BEETHOVEN: How does Beethoven’s music sound so good when he was supposedly deaf? Was it simply him figuring out what notes would sound good together?

PHILIP RICE answers: Not “supposedly deaf”. DEAF! Here’s the thing. When you know enough music theory and have been around the block, and are one of the most talented musicians in history…. You look, or write notes on a page and know EXACTLY what it “sounds like”. This is called hearing a score in silence […]

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Top 10 Baroque Period Composers

Coming in at number one is Johann Sebastian Bach (1685–1750), one of the best-known of all composers in classical music. Bach was born into one of the great musical families of the day. A natural genius at the keyboard, he mastered the organ and harpsichord and was simply a brilliant composer. Bach brought baroque music […]

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Drugged, sexually abused, swindled… Maria Callas’s tormented life revealed

Her mother blackmailed her, her husband Giovanni Battista Meneghini stole from her, and shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis was violent and abandoned her for Jackie Kennedy. Soprano Maria Callas was adored by audiences worldwide but she never knew real love offstage, and her life was even more tragic than previously realised, according to research. In writing […]

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BACH: Exploring the genius of JS Bach

Jonathan Freeman-Attwood joins the Gramophone Podcast to discuss Baroque music’s greatest composer This week’s podcast is devoted to exploring the music, life and legacy of the greatest genius of Baroque music – and arguably of all music – JS Bach. Editor Martin Cullingford invited Bach specialist and Gramophone reviewer, the Royal Academy of Music’s Principal […]

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PS AUDIO: Streaming Audio and Other Rants

Written by Jay Jay French First off, I hope many of you are listening to my new Podcast called The Jay Jay French Connection: Beyond the Music (available on Spotify, Apple Music and Podcastone.com) Great topics, great guests, and my new book, Twisted Business: Lessons From my Life in Rock n Roll is coming out […]

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‘I feel admonished for being myself’: Yseult, the chanson singer riling the French establishment

Interview ‘I feel admonished for being myself’: Yseult, the chanson singer riling the French establishment Marta Represa The Parisian singer’s take on traditional variété française includes confrontations with mental health, body image and bondage – and her challenge has struck a nerve MORE

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LANG LANG: The interview

There was a bit of a fracas during Lang Lang’s Proms appearance. As he bounced back on stage for an encore, a heckler in the arena hooted derisively. An embarrassed murmur ran through the audience. There was some nervous laughter. But the pianist took it in his stride and began a Chopin Etude, seemingly unruffled. […]

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SCRATCHED CDs: Ideas for best way to repair them?

Hello all. Over the years, I’ve managed to scratch a few cd’s, due to transferring between players, cars, lying around as lots get played on drinking nights etc etc..There are quite a few that are going to be hard or impossible to replace, so I’d like to ask opinions on effective methods / widgets for […]

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SCHUMANN: Scenes from Goethe’s Faust CD review – deeply impressive

Gerhaher/Karg/Miles/ Bavarian Radio Choir and SO/Harding (BR Klassik, two CDs) Andrew Clements writes: Even Schumann’s greatest admirers – and I’d count myself among them – would never claim that his choral music is the most significant or rewarding part of his output. But Scenes from Goethe’s Faust, which he worked on for a decade and […]

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VINYL REPLAY: Is record wear over hyped?

Back in the days I followed the trend of aspiring to an SME/Shure V15 as I was told that poor stylus tracking caused significant record wear and groove distortion so ‘trackability’ was king. Now, playing some of my golden oldies which had been played when I was a kid with a Sonotone cartridge of dubious […]

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Breaking out of the genre box

Exploring our genre-less musical past with The Alehouse Sessions Although I am a violinist specializing in Baroque music I have always considered myself as something of a free spirit and so, when I found myself increasingly engaged to follow the notes written on the page, I realized it was time to break loose and start […]

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Rising from the ashes of war / Janusz Wawrowski recreates Ludomir Różycki’s Violin Concerto

As we know from the book and multi-award-winning film The Pianist, there are some extraordinary musical stories in the terrible devastation of Warsaw in WWII. Jewish pianist Władysław Szpilman escaped the Warsaw ghetto and, after entrancing a Nazi officer by playing Chopin, managed to survive the Warsaw Uprising and return to his job at Polish […]

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