#838 Felix Mendelssohn – Elijah

Mendelssohn was a musical prodigy who wrote over 750 works and died at the age of 38. During his short but eventful life he made 10 trips to Britain, in particular to Scotland, which inspired two of his most well-known works, The Hebrides (Fingal’s Cave) and A Scottish Symphony. Elijah, his second oratorio was commissioned … Continue reading #838 Felix Mendelssohn – Elijah

#19 Allegri – Miserere and other spiritual classics

From early 90s to early noughties, HMV released a lot of excellent music through their own HMV Classics label. I bought several CDs from this collection, available only from their own stores. It was an economical way of listening to a wide range of excellent recordings, before the world of streaming services and the sad … Continue reading #19 Allegri – Miserere and other spiritual classics

#1559 John Williams – Spanish Guitar Favourites

John Williams recorded this album when he was 17 years old. 17!! For some reason, I always thought he was British, possibly because I associate him with one of his contemporaries, the Englishman Julian Bream. Williams trained in the UK and his first professional performance was at the Wigmore Hall in London. He is, however, … Continue reading #1559 John Williams – Spanish Guitar Favourites

#1368 Edgar Varese – Orchestral Works

Ah, Varèse. Perfect for Valentine’s Day, no? Edgard Varèse was French émigré who made the US his home in 1915. He had long been a composer, although much of his earlier Paris-made work has been lost, but one of his most famous compositions was completed soon after his arrival in America, the aptly named Amériques. … Continue reading #1368 Edgar Varese – Orchestral Works

#602 Edvard Grieg – Peer Gynt and Piano Concerto

Along with a few other classics of classical music, this is one of the first pieces of music I owned and listened to. My brother and I had a well-worn cassette of Edvard Grieg’s Peer Gynt that my parents would sometimes even allow to be played in the car on journeys to visit random relatives … Continue reading #602 Edvard Grieg – Peer Gynt and Piano Concerto

#1320 The Three Tenors (Carreras, Domingo, Pavarotti) – In Concert

This is my wife’s record, bought for €1 a couple of years ago at a Utrecht Record Fair. It’s a classic album and one that turned the three mid-life operatic tenors into a boy band. This is a concert recording of their first performance together, conceived as a fundraiser for Jose Carreras International Leukaemia Foundation, … Continue reading #1320 The Three Tenors (Carreras, Domingo, Pavarotti) – In Concert

#856 The Moody Blues – Days of Future Passed

I played this last week to my 13 month old nephew and he absolutely loved it. It is orchestral rock or progressive pop? Who knows? Who cares! It’s just great music. A highwater mark in the increasing maturity and creativity of late 60s British pop, recorded in the months following the release of The Beatles' … Continue reading #856 The Moody Blues – Days of Future Passed

#1172 Dmitri Shostakovich – Symphony No 8 (LSO)

I developed a bit of crush on Shostakovich when I was in my mid-teens. I think this is largely due to the Marxist phase I went through of loving all things Russian and revolutionary. That, and the LP I perma-borrowed from my Grumps of Dmitri’s Symphony No 12, dedicated to Lenin and subtitles 'The Year … Continue reading #1172 Dmitri Shostakovich – Symphony No 8 (LSO)

#767 London Chamber Orchestra – LCO10: Power

Not to be confused with the London Contemporary Orchestra, the London Chamber Orchestra is the baby and brainchild of Christopher Warren-Green who relaunched Britain’s oldest professional chamber orchestra, originally dating from 1921, in 1989. They tour and perform regularly, performing also at the 2011 royal wedding. This album is a sampler essentially, a compilation of … Continue reading #767 London Chamber Orchestra – LCO10: Power