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Delete the tracks: Live or silence

September 21, 2012 at 5:43 PM

I went to the symphony last night. They started with Brahms Tragic Overture. It brought back a flood of memories. I recalled the first time I ever heard it. I remembered how I got the ticket, who gave me the ride, the drive home and much of the rest of the program 45 years ago with the Phoenix Symphony and conductor Guy Taylor. The memory of those two opening chords is still big and immediate.

Last night's performance was very good but I won't remember it. The German Requiem was also on the program . Also an excellent performance but I spent the time wishing for this sound here, that tempo there etc. etc.

The problem? I have heard these works so many times that it is hard to get the same level of enthusiasm I had those years ago when I owned a handful of LPs. I doubt I will follow through with deleting my tracks but I listen to recorded music less and less.

Even the greatest music cannot continue to excite when it is available on demand and played incessantly.

I resolve to make more live music and attend more live performances. I resolve to turn off the radio and the iPod more and more. If it isn't live it needs to be silent.

From Dave Bazell
Posted on September 22, 2012 at 3:04 PM
Interesting thoughts, but mine are just the opposite. For a while I was listening to Schubert trios in my car every day, for weeks, maybe twice a day. I love them and found the recording (cd) wonderful. Then I went to a concert and was surprised by a Schubert trio on the program. It was great to hear it live, it was a little different, fresh in a way. And it was great to watch the musicians play. Now, I am not a professional, I just practice every day. But both recorded and live music still move me.
From Carolin Tyrchan
Posted on September 22, 2012 at 7:22 PM
very interesting thoughts, but I wouldn`t see it so drastically. maybe the first step could be to only listen to recordings actively and don`t keep them playing as background music...
From Anne-Marie Proulx
Posted on September 23, 2012 at 3:28 AM
Actually, what I can get sick off is never an excellent recording but the same melodies over and over.

The violin repertoire is big, but the one that I like is not as big (I mean, we can have classical peices that we like a little less too...)

When I'm fed up of the same peices, I take a break of classical records and fast ennough, I want to listen to classical music again!

I often find live performances less good than my favorite recordings but... not always, it depends.

Interesting thoughs!

From Karen Allendoerfer
Posted on September 23, 2012 at 9:02 PM
Like other commenters, I often have the opposite reaction. If I know a piece really well from listening to recordings, it can deepen my enjoyment of a live performance. I rarely get that much out of my first hearing of a piece of classical music. I might get a broad, general sense of enjoyment, but what that usually does is make me want to hear it again, and then, invariably, I will discover new things that went right in one ear and out the other the first time around.
From marjory lange
Posted on September 23, 2012 at 11:33 PM
With Carolin, I steer away from treating good classical as background. Listening to a recording or a live performance with attention suits me.

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