Archives

Purchase log, 2021-09-21

[Dawn Upshaw - Knoxville: Summer of 1915]

I catalog my music purchases on Collectorz and Discogs, but they don’t give me a sense of change over time. So I’m noting them here weekly as well.

New releases

CD
  • Jeremy Denk, Mozart Concertos
  • MONO, Pilgrimage of the Soul

Catalog

CD
  • Emmylou Harris, Duets
  • Emmylou Harris, Profile
  • Emmylou Harris, Profile II
  • Imagine Dragons, Night Vision
  • Johnny Cash, Unchained
  • Joshua Bell, Romance of the Violin
  • Kesha, Warrior
  • Lady Gaga, Born This Way
  • Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg / Sergio and Odair Assad, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg / Sergio and Odair Assad
  • Ne-Yo, Year of the Gentleman
  • Sam Hunt, Montevallo
  • Suzanne Ciani, The Velocity of Love
Vinyl
  • Dawn Upshaw, Knoxville: Summer of 1915

Reissues

CD
  • Andrew Lloyd Webber, Jesus Christ Superstar (Deluxe Edition)
  • Metallica, Metallica (Deluxe Edition)
Vinyl
  • Guided By Voices, Isolation Drills

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Purchase log, 2020-03-30

[Penzias and Wilson - Rescue the Fly]

I catalog my music purchases on Collectorz and Discogs, but they don’t give me a sense of change over time. So I’m noting them here weekly as well.

New releases

CD
  • MONO, Beyond the Past: Live with the Platinum Anniversary Orchestra
Files
  • Penzias and Wilson, “Rescue the Fly” / Empty Ensemble, “String Quartet Song No. 6 (Reiwa 3 Remix)”

Catalog

CD
  • ABC, Abracadabra
  • Bob Dylan, Highway 61 Revisited
  • Einojuhani Rautavarra, Angels and Visitations / Violin Concerto / Isle of Bliss
  • fIREHOSE, “if’n”
  • Guided By Voices, Hold on Hope EP
  • Hiroshima, Ongaku
  • Huey Lewis and the News, Huey Lewis and the News
  • Huey Lewis and the News, Small World
  • Jonathan Elias, Requiem for the Americas
  • Kelela, Take Me Apart
  • Milla, The Divine Comedy
  • Peter Gabriel, Shaking the Tree: Sixteen Golden Greats
  • Richard Wagner, Die Walküre (Vienna Philharmonic, Georg Solti)
  • Sergei Rachmaninoff, Piano Concerto No. 2 / Rhapsody on a Theme By Paganini (Vladimir Ashkenazy, London Symphony Orchestra)
  • Spice Girls, Forever
  • Wolfgang Mozart, Le nozze di Figaro (James Levine, Metropolitan Opera)
  • Yo Majesty, Futuristically Speaking … Never Be Afraid
  • Soundtrack, The Saint

Reissues

CD
  • Robert Palmer, Collected

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Purchase log, 2018-12-25

[Ofra Haza - Fifty Gates of Wisdom: Yemenite Songs]

I catalog my music purchases on Collectorz and Discogs, but they don’t give me a sense of change over time. So I’m noting them here weekly as well.

Catalog

CD
  • Damien Rice, O
  • Orlande de Lassus, Requiem for Four Voices
  • The Pointer Sisters, Greatest Hits
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, The Last 5 Symphonies
Vinyl
  • Ofra Haza, Fifty Gates of Wisdom: Yemenite Songs
  • The Blow Monkeys, Animal Magic

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Purchase log, 2018-10-23

[Jason Isbell and 400 Unit - Live from the Ryman]

I catalog my music purchases on Collectorz and Discogs, but they don’t give me a sense of change over time. So I’m noting them here weekly as well.

New releases

CD
  • Jason Isbell and 400 Unit, Live from the Ryman

Catalog

CD
  • Benjamin Britten, String Quartets 2 & 3 / Sinfonietta (Amadeus Quartet, Vienna Octet)
  • Cyndi Lauper, She’s So Unusual
  • Hot Hot Heat, Make Up the Breakdown
  • John Zorn, The String Quartets
  • Kahimi Karie, The Best of Trattoria Years Plus VCD
  • Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, The Heist
  • Gram Parsons and the Fallen Angels, Live 1973
  • Simon and Garfunkel, Sounds of Silence
  • Talking Heads, Little Creatures
  • Various Artists, Trojan Reggae
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Symphonies Nos. 40 and 41 (John Eliot Gardiner; English Baroque Soloists)
Vinyl
  • Boris, Pink
  • Icicle Works, Icicle Works
  • Frida, Something’s Going On
  • Painkiller, Guts of a Virgin
  • Robert Palmer, Sneakin’ Sally Through the Alley

Reissues

Vinyl
  • Kylie Minogue, Fever

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How Amadeus became my favorite movie (it was a technical glitch)

[Amadeus - Soundtrack]

There’s a reason I can pretty much recite the film Amadeus all the up till the maid hired by Antonio Salieri to spy on Mozart begs the maestro to quit her job.

My parents never wanted to pay for cable, let alone a subscription to a video rental store. Nor did they like going to movie theaters. So it was many years before anyone in my family watched Amadeus, when it finally aired on broadcast television.

Being such a thrifty family, we taped it off the TV, pausing the recording to cut out commercials. Let me mention now that my parents decided to hitch our home video options to BetaMax instead of VHS. I was trying to get them to buy a LaserDisc player.

The BetaMax started going haywire after a few months, but instead of replacing it, we developed coping mechanisms. That meant rescuing tape caught in the rollers whenever we ejected a cassette, and it meant dealing with a distorted picture when we would play those same damaged tapes.

Our first few viewings of Amadeus went all the way to the end. Subsequent viewings would not be so kind. The picture and sound cut out just as the maid, played by the timeless Cynthia Nixon, sought to end her employment.

We tried rewinding, then fast-forwarding. Nothing.

On another attempt, my brother discovered it would play to the end so long as we didn’t advance or rewind the tape — we had to let it play from start to finish without interruption. That worked a few times, but then it stopped.

It became a contest. Would the damaged tape once more deny us the conclusion of the movie? Or would it be cooperative and play to the end? Most times, it was a game we lost. It was also a game we played multiple times.

When it became apparent BetaMax was obsolete, my brother bought a VHS player, and I bought a copy of Amadeus on VHS. By that time, I had lost the contest so often, I was reciting the lines before the actors.

I borrowed the soundtrack from the library and played it so often, I eventually bought my own copy. Now, the only ensemble I want to hear perform Mozart is the Academy of St. Martins-in-the-Field.

Peter Shaffer’s story fascinated me, of course, despite its tenuous connection to history. Salieri’s rants against God mirrored my own questioning of religion, and the scene where Mozart and Salieri work on the Confutatis in Requiem served as a crash course on arranging.

Some musicians don’t see Amadeus in a very good light, but without it, I probably wouldn’t have dove into classical music as deeply as I have. And so it sits on top of my list of favorite movies.

 

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