BBC Music Magazine CDs

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dirkronk
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BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by dirkronk » Mon Aug 04, 2008 3:43 pm

A rather large stack of the "freebie" CDs that come with BBC Music Magazine subscription has shown up at a local used book store. Most are from the past 4 years or so, and I notice a goodly number with conductors such as Sinaisky, Vanska, Otaka. Are there any that are particularly worth looking for and listening to? At a buck each, I won't be terribly disappointed if I run into a clunker, but...hey, I don't want to build up stacks of CDs for no real reason, either. Your expert opinions will be gratefully read.

Thanks,

Dirk the Acquisitive

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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Ralph » Mon Aug 04, 2008 3:52 pm

Grab 'em all while you can!

These are usually first-rate performances.
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Gary
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Gary » Mon Aug 04, 2008 9:23 pm

I find their orchestral recordings ho-hum; so I would avoid those unless it's something you've never heard before. The others are pretty good.
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by GK » Mon Aug 04, 2008 10:54 pm

A few years ago a thrift shop in our senior development sold them for 50 cents each and I bought all they had--56. Even at $1 I'd consider Ralph's advice and buy them all. In any case buy all the chamber, and solo works. Also buy works by composers that you are not likely to buy at a higher price, e.g. Tippett, Walton, Lloyd.

Some specific recommendations:
Mahler--Symphony #10
Mozart--Wind Serenade
Schubert--Octet
Schubert--String Quintet in C
Mozart--Violin Sonatas
BBC Young Musicians, Past Finalists
The Symphony--Excellent renditions of Beethoven #6 and Brahms #2

Corlyss_D
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Corlyss_D » Tue Aug 05, 2008 2:01 am

Ralph wrote:Grab 'em all while you can!

These are usually first-rate performances.
GK wrote:Even at $1 I'd consider Ralph's advice and buy them all.
I agree. Some of them are unique productions for BBC Mag and not available elsewhere. As such they are very hard to come by if you change your mind later.
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dirkronk
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by dirkronk » Tue Aug 05, 2008 8:35 am

Corlyss_D wrote: I agree. Some of them are unique productions for BBC Mag and not available elsewhere. As such they are very hard to come by if you change your mind later.
To that point, I notice a few labeled as themed discs: "Fiesta" (with some Latin American composers), a Christmas number of some kind, and so on. Are these discs equally grab-worthy?

The list keeps growing...
:wink:

Dirk

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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by GK » Tue Aug 05, 2008 12:33 pm

One of my 56 BBC discs is "Music for Christmas:An anthology from the 12th to the 20th century". It is a fine recording including works by Bach, Handel, Liszt, Webern and Schoenberg performed by the Taverner Consort.

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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Corlyss_D » Tue Aug 05, 2008 8:15 pm

dirkronk wrote:
Corlyss_D wrote: I agree. Some of them are unique productions for BBC Mag and not available elsewhere. As such they are very hard to come by if you change your mind later.
To that point, I notice a few labeled as themed discs: "Fiesta" (with some Latin American composers), a Christmas number of some kind, and so on. Are these discs equally grab-worthy?

The list keeps growing...
:wink:

Dirk
I would on general principles, i.e., if years later you suddenly discover that the only recording of a Landini song by Giulietta Sopranissima was on one of those discs and for some reason you just had to have that one (as sometimes happens with us OCD collectors), well, you'd suprise yourself by already owning it, precluding the years of sleepless nights trying to outbid some philistine on eBay for the last surviving copy.
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dirkronk
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by dirkronk » Wed Aug 06, 2008 9:37 am

On the astute advice of the posters here, I have scarfed up 28 of the little jewels. Might go back later for more if I like what I've gotten so far. Of course, now I have to find time to LISTEN to them, I suppose...

:lol:

Dirk

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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by ChrisX » Fri Jan 23, 2009 1:14 pm

If anyone has the BBC disc, and would like to part with it, that has a recording of Walton's Belshazzars Feast coupled with Vaughan Williams Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis conducted by Andrew Davis and recorded at Gloucester Cathedral, please contact me through PM.
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Michael » Fri Jan 23, 2009 1:25 pm

I have quite a few of these discs and highlights from my collection include Schumann chamber music and lieder with Emma bell, Jonathon Biss and the Jerusalem Qtet (pno 5tet), Vlado Perlmuter playing Debussy and Ravel (studio performances fro late 60s), Gesualdo sacred music for Easter also Byrd and Tallis Masses and Motets both with the BBC Singers and chamber music by Clara Schumann and Fanny Mendelssohn.
Michael from The Colne Valley, Yorkshire.

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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Fergus » Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:18 pm

GK wrote:..... Even at $1 I'd consider Ralph's advice and buy them all. In any case buy all the chamber, and solo works. Also buy works by composers that you are not likely to buy at a higher price, e.g. Tippett, Walton, Lloyd.

Some specific recommendations:
Mahler--Symphony #10.....
Image

If this is among the ones that you did not buy I can also highly recommend it as being the best M10 that I have heard. I would also concur that at $1 each I would buy the lot.

Seán
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Seán » Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:24 pm

Fergus wrote:
GK wrote:..... Even at $1 I'd consider Ralph's advice and buy them all. In any case buy all the chamber, and solo works. Also buy works by composers that you are not likely to buy at a higher price, e.g. Tippett, Walton, Lloyd.

Some specific recommendations:
Mahler--Symphony #10.....
Image

If this is among the ones that you did not buy I can also highly recommend it as being the best M10 that I have heard. I would also concur that at $1 each I would buy the lot.
Who is on that M10 Fergus?
Seán

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Fergus
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Fergus » Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:28 pm

Seán, that is the BBC National Orchestra of Wales conducted by one Mark Wigglesworth and I also picked it up very cheaply and it is a little gem.

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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Seán » Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:32 pm

Fergus wrote:Seán, that is the BBC National Orchestra of Wales conducted by one Mark Wigglesworth and I also picked it up very cheaply and it is a little gem.
The BBC Orchestra's are very good indeed, I never heard of Wigglesworth before now. By the way my favourite M10 is the Ormandy/Philadelphia Orchestra recording, it is sublime. :wink:
Seán

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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Chalkperson » Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:54 pm

Seán wrote:
Fergus wrote:Seán, that is the BBC National Orchestra of Wales conducted by one Mark Wigglesworth and I also picked it up very cheaply and it is a little gem.
The BBC Orchestra's are very good indeed, I never heard of Wigglesworth before now. By the way my favourite M10 is the Ormandy/Philadelphia Orchestra recording, it is sublime. :wink:
He is in the middle of a Shostakovich Cycle on BIS that I like a lot, some are SACD's too, I have never seen the Mahler 10 for sale though...
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Fergus
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Fergus » Fri Jan 23, 2009 4:06 pm

Chalkperson wrote:
Seán wrote:
Fergus wrote:Seán, that is the BBC National Orchestra of Wales conducted by one Mark Wigglesworth and I also picked it up very cheaply and it is a little gem.
The BBC Orchestra's are very good indeed, I never heard of Wigglesworth before now. By the way my favourite M10 is the Ormandy/Philadelphia Orchestra recording, it is sublime. :wink:
He is in the middle of a Shostakovich Cycle on BIS that I like a lot, some are SACD's too, I have never seen the Mahler 10 for sale though...
I had never heard of Wigglesworth either until I bought that cd. Interesting about that Shostakovich cycle.
I suppose the only way that one will come across it is the way that dirkonk did but it is worth seeking out. Put it on one of those lenghty "Wish Lists" that are being discussed on another thread and it may turn up.
Incidently Seán the Ormandy was not to my taste but Chalkie will be delighted to learn that I have the 2 versions on Simon's M10 :wink:

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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Chalkperson » Fri Jan 23, 2009 4:27 pm

Fergus wrote: Chalkie will be delighted to learn that I have the 2 versions on Simon's M10 :wink:
I have one too...not Bournemouth but the BPO, I could send it to you and then you will have three... :wink:
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Fergus » Fri Jan 23, 2009 5:52 pm

Chalkperson wrote:
Fergus wrote: Chalkie will be delighted to learn that I have the 2 versions on Simon's M10 :wink:
I have one too...not Bournemouth but the BPO, I could send it to you and then you will have three... :wink:
My post should have read “I have 2 versions of Simon’s M10 (both the Bournemouth and BPO). I do prefer the Bournemouth version. Anyway would you want to give away a Simon + BPO cd :?:

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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Seán » Fri Jan 23, 2009 6:44 pm

Fergus wrote:
Chalkperson wrote:
Fergus wrote: Chalkie will be delighted to learn that I have the 2 versions on Simon's M10 :wink:
I have one too...not Bournemouth but the BPO, I could send it to you and then you will have three... :wink:
My post should have read “I have 2 versions of Simon’s M10 (both the Bournemouth and BPO). I do prefer the Bournemouth version. Anyway would you want to give away a Simon + BPO cd :?:
I have the Rattle/BPO and don't much care for it, you may have my copy too if you like.
Seán

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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Chalkperson » Fri Jan 23, 2009 7:46 pm

Seán wrote:
Fergus wrote:
Chalkperson wrote:
Fergus wrote: Chalkie will be delighted to learn that I have the 2 versions on Simon's M10 :wink:
I have one too...not Bournemouth but the BPO, I could send it to you and then you will have three... :wink:
My post should have read “I have 2 versions of Simon’s M10 (both the Bournemouth and BPO). I do prefer the Bournemouth version. Anyway would you want to give away a Simon + BPO cd :?:
I have the Rattle/BPO and don't much care for it, you may have my copy too if you like.
If I remember correctly it won a Gramophone Award...but that figures, they are probably in cahoots with EMI... :wink:
Sir Simon Rattle previously recorded Deryck Cooke's performing version of Mahler's incomplete Tenth in June 1980. He was not the first to do so. Eugene Ormandy taped an earlier, more tentative edition of the text in the 1960s (CBS, 6/66 - nla), and it was Wyn Morris's New Philharmonia LPs (Philips, 3/74 - nla) that unlocked the emotive force of the finale by the simple expedient of taking it at a more deliberate tempo. Rattle came in third, but the passionate sensitivity of his reading helped win over a sceptical public at a time when we were much less keen to tamper with the unfinished works of dead or dying artists. These days, it's almost as if we see in their unresolved tensions some prophetic vision of the life to come; Rattle's success looks to have been replicated by Paul Daniel's (second) commercial recording of Anthony Payne's speculative Elgar 3 (Naxos, 3/99). In truth, the hysterical edge of Bournemouth's Mahler will have owed something to the discomfiture of the players in what is, in every sense, a difficult score, although this is absolutely in keeping with the manuscript's scrawled invocation to unfaithful Alma: 'Fur dich leben! fur dich sterben!' ('To live for you! To die for you!').
Over the years, Rattle has performed the work nearly 100 times, far more often than anyone else. Wooed by Berlin, he repeatedly offered them 'Mahler ed Cooke' and was repulsed. He made his Berlin conducting debut with the Sixth. But, after the announcement last June that he had won the orchestra's vote in a head-to-head with Daniel Barenboim, he celebrated with two concert performances of the Tenth. It's a composite version that is presented here. Had the musicians ever played movements two to five? I doubt it, and it seldom matters: they have been rehearsed to within an inch of their lives even if the exhaustingly high writing for the trumpets is not quite without flaw and the brass can obtrude more cussedly than intended. As always, Rattle obtains some devastatingly quiet string playing, and technical standards are unprecedentedly high in so far as the revised performing version is concerned. Indeed, the danger that clinical precision will result in expressive coolness is not immediately dispelled by the self-confident meatiness of the violas at the start. We are not used to hearing the line immaculately tuned with every accent clearly defined. The tempo is broader than before and, despite Rattle's characteristic determination to articulate every detail, the mood is, at first, comparatively serene, even Olympian. Could Rattle be succumbing to the Karajan effect? But no - somehow he squares the circle. The neurotic trills, jabbing dissonances and tortuous counterpoint are relished as never before, within the context of a schizoid Adagio in which the Brucknerian string writing is never undersold.

The conductor has not radically changed his approach to the rest of the work. As you might expect, the scherzos have greater security and verve. Their strange hallucinatory choppiness is better served, although parts of the fourth movement remain perplexing despite the superb crispness and clarity of inner parts. Rattle allows himself some satiric palm-court stylization hereabouts, also pointing the parallels with the 'Trinklied' from Das Lied. More than ever, everything leads inexorably to the cathartic finale, brought off with a searing intensity that has you forgetting the relative baldness of the invention. The Berlin flautist floats his tone even more poignantly in the principal theme (from bar 29, 2'14''), while an older, wiser, albeit more self-conscious maestro, painstakingly avoids sentimentality and gets a real ppp for the entry of the strings - breathtaking stuff. Several conductors (Mark Wigglesworth is one) now impose a long glissando on the upward thrust of the heart-wrenching sigh that concludes the work; Rattle has no truck with this.

But then the Tenth is a work in progress in which the conductor has every right to innovate. With Berthold Goldschmidt's encouragement, some of Rattle's departures were signalled last time. In the first movement, he reallocates Cooke's bassoon line to a Nelson Riddle-ish bass clarinet (from bar 162, 14'37'') ; he enlivens the denouement of the first Scherzo with a cymbal clash (this revision got into the 1989 edition of the printed score), and he cuts out a drum stroke to pass seamlessly from the fourth to the fifth movement. In the finale, he still disagrees with Cooke, opting to reinforce the return of the Adagio's dissonant 'break-down' chords. At least the more obstreperous percussion has gone, leaving the low rumble of drums to underpin rather than obscure the harmony. There are other gains. The subtlety of the orchestral response allows more scope for special effects. Sample the gloriously scored, spaced-out cadence that concludes the Adagio. Or the achingly beautiful treatment of the episode marked A tempo aber sehr ruhig in the second scherzo (from bar 291, 5'32''). The woodwind playing in the Purgatorio is of a similarly exalted standard.

I had qualms about the recording quality, given that Rattle's live Viennese Ninth (EMI, 8/98) is by no means an easy listen. Nor is Berlin's fabulous Philharmonie the easiest venue: with everything miked close, climaxes can turn oppressive. In fact, the results here are very credible and offer no grounds for hesitation. What of the alternatives? Leonard Slatkin's CD, the first generally available commercial recording of Mahler's Tenth Symphony to use an edition other than Deryck Cooke's, is uncompetitive for that very reason, although, like Riccardo Chailly's, it represents a genuine attempt to engage with what Tony Benn would call the 'ishoos'. Chailly's own, eminently lucid account, deploying a sympathetic orchestral layout in the lustrous acoustic of the Jesus-Christus-Kirche, has perhaps been underrated. That said, comparisons are pretty much beside the point when Rattle's new version sweeps the board even more convincingly than the old. According to press reports of the first night, the conductor was called back and accorded two Karajan-style standing ovations after the orchestra had left the stage. There is no applause here, but it is not difficult to imagine such a scene. Rattle makes the strongest possible case for an astonishing piece of revivification that only the most die-hard purists will resist. Strongly recommended.

-- David Gutman, Gramophone [5/2000]
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Michael
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Michael » Fri Jan 23, 2009 7:58 pm

To be honest I don't care for the completed 10th and have played it twice, I can't for the life in me remember who I played the Cooke version with but I played it with Jesus Lopez Cobus around 10 years ago in a version by Remo Mazzetti. Still didn't care for it other than the glorious opening movement. The greatest performance I heard of the adagio was around 1979 when the Los Angeles Phil came to Britain. I went to the concert in Manchester and then heard the broadcast from London which I recorded. The cassette tape has probably deteriorated badly by now but I have it somewhere. The Eroica was the work after the interval which they recorded for DG.. not all that memorable but the Mahler performance will always stay with me.
Michael from The Colne Valley, Yorkshire.

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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by stenka razin » Fri Jan 23, 2009 9:34 pm

Run, don't walk and grab as many of those $1 CDs as you can. I have collected every CD that BBC has issued since they started their magazine about 18 years ago. 95% of their recordings are original BBC productions and many of them are excellent. The rest are all good. Gobble up those BBC CDs, while you can. :D :D :D :D
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by Corlyss_D » Sat Jan 24, 2009 5:24 am

stenka razin wrote: I have collected every CD that BBC has issued since they started their magazine about 18 years ago.
Does that include those special issues they did about 10 years ago - ballet, baroque music, Shubert, etc?
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stenka razin
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Re: BBC Music Magazine CDs

Post by stenka razin » Sat Jan 24, 2009 9:29 am

Corlyss_D wrote:
stenka razin wrote: I have collected every CD that BBC has issued since they started their magazine about 18 years ago.
Does that include those special issues they did about 10 years ago - ballet, baroque music, Shubert, etc?
Corlyss, how are you? It is so good to see you back home here. The answer is yes. I have them all.
:D :D :D :D
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