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Classical Notes: March 6, 2006 Archive

And the Laminees are...

Posted at 1:28 AM on March 6, 2006 by Valerie Kahler
Filed under: Musical philosophy

I’m riding the Oscar wave with my own nominations for The Laminated List (see John Zech’s post of 3/3).

JS Bach: Six Suites for Unaccompanied Cello. Okay, yes, I’ve already mentioned Yo Yo Ma’s 1998 recording of the Bach Suites this week, but I can't help it. Talk about dishy! It’s the perfect soundtrack for road trip or river trip...the perfect background for sweeping the floor or foreground for clearing out the mental cobwebs...the perfect companion to ibuprofen and lavender eye-pillow for migraine relief.

Mahler: Symphony No. 4. Bernard Haitink conducting the Concertgebouw Orchestra. Soprano Roberta Alexander. There’s always a hint of fairy dust to Mahler, in my reckoning. How else can jingle bells sound both whimsical and vaguely sinister?

Barber: Violin Concerto
Vaughan Williams: Tallis Fantasia
Vaughan Williams: Five Variants on Dives and Lazarus

Pretty much any recording of the above can take my breath away. Case in point: I wondered why I was crying as I watched “Master and Commander” in the theatre, then realized I was swimming in a Dolby ocean of Tallis Fantasia.

The long, steady slide from 1934 to 2005

Posted at 10:49 AM on March 6, 2006 by John Birge
Filed under: The blog

From "The Continental" in 1934, to "It's Hard Out Here for a Pimp" in 2005, behold this chronology of Best Song winners at the Oscars. Of course every decade has its occasional dogs, but on average it looks like mebbe 1972 was a critical turning point downward... Doom-ily and gloomily yours, jb ;-)

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