Skip to comments.The Greatest Violinist You Probably Never Heard Of
Posted on 01/06/2018 12:16:58 PM PST by PJ-Comix
"Alexa, play Fritz Kreisler."
I say that command several times a week (sometimes twice a day) to my Echo Dot. Why? Because after discovering the violin music of Fritz Kreisler, I have become hooked. His style is incredibly soothing and makes me relax. He also plays in quite a haunting manner as you can hear in his LIEBESLIED.
I first discovered Kreisler several months ago after watching the movie, "Music of the Heart" about a violin teacher. It featured a cameo by Isaac Stern. As is often the case I did a bit of research on Stern and found out he was inspired by Fritz Kreisler. Curious, I checked out the violin music of Kreisler and became instantly hooked.
Now I play Kreisler all the time. Alexa shuffles his violin music so I get hours of his repertoire at a time. I find his music also helps me sleep. Very soothing but also very inspiring.
Stern certainly plays in that style. Gotta like those slides.
Kreisler’s notes stop at the end. Stern lets the notes fade a bit, but he keeps the slides.
Not a fan of all that vibrato. Find it quite maudlin. Stern, Perlman and their ilk are pretty much unlistenable for me.
Much prefer baroque violin—in the hands of a Baroque master like Rachel Podger:
If I must listen to that sort of over-the-top, vaudevillian, degraded violin, I’ll take Stephane Grapelli:
Sorry. JMHO. You asked :-)
Stéphane Grappelli, a French jazz violinist, is right up there on my list.
Oscar Peterson - Stephane Grappelli - Joe Pass: “NUAGES”
I thought this might be about Eddie Jobson.
Seems he’s famous for being responsible for something that goes wrong, as in - “it’s on the fritz”...
I was just listening to Jean-Luc Ponty last night.
Another good one.
IIRC, SG was a mentor to JLP
And you know you’re good when Zappa invites you to play in his band.
Kreisler would be quite familiar to anyone who’s any kind of a fan of classical music. Legendary child prodigy.
I discovered Grappelli via JLP when I was getting into jazz-fusion - Weather Report, et al.
I never got into Zappa although I recognized his genius.
Vibrato is part of the zeitgeist, considered a necessity in Kreisler’s day. OTOH, Baroque performance required ornamentation that seems like so much squiggly wallpaper to contemporary ears. Oddly enough, the one place we find melismatic ornamentation in music today is R&B singing since at least Whitney Houston.
I suppose wire band nancys are into violin, but let's face it, piano is where it's at. He-men play percussion instruments - or trumpet.
A wise man once said, "Good music should be played loudly."
Yes — a grating sentimentality was the flavor of his day.
Jerry Garcia (Grateful Dead), imo, took a Baroque approach to ornamentation.
ps — if you listen to the Biber piece I linked in post 4, you will find hardly any ornamentation, btw. In Vivaldi’s Violin concertos, most of the ornamentation occurs in the largos. Not so much elsewhere — it’s moving too quickly.
Further, the baroque violin as a musical instrument is different and superior to the modern violin. Different strings, different bow, technique, etc. Much warmer, throatier tone, not so shrill like the modern violin.
Same is true of oboe. The baroque oboe is a beautiful, warm sounding instrument. Listen to a baroque oboe for 20 minutes, then go listen to a modern oboe, and you’ll think you’re listening to a kazoo.
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