Friday, April 20, 2012

R: Rachmaninov

The Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom by Rachmaninov is a major work in Russian Church music - a glorious piece of music. This recording, by the Kansas City Chorale, is astonishing and regarded as one of the great performances of this work.

We find it a wonderful way to begin a Sunday morning.

A long time ago I was on the periphery of a...discussion...as to whether a {insert your favorite classical composer} would be able to write anything as good as {insert your favorite classic rock composer/performer}. The contention on one side was that silly, simple melodies were easy but beneath the "masters". The opposing view held that to write something that caught the ear needed a talent beyond/not possessed by creators of "long hair music".

Given the hairstyles of many of the classic rock composers/singers, I've always been amused by such a description of classical music composers. But I digress.

Years later I discovered the connection between a song, "All By Myself" - a song of such melancholy that, of course it couldn't fail to appeal to me, and the 2nd. movement of Rachmaninov's 2nd. piano concerto.

The music for the verses of the song is directly from Rachmaninov's work - the very notes if I'm not mistaken.

So, the...discussion...is over. The answer is "Yes".

7 comments:

  1. In my opinion anyone who writes music that stays in your head is amazing. At the moment I' m listening to music from Cirque Du Soleil shows and it is beautiful.

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    1. I agree wholeheartedly.

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    2. Thanks for telling me my comments had vanished. I panicked and then I asked my friend Google and it's fixed now . Thanks again.

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  2. The "long hair music" definition has always amused me as well. As Cassam said, any composer who writes music that touches the soul is a genius, as far as I'm concerned. Rachmaninov's work is beautiful, letting the lower monotone notes carry the music (spoken from an alto) :)

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    1. An alto?

      Back in the day - long ago and far away (Salamanca, Spain in distance, let's leave the time element less clear) I sang baritone in a choir. Seems I could have handled 2nd tenor, but the choirmaster was light on baritones.

      Which was good, for I like the baritone...um...tone. :D (Ever the wordsmith, Kevin.)

      The Kansas City Chorale was augmented by some Russian basses for the recording mentioned above. And you can tell.

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    2. Tone works. *snicker* I loved singing alto but the music usually focused on the soprano and tenor, with everyone else set as background *tone*.
      My experience was long ago and farther away than yours...high school.

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  3. Good music- I haven't heard this particular recording. I'm trying to visit all the A-Z Challenge blogs this month. My alphabet is at myqualityday.blogspot.com

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