Avatar
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    Mozart's K. 488 or K. 595; Haydn's 103rd and 104th symphonies and his cello concertos; any number of Chopin nocturnes.

    (Aside from Bach, of course.)

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    Senior Member consuono's Avatar
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    Oh, and this never fails to do the trick:





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    Senior Member Bulldog's Avatar
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    For de-stressing purposes, I can't do better than Mozart's Oboe Quartet and Weber's Grand Duo Concertante for clarinet and piano.

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    Senior Member MatthewWeflen's Avatar
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    Beethoven's 6th. It truly is evocative of the outdoors and has the same palliative effect.

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    Some excellent choices above. For me it's just about anything by Mozart. Forced to pick one piece, I'd probably go for his Piano Concerto no.21, particularly the sunny first movement.

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    Bach and Haydn are pretty much tied for sanity inducing qualities. So many pieces.

    Some specific works by others would include:
    - Sibelius Symphonies 3 and 6
    - VW Symphonies 3 and 5, Oboe concerto, Flos Campi
    - Elgar Serenade for Strings
    - Handel Concerti Grossi Op 6
    - Various Poulenc chamber pieces (Flute, Clarinet and Oboe sonatas)
    - Ravel Piano Concerto in G, Ma Mere l'oye
    - Mendelssohn String Symphonies

    I think what is not on these lists is as interesting as what is.
    I suspect there won't be a lot of Beethoven (compared with his prevalence on other lists), although we've had a vote for the Pastoral, and not much avant-garde stuff. I'm a big fan of Bartok, but he's not mainly a de-stressing type, ditto Prokofiev. Does anyone find things like Webern's Six Pieces de-stressing? Some of them can be, but he has a tendency to include a bit of menace or a sudden outburst in what, until that point, had been ear-tickling and soothing.

    It might be interesting for people to pick de-stressing pieces from not normally de-stressing composers. Most de-stressing piece by Bartok, for example. And not a movement or section (- that's going to be too easy): a whole piece.

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