GMG Classical Music Forum

The Music Room => General Classical Music Discussion => Topic started by: Cato on November 06, 2013, 02:44:26 PM

Title: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on November 06, 2013, 02:44:26 PM
Since we have some members who were not here the last time such a topic surfaced, I thought I would start one again.

This is NOT a poll!   ;)

One of my more unusual associations deals with a section of the opening movement of Bruckner's Fourth Symphony.

Bars 334-350 (of the Nowak score) one day brought up the image a B-52 bomber approaching for a landing.

(I lived near an Air Force base in the good ol' days where a fair number of these behemoths took off every day!)

Why?  Who knows?

The opening of Busoni's Piano Concerto always takes me back to a vague memory of visiting the house of an elderly boss my father had in the early 1950's.  The place was out of the early 1900's, with maybe a hint that the 1920's were the last time anything had changed!.  The man's wife was very nice to me, plopping an entire plate of cookies in my lap!

Your turn!

Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Est.1965 on November 06, 2013, 02:57:52 PM
Since we have some members who were not here the lat time such a topic surfaced, I thought I would start one again.

This is NOT a poll!   ;)

One of my more unusual associations deals with a section of the opening movement of Bruckner's Fourth Symphony.

Bars 334-350 (of the Nowak score) one day brought up the image a B-52 bomber approaching for a landing.

(I lived near an Air Force base in the good ol' days where a fair number of these behemoths took off every day!)

Why?  Who knows?

The opening of Busoni's Piano Concerto always takes me back to a vague memory of visiting the house of an elderly boss my father had in the early 1950's.  The place was out of the early 1900's, with maybe a hint that the 1920's were the last time anything had changed!.  The man's wife was very nice to me, plopping an entire plate of cookies in my lap!

Your turn!

Bruckner, the fourth movement of his 8th Symphony, last movement, comes charging in like the four horses of the Apocalypse.  Sometimes it doesn't though.   :'(  Depends who is conducting!  But that's for another thread...

There's also the trio (I think) in the third movement of Atterbergs second which rather bizarrely brings to me the foreboding image of...BATMAN!

Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: amw on November 06, 2013, 03:04:41 PM
Clementi Sonatinas Op. 36 <----------> Taste and texture of dried mango

Don't ask me why.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on November 06, 2013, 04:56:03 PM
Clementi Sonatinas Op. 36 <----------> Taste and texture of dried mango

Don't ask me why.

Fascinating!

Sounds like you may have synaesthesia!  ???
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: amw on November 06, 2013, 05:07:53 PM
Fascinating!

Sounds like you may have synaesthesia!  ???

Well, I have the more "normal" colour-key thing (E major <---> green, G major <---> orange, etc—different keys also have different "textures" if that makes any sense), but taste doesn't usually enter into it. Most pieces don't taste of anything. But for some reason, hearing one of those Clementi sonatinas (particularly nos. 3 and 4) immediately gives me the feeling of having just bitten into a dried mango.

I can't stand dried mango. :lol:
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 06, 2013, 05:32:56 PM
Rachmaninov's Symphonic Dances: I've always seen this as a dance for the dead or the demonic. Especially the second movement valse, and the chaotic over-the-top closing minutes of the finale where I find the evil dancing among fire.

These images originated from two places: My first recording of Dances was of Previn/LSO on EMI coupled with Isle of the Dead. I used to listen to the disc straight through and found a connection both in character and musically between the two pieces. That connection was technically the Dies Irae chant utilized in both works, but the fact that they were coupled together on disc almost merged them into one work for me.
The second reason is Symphonie Fantastique by Berlioz. For almost the exact same reason, the Dies irae. This was one of my first true "loves" of classical music, and the Witches Sabbath of the finale also conjured up those dark images, but it was Symphonic Dances where the ghouls and monsters of the Berlioz piece were able to get loose and cut a rug.

To this day Dances and Fantastique remain two of my favorite pieces of music, absolute masterful examples of music-inducing images.

Edit: or is it image-inducing music?
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: ChamberNut on November 06, 2013, 06:08:13 PM
When I was young (sometime in the 1980's), back in the first incarnation of the Winnipeg Jets, I can swear that the arena organist would play the beginning of Brahms' Piano Quartet, Op. 60 Scherzo, during intermission or during a 'time out'.

Years later, falling in love with classical music and all.....it was like I immediately recognized the Brahms tune, and associated with attending Jets games as a youngster.  :)

Seriously......you can't make this shit up!  ??? :D
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Mirror Image on November 06, 2013, 06:38:01 PM
Mahler's Adagietto in his Symphony No. 5 always brings up strong images in my mind mostly of things that have been hard for me to deal with (i. e. my Dad being ill, among other situations). I have actually had tears pouring from my eyes during this movement. The Passacaglia from Shostakovich's Violin Concerto No. 1 has a similar effect on me.

Other works like say Boris Tchaikovsky's Sebastopol Symphony or Silvestrov's Symphony No. 5 leave me with different images in my mind mostly of childhood and more innocent times.

I've never been a listener that has images of landscapes or structures. All of the images I've had dealt with my past or what I'm currently going through. Most of the time, though, I listen to music with no kind of associations whatsoever.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Superhorn on November 06, 2013, 07:05:01 PM
   When I hear such works as the Hindemith Weber metamorphoses , the Saint-Saens  Havanaise for violin and orchestra , Bernstein's Candide overture and several others, they have always reminded me of  the tour of  Australia , New Zealand, Samoa nd the Fiji islands
I took as a member of the Long Island  youth orchestra back in the 1970s in my callow youth . These were some of the works the orchestra played .
   It was an unforgettable  experience ; five weeks  going  through the south Pacific ,playing a concert at the then new  Sydney opera house ,
swimming in the great barrier reef and seeing giant clams  which were five feet in diameter ,  flying to the New Zealand alps ,and so much more . 
    The LI youth orchestra ws the first symphony orchestra ever to play in the Fiji islands !
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Pat B on November 06, 2013, 07:10:45 PM
Clementi Sonatinas Op. 36 <----------> Taste and texture of dried mango

Don't ask me why.

Not clementines? ;)

For me, most of the time there are no associations.

Aside from the obvious program music examples (e.g. Vltava -> bubbling river) most of my exceptions are recollections of pieces I played as a student. My recollection of Corelli op. 6 no. 8 is sublime.

Among non-classical music I have a specific childhood memory of hearing "I Feel for You" by Chaka Khan. It has always taken me back to a time and place, but only now, by consciously thinking about it, do I really understand it. Maybe I'll share it later.

And then, thinking about Chaka Khan in a sort of emotional way reminds me of "Seth" Galifianakis discussing the Fugees. :laugh:
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on November 07, 2013, 04:24:17 AM
Rachmaninov's Symphonic Dances: I've always seen this as a dance for the dead or the demonic. Especially the second movement valse, and the chaotic over-the-top closing minutes of the finale where I find the evil dancing among fire.

These images originated from two places: My first recording of Dances was of Previn/LSO on EMI coupled with Isle of the Dead. I used to listen to the disc straight through and found a connection both in character and musically between the two pieces. That connection was technically the Dies Irae chant utilized in both works, but the fact that they were coupled together on disc almost merged them into one work for me.
The second reason is Symphonie Fantastique by Berlioz. For almost the exact same reason, the Dies Irae. This was one of my first true "loves" of classical music, and the Witches Sabbath of the finale also conjured up those dark images, but it was (Rachmaninov's) Symphonic Dances where the ghouls and monsters of the Berlioz piece were able to get loose and cut a rug.

To this day Dances and Fantastique remain two of my favorite pieces of music, absolute masterful examples of music-inducing images.

Edit: or is it image-inducing music?

Rachmaninov's Symphonic Dances seems to have been part of the composer's continual exorcising of his own demons!   0:)

And if one knew nothing about the Dies Irae ?  Would the work be picked up as a Totentanz of sorts?  I think it could be: "image-inducing" indeed!


Years later, falling in love with classical music and all.....it was like I immediately recognized the Brahms tune, and associated with attending Jets games as a youngster.  :)


Think of all the Looney Tunes cartoons and their associations with classical music: Elmer Fudd's infamous "Kill da wabbit!  Kill da wabbit!" has the potential of sabotaging the appreciation of Wagner!

Of course, some people would say that Wagner sabotages the appreciation of Wagner!   ;)

Not clementines? ;)

For me, most of the time there are no associations.

Aside from the obvious program music examples (e.g. Vltava -> bubbling river) most of my exceptions are recollections of pieces I played as a student. My recollection of Corelli op. 6 no. 8 is sublime.


I will need to check that piece!
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: listener on November 07, 2013, 09:47:23 PM
Haydn's "Surprise" Symphony variations which were more than that when played by a high school orchestra that had been in the open air for two hours and then told to 'just play the piece, no warmup please'.  We had tuned while it was still warm, evening cool had set in. The sound of the G-strings all approximating a unison by an interval and a half has lingered in my mind for decades.  Ives would have loved it.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on November 08, 2013, 06:52:10 AM
Haydn's "Surprise" Symphony variations which were more than that when played by a high school orchestra that had been in the open air for two hours and then told to 'just play the piece, no warmup please'.  We had tuned while it was still warm, evening cool had set in. The sound of the G-strings all approximating a unison by an interval and a half has lingered in my mind for decades. 

Ives would have loved it.


 :D

Oh my!  For years I tried to rid myself of the memory of the finale of the Brahms First Symphony as played by a suburban orchestra of well-meaning amateurs and high school students.  For some reason the local classical radio station broadcast the concert - possibly trying to spread appreciation of amateur attempts in classical music - complete with the strings (especially the cellos) at times so awry that it was difficult to know exactly what they were playing!

I recall turning the concert on about a minute or two into the final movement, wondering "What is this?" and thinking that it might be the Brahms...but I could not be sure for a while!   ;)

I once knew a German who refused to listen to "Profis" play classical music: he went only to amateur concerts!  He subscribed to the Romantic notion that money sullied the music, and only the pure amateur, the innocent representative of das Volk, could properly play classical music.   0:)
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on November 08, 2013, 07:13:24 AM
Debussy Nocturnes -> Atlantic City (where I played in the All-State Orchestra)
Berlioz Marche au supplice -> the first suit I wore, which my grandfather bought me for the band concert at which we played an arrangement
Shostakovich Tenth -> McGaw Chapel at Wooster, where I first heard it
Le sacre -> Cleveland's Severance Hall, where I first heard it live
Petrushka -> Pittsburgh's Heinz Hall, ditto
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on November 11, 2013, 09:09:26 AM
  I went in and bought the cheapest ticket available, not knowing what was on the program.  It was the Philharmonic playing Scriabin, Poem of Ecstasy.

A great experience of a piece I probably would not have bought tickets for otherwise.

 8)

Serendipity!

Live music can enthuse people about a piece which they would otherwise not have wanted to hear.

Sometimes even "good" works that are not considered "great," can be improved by a great performance.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: springrite on November 11, 2013, 09:10:47 AM
Rite of Spring ---- College sex
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Mirror Image on November 11, 2013, 09:30:02 AM
Rite of Spring ---- College sex

(Spits drink out of mouth from laughter)

Oh goodness....that was too funny! :P
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on November 11, 2013, 09:39:11 AM
Rite of Spring ---- College sex

Hmm!  I guess the sacrifice of a maiden is involved!   0:)
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: TheGSMoeller on November 11, 2013, 09:46:53 AM
Rite of Spring ---- College sex

I was thinking more along the lines of "Short Ride in a Fast Machine" for college.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Mirror Image on November 11, 2013, 09:47:10 AM
Hmm!  I guess the sacrifice of a maiden is involved!   0:)

LOL!!! Oh, this is too much!!! I can't laugh from hurting now! :D
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on November 11, 2013, 10:18:02 AM
I was thinking more along the lines of "Short Ride in a Fast Machine" for college.

Outside of college, that's a ride to a divorce lawyer usually!   ;)
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Mirror Image on November 11, 2013, 11:25:28 AM
I was thinking more along the lines of "Short Ride in a Fast Machine" for college.

 :laugh:

Damn, you guys are on fire today with the jokes!
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Brian on November 11, 2013, 11:27:14 AM
I have many memories associated with where/when I first heard the music, or interestingly enough, what book I was reading at the time:

- Chuck Mangione jazz. My childhood home, Christmas of age 11, reading Holes[/b] by Louis Sachar.
- Khachaturian's cello concerto was on repeat during a road trip through Utah and Arizona.
- some very peculiar, indeed unique car alarm outside my window that kept going off while I read No Country for Old Men
- Brahms chorchestral music (especially the Ave Maria and Alto Rhapsody) with saying goodbye to a beloved friend. I played it on the trip back and have never forgotten that feeling of resignation and peace.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on November 11, 2013, 11:51:42 AM
I have many memories associated with where/when I first heard the music, or interestingly enough, what book I was reading at the time:

- Chuck Mangione jazz. My childhood home, Christmas of age 11, reading Holes[/b] by Louis Sachar.


Chuck Mangione
!  I recall he wore a big hat and often bounced up and down on his toes, when he played (the flugelhorn)!

(http://jazzbluesclub.com/uploads/posts/1186275266_chuck_mangione__love_notesweb.jpg)

Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: jochanaan on November 11, 2013, 07:08:59 PM
In my childhood, my mother used to play Mozart's Violin Concerto #3 in G major for my two sisters and me at bedtime every night; she had come across the notion that having a specific "aural setting" for going-to-bed would help us fall asleep better.  It seemed to work.  Years later when I first played in the orchestra for that concerto, I was afraid old associations would make me fall asleep! :o Fortunately, I stayed awake. ;D But that concerto brings back good memories of bedtimes, especially the classic Isaac Stern recording that my mother used.

The opening of Beethoven's Ninth's Scherzo was used at one time for a radio news program--don't ask me which one!  I've been trying for decades to remember...

And the first time I ever played in an orchestra (age 17, at the Nebraska All-State Fine Arts Camp in Lincoln), our program included the March from Saint Saens' Algerian Suite, the Evening Prayer from Hansel und Gretel, a "country" orchestral composition whose name and composer I'd have to look up, and the Finale from Beethoven's Fifth.  Any one of those pieces, especially the Evening Prayer, takes me right back to that heady virgin experience with an orchestra. 8)
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Brian on November 11, 2013, 07:49:00 PM
In my childhood, my mother used to play Mozart's Violin Concerto #3 in G major for my two sisters and me at bedtime every night; she had come across the notion that having a specific "aural setting" for going-to-bed would help us fall asleep better.

Oh goodness, that reminds me! In 7th grade, every morning we had to help clean up the classroom. Our teacher decided clean-up period should last 10 minutes, and sought out a 10-minute piece of music to give us a time frame. I suggested Tchaikovsky's "Marche slave", which was a mistake on my part, because for the next 180 school days, we listened to "Marche slave" every morning while cleaning. When the music stopped, you stopped spraying down every surface with Orange Clean. That's all we used: Orange Clean.

I think I've listened to "Marche slave" maybe twice since.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on November 12, 2013, 06:21:35 AM
Oh goodness, that reminds me! In 7th grade, every morning we had to help clean up the classroom. Our teacher decided clean-up period should last 10 minutes, and sought out a 10-minute piece of music to give us a time frame. I suggested Tchaikovsky's "Marche slave", which was a mistake on my part, because for the next 180 school days, we listened to "Marche slave" every morning while cleaning. When the music stopped, you stopped spraying down every surface with Orange Clean. That's all we used: Orange Clean.

I think I've listened to "Marche slave" maybe twice since.

And did you smell anything orange when it came on?   ;)
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on November 12, 2013, 06:23:02 AM
Oh, but that is dreadful, Brian.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: springrite on November 12, 2013, 06:27:21 AM
Oh Brian, I would guess  some of you started to pronounce the name of the work differently after that, maybe as March Slave (March of the Slaves)?
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Sergeant Rock on November 12, 2013, 06:31:01 AM
In 7th grade, every morning we had to help clean up the classroom.

Didn't your school have a custodial staff?  :D  Or was the teacher a germaphobe?

Sarge
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: The new erato on November 12, 2013, 06:37:45 AM
I have some memories of a "short ride with a fast maiden".
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: springrite on November 12, 2013, 06:43:38 AM
I have some meories of a "short ride with a fast maiden".

If I were you I would keep quiet about it...
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on November 12, 2013, 07:09:03 AM
Well, he might have said fast ride with a short maiden . . . .
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: springrite on November 12, 2013, 07:11:59 AM
Well, he might have said fast ride with a short maiden . . . .

Not much of an improvement, is it?
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Fafner on November 12, 2013, 07:14:41 AM
Or was the teacher a germaphobe?

Sarge

Is that someone who is afraid of the Germans?
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Brian on November 12, 2013, 07:38:59 AM
Didn't your school have a custodial staff?  :D  Or was the teacher a germaphobe?

Sarge

I think it probably did have a staff, but she wanted us to have some responsibility for ourselves, I guess. It was great practice for cleaning house as an adult? That 7th grade class also had more homework than I got at any level until university, and once when I didn't finish the English homework my punishment was to call my mom's voice mail and leave a message saying that I hadn't done my homework.

We were also expected to organize cafeteria lunches for the primary school kids and actually complete a job internship that year... I followed the school's IT lady on her rounds, but can't remember any of it. I was 12, what did they expect  ;D
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Sergeant Rock on November 12, 2013, 07:52:24 AM
Is that someone who is afraid of the Germans?

 ;D :D ;D


Sarge
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on November 12, 2013, 08:31:15 AM
Didn't your school have a custodial staff?  :D  Or was the teacher a germaphobe?

Sarge

Sounds like a Catholic school!  0:)  Getting physical, purgatorial labor from students to improve their souls is an old Catholic tradition!  0:)
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: jochanaan on November 12, 2013, 10:40:19 AM
Didn't your school have a custodial staff?  :D 
Do you use treble or bass clef on a custodial staff? ;)
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on November 14, 2013, 03:49:15 PM
Do you use treble or bass clef on a custodial staff? ;)

There are union rules about those things!

One of my memories is from about 25 years ago or so, when I was showing a videotape (remember those?) of Jessye Norman performing Erwartung by Schoenberg.

I was teaching German at the time, and used the text (not particularly difficult) in the third-year class for translation practice, and then showed the performance on a projection TV which the football coaches used.

At the end of the performance, one of my juniors leaned back and sighed and shook his head.  I asked what was wrong, and he replied: "That opera had so much tension!"
 ;)
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on November 15, 2013, 05:37:11 AM
One of my memories is from about 25 years ago or so, when I was showing a videotape (remember those?) of Jessye Norman performing Erwartung by Schoenberg.

I was teaching German at the time, and used the text (not particularly difficult) in the third-year class for translation practice, and then showed the performance on a projection TV which the football coaches used.

At the end of the performance, one of my juniors leaned back and sighed and shook his head.  I asked what was wrong, and he replied: "That opera had so much tension!"
 ;)

So much for any supposed language barrier!
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Jo498 on March 18, 2017, 05:32:29 AM
The oddest associations I can think of are with Mahler's 4th symphony. One are the "tattoo signals" in the first movement that remind me of some children's cassette I had but I do not even remember the precise song it is similar to.
The other is more generally connected with the strange faux naivity of the whole piece. Around the time I first listened to Mahler's 4th with 17 we went on a school trip to Greece and in one of the Meteora monasteries there were really odd paintings or frescoes, depicting either legends of saints/martyrs or biblical stories or maybe historical episodes in a strangely naive picture-book-like fashion. Often quite cruel, with bloody severed heads rolling around, I think. My memories are very dim, but to this day I often think of the Metéora when I listen to Mahler's 4th.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: relm1 on March 18, 2017, 06:14:16 AM
My unusual memory was from the premiere of Scriabin/Nemtin Mysterium.  After the hour long onslaught ended, the diminutive Vladimir Ashkenazy nervously peaked at the audience to see if anyone was still left in the concert hall.  It was generally well received but I remember he seemed unsure of how it would be received. 
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Sergeant Rock on March 18, 2017, 06:46:23 AM
The opening of Beethoven's Ninth's Scherzo was used at one time for a radio news program--don't ask me which one!  I've been trying for decades to remember...

I don't know about a radio news program but The Huntley-Brinkley Report (NBC News) used it. That Beethoven movement is indelibly linked to Chet and David just like The William Tell Overture will forever bring up visions of the Lone Ranger and Silver.

Sarge
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on March 18, 2017, 07:43:06 AM
My unusual memory was from the premiere of Scriabin/Nemtin Mysterium.  After the hour long onslaught ended, the diminutive Vladimir Ashkenazy nervously peaked at the audience to see if anyone was still left in the concert hall.  It was generally well received but I remember he seemed unsure of how it would be received.

Wow!  YOU were there!!!  Tell us more!  That is one of my favorite works, ever since the first movement was revealed back in the 1970's!

Concerning Mahler, I played for some unknown reason the Tenth Symphony (completed version) not long after my father's funeral.  Perhaps I was looking for a catharsis, but I approach the work cautiously now because of that association.

 

Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Spineur on March 18, 2017, 08:12:18 AM
The success of some commercials comes entirely from the classical music used.  The best example that come to my mind is the insurer (CNP) used the Waltz from Shostakovich Jazz suite no 2, and this was an instant hit.  Shostakovich sales went to the roof.  I believe the retro style of this particular piece matched the topic so perfectly.

Here is the waltz (without the commercial)

https://www.youtube.com/v/7UIHl0oJEpg
 
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on March 18, 2017, 08:26:47 AM
The success of some commercials comes entirely from the classical music used.  The best example that come to my mind is the insurer (CNP) used the Waltz from Shostakovich Jazz suite no 2, and this was an instant hit.  Shostakovich sales went to the roof.  I believe the retro style of this particular piece matched the topic so perfectly.

Here is the waltz (without the commercial)

https://www.youtube.com/v/7UIHl0oJEpg
 

Myself, I shall for a long time yet think of the Timothy Hutton/Maury Chaykin adaptation of Rex Stout's Champagne for One, in which this is used.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: ahinton on March 18, 2017, 08:30:21 AM
My unusual memory was from the premiere of Scriabin/Nemtin Mysterium.  After the hour long onslaught ended, the diminutive Vladimir Ashkenazy nervously peaked at the audience to see if anyone was still left in the concert hall.  It was generally well received but I remember he seemed unsure of how it would be received.
That must have been only an excerpt, although I do not know which; the whole is at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V4YSysUn-Bk and plays for 2 hours 40 minutes but it's unclear which section you heard because only the last is close to an hour in duration. It's a very considerable achievement on Nemtin's part but, the copious Scriabin quotations aside, I imagine that it's mostly Nemtin and not much Scriabin. I did ask the Scriabin scholar Jonathan Powell about this be he didn't respond, so one might make whatever one might make of that!...
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on March 18, 2017, 10:15:46 AM
That must have been only an excerpt, although I do not know which; the whole is at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V4YSysUn-Bk and plays for 2 hours 40 minutes but it's unclear which section you heard because only the last is close to an hour in duration. It's a very considerable achievement on Nemtin's part but, the copious Scriabin quotations aside,I imagine that it's mostly Nemtin and not much Scriabin. I did ask the Scriabin scholar Jonathan Powell about this but he didn't respond, so one might make whatever one might make of that!...

How much of this is Nemtin and how much is Scriabin?  Yes, that is the question!

Much is made of the 53 pages of "musical sketches" found in Scriabin's house, and left untouched for 55 years!   So one assumes that the text is not necessarily taking up space in these pages, or too much.  Depending on the size of the pages, the penmanship, etc. that could be a considerable amount of material.  On the other hand, according to the CD notes, Nemtin mentions using a late piano piece as material for Part II.  "I made use of the Prelude Op. 74 #2..."  That would seem to indicate that such use was not indicated in the sketches.

The CD has other vague comments: there is a quote of Nemtin saying that he "was unwilling to write in the style of Scriabin," for a documentary about the composer.  Do we assume that he changed his mind...or was there enough material for Nemtin to follow without inventing anything of his own?

To return to the topic: the opening of this work is connected to a death in my family, this time my grandmother.  She died in our house in July in the 1970's, at a time when I was often playing the work in my room.

Such a connection would please Scriabin, I think!
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: aligreto on March 30, 2017, 01:07:02 PM
I must have been only about fourteen or fifteen years old. It was one very warm summer Sunday afternoon. I was lying on my bed. A soft, warm breeze was gently stroking the net curtains on my open window. BBC 3 was on the radio. Mahler’s Symphony no. 6 was playing but unfortunately I cannot remember the orchestra or the conductor. I was engrossed. Then the slow movement began. I closed my eyes and the music enveloped me and washed over me. I thought that I was in heaven.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Monsieur Croche on March 31, 2017, 05:03:40 AM
I don't get the usual (I suppose, "usual," anyway) associations so many seem to get with music.  It seems I don't even get those more exceptional occasions as tied in with some memorable event upon first hearing, or hearing a piece live for the first time in that hall, those performers, that time of your life; I do remember exactly such performances, as exciting, thrilling, etc. but as the especially electric performance I heard of _____, i.e. rather directly what it was.

What is memorable and impresses -- and lingers in memory -- is the music itself. 
A lot of what is extra-musical around music eludes me, it seems.

I rarely if ever get associative images or a sense of literal narrative from music, either.  To me, it parses down to music being a very direct thing all of its own.  I know this is somewhat unusual, as even my numerous musician friends -- over several decades and places -- do seem to have / get those associations.


Best regards
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: some guy on March 31, 2017, 06:47:33 AM
Me either.

I have lots of memories in which music is involved, but the music is always the focus, not the catalyst. That is, whenever I listen to Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra, I don't think of Darmstadt, where I was living when I first heard it, but if I ever think of Darmstadt, that will trigger memories of first hearing the Bartok.

Stockholm. Where I first heard Stravinsky's Les Noces.

Amoeba Records in Hollywood. Where I found a CD of Michele Bokanowski's L'etoile Absinthe.

Places, events, people, circumstances--all of those can trigger memories of music. Sure!! The other direction? Not so much.

So thanks, M. Croche, for articulating all that so well for me. Took all the pressure off.  :)
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: aligreto on March 31, 2017, 09:53:29 AM
The way that it works for me, not just in music but also in literature and to a lesser extent in visual art, is that I do not always remember or recall all of the exact details of a work until I hear, read or see it again. What I come away with and what stays with me is a strong impression of the impact that particular work made on me.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Uhor on April 05, 2017, 03:00:05 PM
Dorian Horizon makes me think of trains departing.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on April 05, 2017, 03:17:17 PM
Dorian Horizon makes me think of trains departing.

Thanks for the recommendation:

https://www.youtube.com/v/x4hMYQ_D7GQ
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: PotashPie on April 07, 2017, 12:30:39 PM
Here is one of my post/blogs, which exists on another site:

Instrumental music is not, literally, about any particular "narrative." This doesn't mean it has no other meaning, such as evoking strong "emotional states," as in Schoenberg's Transfigured Night, Five Pieces and Mahler's symphonies.

Instrumental music, "musical sound", when divorced from "literal action" and drama, lost its connection to explicit meaning, and was revealed for what it is: a non-representational medium, the abstract evocation of "inner" states of being, which, coincidentally, is exactly what "abstract art" does: it reveals the artist's, and by empathy, the viewer's inner emotional state of being.

Music gradually divorced itself from drama over several centuries. Look at the rise of instrumental forms: the symphony, the concerto, tone poems, etc.

In instrumental Romanticism, although it was music divorced from drama, still had residual traces of drama, expressed as "dramatic gestures."

This "splitting" of drama from music opened-up a new can of worms, giving us the whole range of the non-specific "feelings" evoked by music, which are by their very "non-narrative nature" fleeting, transitory, and ephemeral, unclear, evocative, vague, and indefinable (meaning non-narrative).

Still, this is not a requirement for music to be expressive of emotion or states of being. To take matters even further into the fog, when we get into more modern music, I think "emotion" as a descriptive term begins to fail us. For example, in Schoenberg's Five Pieces for Orchestra, the "emotional gestures" expressed are so complex that we begin to experience them as "states of being," like anxiety, foreboding, fear, tension, awe, etc., creating in our minds, empathetically, a reflection of our own, and the artist's, "inner state of being."

Concerning modernism, it's true that in many instances the "evoking" of dramatic emotion, and dramatic gesture is absent (but certainly not always). Stockhausen evokes, for me, a sort of "Platonic classicism" in his Klavierstücke; with modernism, we must put aside our need for drama and overt emotion, and listen on the level of "pure abstraction," an enjoyment of color, sound, and timbre itself. In this sense, modern music is not "modern" at all; music has always been "abstract expressionism" when divorced from drama and opera.

So, in a sense, this is an "internal narrative" we share with the composer, but indefinable in literal narrative terms, because these are transitory, fleeting states by nature; simply "gestures of meanings."

Our general knowledge, and the historical context of a work can provide a source of "general narrative content" which can add greatly to the meaning of a piece, if only in our own minds. This always happens for me with Shostakovich (images of Soviet Russia) and with Webern's Op. 6 (Six Pieces for Orchestra), which always evokes in me grey images of Europe immediately preceding the World Wars. With Mahler, the Sixth Symphony snare-drum always evokes images of some malevolent military presence marching through our once-peaceful existence.

I think in many cases, the composer actually is composing with a specific narrative in mind, from his own emotionally-charged experience of events in his life, and then leaving it up to us to interpret it as we will; but we will never know for sure. That's the beauty of poetry; it is open-ended in meaning.

That's a useful distinction, I think; instrumental non-narrative music (containing "dramatic gesture") is more like poetry, whereas the explicit meaning and narrative of opera is like a story or novel.

Perhaps that's the reason opera seems to lend itself to an audience more easily; the "poetry" of instrumental music is an "inner" experience, more solitary in nature, like reading a book of poems by yourself. Maybe sitting there in the concert hall listening to instrumental music gave audiences too much idle time to think.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on September 22, 2017, 06:22:49 AM
Courage!
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on September 23, 2017, 12:24:09 PM
^ Pretty correct, but you misspelled Dikhthas...you knob  :laugh:


I doubt anyone noticed  ::) but I listened to Millie Regretz by Josquin Des Prez several hundreds of times back in June, I had a really depressed month and that piece helped me through it at the time. It is a piece that makes me cry  :-[  By the fourth chord/harmony in the opening, I get chills.
But that piece is very indicative of what this year has been (and still is) for me: self-discovery and overcoming a lot of struggles.

Many thanks for the interesting comments!  Musical therapy!  Perhaps we need more of it in these days of mass mediocrity... 0:)

For those who do not know the Des Prez work:

https://www.youtube.com/v/GnEgoNEHs68

Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: North Star on September 23, 2017, 01:11:48 PM
Many thanks for the interesting comments!  Musical therapy!  Perhaps we need more of it in these days of mass mediocrity... 0:)

I've yet to hear a mediocre mass from the time of Josquin & al..  0:)
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on September 23, 2017, 05:34:35 PM
I've yet to hear a mediocre mass from the time of Josquin & al..  0:)

Ever since Vatican II in the mid 1960's, Mass mediocrity has been the rule in most Catholic parishes, unfortunately!  :blank:
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on July 28, 2018, 07:25:58 AM
Nearly a year has gone by since this topic was addressed.

I return to it today, after I had been thinking about Hermann Hesse's novel Das Glasperlenspiel (The Glass-Bead Game also known in English as Magister Ludi ).

If you do not know the book, it deals with a future society (somewhat resembling the Middle Ages) where the highest intellectual achievement is playing "The Glass Bead Game."  Exactly how one plays such a game - in a society where all creativity has been banned  ???  (no new stories, no new music, etc.) - is never completely clear.  However, from various clues it seems one must find or invent connections among ideas, artworks, scientific concepts, mathematics, etc. and then successfully show the logic behind making such connections.

e.g.  (This is my invention, not from the book) a game might take a fugue by Bach, the Chinese ideogram for "soul," the multi-dimensional E8 Theory of the Universe, and Grant Wood's American Gothic and attempt to show how they are inter-related. 

Anyway, oddly, listening to the Dvorak Symphonies I, II and III, and the associations they summoned forth from many decades ago, made me think of Das Glasperlenspiel.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Capeditiea on September 02, 2018, 06:54:08 AM
...well i have a long list due to my overactive imagination.

First we shall start with
Beethoven's Op. 129 Rondo e Capriccio = Seeing him outstretching his arms as a coin sorta rolls away (having a mind of it's own) ...which is probably an accurate adaptation.

Beethoven's First Symphony Fourth Movement = having him gallavanting around saying "Cherryho" to every one and their dog.

Mahler's Tenth (unfinished version) = it just reminds me of him, sorta expressing similar to how jesus was asking "father why art thou forsaketh ye?" then suddenly shifts into jazz hands in a ballet style fashion.

(almost all) of J.S. Bach's Concerti kinda are similar to Beethoven's First... but instead Bach being a lot more flamboyant.

The HIP performance of Vivaldi's Autumn seems to have him headbanging.

Gloria Coates Symphony No. 7 = Jets taking off then timetraveling to a distant time and taking you to some dimension that you are unaware of your existence. :D

Albinoni's Concerto No. 2 Op. 9, Tchaikovsky's Serenade for Strings in C Major, Fanny Mendelsson's Trio and Felex Mendelssohn's String Quartet No. 6 = just turns me on. (among a few others...)

Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on September 05, 2018, 05:07:18 PM
...well i have a long list due to my overactive imagination.

First we shall start with
Beethoven's Op. 129 Rondo e Capriccio = Seeing him outstretching his arms as a coin sorta rolls away (having a mind of it's own) ...which is probably an accurate adaptation.

Beethoven's First Symphony Fourth Movement = having him gallavanting around saying "Cherryho" to every one and their dog.

Mahler's Tenth (unfinished version) = it just reminds me of him, sorta expressing similar to how Jesus was asking "father why art thou forsaketh ye?" then suddenly shifts into jazz hands in a ballet style fashion.

(almost all) of J.S. Bach's Concerti kinda are similar to Beethoven's First... but instead Bach being a lot more flamboyant.

The HIP performance of Vivaldi's Autumn seems to have him headbanging.

Gloria Coates Symphony No. 7 = Jets taking off then timetraveling to a distant time and taking you to some dimension that you are unaware of your existence. :D

Albinoni's Concerto No. 2 Op. 9, Tchaikovsky's Serenade for Strings in C Major, Fanny Mendelsson's Trio and Felex Mendelssohn's String Quartet No. 6 = just turns me on. (among a few others...)

An overactive imagination is the only kind to have!  0:)

I will need to check out that Gloria Coates work! 
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: NikF on September 05, 2018, 05:54:26 PM
The first time I watched Michael Haneke's 'La Pianiste' was also my first time hearing any of Schubert's Winterreise. When I listen to it now - especially 'Im Dorfe' - it recalls sitting on a sofa under a homemade patchwork quilt with a glass of heady red wine in the company of the curly haired woman (Frau Doktor) who introduced me to so much music.

As far as pop music is concerned, another then girlfriend walking into my (home) office, returning the track currently playing (Poinciana - Ahmad Jamal) on the CD to the beginning, then turning to where I was seated and with a serious expression on her little face starting to dance uninhibited and with increasing abandon, remains strong, clear, vivid, and I'm grateful.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: pjme on September 06, 2018, 04:23:27 AM
On june 25th 1988 I went to the Koncertgebouw in Amsterdam. Reinbert de Leeuw was conducting Milhaud's complete "Orestie", with a large cast (Maria Oran, June Card, Charles van Tassel, Françoix Leroux ...), the Dutch Radio PhO and chorus.
I knew "les Choéphores" from the old Markevitch recording on DGG and was mightily nervous and intrigued to discover the rest of this , nearly three hour long mammoth score.
I was -at least- deeply impressed by the sheer physical efforts of all the musicians involved. The choral soprano's have incredibly high lying parts, Pallas Athena (sung by three singers) has an equally difficult (ungrateful) part and the orchestra (including 13 percussion players) underlined every move of the chilling tragedy.
During an interval I noticed some unease in the Koncertgebouw. Some ushers were listening to small portable radios... that afternoon the
UEFA Euro 1988 Final was being played in Munich (the Netherlands - Soviet Union). Tension was building up everywhere.
The last scene of l'Orestie is a huge Processional: Athena persuades the ancient Furies to give up their anger and be worshipped as benevolent and constructive forces of good. Milhaud unleashes a final mighty roar in chorus and orchestra ....
Dazed by the experience and with all kinds of images of hyper exited marching throngs in my head...I was swept away by hordes of hyper exited Dutch football fans who ran in the streets, brandishing flags and banners after the 2-0 victory. Athena was not to be seen - Ruud Gullit and Marco van Basten were the gods!
In only a few minutes time - getting from the concerthall onto the Museumplein ,it seemed as if that musical processional became a reality.
I will never forget that moment.
P.



Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: NikF on September 06, 2018, 04:28:49 AM
^ i enjoyed reading that. Good stuff.
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: Cato on September 06, 2018, 04:43:45 AM
^   I enjoyed reading that. Good stuff.

 0:) Amen!   0:)


As far as pop music is concerned, another then girlfriend walking into my (home) office, returning the track currently playing (Poinciana - Ahmad Jamal) on the CD to the beginning, then turning to where I was seated and with a serious expression on her little face starting to dance uninhibited and with increasing abandon, remains strong, clear, vivid, and I'm grateful.


Very discreet!  ;)
Title: Re: Memories and Associations (Unusual and Otherwise) Connected To Musical Works
Post by: ritter on September 06, 2018, 08:35:14 AM
^ i enjoyed reading that. Good stuff.
+1 ... very nice.... :)