From Hunter Miller
Posted August 15, 2011 at 11:28 PM
Who is the best? Beethoven, Bach, or Mozart?
Bach. The other two really aren't bad though ;)
Bach. nuff said
A few specifics maybe? Best at what?
As significant as all three composers are, I'm thinking of compositions by each of them that I doubt the others could have pulled off so effectively; e.g., Bach S&Ps, Mozart Requiem, Beethoven VC.
I was mainly looking for other people's opinions. I cant exactly ask my dad which of Mozart's Violin Concertos he likes best. His response would probably be "the one with the violins". And I cant ask my mom what Brandenburg Concerto she likes best because she hasnt heard of them. Also I cant ask my friends at school what is their favorite movement from Beethoven's 9th, 7th, or 3rd symphonies, because they havent heard any of them. I just wanted to know who is your favoite and why. (I like Beethoven.....I feel the emotions in his music better than most other composers, though Bach is very good.)
"Favorite" is not the same as "Best," you know. "best" implies an absolute standard; 'favorite' is preference.
Each of them has written things that speak to me at different times, in different moods. Bach is, for me, the most 'versatile,' both when I'm playing and when I'm listening, but at the same time, I'm less tolerant of a less-than-first-rate performance with his music.
Mozart probably offers more sorrow under his joy than any other I can name (though I imagine plenty would--will--argue that).
Beethoven is a Titan; and that sometimes leaves me in the dust, but I dearly love his symphonies, quartets, and sonatas.
Maybe just enjoy them all, rejoicing that each lived.
Which is best? Pears, apples or oranges?
And lest us not forget pineapples and mangos.
But even with apples I like golden delicious my son likes Granny Smith.
As a sometimes one-key flute player some days I love C.P.E as much his father.
The three masters you mentioned could do things structurally that I believe approaches perfection. But each one can also touch the emotions.
When I was stuck in the baroque for many years I used to joke that music started going down hill with Mozart. No one believed me, nor did I expect them to.
I have a lot of Bach, Beethoven and Mozart on my MP3 player, but lately I have been hooked on Sarasate.
Remember the three ‘B’s of music Berry, Brubeck and the Beetles. Or maybe it’s supposed to be Bach, Beethoven and Brahms.
I think I’ll have a couple more dates and go to bed. I’ve definitely been up too long.
What would Mozart have composed if he had lived till he was 90 years old ? That is a more interesting question. In fact I think that is the best question. Not just interesting but better than yours. The best question ever asked on this forum , and any other forum in the World , the Milky Way or the Universe. So there.
How fast did Mozart turn out symphonies?
How fast did Mozart compose symphonies?
Da-da-da-dun! Beethoven Rocks!
I already settled this...http://www.violinist.com/blog/rfloyd1885/20118/12544/
"How fast did Mozart compose symphonies?"
How do you catch a cloud and pin it down?
How fast did Mozart turn out symphonies?
How fast did Mozart compose symphonies?
I saw these as two separate questions.
But being a person who has owned two so called complete organ works of Bach, one vinyl in the 70’s and one Cd (16 of those puppies). And yes I have listened to them multiple times. I took this as an underhanded reference to Bach’s habit of rebranding works.
Ok the flute duet did sound ok with violin, cello and piano (ok it was great). And we all know about the “I need the Brandenburg commission when?” thing.
Hey, he was a professional, and a well tempered one at that. Ok, he had a little trouble holding jobs.
The only problem I have is trying to hum a fugue. A guess there is an art to it.
Just easier to hum a fugue if you enjoy multiple personalities.
I didnt mean to type How fast did Mozart turn out symphonies.....I typed it then decided that wasnt the question I wanted to ask, but forgot how to edit it. I asked it to see aproximately how many symphonies he would have composed if he died at 70 if he continued composing at the rate that he was at the time of his death.
I’m just being silly and opportunistic. I enjoy music humor, much to the chagrin of my oldest son's musician friends. Plus having an engineer for a wife I need any outlet I can get.
But yes that would be a good question.
Marjory, Very funny, hee, hee. Has anyone seen Willie the operatic Whale.
Mozart's Linz(er) symphony, K425, was, apparently, composed in four days.
When we look at these three composers they all have masterpieces that make you feel at the time --"That`s the best!"-- but we are mere mortals compared to them and it seems arrogant to even pass our own opinion about them.They were so far in advance of ordinary people in musical ability. That`s where I find it impossible to answer the question. The idea of Mozart composing a symphony that he visualises as a whole thing in his head before writing it down is enough to sink my opinions. It insults the other two to pontificate about who is best.Who you like best ,at any one moment is ok .That admits our own subjective limitations. I have too much respect to be picking and choosing a football team of composers . Imagine Bach being left against the wall as all the others have been chosen to play. " Sorry Bach mate. You will just have to clean their boots today".
It would be of interest to explore the group of articles by Anthony Tommasini (music critic at the New York Times) naming his choices for the 10 best composers of all time (he has J.S. Bach in the number one spot). There are reasons one might question some of his specific choices - but they interesting.
This website is related to the articles: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/01/07/arts/music/20110107-top-ten-composers.html/?src=fbmain?src=ISMR_HP_LO_MST_FB#bach
Best ten composers . "Oh no . Sorry Rachmaninov, you`ll have to play in goal again. Well you`ve got big hands , haven`t you? Stop moaning !"
new york times ten best composers ----works better without the squinting at commas.
this might be of interest - years ago, when i was due to go into the hospital for an operation, i transferred mozart's sonatas for piano and violin (walter klein and arthur grumiaux) onto tape cassettes for my (this will date me) sony walkman - i thought they'd be a joy to listen to while convalescing. i tried ... but mozart's irrepressible chit-chat proved to be really agitating - a right pain in the ear, literally - sounding a bit like woody-wood-pecker on speed.
beethoven's was the first classical music i ever heard and i've always loved him - i appreciate you not having anyone nearby to relate to - it was the same for me. if i was stranded on a desert island with only one composer to listen to, i'd choose bach ... but beethoven was the first.
For listening to a solo intsturment - Bach
For perfect serenity - Mozart
For a sense of wonder - Beethoven
Thank the Muse for all three !
I read those NY Times articles when they came out--I guess I was less impressed.
Likewise, this is a subjective question. As someone pointed out, there's no yardstick for measuring their relative "greatness." I'm not bothered, as one of my college teachers was, by the fact that Beethoven didn't have the success with opera that Mozart did.
For years I listened to far more Bach than Mozart or LVB. But for half of my life it's been more Beethoven, by a long shot. Especially the piano sonatas and the string quartets. I could coast a long way with those works and nothing else. It's wonderful stuff.
Beethoven. And in this order:
My wife seems hooked on Haydn`s first symphony. She hears all the usual composers plenty of times. There`s just something about that particular one. I was pleased to see the Bach Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue mentioned in the Times article. That`s always a special for me.
Here's one for you:
Who's the best? Batman, Spiderman or Superman?
I like Bach's songs because they build my technique. But I love to hear and play Mozart's and Beethoven's songs also. Their songs are more "fun" than Bach's :)
-shasha (13 years old)
It's sort of a silly topic, comparing the greatness of three different generations of composers. Bach, being the epitome of the high baroque style with his driving contrapuntal textures. Mozart is worlds away, stylistically with his simple, elegant classicism. Had he lived another 20 or 30 years, we could make a reasonable comparison with Beethoven, but they had drastically different circumstances. Beethoven was a child of the revolution and a man of the world during the Napoleonic wars. His music is infused with passion that is right there on the surface. Mozart is equally passionate, but you must seek it out - he won't slap you in the face with it. Maybe instead of who's the best, we should ask who's the worst? Both Bach and Mozart composed with unbelievable fluency and were seemingly incapable of writing a bad piece of music. Beethoven worked and reworked his compositions, chipping away at them until what remained was a masterpiece, but he DID know how to write a stinker - ie: Wellington's Victory! Of the three, I spend the most time listening to Beethoven, then Bach, then Mozart, but that doesn't mean this is the order of greatness - it's probably the opposite.
@John Cadd, re Haydn's 1st symphony in D. I also listen to it frequently. For me it is the beginning of the classical symphonic era, and, by extension, all symphonies composed thereafter. Btw, my favorite recording is by Christopher Hogwood and the Academy of Ancient Music – I think there's no better baroque ensemble to do it justice.
Beethoven. Cause thats the one I'm working on now. But stick around it will be Bach and Mozart in due course...
Though if you are hungry, none of them are as good as a mango...
Who is the best???? I can't really say. I personally like Beethoven more over Bach and Mozart mainly because there are more pieces by him that I'd rather play or listen to than that of Bach or Mozart. However, I agree with one of the previous posts, they are all good.
A good piece is a piece that one can remember after hearing only once. Mozart is by far the best composer.
Mozart is nice
Beethoven is great
but Bach is never-ending
In the jazz world, we say, "It depends on what talks to you."
In the Classical/Baroque world, what talks to me depends on the day, my mood, and the specific piece.
Almost any day, some of Beethoven's work can leave me cold.
Funny, somebody said The Linz was composed in only four days. It is my favorite Mozart symphony, hands down, because of what it evokes only in my imagination and what I was experiencing when I performed in it.
I'm going to vote for Bach. If I had to choose one composer that offered the largest variety of music, he would win for me. With Bach you have solo and accompanied violin music (sonatas), concertos, solos "in" larger works and so on. Curiously I also find Bach more spiritual than either of the others.
There, I've said it.
There are plenty of pieces I've remembered quite well after one hearing that I don't consider particularly good -- some children's songs, for instance. To me, a good piece is one that I find appealing and challenging at the same time -- it hooks me to the point that I have to hear it again -- precisely because I know there's a lot more I have to get out of it.
Case in point: Wagner's Ring tetralogy. It took some work -- and time -- on my part. But it was worth it. I love Mozart's music, too; but when it comes to opera, I'd rather sit through a few hours of Wagner, especially his later works, than a few hours of Mozart. Unlike the Mozart works, the Ring won't let you stop the show to applaud arias, duets, and ensemble numbers. To me, the unbroken tissue of musical drama makes a far more compelling experience.
As wonderful as Corelli's music is, did Corelli compose anything on the level of the St. Matthew Passion or the Mass in B minor or the Brandenburg Concertos or the Goldberg Variations?
It's hard to say. Beethoven may have had an entirely different approach... he focused so much on developing motives in his music. Then again, he still would have had Handel (poor, neglected Handel) to look up to, and Mozart as well.
What would Mozart do? He would have written some of the finest operas of all time, as well as symphonies, string quartets, piano trios, concerti, dance tunes, concert arias, etc., etc., etc. Mozart's musical influences were so diverse that I doubt losing one even as mighty as Bach would have changed his output that much. Remember, Bach didn't write any string quartets, symphonies, operas, piano trios. Not that he couldn't have written masterworks for any of these genres, he just lived in a different time.
Right you are, of course! Here I am going on about Handel getting the respect he deserves and I leave out the godfather of Viennese classicism. Though Ludwig didn't like to admit it, he was surely shaped as a composer by his "lessons" with Haydn.
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