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Inasmuch as All my recorded music is bought because I like it, it's really impossible to say what, of all I have, is "the best." But I'll throw out one because it's wonderful and I'd be lost without it.

It's Gina Bachauer, a Greek pianist whose recording of the Lizst Hungarian Rhapsody #12 is just superlative. She made it 50 years ago. I have a monaural LP recording of her playing that work (Mercury MG50349) and would love to get it in digital form. If anyone knows of one, please let me know. She also made a piano transcription of Stravinsky's Petrouchka on the same record which is dynamite.

Like someone else mentioned I have multiple recordings of Mahler works and each brings something interesting to the work. I think Bernstein is right up there but I find myself listening to Claudio Abbado's (with the Berlin Phil.) recordings alot lately.

Also, Michael Tilson Thomas (and the San Francisco Symphony) doing the "Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen"; the "Kindertotenlieder" and the "Rückert-Lieder" with Thomas Hampson is just right up there among the top of the heap.

It's just hard to write favorite for me.
 
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