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Old 7th January 2004, 05:14 PM   #1
SY is offline SY  United States
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Default Is recorded classical music dead?

One writer thinks so:

http://www.scena.org/columns/lebrech...recording.html
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Old 7th January 2004, 05:32 PM   #2
jam is offline jam  United States
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Looks that way.....................
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Old 7th January 2004, 05:52 PM   #3
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Default Re: Is recorded classical music dead?

Quote:
Originally posted by SY
One writer thinks so:

http://www.scena.org/columns/lebrech...recording.html
Yes, so according to the unwritten rules of this forum it must
be true then.


I don't think there is any serioous problem for recorded classical
music per se, but things are changing as they always were.
Someone (Universal?) bought up DG, Philips and Decca and not
surprisingly the catalogues of especially the latter two has
shrunk considerably. You can't have too much in house
competition. The number of record companies is growing, the
big ones are getting more and more competition from small
and new lables, not to speak of newer big ones like Naxos.
Many of the modern full-prices discs are sold by marketing
rather than artistic merits. The archives of old recordings is
by necessity growing over time and the modern artist have
the older ones to compete with. Why buy a badly sounding
full-price recording with a possibly good modern musician
when you can buy a good-sounding reissue of an outstanding
musician at a bargain price? Maybe the market for classical
music is decreasing, but I am not sure. I think the interest
for opera is higher than it has been for many decades, for
instance. Although Naxos recordings are of varying musical
quality and often with lesser known artists, their low price
and frequent presence also in typical pop music shops is
likely to attract new classical listeners. That won't show up
as a profit for the usual big companies or as expensive
contracts for the mega-stars, at least not for a start. Here in
Sweden I do see a change. While there has never been any
really good shop for classical music in my town, there is
basically none at all now. On the other hand, I think there
has never before been so many well-stocked classical
record shops in Stockholm as there is now, and that despite
all the internet shops.

Well, that was some thoughts, but let's stop there for
the moment.
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Old 7th January 2004, 11:18 PM   #4
lohk is offline lohk  Europe
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All those classical recordings!
Since digital technologie they sound "better" and "perfect" so why go on recording new interpretations of the same stuff over and over? Serious, I have records of several interpratations of different beethoven symphonies at home, why should I stack another one if i really like them.
I want NEW MUSIC!! NEW RECORDINGS OF NEW MUSIC!! Never heard of, interesting, tempting to experience more, more varability, etc.
In pop or rock music it is the game of the day to bring something at least "a little" newer and different. Classical music instead stays frozen at the state 200years ago. That is weird. Imagine painting beeing stuck at the time of Rubens or Rembrand, literature at the time of shakespeare.
So the recording industry must wake up, start to research the very wide field of musical artistc production of today. This is good music AND IT WILL SELL if the recordings and interpretations are good and if the marketing is good and willing too.

Again: All those never really changing classical recordings of the same stuff again and again! I do not need them: No.

Klaus

ps: as some of you know, I am a composer, so this post is a milder version of what I really think...
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Old 8th January 2004, 12:50 AM   #5
Cobra2 is offline Cobra2  Norway
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I do not think we need another Placido Domingo, or another streamlined classical work, we would however maybe need more distinctive characters or orcestras to do recordings.
This done in a bigger variety of ways, would make it worth having several "copies" of "the same works".

Arne K
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Old 8th January 2004, 01:39 AM   #6
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Default Placido is "helden tenor"

Quote:
Originally posted by Cobra2
I do not think we need another Placido Domingo, or another streamlined classical work, we would however maybe need more distinctive characters or orcestras to do recordings.
This done in a bigger variety of ways, would make it worth having several "copies" of "the same works".

Arne K
well, having the pleasure of a Metropolitan Opera subscription for almost 20 years I would also say that we don't need another "Domingo" as we have Roberto Alagna and Juan Diego Flores. Flores rocked the house with his rendition of Count Almaviva in "Barbiere" this past Saturday. Parenthetically, I despise NYC audiophiles who never attend a live concert of classical!

Some will still lament the passing of Lauritz Melchior -- but he's still available on the historical recordings.

I would very, very strongly urge listeners who don't have access to the Chevron-Texaco Opera broadcasts (U.S and Canada do for sure) to listen to WQXR -- www.wqxr.com on Saturday -- usually 1:30 pm Eastern Time. This has been a phenomenal year for the Metropolitan Opera.

With respect to Classical Recordings generally, it's my personal experience that there is hugely more variety than 10 or 30 years ago. Smaller labels are getting picked up by Tower Records in NY, EBay has made a lot of stuff available, and it's very easy to order virtually anything from any period on the web.
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Old 8th January 2004, 02:11 AM   #7
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I regularly browse the new releases.The last 2 years I have bought some enterprising discs from Naxos and CPO,some harpsichordissues on tiny labels and lots of secondhand material.
The last Universal has been a Decca(Rousset) which is so poorly recorded that I assume the producer hates me.
EMI-reissues pressed locally (Uden) compare so badly with my older Swindon and Sonopress cds that I totally gave up.
No wonder my lp collection grows and grows!

Martijn
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Old 8th January 2004, 02:18 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by martijn
I regularly browse the new releases.The last 2 years I have bought some enterprising discs from Naxos and CPO,some harpsichordissues on tiny labels and lots of secondhand material.
The last Universal has been a Decca(Rousset) which is so poorly recorded that I assume the producer hates me.
EMI-reissues pressed locally (Uden) compare so badly with my older Swindon and Sonopress cds that I totally gave up.
No wonder my lp collection grows and grows!

Martijn
Is there a Dutch equivalent of the UK publication "Gramophone" -- I pick up a copy every month at Borders and scrutinize the reviews -- one very important tip -- they often cite the best prior recordings and these can be had on EBay (or perhaps you have CD and LP trading shops in Holland!) An investment in Gramophone spares me the disappointment of choosing by the cover.

Too bad that Hifi News and Record Review has become HiFiNews and Nothing Review.
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Old 8th January 2004, 02:36 AM   #9
Mark Kravchenko --- www.kravchenko-audio.com
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Default Dead no badly marketed yes

I've enjoyed "classical " music for over twenty years. But it's the growing pains of finding the stuff you like that makes it so hard. It's still to elitest. I have a large collection that I consider to be of very high quality. But I have almost completely given up on the big names in the industry to produce a good recording.

Mark

Bach still rules
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Old 8th January 2004, 04:00 AM   #10
eStatic is offline eStatic  United States
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Default Re: Is recorded classical music dead?

Quote:
Originally posted by SY
One writer thinks so:

http://www.scena.org/columns/lebrech...recording.html
Not surprising if true. And if informal observation of concert audiences has any validity then the problem would seem partly demographic. Youth seems to have scanty representation in the concert hall audiences that I see, though I don't get out a lot anymore.

This may be an historic hiatus. The "fashion" of full-intelligence-in-music may return in a not too distant future, but then it may happen never again. That may have been it, and some of us were lucky enough to have lived through the end of it. But I have to believe that it still lives. And my ears tell me it is still alive. I can easily believe that works by composers like Adams and Philip Glass will enter the standard repertoire of classical orchestras and remain there for as long as we have continuity of civilization. Though I grant that there may be few classical orchestras in the near/mid future. Also the scale of classical works may be diminished for an indeterminate duration. But I think the tradition will continue in one form or another.

eStatic
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