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Re: landowska

I believe that the transfers were done by Seth Winner, who usually does a
great job -- you get some surface noise, but the ambience is retained;
unlike some transfers, the sound is very much alive rather than dead (which
is what happens when they make elimination of surface noise the main goal;
the musical surface is clear, but its also very shallow).

-----Original Message-----
From: Williamson, Mark [mailto:MWilliamson@alston.com]
Sent: Thursday, August 03, 2000 9:40 AM
To: 'Baldwin, Daniel'; F_MINOR@EMAIL.RUTGERS.EDU
Subject: RE: landowska

I think that is the same CD I have.  The recordings are very old (from the
ealier 30s) and in fact I think they are taken off cylinders.  It is a
fabulous record, and it is interesting how good the audio quality is
considering all of this.


-----Original Message-----
From: Baldwin, Daniel [mailto:baldwin@BAERMARKS.COM]
Sent: Thursday, August 03, 2000 9:29 AM
Subject: Re: landowska

Good morning, f_minors!

        I suppose Landowska is what one might call "sui generis" (much like
our hero). Yes, there are some inconsistencies -- she lead the harpsichord
revival, but it was with an instrument unlike any that existed during Bach's
time; she said to another keyboard player ( I forget who): "You play Bach
your way; I will play him his way," and yet her interpretations are
generally of the "Romantic" rather than the more "authentic" type. And yet,
all the elements combined create a magical effect. Her playing has
tremendous vitality, color, warmth, and sprituality. Virgil Thomson said
that "Landowska plays the harpsichord better than anyone else plays
anything."  To me, perhaps the most essential quality of a great Bach player
is a strong sense of rhythm, but without sounding mechanical. In this
dimension of her art, I think Landowska is second to none; she is certainly
on a level with GG.

        All this is by way of saying that it may take a while for your ears
to become adjusted to WL after long exposure to GG, but it's well worth the
effort. One of the best places to start is with a Pearl CD called "Landowska
Plays Bach;" it contains close to 80 minutes of music, including a fabulous
version of Partita No.1, as well as a complete French Suite (I forget
which), and assorted other goodies, incldg a live perf of the c minor
prelude and fugue from WTC 1.

Regards --

-----Original Message-----
From: Jim Morrison [mailto:jim_morrison@SPRYNET.COM]
Sent: Wednesday, August 02, 2000 9:46 PM
Subject: landowska

Hi Fminor

Someone off list recently wrote to me saying that one of the special things
about Landowska's playing is that there's "never a dull moment" in it.  And
from what I can tell, that's true.  She sure does grap your attention and
say, "Listen to this music that I love.  I can't wait to show it to you."  A
bit like early Gould that way.

And there is something special about that.
And I'll have to give her and her Pleyel a more charitable hearing.

I didn't know that her huge harpsichord had to be miked very closely because
the volume was so low on the thing.  You think they would have put a knob on
the thing to let her control that feature.

Good night


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