Archive for the 'classical music' Category

Italy Playlist

Burano 2003

Burano 2003

“On Approaching Italy” by Oscar Wilde

I reached the Alps: the soul within me burned,
Italia, my Italia, at thy name:
And when from out the mountain’s heart I came
And saw the land for which my life had yearned,
I laughed as one who some great prize had earned:
And musing on the marvel of thy fame
I watched the day, till marked with wounds of flame
The turquoise sky to burnished gold was turned.
The pine-trees waved as waves a woman’s hair,
And in the orchards every twining spray
Was breaking into flakes of blossoming foam:
But when I knew that far away at Rome
In evil bonds a second Peter lay,
I wept to see the land so very fair.

Here’s a playlist I put together for an Autumn trip to Italy.   Wonderful to listen to on the long flight.  One of the stops for this trip was Lucca, Puccini’s birthplace, so a lots of opera.

Cavalleria Rusticana-Intermezzo-Mascagni

Mendelssohn Symphony #4-“Italian”

Albinoni’s Adagio in G minor – Amici Forever

Ancient Airs and Dances-Resphighi

Sicut Cervus-Palestrina

Canzon for Double Echo-Gabrielli

Concerto Grosso -Corelli

Cantabile, for violin and guitar- Paganini

Carnival of Venice-Paganini

Double Cello Concerto-Vivaldi-Ma and McFerrin

Four Seasons-Autumn-Vivaldi

Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves-Verdi

O  Sole Mio-Pavarotti

La Danza-Rossini-Pavarotti

Nessum Dorma-Puccini-Pavarotti

E Lucevan le stella-Puccini-Pavarotti

Vissi di’ Arte-Puccini-te Kanawa



Autumn Leaves-Andrea Bocelli


San Francisco Symphony Visits the Central Coast

I’m still humming Tchaikovsky this morning having had  7th row tickets to the debut appearance of the San Franciso Symphony at the Cohan Center in San Luis Obispo last night.  The program included Copland’s music from the film Our Town, Berg’s Three Pieces for Orchestra, and Tchaikovsky’s 5th Symphony.  Three totally different works that together showed off each of the sections of such a great orchestra. 

mttGetting to finally see Michael Tilson Thomas conduct in person was such a treat.  He really is a rock star.  I am in awe.   I especially enjoyed my sight lines.  Being so close to be able to see his expressions as he conducted and to really be able to watch the concertmaster’s fingering, especially on the Tchaikovsky,  was spectacular.

The opening  credits of Our Town (1940)

The Second Movement of Berg’s Three Pieces for Orchestra

Finale from Tchaikovsky’s 5th

Songs of Spring

p4040006.jpgGetting ready for Easter dinner tomorrow and need to get the music playlist together.  Here are the  selections for this year. The list is divided into two parts: classical and pop/jazz.  Links are to Youtube videos of the selection. 

The poppies are blooming on the Central Coast.  I found these in a vacant lot across the street from my mechanic.  You can find beauty everywhere you look.  I’m going to have to go for a drive this week and find some more.  They revive my spirit.


Popular Music

Peace on Earth

0347-34.gifGloria in excelsis Deo. Et in terra pax hominibus bonae voluntatis.

Glory in the highest to God. And on earth peace to men of good will.

The message has been the same for over two thousand years.  When we will listen?

Vivaldi’s GloriaEt in Terra Pax

A Choral Christmas

sheet_music.jpgWHAT sweeter music can we bring,
Than a Carol, for to sing
The Birth of this our heavenly King?
Awake the Voice! Awake the String! 

( Robert Herrick)

Here is the list of some of my favorite things to sing at Christmas that I found on Youtube.  Beautiful music from different times and places. 

 Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern (Bach, J.S. – BWV 1 – 1.)

Bogoroditse Devo

Gabriel’s Message

Victoria – O magnum mysterium

Nativity Carol

For Unto Us a Child is Born (from Handel’s Messiah)

Shepherds’ Farewell

Gloria (From Vivaldi’s Gloria)

Dona Nobis Pacem (Bach’s B Minor Mass)

The end of November

pa160043.jpgThe last week of November is upon us.    I spent last week in Arizona.  Not my choice for a Thanksgiving location, but family dictates it.  Too dry, dusty, and bare for me, but being with those I love and sharing food, wine, music and stories made it just right. I spoke with friends in the Midwest whose children spent Thanksgiving morning making snow angels.  Think I’d rather look at the cactus, than slide around the icy streets. 

My pumpkins and mums that are sitting next to the red door are still are looking good, but I’m itching to replace them with something more winterlike.  I saw this lovely pot at a local winery (of course).  I think it would make a nice winter arrangement to replace the mums and pumpkins.

I’ve started compiling my winter music lists.  I’ll do a separate Christmas list later.  There are so many choices that I wanted to limit this year’s list to a nice blend of upbeat sounds of  seasonal joy, nostalgia, and some good winter storm music.  I’ve divided the list into two parts:  classical and pop.  Here are my choices for classical. 

Lieutenant Kije Suite, Op. 60: IV. Troika (Prokofiev)

Concerto for Violin in F minor, Op. 8 no 4/RV 297 “L’inverno” (Vivaldi))

Serenade no 13 in G major, K 525 “Eine kleine Nachtmusik”: 2nd movement, Romanza (Mozart )

 Préludes (12) for piano, Book I, L. 117 Footprints in the Snow (Debussy )

 Symphony No. 9 “From the New World” – 2nd movement-Adagio  (Dvorak)

Saving Thanksgiving #3

“Beglückt darf nun dich, o Heimat, ich schauen und grüssen froh deine lieblichen Auen; nun lass ich ruhn den Wanderstab, weil Gott getreu ich gepilgart hab!”

“Blest, I may now look on thee, oh my native land, and gladly greet thy pleasant pastures; now I lay my pilgrim’s staff aside to rest because, faithful to God, I have completed my pilgrimage.”  “The Pilgrims’ Chorus” from Wagner’s Tannhauser


 Today is the last of the music playlists for Thanksgiving.  This one is secular, but as with “The Pilgrims’ Chorus” faith seems never too far from thankfulness. I tried to include a selection of different styles of music which should appeal to someone sitting around your table this holiday.  Just don’t sing with your mouthful! Today’s Thanksgiving art is Van Gogh’s Harvest.  A wonderful sense of bounty in the French countryside.


Thanksgiving Playlist

  • “I’ve Got Plenty of Nothing” from Porgy and Bess by George Gershwin
  • “Thank You” by Sly and the Family Stone
  • “All Good Gifts” from Godspell by Stephen Schwartz
  • “Amazing Grace” by Aretha Franklin
  • “I’ve Got Plenty to be Thankful For” by Bing Crosby
  • “Thank You” by Tori Amos
  • “Be Thankful for What You Got” by Yo La Tengo
  • “Thanksgiving Theme (Peanuts)” by Vince Guaraldi Trio
  • “Stuffy Turkey” by Thelonious Monk
  • “Mayflower Rock” by Dizzy Gillespie
  • “Thank You” by Ray Davies
  • “Thank You” by Led Zeppelin
  • “Cornucopia” by Black Sabbath
  • “Thanksgiving” by Loudon Wainwright III
  • “Kind and Generous” by Natalie Merchant
  • “Homeward Bound” by Simon and Garfunkel
  • “Turkey in the Straw” by Flatt and Scruggs
  • “Thanksgiving Song” by Adam Sandler
  • “Thank You” by Dido
  • “Thanksgiving”  by George Winston

cjlhlm.jpgWhen it comes to great music, there’s always room for Wagner.  Of course, once I introduced my children to “The Pilgrims’ Chorus,” I felt honor bound to follow it up with a showing of “What’s Opera, Doc?”  I just can’t think of Wagner without thinking of Bugs Bunny in his Brunhilde costume.  Completely destroys the beauty of the moment.” Elmer: Oh, Bwunehiwda, you’re so wuvwee.”Bugs: “Yes I know it, I can’t help it.” Elmer: “Weturn, my wove / A wonging burns deep inside me.” Bugs: “Return, my love / I want you always beside me.”

It’s  akin to when you learned the camp song, “Be kind to your web footed friends, for a duck may be somebody’s brother” before you were old enough to know it was John Phillp Sousa.  Don’t get me started on the Lone Ranger and Rossini or Chopin sonatas and funerals.   Now that I’ve got that out of my system, back to Thanksgiving.