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Solti’s Parsifal

Below is Stephen Follows’ entry for Solti in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. Solti, Sir Georg (1912–1997), conductor, was born György Stern in Vérmezö utca, in the Buda district of Budapest, on 21 October 1912, the younger of the two children of Moricz (later Móric) Stern, a businessman originally from Balatonfökajár in southern Hungary,…

The Glance of Music: Ennio Morricone Documentary

I’m very much looking forward to viewing this documentary (first video) on the genius that is Ennio Morricone. At 87 he’s still going strong and is sharp as a whistle. To my mind, he’s the most Wagnerian of 20th Century composers. Beyond the Morricone-Leone collaboration only one other classic collaboration springs  to mind and that’s the Herzog-Popol Vuh-(Florian Fricke)…

Hammer of the Gods

Listening again to the O2 concert it has became clearer than ever that Led Zep’s sound is of Wagnerian proportions, dragging you through the Mississippi delta up to Norse and Celtic mythology and much in between and then back down to the delta. Here are two decent enough interviews — the first is with Jimmy…

Steely Dan and Martinis

Ed Feser has another terrific earlier posting on Steely Dan (I recently brought attention to this one). Ed engages with Roger Scruton’s analysis of “popular” music. In older musical traditions, the focus was on the music itself, which had only a contingent relationship to the performer even when the performer was the one who composed it .…

Caspar David Friedrich

My favourite painter gets a mainstream mention – if one sees the full body of his work then I guess one can excuse the clichéd use of the Wanderer above the Sea of Fog used for the target book and many a philosophy book and CD cover. Below is Friedrich painted by another favourite of mine,…