Top 3 Classical Music Pieces

Heard most of this on the radio recently (it is Holy Week, after all) and I have come to the conclusion that I don’t particularly like my recording of Handel’s Messiah. And I would like to buy a better one. But I’m not sure what I heard on the radio (which was much better than my recording) as I missed both the beginning and ending announcements.

Soooo… favorite recordings of the Messiah anyone??

I can’t recall which one I have, but I know that it has an alto singing The Trumpet Shall Sound. Which … I am an alto so it feels disloyal to say this, but no. Just… NO!!! It is a Bass Aria. It needs to be a Bass Aria. It doesn’t sound good as an Alto Aria. That’s my biggest complaint, but my recording is also just not joyous enough in the Easter section. The choir & soloists sound more angry than ecstatic.

Richard Wagner - The ride of the Valkyries, especially with helicopter accompaniment

Some times stations will list what was on their program…check the website…I know KBEM 88.5 in MPLS does this…I think 99.5 MPR does it as well

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Your choice of Messiah recordings shall be changed

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My favorite recording for the last couple of weeks is the Mendelssohn Octet (especially the first mvt) played by the Emerson String Quartet and friends. I’m a bit of novice when it comes to chamber music - I know a lot more about orchestral music and opera.

I’ve also started a listening project whilst cooking/jigsaw puzzle building. I’m listening to all sixteen Beethoven quartets in order by three different quartets (listen to all three recordings before moving onto the next numbered quartet). I’ve selected the Takacs, the Alban Berg and Tokyo String (older version) quartets. I’ve also read good things about the Alexander and Italiano quartets and a few others so may slip some of them in as well.

There are many recordings that I have access to through the app Idagio. This would have been an awesome app when I was a music composition student but better late than never.

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I went all out nerd and just ordered the complete score for all 16 quartets ($10 + $5 postage for Used - Like New copy, bargain!).

Today is the 200th anniversary of the first performance of a very influential piece in the history of music (and one of my faves, especially when they used it in Die Hard) - Beethoven’s 9th symphony. I’m listening to the Karajan 1976 version.


Saw the 9th in concert last year - incredible performance. When they were finished, a lady with a thick southern accent turned to me and said, “That’s the first tahm Ah’ve heard this all the way through.” I’m not sure she noticed the tears in my eyes when she said it. (Crying because of the beautiful music, not the lady.)

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My top 3 classical pieces are:

Stairway to Heaven
War Pigs
Free Bird

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