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  1. #1
    Andante
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    Default newby saying hello

    Hi everyone I have just signed up, music is my passion, played string bass in small groups and Jazz bands strictly semi pro, have just done grade 3 Flute, look forward to some talk. Just have to get used to the site and get my profile sorted.

  2. #2
    Junior Member Mahler Maniac's Avatar
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    Hello, welcome!!

    This forum isn't a flurry of activity, but it has some smart and music loving people!

    Have a good day!

    MM

  3. #3
    Senior Member linz's Avatar
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    Jazz is like Classical that has had a little to much to drink. My favorites is a Jazz composer/pianist who often walks under the shadow of Thelonius Monk, his career name was "Fatha Hines" his music is unfortunetly underated.

  4. #4
    Andante
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    Yes T Monk is a clever Pianist, plays the notes in-between the keys
    I am not sure if it is the correct protocol to continue this thread where we are or to move to another forum, Classical is my music but I started playing jazz as a youth and it has stuck, The MJQ are fantastic more like chamber music.

  5. #5
    Senior Member linz's Avatar
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    Who's your favorite Classical composer? I'm fond of Wagner, but I like many different composers.

  6. #6
    Andante
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    Hi Linz, Beethoven for me, especialy the St Qts, also go for Shostakovich, With your user name I would have had you down for Mozart LOL.

  7. #7
    Newbies LouDem's Avatar
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    Smile Mahler and cie

    Hello all.

    I'm new at this stuff. As it is quite hard to have "serious" conversation about anything "classical", I tried this site and hoped for the best.

    You could call me a "classical maniac" and my musical range is anything between Monteverdi and Stockhausen.

    But at this stage of my life ( I'm 57, but who's counting? ) these are the apex composers for me:

    1) Mahler 2) Bruckner 3) Beethoven 4) Wagner 5) Prokofiev 6) Shostakovich.

    But I must say that Mahler is my fetish composer right now. I just love listening to his symphonies. They do seem to have that transcendency no other composers reached ( Bruckner do come close, but not quite. With all these versions of his symphonies, maybe the end product is not as satisfying as Mahler's confident output). When you listen to the "Resurrection" symphony, the end just shatters you to tears, every damn time. The Fifth is just without peer. The Eight is so gigantic there's nothing to compare it with. And the Ninth is just that, the "Ninth" ( on par with Beethoven's 9th, Bruckner's 9th ).

    I could go on and on, but for now "the ball is in your court".

    Let me know what you think, like, love about "music".

    LouDem

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    Hello LouDem


    I’ve had major “crushes” on a variety of composers in the past.

    Tchaikovsky
    Mozart
    Beethoven
    Chopin
    Brahms
    Wagner
    Schumann
    Schubert

    I have had mini-crushes on several more: Bach, Mendelssohn, Liszt, Mahler, Elgar, Sibelius, RVW.

    On the other hand, I've had several unsuccessful ventures: Debussy, Stravinsky, Second Viennese. I dislike most contemporary.

    As you will see, I have tended to wander around a bit in the time zones. As a result I’ve gained quite a few CDs and a fair knowledge about these people.

    I note your passion for Mahler. I enjoy all the works you mention, and rate him quite quite highly. I like best Mahler's S 2, 4, 5 and 9. I quite like Bruckner and Shostakovich. But I'm not as impressed as you evidently are with either of these. I find many of the latters' symphonies very up and down affairs, i.e. some good bits followed by some dull bits, if you know what I mean; and generally a bit long-winded and too sombre.

    My main interest now is 19th C Romantic music, mainly but not only piano solo work. If I could take only 3 composers’ works with me to a desert island it would definitely be Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann. Obviously, a wider choice would be better but if it had to be just 3 these provide everything I'm mainly interested in.


    Topaz

  9. #9
    Newbies LouDem's Avatar
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    Cool Serious Music

    Topaz,

    I've join the forum, chat or whatever you may want to call it for a much more than to list "your favorite composer". I know every one has one, but it changes a we change. So this is irrelevant and might I add a tad juvenile.

    So, let me press on. Music appreciation is something you acquire with time and patience. You do not dislike Debussy or Stravinsky, you just don't understand the finer meaning of these composers. If you listen to 'Le Sacre du Printemps" from Stravinsky and cannot fathom its meaning, then you must listen to it again. You must get on the Internet and read his biography and learn how and why and when he wrote the piece. After a time, you will "learn" to APPRECIATE the piece and the composer. You have to become "friend" with it and "try" to get its meaning.

    Again, how can I appreciate a madrigal from Monteverdi, or a concerto grosso ( what is a madrigal or a concerto grosso? Go and find out on the Internet ) by Vivaldi if I don't know the period they lived in, who he was, or the musical history of the time. Let's get a thing strait: we woudn't have Mahler if Wagner hadn't been around; we wouldn't have Wagner if Carl Maria von Weber hadn't been around before; we woundn't have Beethoven if Mozart hadn't been around; and no Vivaldi if Monteverdi hadn't been aroud too. So period appreciation is primordial. So get it done.

    I'll soon start treads of my own under different composers, periods, or specific pieces ( Beethoven's third, let say ). I hope you'll be amongst the ones who'll be "exchanging" thoughts on the nitty gritty, and get down to business. Enough of who's your favorite and let's get serious here. Let's dig in and get "satisfaction" in our quest in serious music, be it Corelli, Frescobaldi, Soler, Beethoven, Mahler, Wagner, or Shostakovich. Be it Baroque, Classical, Romantic, post-Romantic, or Modern. These musics are not dull. These musics are the reflections of there times.

    I've just acquired the "MISSA IN TEMPORE BELLI " by Haydn. What's it about? Why was it written? On what occasion? These are the things to ask yourself when you listen to a new piece of music. You must not just say that the piece is dull because you do not comprehend its meaning. The fun thing, I think, about dealing with music that is 100, 200, 300, 400 years old or more is that you get to know the evolution of musical periods, the influence a composer had on another one. Can one know Shostakovich without knowing the political situation in Russia at the time? That period shaped that composer's output. Would he have written the same 15 symphonies had he lived let's say in Germany or France or the USA? The answer is a resounding "NO".

    So, in conclusion, get to know your stuff. I you like "classical" music ( in the broad sense of the term ) dig in and enjoy the result of pure musical satisfaction.

    See you soon

    LouDem

  10. #10
    Senior Member Hexameron's Avatar
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    Well, LouDem, you asked everyone to "Let [you] know what [they] think, like, love about "music"' so Topaz responded in that way. No need to call it "irrelevant" and "juvenile." You presented a similar list yourself.

    Regarding your main argument, though, there are some flaws. But I'm just going to address one: It is possible to dismiss composers as being completely incompetent, mediocre, or simply uninteresting. Have you ever heard of the composer John Cage? He wrote a piano compostion called "4'33" where the pianist sits at the piano for 4 minutes and 33 seconds with his hands in his lap, playing nothing. No amount of music appreciation in the world can ever improve that piece or make it significant. Despite your assertions that we should read and understand the times, I did just that and found it even more laughable. I read about Cage's attempt to mimick some of the modern art of presenting completely black canvases to provoke our own imaginations. But Cage's idea of 4 minutes and 33 seconds of silence to inspire our thoughts is so ridiculous and weak, that he's just a footnote in music history now. I also safely relegate him to the "Do not waste time" list.

    I do agree with you that it takes patience and much time to grasp a composition from anybody, though. Many people think one or two hearings alone can determine whether or not you like it. Maybe that applies to the simplistic pop music of today, but how can you listen to Handel, Wagner or Reger on a first hearing and possibly "get" it?

  11. #11
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    Loudem

    In your opening post you merely listed your composer preferences, adding that you have a "fetish" for Mahler. You then specifically asked:

    "the ball is in your court". Let me know what you think, like, love about "music".

    In my reply I set out my preferences about composers and music, just as you requested. In your reply to that you say you think my composer listings are “irrelevant and might I add a tad juvenile”. You then go on to say that my lack of interest in Debussy or Stravinsky is because I “just don't understand the finer meaning of these composers”. How condescending of you. Then you treat me to a bit of classical music history (“we wouldn't have Mahler if Wagner hadn't been around”), as if I didn’t know this. Then you tell me I would appreciate Shostakovich more if I realized more about the political regime he lived under, again as if I didn’t know about that regime. Finally you tell me “get to know your stuff”.

    Well, thankyou for this. At present, I am biting my tongue hard to refrain from spelling out exactly what I think of you. You have caught me on a very generous day. But if you come back to me with any more of this so-called “advice” I’ll gladly tell you. On second thoughts, I don't think I'll bother as you are evidently on a much higher level of appreciation than the rest of us and wouldn't be interested.



    Topaz
    Last edited by Topaz; Nov-03-2006 at 11:02.

  12. #12
    Andante
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    Bl**^y Hlel, So that’s the first movement, now for the second.
    A solo moan from the principle Cello perhaps

  13. #13
    Newbies LouDem's Avatar
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    Cool Music and Cage or music in a cage

    Well hello again,

    First Topaz, I responded to the last thread, which was you. Don't take it personal. What I wrote wasn't concerning you or anybody in particular. I was just stating that to dismiss a composer outright is a tad harsh, since one might be missing on some pretty interesting music. And is that not what's important here: the Music? So I hope you understand that I was just making a comment, not against you, not for you. It was just a comment. And I still think that it is valid.

    Second Hexameron, I did not say that what Topaz wrote was irrelevant or juvenile. What I said is that to just list composers is irrelevant in the sense that it doesn't bring us anything. Sure I listed some of my favorite composers. Point taken. But what I was trying to bring forward is that after everyone knows what everybody else likes we should try to develop on this. I gave you my views on things, so I shouldn't get dissed for it.

    As for what you say about John Cage’s 4’33” you may think it as irrelevant but here is something that may explain it more:

    In 1952, David Tudor sat down in front of a piano for four minutes and thirty-three seconds and did nothing. The piece 4'33'' written by John Cage, is possibly the most famous and important piece in twentieth century avant-garde. 4'33'' was a distillation of years of working with found sound, noise, and alternative instruments. In one short piece, Cage broke from the history of classical composition and proposed that the primary act of musical performance was not making music, but listening.

    In the '70's, with inspirations like Thoreau and Joyce, Cage began to take literary texts and transform them into music. "Roratorio, an Irish Circus on Finnegan's Wake" (1979), was an outline for transforming any work of literature into a work of music. His sense that music was everywhere and could be made from anything brought a dynamic optimism to everything he did. While recognized as one of the most important composers of the century, John Cage's true legacy extends far beyond the world of contemporary classical music. After him, no one could look at a painting, a book, or a person without wondering how they might sound if you listened closely.

    This is his view on it, and again knowing a little bit more about a piece of music ( or non-music ) help us comprehend the meaning behind why it was written. You may not like what he did ( I personally own none of Cage’s works, but I wouldn’t discard them without a fair trial. And would I have the chance to go to one of his concert I would without a second thought. I’m sure the concert hall would be jam packed. He might be dead, but I do think that he brought something to contemporary music ) but that doesn’t mean that the work is without value for others. And that’s good. That’s what make the world go round. As they say: “Talk against it or talk for it, but talk about it”. And still they’re talking about 4’33”.

    I hope this clear things a bit Topaz and Hexameron ( or anyone reading these threads ) and that we can continue to talk ( for or against ) what we love so much: music.

    Lastly, Andante, I don't know what the **** you're trying to say with your "solo moan". Please explain. Let us in on the joke, seriously.

    Regards

    LouDem

  14. #14
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    I see now that LouDem’s earlier post was addressed to all of us, not just me. Thanks for that.

    He believes it’s not possible to know or appreciate a composer’s works without knowledge of the composer’s personal make-up, or the general social/political situation at the time they lived. I would agree with this up to a point but I don’t think it’s crucial. If someone doesn’t like a composer’s works it’s not going to make any significant difference to find out they resulted partly from political oppression or War or anything like that. Likewise, if someone likes a composer’s work they probably won’t like them any more merely by virtue of knowing they resulted partly from the influence of some previous famous composer, or that it was the result of a personal event in their life.

    The essential things for me are whether the composer’s style of music appeals, and whether I consider the music itself is any good. If I get to like a particular composer from this route it would definitely encourage me to read more about that composer’s background, as I have often done. I agree that it sometimes helps to have such further information, and to know what may have inspired some of works, but it’s not necessary or sufficient to have this information in order to get to like that composer' works.

    I have already had a pretty good look around the classical music scene. I don’t pretend to know it all, or anything like. There are some quite big gaps. But I know for sure what types of music I really do like, and I’m pretty sure I know what I really don’t like. There’s a big middle ground where I can happily listen to much of it without any difficulty. I’m receptive to suggestions in the middle ground for developing a stronger interest among certain composers, but it’s a waste of time in the area of music I know I don’t like.

    Picking up on LouDem's comment, I agree that Forums like this are often, for many people, the only way to get an exchange of views on classical music. I am afraid to say I find very little interest among the majority of my circle of friends or work colleagues (now and in the past). It’s always been a struggle to get from other people much more than “oh yes, I quite like composer X, but I don’t play it much”. If you try to probe slightly further, or dare express your own views, that’s usually when the shutters come down and you get that unmistakable uninterested look. Unfortunately, it’s a sad fact that classical music is a minority interest.


    Topaz
    Last edited by Topaz; Nov-04-2006 at 15:12.

  15. #15
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    <<If you try to probe slightly further, or dare express your own views, that’s usually when the shutters come down and you get that unmistakable uninterested look. Unfortunately, it’s a sad fact that classical music is a minority interest. >>

    That statement, Topaz, is sadly true but interest seems to be growing again.

    With regard to the comments that it's not possible to know or appreciate a composer’s works without knowledge of the composer’s personal make-up etc., I find this total rubbish. If we took this into account then there would be a downsurge in appreciation of Wagner's music considering his rather, ermmmm should I say, controversial political preferences.

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