Writings about Macs, music and more by Kirk McElhearn

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Essential Music: Franz Schubert’s Complete Songs

06/11/2014

Music Review: Franz Schubert Complete Songs
Hyperion Records
40 CDs plus book containing song texts, 2005. List price GBP 180.

Buy from Amazon.com | Amazon UK | Amazon FR

In 1987, Hyperion Records began what turned out to be a colossal project: the recording of all of Franz Schubert’s songs (or lieder), a total of 729 songs performed by over 60 soloists. Some of these songs are for male voice, others for female voice, and others for several singers together. (In comparison, Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau’s landmark recording of all the lieder for solo male voice includes 463 songs on 21 CDs.) Originally released on 37 CDs, over a period of 18 years (the amount of time it took Schubert to compose all these songs, before his early death), this new set presents the songs in chronological order.

Graham Johnson’s Monumental Work on Schubert’s Lieder to Be Released Soon

06/11/2014

Graham Johnson, the pianist behind Hyperion Record’s monumental series of Schubert’s complete lieder, is known for having a lot to say about these songs. His liner notes to the original releases of the series are rich and full of insight. Unfortunately, the current box set doesn’t come with those notes, but just a book of […]

Jeremy Denk Praises Charles Ives

06/04/2014

Jeremy Denk has in interesting article about Charles Ives in the New York Review of Books. Disguised as a review of a new biography of the composer – Mad Music: Charles Ives, the Nostalgic Rebel, by Stephen Budiansky (Amazon.com, Amazon UK) – Denk addresses much of the criticism of Ives’ music. In particular, he points […]

Apple Promotes the Wrong Kind of Classical Music

05/27/2014

Apple’s latest “your verse” campaign, touting the features of the iPad, features conductor and composer Esa-Pekka Salonen. As a conductor, he is well-known in the United States, having worked with the Los Angeles Philharmonic since 1984, where he was long music director. As a composer, he is also well-known, in contemporary music circles, having written […]

Deutsche Grammophon Releases 100 Great Symphonies Box Set

05/01/2014

Deutsche Grammophon has just released another of their big box sets. This one is not about a composer or conductor, but is a selection of 100 great symphonies ( , Amazon UK), from Giovanni Battista Sammartini to Philip Glass. According to DG: We have prepared 100 Great Symphonies whose contents are based on the results […]

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