All-Time Best CDs

February 6, 2006 at 11:56 PM · I need some new CDs and was wondering what everyone's favorites are.

Thanks! :)

Replies (45)

February 7, 2006 at 12:27 AM · Greetings,

Milstein- Goldmark Concerto.

Milstein-Art of.

Enesco- Unaccompanied Bach.

Huberman- Brunswick recordings.

Neveu and Hassid (for the Hassid)

Heifetz - Castelnuovo doofreewhotsit cocnerto.

Borodin Quartet- Tchaik quartets.

Szigeti- 1956 recording of Brahms.

Thibaud- Art of.

Rosa Ponselle. (Singer)

Capet Quartet- Beethoven

Szeryng- Accompanied Bach Sonatas.



February 7, 2006 at 12:29 AM · Heifetz- Sibelius with Beecham, Wieaniawski 2, Vieuxtemps 4, Zinergenerweisen, Saint-Saens Intro and Capriciuso with Barbirolli, Scottish Fantasy, Brahms Sonata no.3 with Kappell, Krongold VC, Waxman Fantasy, Brahms piano trios with Piatigorsky and Rubinstein, Strauss sonata, recordings 1917-1920, all Wieniawski, all Sarasate, all of his live recordings, all of his Paganini, :).

February 7, 2006 at 12:34 AM · I second the Borodin Quartets recording of the Tchaikovsky quartets...there is no better recording of the first quartet than this CD.

February 7, 2006 at 01:36 AM · There isn't room.


Beethoven Violin Concerto (Francescatti, Ormandy, 1950 recording).

Tchaikovsky Concerto (Heifetz, Francescatti).

Paganini Concerto #2 (Menuhin, Fistoulari).

Sibelius (many, many performances, all different, all beautiful - Oistrakh, Heifetz, Wicks, and others).

Goldmark (Milstein, Blech).

Bartok Concerto (Gitlis).

Bach Sonatas (Milstein, Szeryng, Grumiaux, Menuhin, Enesco).

Brahms Concerto (too many to mention).

Elgar Concerto (Heifetz, Menuhin).

Shostakovich #1(Oistrakh, Kogan, Perlman, Hahn).

Hindemith and Barber Concertos (Stern).

Mozart concertos (Grumiaux, Heifetz, and others).

....stop me before I list more.

February 7, 2006 at 03:26 AM · Andre Rieu: Live from the Big Golden Castle on the River of Mystery.

(I actually really like Andre Rieu, so if you're reading this I'm just joking)

February 7, 2006 at 03:47 AM · My favorite album is an audiocassette.

it is tchaikovsky symphonies 4 and 6 with maazel and the cleveland orchestra

February 7, 2006 at 12:51 PM · Hi - there are so many. My first batch:-

1) Michael Rabin - EMI Box set of 6

2) Michael Rabin - Sony CD (coupled with Renardy)

3) Jascha Heifetz - Spohr VC 8

4) Jascha Heifetz - Bruch Scottish Fantasy

5) David Oistrakh - Beethoven Romances 1 & 2 (DG)

6) Leonid Kogan - Tchaikovsky VC (with Silvestri

and another with Nebolisin)

7) Alfredo Campoli - Mendelssohn VC (Boult on


8) Dvorak - Cello Conc (Rostropovich/Karajan)

9) Rimsky-Korsakov - Capriccio espagnole (Berlin

PO, Maazel on DG Originals)

10) Mahler - Sym 1 (Gary Bertini, Cologne RSO,


That'll do for now. Next 10 soon!

February 7, 2006 at 02:19 PM · Stern/Rose/Istomin -- Archduke and Ghost Trios of Beethoven.

February 7, 2006 at 10:59 PM · Greetings,

Yes Tom! I was going to put down that trio`s chamber work, too. The Haydn trios are also fantastic,



February 8, 2006 at 09:00 AM · Jonathan verry true, the Borodin quartet is amaaaazing, also recommend all the Schostakovich Quartets, great cd's...

all of Heifetz's recordings ;)

Ginète Neveu Brahms concerto

Oistrakh and Rostropovich Brahms Double concerto,

Rabin Meditation

Julian Rachlin Mozart's 4th

Mozart's Requiem with Mutti and Berlin Philhamonic,

and soooo many others...

February 8, 2006 at 11:18 PM · Greetings,

Alexanra et al,

I heard the Borodin quartet for the first time a year ago and for the life of me I don`t know how I managed to miss out for so long. The sheer unique intensity of the sound produced in those performances just blew me away. I was genuinly traumatized by the force being expressed. Indeed for me, that is the ideal string sound which I consider to be greater than many top soloists, which all thes eplayers cou;ld have been.

On aless loony note, I also think everything by the Guarneri quartet is fantastic,



February 8, 2006 at 11:39 PM · Complete beethoven SQ's by Alban Berg Quartet - ooohhhhhhh yeah

February 9, 2006 at 12:17 AM · Brahms trios - Stern, Rose, Instomin

February 9, 2006 at 06:23 AM · Okay, I'm throwing my hat in this one:

Violin: HANDS DOWN--The Michael Rabin Complete Recordings.


Bernstein conducting Mahler 3 with New York (Live 1989)

Mravinsky conducting Tchaikovsky 4, 5, & 6 (Deutsche Gramm)

Rattle & Vienna -- The Beethoven Symphonies

That's a start.


February 9, 2006 at 08:23 AM · Peter Wilson - agree with you on the Rabin set.

The Mravrinsky Tch 4 to 6 - you mean the Dg steero set?

February 9, 2006 at 08:27 AM · Emi - Menuhin Encores - Bazzini, Bloch, Dinicu, Granados, Kreisler, Moszkowski etc always keep coming back to this CD

February 9, 2006 at 08:53 AM · Dylan's first album, then maybe the White Album. A lot of people would put Sgt. Peppers in there somewhere.

February 9, 2006 at 02:18 PM · Hi,

Lots of great stuff up there already... For me, personally, two additions:

Lekeu Violin Sonata played by Arthur Grumiaux with Castagnone - sublime playing

The Schubert C Major quintet in the live recording from the Casals festival with Stern, Schneider, Katims, Tortellier and Casals - what can I say...

Bach Goldberg Variations played by Glenn Gould, 1955 version - one of the greatest recordings of the 20th century for a reason


February 9, 2006 at 02:39 PM · Bach unaccompanied: Szeryng

Rock: The Beatles -- Abbey Road

Christmas: Harry Connick, Jr. (1st Christmas album); Ella Fitzgerald


Star Wars, Close Encounters, E.T. (J. Williams)

Backdraft (Hans Zimmer)

Rocketeer (James Horner)


February 9, 2006 at 02:59 PM · I have to echo the praise for the Rabin set (so glad it's available once more)...that's a great place to start a collection. Ditto the Borodin and Guarneri quartet suggestions.

I'm not sure that I wouldn't put Rachel Podger's Bach S&P on my list...I need to let it soak in a while longer before making a premature judgment.

Jim, I agree--the first Dylan is an underrated jewel. I'd put Revolver over Sgt. Pepper's, plus Talking Book, Are You Experienced, Elvis: The Sun Sessions, and Pet Sounds.,,and Robert Johnson's collection and A Hard Day's Night, another underappreciated early effort.

February 9, 2006 at 03:21 PM · RJ's not the all time best cd, but might be the all time best music:) The Columbia reissues is the best version. But we digress...

February 9, 2006 at 05:47 PM · Boris Christoff :Moussorgsky melodies !!!!!!!

February 10, 2006 at 12:52 AM · Simon Barere - The Last Recording Session. He died a few days later (on stage at Carnegie Hall in the middle of playing the Grieg Concerto with Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra). He makes Horowitz sound like Liberace.

February 10, 2006 at 02:55 AM · Sander:

I'm amazed and delighted that someone mentioned Barere. I had thought of suggesting his 1936-38 recordings. He is one of the very greatest pianists of the 20th century with a technique that, in certain respects, had no peers. The virtuosity of his Schuman Toccata simply has never been equaled.

February 10, 2006 at 03:22 AM · Looks like someone needs to open a "" site . . .

February 10, 2006 at 07:42 AM · I enjoy watching the dvd of the Trout recorded in the late 60's by Perlman, Zuckerman, De Pre, Barenboim, and Mehta.

Also "The Legacy of Cremona" recorded in 2001 by Ricci. Great pieces.

February 10, 2006 at 08:36 AM · did noone put Bernstein conducting West Side Story here? :)))

Prokofiev 2ond Sonata by Martha Argerich and Kremer.

verry true about Borodin Quartet :) they're really great. my dad was student of the chelist. by the way, his grandson is my ex-boyfriend ;))

forgot to add some of Mischa Maisky's cd, his Rachmaninov is amaaaazing :)

February 10, 2006 at 10:34 AM · Greetings,

your ex boyfriend? You Borodim from someone perhaps?



February 10, 2006 at 12:27 PM · Peter: You don't have to be a pianist to appreciate Barere. His playing transcends the instrument. And for violinists, the only analogy I can think of is the incredible articulation in the best of the Ysaye recordings, in which you hear every single note as a beautiful gem, and yet the musical, sweeping line is spectacular. Give it a listen.

February 10, 2006 at 08:12 PM · Sander:

I wasn't knocking Barere; in fact, I ordered 3 CDs of Barere as soon as I left this site! My joking comment about starting a was in reference to the sudden flood of messages pertaining to pianists!


February 10, 2006 at 08:44 PM · good one, Buri.

Segovia, the EMI recordings 1927-1939, vol. 2 Lots of Spanish transcriptions and Ponce. Wonderful playing on scratchy old 78's.

February 10, 2006 at 09:06 PM · OK, no problem. You'll love it.

February 10, 2006 at 09:16 PM · Gotta love the scratchy old 78's :D

February 11, 2006 at 05:03 AM · Peter:

Order the one with the Liszt Sonata and Islamey on it, if you haven't. They were recorded in Carnegie Hall by Barere's son. The sound isn't great. But the performances are. I prefer his Liszt even to the Horowitz recording from the 30s.

BTW, Barere's son, Boris, is also a pianist. He can be heard accompanying the violinist David Nadien on some of his recordings. There is a woman with the last name Barere in the violin section of the Met Orchestra. I've wondered if she is somehow related.

February 12, 2006 at 07:00 AM · Pablo Casals conducting Schubert's Fifth Symphony with the Marlboro Orchestra; the opening of this symphony under Casals' direction is breathtaking. It is infinitely tender and filled with a sense of occasion as this orchestra of virtuosi combines their individual talents to produce a kind of magic that happens rarely in a lifetime. It is astonishing in its beauty.

February 12, 2006 at 03:15 PM · Leonard Rose, cello, 1951/52, playing the Saint-Saëns cello concerto, Bloch's Schelomo, and Tchaikovsky's Variations on a Rococo Theme. Recently released on Biddulph 80209-2. Perfect in every way.

February 12, 2006 at 11:57 PM · Isaac Stern and David Oistrach playing Vivaldi Concertos for 2 violins. I grew up with this LP, brought it on a casette to the US and played it until it died. I managed to track it down on a CD (as "an Isaac Stern, Vivaldi Gala")

Andrew Manze's Corelli Sonatas - just amazing!

Gidon Kremer and Kremerata Baltica - Eight Seasons (Vivaldi and Piazzolla)

Bell/Thibaudet - Faure, Debussy, Franck sonatas

Perlman/Ashkenazy - Prokofiev sonatas

Ethel String Quartet


February 13, 2006 at 12:22 AM · Lucia, I also grew up on that LP! When I finally got around to playing the piece, I realized there was something fishy with the last movement...

February 13, 2006 at 06:10 PM · Storm by vanessa mae and musicology by prince oh and west side story suites by LB performed by JB

February 16, 2006 at 12:37 AM · Impossible....but to give an example: Brahms VC: Heifetz/Szell (Live), Beethoven VC:Heifetz/Mitropoulos (Live), Vivaldi-Four Seasons:Carmignola/Marcon/Venice Baroque Orchestra, Janacek-String Quartetts:The Talich Quartett, Vieuxtemps-VC no.4:Heifetz/Barbirolli, Shostakovich-VC nos.1&2:Oistrach/Mravinski/Kondrachine, H.I.F. Biber-Violin Sonatas:Ensemble Romanesca (Andrew Manze & co.), Shostakovich/Tsiganov-Preludes:Kogan/Shostakovich, Bartok-Solo Sonata:Mullova, Paganini-Nel cor piu non mi sento:Kogan

February 16, 2006 at 01:30 AM · Oh come on Prince and Vanessa Mae Kick Ass.Any way has anyone heard of DBR Daniel Bernard Roumain (Awsome violinist) i put him and Prince on the same level of vurtuososity as JB or Pearlman.

February 16, 2006 at 01:45 AM · Musicology isn't bad. Cinnamon girl is a great song. Too bad it has the same title as a goofy Neil Young song.

February 16, 2006 at 06:58 PM · don't forget inquisition symphony by apocalyptica, just because its pop dosen't mean its bad or lacks technicality.

February 16, 2006 at 07:29 PM · ...but just because it's trendy or novel doesn't mean that it can be compared to the best classical solo and ensemble CD's.

BTW, I have a copy of that CD myself, so I'm not just being a knee-jerk jerk.

February 16, 2006 at 11:15 PM · Ingolf Turban works by Ernst. Quite amazing playing.

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