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Pierre's Tuesday Blog

Pierre's Gumdrops for 2012

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This year again, I wanted to share some of my finds and acquisitions for 2012 that haven't made it to either a Tuesday Blog post or a Chronique du DIsque post.

To begin, how about a good cup of coffee. Tim Horton was (I would argue) a better-than-average defenceman in his day, and he tried his hand on a number of business ventures outside of hockey. As legend has it, the few doughnut shops he started with a business partner were marginally successful and – upon his death in a car crash some 40 years ago – his widow sold her interests in the company which still bears his name. A Canadian fixture in the food industry and now owned (I believe) by Wendy’s you can get your double-double (two creams, two sugars) at Tmmies in parts of the USA and even in the Middle East!

Do you remember the HP Vs TI calculator wars, the VHS Vs Beta videotape showdown, the HD DVD and Blu-Ray debacle – now, we have the battle of the single-cup coffee brewers, with Keurig Vs Tassimo, and Tim's has thrown their hat behind the latter, with their recent offering of Tassimo T-disks. My wife loves the latte, but I still think my regular blend (two creams, no sugar) hits the spot just fine thank you. Only available at Tim Horton’s.

If you follow me here and elsewhere, you know that the Internet Archive is where I store my library of music podcasts. If you give the site a visit, you will find hours of music and related artifacts.

  • Friday Night at the Opera – now known as At the Opera with Sean Bianco – is a weekly fixture on Sacramento Public Radio, and features an opera “cover to cover” every week and “opera potpourri” with operatic filler material. There are tens upon tens of FNAO podcasts, and you can find some of them here.
  • A great video I found was another operatic nugget, Gian Carlo Menotti’s The Medium, as broadcast in the early days of CBS Television in their anthology series Studio One (Also posted by your truly to YouTube).
  • As stated above and indiucated in my recent podcast directory post, you can find my music mointages at the Internet Archive right here. Ditto for Once Upoin the Internet.

Here are a few quick hit” YouTube channels I discovers this year:

Charles-Marie Widor - Complete Organ Works - Ben van Oosten

If you have followed la Chronique du disque over the past few months, you had to see this one coming. After the complete Vierne and the complete Dupre, Van Oosten's Complete Widor is inevitable. Unlike the other two, Widor focuses on three particular Cavaille-Coll organs and presents a compelling anthology of one of the great Organ composers of the last Century and change. I will refrain from providing grades for this gumdrop post, but you know I would score this one fairly high, as I did for the other two great anthologies by Van Oosten.

Astor Piazzola - The Soul Of Tango Greatest Hits

Astor Piazzola is a complex character: raised in the USA and Argentina, and a mostly self-taught musician, Piazzola has elevated the Argentine Tango to unimaginable heights. A late bloomer from a "traditional music" perspective, Piazzola sought the help of the grande dame Nadia Boulanger, and some of his most complex compositions (proposed on this album) display this unique sense of harmony as well as simplicity, making the angst of the Tango come through like a lightning bolt. A must have in any music collection.

Haydn - The Symphonies - Hanover Band, Roy Goodman (18 CDs)

Haydn's symphonic output is as large as it is remarkable. 104 symphonies, most of which following the classical 4-movement mould, and (am I the only one to think so) very few forgettable ones. It would be unfair to say that Haydn's symphonies lack inventiveness, or that they all sound the same. So many composers have recorded specific sets of Haydn Symphonies: Karajan's terrific Paris Symphonies, Colin Davis and Jeffrey Tate's remarkable London Symphonies, but Goodman and the Hanover Band have no favourites, and take no prisoners in this HIP broad sampling of almost half the complete set, hitting all the great groups (aforementioned Paris, London, as well as some of his "name" symphonies). A great sense of continuity and momentum throughout. Highly recommended.

Next week, back with la Chroinique...

December21 2012, "I Think You Will Love This Music Too" will feature a new podcast "Child's Play" at its Pod-O-Matic Channel. Read more December 21 on the ITYWLTMT Blogspot blog.