Author Topic: Naxos American Classics  (Read 1383 times)

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Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Naxos American Classics
« Reply #20 on: April 05, 2020, 03:08:21 PM »
What is Schuman's music all about? I'm asking because I've heard a few works of his—In Praise of Shahn & To Thee Old Cause, on a disc conducted by Bernstein, and I couldn't make any sense of them.

All the info and opinions you need:

https://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,1820.0.html
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Offline vers la flamme

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Re: Naxos American Classics
« Reply #21 on: April 06, 2020, 03:21:58 AM »
All the info and opinions you need:

https://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,1820.0.html

Thanks, I'll do some reading (and listening) and see if I can figure out what he's all about.

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Naxos American Classics
« Reply #22 on: April 06, 2020, 03:40:46 AM »
What is Schuman's music all about? I'm asking because I've heard a few works of his—In Praise of Shahn & To Thee Old Cause, on a disc conducted by Bernstein, and I couldn't make any sense of them.

Try Symphony No.3 and the New England Triptych.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).

Offline DaveF

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Re: Naxos American Classics
« Reply #23 on: April 06, 2020, 05:10:14 AM »
For those of us in Western Europe, and who like downloads (or who buy them to attempt to avoid being told off for buying more CDs), Qobuz has the whole series - indeed the whole Naxos label - at 50% off at the moment - so £2.90 for standard CD quality, £3.65 for hi-res.
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Online VonStupp

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Re: Naxos American Classics
« Reply #24 on: June 06, 2021, 08:21:38 AM »
Boy, Naxos really churned out the American Classics series when it first came out in the late 90’s and early 2000’s. I can’t say they come out at that pace nowadays, but maybe they offer less for higher quality? I certainly don’t purchase them like I used to either; too many so-so works vs. ballpark hits in the end, although discovery is part of the fun.

It seems since then, Naxos acquired a lot of Gerard Schwarz's back catalog from Delos and rebranded many of them into the series. This seems to include a different offshoot - the Milken Archive of American Jewish Music, which has been interesting too.

As I am looking back at some of those American Classics early releases I purchased, I am not exactly pining to listen to them again. Those Russian and Eastern-European orchestras were so variable, as was the sound. I have a lot of the JoAnn Falletta and Leonard Slatkin ones from the last decade (not so many Alsop), and I think more highly of them.

In any case, I think my first purchase was the symphonies of Meredith Willson. As I am listening, I really like this music; it is well constructed, interesting Latin and jazz inflections, but it receives middling playing from the Moscow orchestra. The liner notes mention another 10 major orchestral works from Willson sitting around somewhere, but I don’t think anyone went back to find more music. Oh well…we’ll see how many of these I want to revisit.


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Offline Daverz

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Re: Naxos American Classics
« Reply #25 on: June 06, 2021, 12:23:55 PM »
Some of the Ukraine discs conducted by Kuchar are very good, e.g. Creston symphonies and Piston violin concertos.  They are not as refined as the best Western orchestras, but they seem to play with enthusiasm in the right hands.

Offline Brian

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Re: Naxos American Classics
« Reply #26 on: June 06, 2021, 01:54:00 PM »
Many of the contemporary American Classics releases are dedicated to living American composers, like Roberto Sierra, Joan Tower, and Aaron Jay Kernis. Seems like a conscious trade-off to spend less time documenting the nation's musical past and more on its present. However last year they started a cycle of the Florence Price symphonies. Not sure if they are good pieces, haven't listened, but musicologically very important.

Offline foxandpeng

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Re: Naxos American Classics
« Reply #27 on: June 06, 2021, 02:10:12 PM »
I'm fortunate in recent years to not have to worry about the cost of building a robust library of good music (and the advent of pretty comprehensive streaming services further adds to that), but I will always be grateful to Naxos for putting low cost, wide ranging, accessible music in my hands.

Whatever the quality of some recordings, for an eager young man keen to expand his understanding on a very limited budget, they were a godsend. I would certainly never have discovered Diamond, Creston, large swathes of Hovhaness, et al., without them.
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Offline vandermolen

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Re: Naxos American Classics
« Reply #28 on: June 09, 2021, 01:22:47 PM »
I'm fortunate in recent years to not have to worry about the cost of building a robust library of good music (and the advent of pretty comprehensive streaming services further adds to that), but I will always be grateful to Naxos for putting low cost, wide ranging, accessible music in my hands.

Whatever the quality of some recordings, for an eager young man keen to expand his understanding on a very limited budget, they were a godsend. I would certainly never have discovered Diamond, Creston, large swathes of Hovhaness, et al., without them.
I'm grateful to Naxos for the same reason.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

'The test of a work of art is, in the end, our affection for it, not our ability to explain why it is good' (Stanley Kubrick).