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I would love to hear your reaction. Anyone I've played it for has been genuinely overwhelmed by it. 

db

Sent from my iPhone

> On Sep 24, 2014, at 12:06 AM, John Haley <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> 
> Thanks, Dave.  I guess I better hear that one (Sanderling's).  Sorry to say
> that I haven't.
> 
> Best,
> John Haley
> 
>> On Tue, Sep 23, 2014 at 4:11 PM, Dave Burnham <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> 
>> I don't think any Brahms cycle comes close to Kurt Sanderling's. This set
>> is perfect in every way, including sound and performance. I can't even
>> think of what version would run a distant second.
>> 
>> db
>> 
>> Sent from my iPhone
>> 
>>> On Sep 23, 2014, at 12:41 PM, John Haley <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>> 
>>> Well, all the great conductors could be impatient with sloppy playing,
>> but
>>> that's not what happened as a routine matter with the world's great
>>> orchestras that Dorati conducted, and not even in very good regional
>>> orchestras like Dallas had.  All of the leading orchestras in that era
>> had
>>> no problem with delivering the goods and did not deserve abuse.  I have
>>> never heard anyone describe Dorati as "warm" and "liked."  Obviously he
>>> must have been very nice to the record company that was a major factor in
>>> sustaining his career.
>>> 
>>> I also like Steinberg's Pittsburgh Brahms cycle, but Munch's Brahms
>>> symphonies (the RCA ones, not always the live ones) are also really
>> great,
>>> altho he never recorded the third symphony and there is no live one
>>> either.  Munch (who as a violinist had studied with Flesch had been
>>> Furtwangler's concertmaster) brought something of the sense of urgency
>> and
>>> orchestral phrasing to the Brahms Symphonies that we hear in great older
>>> recordings, such as the superb Weingartner's, which can make "modern"
>>> recordings seem very pale by comparison, and RCA recorded Munch/BSO
>>> stunningly.  Reiner also "got it right" with Brahms, as he did with
>>> virtually everything he ever conducted.  His Brahms Third Symphony with
>> CSO
>>> is magnificent in every way.  And Walter's mono cycle with the NY Phil is
>>> wonderful.  I guess everyone has favorites with staples like this.  With
>>> Dorati, things are correct but not inspired.  I never tire of the Brahms
>>> symphonies.
>>> 
>>> Best,
>>> John Haley
>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>>> On Tue, Sep 23, 2014 at 11:48 AM, Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]>
>>> wrote:
>>> 
>>>> Hi John:
>>>> 
>>>> Musicians who recieved Dorati's wrath, for sloppy playing or ill
>>>> preparation, tended to feed the "reports" of his alleged ill temper. He
>>>> actually was a warm person, much liked by those who made recordings with
>>>> him. He was also known to be generous and to take regional orchestras to
>>>> very high levels of competence. I'm sure he battled hard with American
>>>> unions, and he got into quite a fight with unions and management when he
>>>> was in Detroit late in his career. We very much disagree on his
>> recordings,
>>>> many of his are my favorites for various pieces (definitely at least
>> partly
>>>> a product of being brought up on those performances, but I have
>> listened to
>>>> the other "consensus favorites" for most works). He was interested in
>>>> making precise and exciting recordings, but less coldly precise than
>> Szell
>>>> (who I also like very much). Dorati, especially in his Mercury era,
>> rarely
>>>> turned out dull moments. His later work on Haydn, both the symphonies
>> and
>>>> the operas, is still considered "the canon." I find it interesting that
>> he
>>>> was so good with Haydn but also with Stravinsky and Copland. I happen to
>>>> agree that his Brahms cycle is OK but not great, to my taste. I'm not a
>>>> huge fan of Brahms in the first place, so I'm picky. I think that's a
>> case
>>>> where the Szell treatment is quite good, but I really like what
>> Steinberg
>>>> did with Pittsburgh (again, probably because that's what I was brought
>> up
>>>> on), and also Solti/Chicago (which surprised me because I usually don't
>>>> consider Solti "the best" at any symphonic recordings but never "the
>> worst"
>>>> -- Solti/Chicago also made a surpringly excellent "Rite of Spring"
>>>> recording, more furious than you'd ever expect). Anyway, Dorati was very
>>>> much liked and admired by the Mercury team, despite the occasional
>> meltdown
>>>> when the orchestra wasn't getting it right. His approach to music
>> matched
>>>> their approach to recording (get it right, overcome all obstacles, have
>> no
>>>> patience for sloppiness, do things boldly and with great intensity, be
>>>> ambitious and optimistic).
>>>> 
>>>> -- Tom Fine
>>>> 
>>>> ----- Original Message ----- From: "John Haley" <[log in to unmask]>
>>>> To: <[log in to unmask]>
>>>> Sent: Tuesday, September 23, 2014 10:47 AM
>>>> 
>>>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Records Ruin the Landscape
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> Re Tom's comments on Dorati.  Dorati was the conductor in Dallas for a
>>>>> while, and he left behind him there a reputation as a particularly
>> nasty
>>>>> character, personally, to work for or with, and I recall having seen
>>>>> elsewhere some comments that orchestral musicians generally disliked
>> him
>>>>> very much.  Of course he was not alone in that.  The Mercury CD's of
>> his
>>>>> Brahms Symphony cycle are all in stereo, and it is very good, not
>> great.
>>>>> Try as I might, I have never been able to "fall in love" with his
>> records.
>>>>> Extreme competence as a conductor, but not the heart that other great
>>>>> ones brought to the task, including the three other great Hungarians
>> who
>>>>> preceded him with leading conducting careers in the US, Reiner, Ormandy
>>>>> and
>>>>> Szell, all of whom made greater records (musically) than Dorati.  I am
>>>>> sure
>>>>> Dorati must have his great fans; I am just not one of them.
>>>>> 
>>>>> Best,
>>>>> John Haley
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> On Tue, Sep 23, 2014 at 9:40 AM, Dennis Rooney <
>> [log in to unmask]>
>>>>> wrote:
>>>>> 
>>>>> À propos the above comments, it was Doráti who conducted the MSO in the
>>>>>> local premiere of Mahler's Third (I believe the year was 1953), but
>>>>>> Mitropoulos had earlier recorded the First and Ormandy did an
>> important
>>>>>> "Resurrection" there, recorded in concert by Victor in 1935. Steve
>>>>>> Smolian's recollection of academic opposition to Mahler is important
>> to
>>>>>> note; however, Mahler was played by the larger U.S. orchestras,
>>>>>> sporadically but regularly from the teens on. Ernst Kunwald led a
>>>>>> performance of the Third in Cincinnati (May Festival) in 1913.
>>>>>> Unquestionably, Mahler was a beneficiary of the long-playing record,
>> even
>>>>>> before stereo, with important recordings by Scherchen, Adler, Rosbaud,
>>>>>> etc.
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> DDR
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> On Mon, Sep 22, 2014 at 2:24 PM, Tom Fine <
>> [log in to unmask]>
>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> Hi Don:
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> Mercury didn't adhere to any "standard canon of classical music"
>> except
>>>>>> in
>>>>>>> that Paray and Dorati both liked Beethoven and Dorati liked Brahms
>> and
>>>>>>> Tchaikovsky so those composers were well represented. Otherwise,
>> Dorati
>>>>>>> made plenty of records of Hungarian, Russian, Czech and other Eastern
>>>>>>> European composers, plus an on-going series of well-received American
>>>>>> and
>>>>>>> European modern-classical composers. Paray usually stuck to French
>>>>>> music
>>>>>>> and Romantic era classical. Hanson was all about modern American
>> music,
>>>>>> for
>>>>>>> the most part. Fennell was into a variety of things from marches to
>>>>>> "pops"
>>>>>>> to wind arrangements of symphonic music. None of this was "standard
>>>>>> canon,"
>>>>>>> and it was Mercury's main point of difference (note that there is
>> not a
>>>>>>> complete Beethoven cycle on Mercury Living Presence, never a 9th
>>>>>> recorded
>>>>>>> and no released stereo 4th or 8th; if I recall correctly one of
>>>>>> Dorati's
>>>>>>> Brahms symphonies was mono-only too). I would say the reason no
>> Mahler
>>>>>> was
>>>>>>> recorded was that none of Mercury's conductors or orchestras
>> performed
>>>>>> or
>>>>>>> advocated Mahler, the exception being Barbirolli (who was actually
>>>>>> under
>>>>>>> contract with Pye). It's also worth noting that Walter and Bernstein
>>>>>>> started making well-received Mahler recordings in the "golden era"
>>>>>> (late
>>>>>>> mono/early stereo LP era). No sane record producer would spend very
>>>>>> many
>>>>>>> resources competing with Columbia's Bernstein publicity machine.
>>>>>> Columbia
>>>>>>> and RCA were much more obsessed with recording every note of every
>>>>>> piece
>>>>>>> from Beethoven to the 20th century, "standard canon" material,
>> usually
>>>>>> by
>>>>>>> multiple conductors and orchestras. Finally, it's worth noting that
>>>>>> Dorati
>>>>>>> brought forth a lot of new-to-recordings material from Tchaikovsky
>> like
>>>>>>> original scoring for the ballets, first recording of "1812" as it was
>>>>>>> originally conceived, first recording of the complete Suites. Dorati
>>>>>> also
>>>>>>> premiere-recorded several modern pieces. Hanson's recording tally is
>>>>>> full
>>>>>>> of premieres by the very nature of his American Music Festivals.
>>>>>> Fennell
>>>>>>> hunted down original band music never recorded and not heard since
>> the
>>>>>>> original bands, including Confederate sheet music found in attics for
>>>>>> "The
>>>>>>> Civil War" albums. None of this is "standard canon of classical
>> music"
>>>>>> by
>>>>>>> any stretch. Mercury buyers were not wanting the Reader's Digest
>> Guide
>>>>>> To
>>>>>>> Great Music, but Mercury made sure not to get so out there on every
>>>>>> release
>>>>>>> that they couldn't sell records. This was part of what doomed Everest
>>>>>> --
>>>>>>> too much stuff that no one had heard of, no matter how well recorded.
>>>>>> The
>>>>>>> last thing they did, as they were in the midst of shutting down, was
>> a
>>>>>>> mediocre Beethoven cycle with Krips.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> To part of your point, it's doubtful that Mahler symphonies were
>> being
>>>>>>> performed out in places like Minneapolis or Detroit in that period,
>> or
>>>>>> that
>>>>>>> audiences were demanding it. But, I think if you checked concert
>>>>>> repertoire
>>>>>>> around the US, they were being performed here and there through the
>>>>>> years.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> -- Tom Fine
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Don Cox" <[log in to unmask]>
>>>>>>> To: <[log in to unmask]>
>>>>>>> Sent: Monday, September 22, 2014 2:47 PM
>>>>>>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Records Ruin the Landscape
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> <snip>
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> There are no Mercury recordings of any of these (or of Mahler), which
>>>>>>>> shows they were not in the standard canon of classical music in the
>>>>>>>> 1950s.
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> Regards
>>>>>>>> --
>>>>>>>> Don Cox
>>>>>>>> [log in to unmask]
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> --
>>>>>> 1006 Langer Way
>>>>>> Delray Beach, FL 33483
>>>>>> 212.874.9626
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>