Margaret Court

BTURNER

Legend
Evert would (and has) told us.

With how outspoken Serena is on many / most current issues of social justice, her silence on this is strange.

Of course, I could have it exactly backwards. She may be quiet because her views are against the teachings of her religion. And if she reveals them, it could put her in conflict with her church (which is very important to her).

So your objection stands. My view is pure speculation.

With that said, I wouldn’t say what I’m doing is stereotyping. She says she’s Jehovahs Witness. And their beliefs are not secret. So it’s more than just stereotyping to assume she holds tso these beliefs if she is Jehovahs Witness.

But yes, I understand your point. Many Catholics aren’t against birth control for example, even if they don’t publicly say so. But I wouldn’t want to say that assuming someone agrees with the beliefs of their faith is stereotyping. That doesn’t seem like what the word means to me
I concede that 'stereotyping' may be the wrong word here because there is some basis behind this based on religious documentation. Its more like 'guestimating'. I think it is entirely likely that Williams does not want to deal with family or church heat to a more liberal stance, than the other way around.
 

thrust

Hall of Fame
Take it from me, as a gay man who has lived among many religious sorts. One would be foolish to hazard a guess about her views based solely on religious affiliation or her silence. Why not ask Chris Evert the born and raised catholic, her views on same sex marriage? This theory of yours is just not going to work. the word for this is 'stereotyping'[/QUOT
Is it really any of our business as to what Evert or Serena thinks about homosexuality or Gay People?
 

Karma Tennis

Hall of Fame
From what I have read, Margret grew up in a conservative Catholic household.. As a player, she was very quiet avoiding publicity whenever possible. It seems that she became a non Catholic religious zealot and preacher after she left the tour. I was shocked when I first heard that she was so outspoken about religion and politics, considering her tennis life.
Margaret Court was raised as a ROMAN Catholic and became involved with Pentecostalism in the mid 1970s after retiring from Pro. Tennis. She was ordained as an independent Pentecostal minister in 1991. After that, she founded a Pentecostal church in Perth, Western Australia called the "Victory Life Centre". She serves as its senior pastor to this day.
 

BTURNER

Legend
Court remains one of the sport’s defining figures, no matter what she has done post-retirement.

So be it.
What you read about Margaret Court either as a player or a person is entirely different, depending on when it was written. Take a look at stuff written in the 70's and early 80's. Her image and legacy are defined completely differently by tennis writers. They talk about Court as a trailblazer of sorts, as a great role model for women athletes. Much like Martina, a decade later, Margaret refused to allow stereotypes of what a woman tennis player was supposed to be, to impede on her drive to become the best athlete she could using many of the same training methods her male counterparts used to improve performance. Her fight for autonomy from the male dominated Australian Tennis Association and the influential Hopmans, was lauded as courageous and groundbreaking before King began to organize resistance.

Nobody writes about any of that anymore. I maintain once you separate the pastor with all that baggage, from the tennis player, Court was seen as an absolute legend, who's character and behavior on and off court, was virtually without blemish. While she was no firebrand, like King was, in her own quiet unassuming fashion, she made a bit of feminist statement of her own before the concept was popularized by modern culture. There is a great deal to admire about the way she carried herself in the public eye - back then.
 
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Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
Good to see McEnroe in a "nice guy" mood.

He still believes that the "Battle of the Sexes" was a legitimate match?

He has a sense of humour.
 
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NonP

Hall of Fame
It's cute how obsessed the anti-PC brigade are with things they pretend shouldn't matter.

Speaking of whom:

Good to see McEnroe in a "nice guy" mood.

He still believes that the "Battle of the Sexes" was a legitimate match?

He has a sense of humour.
Thus spoke our resident dogmatic grandpa. Here's something you and your ilk seem unable to understand: whether or not the Riggs-Court/BJK matches were staged has no bearing on their actual social significance. And as an old white dude in comfortable retirement you can rest secure in your bourgeois man cave without whining about how society is changing for the better which in your twisted world equals the opposite. Quit feeling so threatened by the rising status of people different from you when all they want is to be treated like everyone else.
 

Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
It's cute how obsessed the anti-PC brigade are with things they pretend shouldn't matter.

Speaking of whom:



Thus spoke our resident dogmatic grandpa. Here's something you and your ilk seem unable to understand: whether or not the Riggs-Court/BJK matches were staged has no bearing on their actual social significance. And as an old white dude in comfortable retirement you can rest secure in your bourgeois man cave without whining about how society is changing for the better which in your twisted world equals the opposite. Quit feeling so threatened by the rising status of people different from you when all they want is to be treated like everyone else.
Hey, you got the wrong message from yours truly....it might surprise you just exactly who some of my best friends are.

I support plurality of views, how dull would it be if we all believed and behaved exactly alike.

Now, most of my close relatives in Saskatchewan are big supporters of the current Prez, so you know where I come from originally.

Bible college for a year was a rite of passage for my family back on the Prairies. But these are basically good folks who have kind and forgiving dispositions,

just like our friendly, nice guy Mac there.

Time to chill out on some more Beethoven, I have just posted some enlightening Beethoven posts on another thread, you may have noticed.
 

NonP

Hall of Fame
Hey, you got the wrong message from yours truly....it might surprise you just exactly who some of my best friends are.

I support plurality of views, how dull would it be if we all believed and behaved exactly alike.

Now, most of my close relatives in Saskatchewan are big supporters of the current Prez, so you know where I come from originally.

Bible college for a year was a rite of passage for my family back on the Prairies. But these are basically good folks who have kind and forgiving dispositions,

just like our friendly, nice guy Mac there.

Time to chill out on some more Beethoven, I have just posted some enlightening Beethoven posts on another thread, you may have noticed.
Ludwig is cool, the hyperbole of calling every performance or recording the best evah not so much.

Having experienced Southern hospitality as a very real phenomenon I don't need to be convinced that people can be good despite holding some disturbing views. Of course that's not exactly what we were talking about.

Let's just say I much prefer your PM or just about any sentient being to our current Prez.
 

Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
Ludwig is cool, the hyperbole of calling every performance or recording the best evah not so much.

Having experienced Southern hospitality as a very real phenomenon I don't need to be convinced that people can be good despite holding some disturbing views. Of course that's not exactly what we were talking about.

Let's just say I much prefer your PM or just about any sentient being to our current Prez.
I'll trade you one Trudeau for one Trump....you can keep some of his baggage.
 

NonP

Hall of Fame
I'll trade you one Trudeau for one Trump....you can keep some of his baggage.
Heh, I wish. You have no idea just how many Americans would gladly take boring over crazy at this point.

One thing we probably do agree on is that there are more important things in life than politics. Here, you might dig some of this:


Been listening to it on and off since last nite after posting a capsule review of the film it's drawn from. It's endlessly fascinating how watching a movie or partaking in some other related activity makes you see some of the stuff you thought you knew in a different way. Of course that's also why nostalgia exerts such a powerful pull on all of us, which makes it as dangerous as it is elevating.

BTW I'm looking forward to seeing the redoubtable Renee Fleming serenade the Kennedy Center crowd with relatively obscure Schubert this weekend. Might be able to get an autograph from her finally, too. We'll see.
 

Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
Heh, I wish. You have no idea just how many Americans would gladly take boring over crazy at this point.

One thing we probably do agree on is that there are more important things in life than politics. Here, you might dig some of this:


Been listening to it on and off since last nite after posting a capsule review of the film it's drawn from. It's endlessly fascinating how watching a movie or partaking in some other related activity makes you see some of the stuff you thought you knew in a different way. Of course that's also why nostalgia exerts such a powerful pull on all of us, which makes it as dangerous as it is elevating.

BTW I'm looking forward to seeing the redoubtable Renee Fleming serenade the Kennedy Center crowd with relatively obscure Schubert this weekend. Might be able to get an autograph from her finally, too. We'll see.
Schubert is one of the best....my music history professor Dr. Downs privately told us that Schubert was a greater composer than Wagner.
 

NonP

Hall of Fame
Schubert is one of the best....my music history professor Dr. Downs privately told us that Schubert was a greater composer than Wagner.
As always I'm enjoying your shameless name-dropping. Anyhoo he (Franz) was. Or at least there's nothing too controversial about your former professor's assessment. I'd probably rank Schubert 5th all time myself, below Handel but above Brahms and Wagner. I'd have to think more carefully about my top 10 but it should look more or less like this:

The indisputable GOATs

1) Bach
2) Mozart
3) Beethoven

The rest

4) Handel
5) Schubert
6) Brahms
7) Wagner
8) Haydn
9) Tchaikovsky
10) Stravinsky

And what the hey, I'll give the next top 20 a go:

11) Schumann
12) Dvorak
13) Verdi
14) Chopin
15) Mahler
16) Liszt
17) Mendelssohn
18) Prokofiev
19) Strauss, R.
20) Shostakovich
21) Berlioz
22) Debussy
23) Palestrina
24) Monteverdi
25) Bartok
26) Puccini
27) Sibelius
28) Bruckner
29) Vivaldi
30) Purcell

I'm sure I've ignored and/or under/overrated some, but there you go. :cool:
 

Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
As always I'm enjoying your shameless name-dropping. Anyhoo he (Franz) was. Or at least there's nothing too controversial about your former professor's assessment. I'd probably rank Schubert 5th all time myself, below Handel but above Brahms and Wagner. I'd have to think more carefully about my top 10 but it should look more or less like this:

The indisputable GOATs

1) Bach
2) Mozart
3) Beethoven

The rest

4) Handel
5) Schubert
6) Brahms
7) Wagner
8) Haydn
9) Tchaikovsky
10) Stravinsky

And what the hey, I'll give the next top 20 a go:

11) Schumann
12) Dvorak
13) Verdi
14) Chopin
15) Mahler
16) Liszt
17) Mendelssohn
18) Prokofiev
19) Strauss, R.
20) Shostakovich
21) Berlioz
22) Debussy
23) Palestrina
24) Monteverdi
25) Bartok
26) Puccini
27) Sibelius
28) Bruckner
29) Vivaldi
30) Purcell

I'm sure I've ignored and/or under/overrated some, but there you go. :cool:
My own rating order is very similar to yours...maybe you and I are on to something.

Level 1

1) Bach
2) Beethoven
3) Mozart


Level 2

Palestrina Victoria Handel Haydn Schubert Brahms Wagner Verdi Bruckner Mahler Debussy Bartok Stravinsky

Level 3

Monteverdi Vivaldi Purcell Bellini Schumann Mendelssohn Berlioz Mussorgsky Tchaikovsky Rachmaninoff Prokofiev Strauss Sibelius Ravel Elgar Schoenberg

Gershwin Berg Vaughan Williams Walton Britten
 
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NonP

Hall of Fame
My own rating order is very similar to yours...maybe you and I are on to something.

Level 1

1) Bach
2) Beethoven
3) Mozart


Level 2

Palestrina Victoria Handel Haydn Schubert Brahms Wagner Verdi Bruckner Mahler Debussy Bartok Stravinsky

Level 3

Monteverdi Vivaldi Purcell Bellini Schumann Mendelssohn Berlioz Mussorgsky Tchaikovsky Rachmaninoff Prokofiev Strauss Ravel Elgar Schoenberg

Gershwin Berg Vaughan Williams Walton Britten
Bach atop the ladder is pretty much set in stone for me. One could easily clearly make a strong case for any one of the three, yes, but who can even begin to match J.S. in his multi-hyphenate mastery? Without question the most perfect synthesis of emotion and intellect in music.

I prefer Ludwig to Wolfgang myself as I usually find the latter too polite, but when you listen to the ineffable perfection of Don Giovanni, the sublime closing pages of Figaro, Sarastro's high arias in The Magic Flute, or the truly bone-chilling and awe-inspiring Requiem it's not hard to see that the most natural genius in the history of music may also have been the greatest of 'em all.

And yeah, it's probably best to group them into tiers without trying to rank every single one. It definitely pains me not to see Ravel up there as he's probably one of my 10-20 all-time faves in any genre (though I could've easily included him).

One quibble, though: your ranking of Victoria is too high, but if you're gonna stand by it you should include Josquin, Dufay, Byrd, Tallis and Dowland as well.

Also while I like Gershwin there's no way he belongs up there while the likes of Corelli, Couperin, Telemann, Rameau, Scarlatti, Rossini, Donizzeti, Smetana, Bizet, Faure, Janacek, Wolf, Ives, Webern, Hindemith and Copland are excluded, not to mention more debatable choices like Hildegard, Machaut, Gesualdo, Gibbons, Lully, Pergolesi, Gluck, C.P.E. Bach, Weber, Gounod, Franck, Strauss II, the rest of the Mighty Five (except Cui and maybe Balakirev), Grieg, Duparc, Nielsen, Satie, Scriabin, Holst, Falla, Poulenc, Messiaen, Barber, and Cage. And you forgot Shostakovich and Sibelius (unless that was intentional, which is simply wrong).

P.S. Here's my all-time fave setting of the Ave Maria, courtesy of Josquin:


Gounod who?
 
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Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
Bach atop the ladder is pretty much set in stone for me. One could easily clearly make a strong case for any one of the three, yes, but who can even begin to match J.S. in his multi-hyphenate mastery? Without question the most perfect synthesis of emotion and intellect in music.

I prefer Ludwig to Wolfgang myself as I usually find the latter too polite, but when you listen to the ineffable perfection of Don Giovanni, the sublime closing pages of Figaro, Sarastro's high arias in The Magic Flute, or the truly bone-chilling and awe-inspiring Requiem it's not hard to see that the most natural genius in the history of music may also have been the greatest of 'em all.

And yeah, it's probably best to group them into tiers without trying to rank every single one. It definitely pains me not to see Ravel up there as he's probably one of my 10-20 all-time faves in any genre (though I could've easily included him).

One quibble, though: your ranking of Victoria is too high, but if you're gonna stand by it you should include Josquin, Dufay, Byrd, Tallis and Dowland as well.

Also while I like Gershwin there's no way he belongs up there while the likes of Corelli, Couperin, Telemann, Rameau, Scarlatti, Rossini, Donizzeti, Smetana, Bizet, Faure, Janacek, Wolf, Ives, Webern, Hindemith and Copland are excluded, not to mention more debatable choices like Hildegard, Machaut, Gesualdo, Gibbons, Lully, Pergolesi, Gluck, C.P.E. Bach, Weber, Gounod, Franck, Strauss II, the rest of the Mighty Five (except Cui and maybe Balakirev), Grieg, Duparc, Nielsen, Satie, Scriabin, Holst, Falla, Poulenc, Messiaen, Barber, and Cage. And you forgot Shostakovich and Sibelius (unless that was intentional, which is simply wrong).

P.S. Here's my all-time fave setting of the Ave Maria, courtesy of Josquin:


Gounod who?
Yes, I should have put Sibelius (I added Sibelius before your response was posted), Josquin and some others there. Shostakovich is usually too bleak for my taste.

Gershwin, like Dvorak and Elgar, was a mostly self-taught composer who managed to find a strong place in the standard repertoire, the only American

composer to do so. Can't ignore him, and he travels well, is accepted all over the world, even Asia.
 
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thrust

Hall of Fame
My own rating order is very similar to yours...maybe you and I are on to something.

Level 1

1) Bach
2) Beethoven
3) Mozart


Level 2

Palestrina Victoria Handel Haydn Schubert Brahms Wagner Verdi Bruckner Mahler Debussy Bartok Stravinsky

Level 3

Monteverdi Vivaldi Purcell Bellini Schumann Mendelssohn Berlioz Mussorgsky Tchaikovsky Rachmaninoff Prokofiev Strauss Sibelius Ravel Elgar Schoenberg

Gershwin Berg Vaughan Williams Walton Britten
Tonight, on You Tube, I saw a wonderful performance of the Beethoven fifth piano concerto, one of the most glorious pieces of music ever composed, The sound and video was great. The pianist was Lang Lang, the conductor Christoph Esenbach. The visual communication between the two during the performance was interesting. One got the feeling after the performance that they really liked each other. IMHO, however, Verdi is a tier one ATG composer, along with Mozart and Beethoven-LOL!
 

Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
Tonight, on You Tube, I saw a wonderful performance of the Beethoven fifth piano concerto, one of the most glorious pieces of music ever composed, The sound and video was great. The pianist was Lang Lang, the conductor Christoph Esenbach. The visual communication between the two during the performance was interesting. One got the feeling after the performance that they really liked each other. IMHO, however, Verdi is a tier one ATG composer, along with Mozart and Beethoven-LOL!
I heard Lang Lang play the Emperor live with the TSO a few years back, he had some new and interesting ideas.
 

Karma Tennis

Hall of Fame
I'm sure I've ignored and/or under/overrated some, but there you go. :cool:
Several in fact, immediately come to mind ...

Gershwin
Rodgers and Hammerstein
Miller
Porter
Bacharach and David
King
Dylan
Robinson
Lennon and McCartney
Wilson
Cohen
Harrison
Simon
John and Taupin
Lynne
Springsteen
Prince
Sting
 

Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
Several in fact, immediately come to mind ...

Gershwin
Rodgers and Hammerstein
Miller
Porter
Bacharach and David
King
Dylan
Robinson
Lennon and McCartney
Wilson
Cohen
Harrison
Simon
John and Taupin
Lynne
Springsteen
Prince
Sting
No Stones? Joni Mitchell?

Is that Glenn Miller? But not the Duke (Ellington)?

I could have included Dylan and another recent guy, Toru Takemitsu, a recent discovery, great atmospheric music.
 
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NonP

Hall of Fame
Yes, I should have put Sibelius (I added Sibelius before your response was posted), Josquin and some others there. Shostakovich is usually too bleak for my taste.

Gershwin, like Dvorak and Elgar, was a mostly self-taught composer who managed to find a strong place in the standard repertoire, the only American

composer to do so. Can't ignore him, and he travels well, is accepted all over the world, even Asia.
That's the usual knock against Shostakovich and I can definitely see it, but unless you're ready to ding Schubert on the same ground for Winterreise and much of his overall output it's really hard to justify leaving the sardonic Soviet out.

And you don't need to convince me of Gershwin's standing in the classical canon. I'm not one of those faux snobs who insist the Tin Pan Alley tunesmith wasn't a composer and I also agree his music will most likely outlive that of nearly all his compatriots (save possibly one - see below). But we're not just talking about American composers, and even by purely populist standards it's all but indefensible to insist on Gershwin's place in such exalted company while excluding such giants as Corelli, Bizet and Faure, especially given the latter's own historical popularity and influence (Corelli for his 12 concerti grossi, the most important group of orchestral music before Haydn; Bizet for you-know-what; and Faure for his songs and couple famous tunes).

BTW there IS an American composer whose music may well outlast Gershwin's, and he happens to be one of your heroes: Leonard Bernstein, whose West Side Story is just as big a crowd fave as Rhapsody in Blue and is in fact about to receive its second film adaptation headed by none other than Spielberg. And you know who'd win all the standard music competitions between Lenny and George. I actually should've included Bernstein in the "debatable" category along with the others. (For the record I'd rank the two about the same.)

Tonight, on You Tube, I saw a wonderful performance of the Beethoven fifth piano concerto, one of the most glorious pieces of music ever composed, The sound and video was great. The pianist was Lang Lang, the conductor Christoph Esenbach. The visual communication between the two during the performance was interesting. One got the feeling after the performance that they really liked each other. IMHO, however, Verdi is a tier one ATG composer, along with Mozart and Beethoven-LOL!
As the only guy (with the only arguable exception of Handel, which is why I place him just below the Big 3) who can challenge Mozart for supremacy in opera Verdi does rank damn high all time, but he's clearly a notch below the Holy Trinity of Bach, Mozart and Beethoven. On a superficial level all his major works are for the voice - in fact he was one of the few great composers who weren't a virtuoso - and belong to a single genre to boot (even his famous Requiem is an opera in all but name, and not even a sacred one at that as he was a longtime agnostic), whereas J.S. and Wolfgang excelled in both vocal and instrumental music as well as in all forms and genres. (I'd argue many of Bach's cantatas and passions are in fact theatrical works. Ludwig OTOH did struggle with the human voice. Not that he didn't write some of the greatest music for our natural instrument - think Sampras and clay - but compared to Bach, Mozart, Schubert and others he was clearly more comfortable on his piano and violin.) But more importantly Verdi was a genius but not an immortal like the Big 3. When you listen to Bach's Chaconne, Mozart's Requiem or Beethoven's last piano sonata (to name a single example a pop) you're no longer dealing with mere beauty or even the best of humanity but what can only be explained as inexplicable, spiritual and/or godlike transcendence. Verdi for all his genius never transcended the utmost limits of us mortals.

He did come pretty damn close, of course. La traviata is the world's most popular opera for good reason (though I'd still say Carmen is tops for the lay audience) and probably one of my three all-time faves (Violetta certainly is one of my top three soprano roles, along with Belli's Norma and Donizetti's Lucia), with his other famous operas not too far behind making him by far the most frequently performed opera composer (even Mozart is a distant second). And who can fail to be awestruck by his high-theater Requiem? Put 'em all together and you've got arguably the richest corpus of musical theater to have come from the pen of a single man.

Speaking of whom/which, here's the single greatest Violetta I've ever seen either in person (including Venera Gimadieva in a fine production at the Kennedy Center last spring) or on screen:


By then (2011) Dessay was obviously a tad too old for the role and no longer in her vocal prime, but in terms of sheer dramatic power I daresay Callas herself couldn't have cut a more moving Violetta. Simply sublime.

The full production, if you're interested (though you should get the DVD!):


Several in fact, immediately come to mind ...

Gershwin
Rodgers and Hammerstein
Miller
Porter
Bacharach and David
King
Dylan
Robinson
Lennon and McCartney
Wilson
Cohen
Harrison
Simon
John and Taupin
Lynne
Springsteen
Prince
Sting
We were obviously discussing composers of the classical tradition only. Comparing musicians from all genres and backgrounds assumes that it's possible to be well acquainted with every one of them, which is humanly impossible and outright arrogant.

But since I'm arrogant enough to know my opinion is superior to nearly everyone else's I'll give it a shot. A few things:

- First off the music of Gershwin, R&H, Porter and other Tin Pan Alley/classic Broadway masters is just too sophisticated for the lay public to qualify as "popular." They deserve their own category unless you can devise a consistent set of criteria which can accommodate them as well as the actual pop/rock acts.

- Your list of jazz luminaries is far from complete. Miller is included while the likes of Armstrong, Duke, Basie, Parker, Davis, Coltrane and Monk are out? Just no.

- In the world of popular music - broadly defined to cover the heyday of Robert Johnson up to the present-day dominance of hip-hop but not inclusive enough to absorb more formally rigorous genres like classical and jazz as well as such non-Western musics as gagaku, bhangra, mawwal, benga and mbalax - the Beatles (who include George and that drummer guy as well, contrary to your framing), the Stones, Dylan and James Brown stand above all the others. Prince may have been the most talented of them all in the usual metrics that we dilettantes love to obsess over, but he wasn't a genius on par with his greater predecessors.

- Even among the second and lower tiers of pop some of your choices are truly baffling. Lynne for real? Sting is a somewhat more defensible choice, but still. Here, a couple more names I'd easily include over these two: Hank, Berry, Otis, Ray, Little Richard, Aretha, Davies/Kinks, Fogerty/CCR, Marley, Green, Bowie, Patti, Young, Cash, Stevie, Marvin, the Clash, MJ (yes, the gloved one), U2, Petty/Heartbreakers, R.E.M., Kurt (though I don't care much for Nirvana's cynical solipsism these days). And my all-time fave Reed/the Velvets, the only rock act in my desert-island canon.

I could have included Dylan and another recent guy, Toru Takemitsu, a recent discovery, great atmospheric music.
Takemitsu is indeed a worthy contemporary composer and you should check out his film music as well if you haven't already.

BTW a fun tidbit: for all his avant-garde cred Toru was an avid karaoke singer, which I suppose couldn't be helped in Japanese culture. (I like to tell people the best nightlife in the world may well belong to either Tokyo or Seoul.)
 

Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
That's the usual knock against Shostakovich and I can definitely see it, but unless you're ready to ding Schubert on the same ground for Winterreise and much of his overall output it's really hard to justify leaving the sardonic Soviet out.

And you don't need to convince me of Gershwin's standing in the classical canon. I'm not one of those faux snobs who insist the Tin Pan Alley tunesmith wasn't a composer and I also agree his music will most likely outlive that of nearly all his compatriots (save possibly one - see below). But we're not just talking about American composers, and even by purely populist standards it's all but indefensible to insist on Gershwin's place in such exalted company while excluding such giants as Corelli, Bizet and Faure, especially given the latter's own historical popularity and influence (Corelli for his 12 concerti grossi, the most important group of orchestral music before Haydn; Bizet for you-know-what; and Faure for his songs and couple famous tunes).

BTW there IS an American composer whose music may well outlast Gershwin's, and he happens to be one of your heroes: Leonard Bernstein, whose West Side Story is just as big a crowd fave as Rhapsody in Blue and is in fact about to receive its second film adaptation headed by none other than Spielberg. And you know who'd win all the standard music competitions between Lenny and George. I actually should've included Bernstein in the "debatable" category along with the others. (For the record I'd rank the two about the same.)



As the only guy (with the only arguable exception of Handel, which is why I place him just below the Big 3) who can challenge Mozart for supremacy in opera Verdi does rank damn high all time, but he's clearly a notch below the Holy Trinity of Bach, Mozart and Beethoven. On a superficial level all his major works are for the voice - in fact he was one of the few great composers who weren't a virtuoso - and belong to a single genre to boot (even his famous Requiem is an opera in all but name, and not even a sacred one at that as he was a longtime agnostic), whereas J.S. and Wolfgang excelled in both vocal and instrumental music as well as in all forms and genres. (I'd argue many of Bach's cantatas and passions are in fact theatrical works. Ludwig OTOH did struggle with the human voice. Not that he didn't write some of the greatest music for our natural instrument - think Sampras and clay - but compared to Bach, Mozart, Schubert and others he was clearly more comfortable on his piano and violin.) But more importantly Verdi was a genius but not an immortal like the Big 3. When you listen to Bach's Chaconne, Mozart's Requiem or Beethoven's last piano sonata (to name a single example a pop) you're no longer dealing with mere beauty or even the best of humanity but what can only be explained as inexplicable, spiritual and/or godlike transcendence. Verdi for all his genius never transcended the utmost limits of us mortals.

He did come pretty damn close, of course. La traviata is the world's most popular opera for good reason (though I'd still say Carmen is tops for the lay audience) and probably one of my three all-time faves (Violetta certainly is one of my top three soprano roles, along with Belli's Norma and Donizetti's Lucia), with his other famous operas not too far behind making him by far the most frequently performed opera composer (even Mozart is a distant second). And who can fail to be awestruck by his high-theater Requiem? Put 'em all together and you've got arguably the richest corpus of musical theater to have come from the pen of a single man.

Speaking of whom/which, here's the single greatest Violetta I've ever seen either in person (including Venera Gimadieva in a fine production at the Kennedy Center last spring) or on screen:


By then (2011) Dessay was obviously a tad too old for the role and no longer in her vocal prime, but in terms of sheer dramatic power I daresay Callas herself couldn't have cut a more moving Violetta. Simply sublime.

The full production, if you're interested (though you should get the DVD!):




We were obviously discussing composers of the classical tradition only. Comparing musicians from all genres and backgrounds assumes that it's possible to be well acquainted with every one of them, which is humanly impossible and outright arrogant.

But since I'm arrogant enough to know my opinion is superior to nearly everyone else's I'll give it a shot. A few things:

- First off the music of Gershwin, R&H, Porter and other Tin Pan Alley/classic Broadway masters is just too sophisticated for the lay public to qualify as "popular." They deserve their own category unless you can devise a consistent set of criteria which can accommodate them as well as the actual pop/rock acts.

- Your list of jazz luminaries is far from complete. Miller is included while the likes of Armstrong, Duke, Basie, Parker, Davis, Coltrane and Monk are out? Just no.

- In the world of popular music - broadly defined to cover the heyday of Robert Johnson up to the present-day dominance of hip-hop but not inclusive enough to absorb more formally rigorous genres like classical and jazz as well as such non-Western musics as gagaku, bhangra, mawwal, benga and mbalax - the Beatles (who include George and that drummer guy as well, contrary to your framing), the Stones, Dylan and James Brown stand above all the others. Prince may have been the most talented of them all in the usual metrics that we dilettantes love to obsess over, but he wasn't a genius on par with his greater predecessors.

- Even among the second and lower tiers of pop some of your choices are truly baffling. Lynne for real? Sting is a somewhat more defensible choice, but still. Here, a couple more names I'd easily include over these two: Hank, Berry, Otis, Ray, Little Richard, Aretha, Davies/Kinks, Fogerty/CCR, Marley, Green, Bowie, Patti, Young, Cash, Stevie, Marvin, the Clash, MJ (yes, the gloved one), U2, Petty/Heartbreakers, R.E.M., Kurt (though I don't care much for Nirvana's cynical solipsism these days). And my all-time fave Reed/the Velvets, the only rock act in my desert-island canon.



Takemitsu is indeed a worthy contemporary composer and you should check out his film music as well if you haven't already.

BTW a fun tidbit: for all his avant-garde cred Toru was an avid karaoke singer, which I suppose couldn't be helped in Japanese culture. (I like to tell people the best nightlife in the world may well belong to either Tokyo or Seoul.)
Thank you for telling us how you really feel....to be sure, you have hit the nail head on some of your suggestions.

Gershwin vs. Bernstein? A strange comparison duo.....Bernstein, the classical man, had his greatest successes on Broadway (West Side Story, On the Town,

Wonderful Town, Candide), while Gershwin, the Broadway man, had his greatest successes in Carnegie Hall (Rhapsody in Blue, Concerto in F, American in

Paris) and the Met (the Metropolitan initiated the commission for "Porgy and Bess").

Strange indeed, but Bernstein will not ever equal Gershwin in the popular category. Not possible.

Now, I admire Bernstein's classical product, Serenade for Violin and Orchestra, Age of Anxiety, Chichester Psalms,.....

He almost makes my grade.

Corelli should make the grade.

Gershwin was a deeper composer, in my view, than Bizet or Faure, whose music is beautiful but lacking in profundity (my opinion).

I am familiar with Takemitsu's "Ran" score....Tak is truly great, I should add him to the third tier.

Verdi is second tier for me, BECAUSE his late great sacred music is real, from the heart. Don't buy that story about agnosticism, his wife was a

fundamentalist, and scolded him for not going full tilt. She went overboard and claimed he was an atheist.

Verdi was anti-clerical, a political position, not a religious view.

Verdi kept a well-thumbed copy of the Bible by his bedside, and specified a Catholic rite funeral for himself. Not the work of an agnostic.

Now, Shostakovich was supposedly an avowed atheist, and I can seem to hear that in his music.

Not so Schubert, who always allows for optimism behind the clouds, you can hear that in his music.

Shostakovich composed no sacred works, that I know of, but Schubert not only composed a lot of sacred music, but had accepted a post as church

composer at the time of his death.
 
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Karma Tennis

Hall of Fame
- In the world of popular music - .
In spite of what many would like to believe ... Lennon and McCartney did not actually collaborate very closely on much of the best stuff The Beatles produced. For example, "Yesterday", "Blackbird", "Hey Jude" and "Let It Be" are all Paul.

And apart from a few exceptions here and there, Harrison's best stuff came after The Beatles was dissolved.

Anyway, you've undermined much of your credibility by not mentioning one particular Act - which I deliberately left out of my original list as I anticipated someone would "bite" the contemporary list and put in their two cents worth :)

Let me give you a hint .... 900 weeks and counting on The Billboard Charts to date (including 741 continuous weeks from initial release.) ... Should be pretty easy from there.
 

NonP

Hall of Fame
Thank you for telling us how you really feel....to be sure, you have hit the nail head on some of your suggestions.

Gershwin vs. Bernstein? A strange comparison duo.....Bernstein, the classical man, had his greatest successes on Broadway (West Side Story, On the Town,

Wonderful Town, Candide), while Gershwin, the Broadway man, had his greatest successes in Carnegie Hall (Rhapsody in Blue, Concerto in F, American in

Paris) and the Met (the Metropolitan initiated the commission for "Porgy and Bess").

Strange indeed, but Bernstein will not ever equal Gershwin in the popular category. Not possible.

Now, I admire Bernstein's classical product, Serenade for Violin and Orchestra, Age of Anxiety, Chichester Psalms,.....

He almost makes my grade.

Corelli should make the grade.

Gershwin was a deeper composer, in my view, than Bizet or Faure, whose music is beautiful but lacking in profundity (my opinion).

I am familiar with Takemitsu's "Ran" score....Tak is truly great, I should add him to the third tier.

Verdi is second tier for me, BECAUSE his late great sacred music is real, from the heart. Don't buy that story about agnosticism, his wife was a

fundamentalist, and scolded him for not going full tilt. She went overboard and claimed he was an atheist.

Verdi was anti-clerical, a political position, not a religious view.

Verdi kept a well-thumbed copy of the Bible by his bedside, and specified a Catholic rite funeral for himself. Not the work of an agnostic.

Now, Shostakovich was supposedly an avowed atheist, and I can seem to hear that in his music.

Not so Schubert, who always allows for optimism behind the clouds, you can hear that in his music.

Shostakovich composed no sacred works, that I know of, but Schubert not only composed a lot of sacred music, but had accepted a post as church

composer at the time of his death.
So you dismissed Shostakovich because he happened to be an unreconstructed heathen. I'm shocked! Here I was thinking the whole point of tiers is to leave out as much personal bias as possible.

If you ask a wide sample of music scholars and cognoscenti to name two American pieces straddling the classical and popular realms that will outlive the rest, chances are you'll hear Rhapsody in Blue and West Side Story in tandem more than any other duo. And like you said WSS isn't the only thing Bernie is known for these days (Candide in particular seems to be enjoying a wide reception lately). Think I'll stick to my roughly equal ranking of the two, thanks.

Also Bizet and Faure lacking depth? You're talking about a guy who created an all-time great tragic heroine in Carmen and another who's arguably the preeminent composer of French song (Duparc may be even stronger on average, but the intensely self-critical control freak left us with only 17 of 'em) and whose Requiem is widely cited as the most serene in the repertoire. You sure you don't have 'em mixed up with their namesakes?

Forgot to add that Tak possibly belongs in the "debatable" group. And yes, his stately score for Ran is arguably his best. So is the Kurosawa film itself, in my book his greatest work and almost certainly the greatest Shakespeare on screen (its only rival is Kurosawa's own Throne of Blood, a loose reimagining of Macbeth).

Got no beef with Verdi in second tier. (I'd probably group them into four, with Handel, Schubert, Brahms, Wagner, Haydn and Tchaikovsky for sure inclusion in second place and perhaps Stravinsky, Schumann, Verdi, Dvorak, Chopin, Mahler and arguably Liszt joining them.) But however you define religion the fact of the matter is that Verdi was a skeptic for most of his adult life. Whether or not he underwent a deathbed conversion of sorts doesn't change his belief system during the evolution of his Requiem.

And I think even you'll agree Schubert's sacred music is not among his best. Maybe religious conviction isn't such a necessary ingredient of musical transcendence as you think?

In spite of what many would like to believe ... Lennon and McCartney did not actually collaborate very closely on much of the best stuff The Beatles produced. For example, "Yesterday", "Blackbird", "Hey Jude" and "Let It Be" are all Paul.

And apart from a few exceptions here and there, Harrison's best stuff came after The Beatles was dissolved.

Anyway, you've undermined much of your credibility by not mentioning one particular Act - which I deliberately left out of my original list as I anticipated someone would "bite" the contemporary list and put in their two cents worth :)

Let me give you a hint .... 900 weeks and counting on The Billboard Charts to date (including 741 continuous weeks from initial release.) ... Should be pretty easy from there.
I never cared much for Pink Floyd. I honestly can't think of a single Floyd song I'd want on my playlist, whereas I can usually name at least one or two by other artists I'm supposed to enjoy but don't (say Jimi's "Purple Haze"). I know mine is a minority opinion and am open to the possibility that my failure to appreciate their space kitsch is indeed a failing on my part, but gawd knows I've tried. My omission of Floyd was fully intentional, and if that makes me a contrarian, so be it.

Whatever Harrison did post-Beatles can't match what they did together. If you want to argue he deserves recognition in his own right you'll get no grief from me, but then Lennon (not too sold on McCartney) did plenty well by himself, too. Why group the two together but not George? That defeats your insistence on singling him out, no?

Also I forgot to include a few other names earlier. Randy Newman belongs up there, and so does Eminem though his unapologetic homophobia and hip-hop in general often turn me off (much of it almost comically misogynistic, plus I like tunes). Gaga is also coming on strong. (Madonna's legacy as dance-priestess nonpareil is secure, but she's never been a top-notch lyricist. Gaga while not on par with Joni or even Kate is stronger there.)
 

hoodjem

G.O.A.T.
My own rating order is very similar to yours...maybe you and I are on to something.

Level 1

1) Bach
2) Beethoven
3) Mozart
Level 2
Palestrina Victoria Handel Haydn Schubert Brahms Wagner Verdi Bruckner Mahler Debussy Bartok Stravinsky
(Off topic, but what the heck.)
IMHO, Mozart is hugely overrated (saccharine, fawning, sychophantic, specious, contrived, artifical, lovely, and popular now because of Elvira Madigan and Amadeus, etcetera).

I would offer--
1) Bach
2) Beethoven
3) Schubert
4) Handel
5) Josquin
6) Haydn
7) Debussy
8) Stravinsky
9) Brahms
10) Telemann
11) Tallis
12) Sibelius
13) Prokofiev
14) Schumann
15) Mendelssohn
16) Shostakovich
17) Byrd
18) Machaut
19) Verdi
20) Purcell
21) Schoenberg
22) Part
23) Chopin
24) Bruckner
25) Dufay
26) Palestrina
27) Mahler
28) Victoria
29) Vaughan Williams
30) Dvorak
31) Wagner
32) Ravel
33) Elgar
34) Puccini
35) Holst
36) Ockeghem
37) Lully
38) Couperin
39) R. Strauss
40) Isaac
41) Rameau
42) Hildegard von Bingen
43) Perotin
44) Berlioz
45) Tchaikovsky
46) Saint-Saens
47) Faure
48) Bartok
49) Copland
50) Reich
51) Hanson
52) Grieg
53) Riley
54) Corelli
55) Adams
56) Messaien
57) Satie
58) Milhaud
59) Glass
60) Poulenc


(Sorry, my iPad does not have umlauts or accents.)
 
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Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
IMHO, Mozart is hugely overrated (saccharine, fawning, sychophantic, specious, contrived, artifical, lovely, and popular now because of Elvira Madigan and Amadeus, etcetera).

I would offer--
1) Bach
2) Beethoven
3) Schubert
4) Handel
5) Haydn
6) Debussy
7) Stravinsky
8) Josquin
9) Brahms
10) Tallis
11) Sibelius
12) Telemann
13) Prokofiev
14) Schumann
15) Mendelssohn
16) Shostakovich
17) Byrd
18) Machaut
19) Verdi
20) Purcell
21) Schoenberg
22) Part
23) Chopin
24) Bruckner
25) Dufay
26) Palestrina
27) Mahler
28) Victoria
29) Vaughan Williams
30) Dvorak
31) Wagner
32)) Ravel
33) Elgar
34) Puccini
35) Holst
36) Ockeghem
37) Lully
38) Couperin
39) R. Strauss
40) Rameau
41) Hildegard von Bingen
42) Perotin
43) Berlioz
44) Saint-Saens
45) Faure

(Sorry, my iPad does not have umlauts or accents.)
It is partly a matter of personal taste.....I cannot sit through most of Shostakovich, his long-winded symphonies are not really symphonies, more like extended angst relief, or loose tone-poems, no real formal construction. Below the other big names of his era.

I used to have a lower view of Mozart, but his ability to express emotions in sound is very unique.

Interesting to see Telemann there, good composer.

No Bartok? No Americans? Well, each to his own.
 

Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
So you dismissed Shostakovich because he happened to be an unreconstructed heathen. I'm shocked! Here I was thinking the whole point of tiers is to leave out as much personal bias as possible.

If you ask a wide sample of music scholars and cognoscenti to name two American pieces straddling the classical and popular realms that will outlive the rest, chances are you'll hear Rhapsody in Blue and West Side Story in tandem more than any other duo. And like you said WSS isn't the only thing Bernie is known for these days (Candide in particular seems to be enjoying a wide reception lately). Think I'll stick to my roughly equal ranking of the two, thanks.

Also Bizet and Faure lacking depth? You're talking about a guy who created an all-time great tragic heroine in Carmen and another who's arguably the preeminent composer of French song (Duparc may be even stronger on average, but the intensely self-critical control freak left us with only 17 of 'em) and whose Requiem is widely cited as the most serene in the repertoire. You sure you don't have 'em mixed up with their namesakes?

Forgot to add that Tak possibly belongs in the "debatable" group. And yes, his stately score for Ran is arguably his best. So is the Kurosawa film itself, in my book his greatest work and almost certainly the greatest Shakespeare on screen (its only rival is Kurosawa's own Throne of Blood, a loose reimagining of Macbeth).

Got no beef with Verdi in second tier. (I'd probably group them into four, with Handel, Schubert, Brahms, Wagner, Haydn and Tchaikovsky for sure inclusion in second place and perhaps Stravinsky, Schumann, Verdi, Dvorak, Chopin, Mahler and arguably Liszt joining them.) But however you define religion the fact of the matter is that Verdi was a skeptic for most of his adult life. Whether or not he underwent a deathbed conversion of sorts doesn't change his belief system during the evolution of his Requiem.

And I think even you'll agree Schubert's sacred music is not among his best. Maybe religious conviction isn't such a necessary ingredient of musical transcendence as you think?



I never cared much for Pink Floyd. I honestly can't think of a single Floyd song I'd want on my playlist, whereas I can usually name at least one or two by other artists I'm supposed to enjoy but don't (say Jimi's "Purple Haze"). I know mine is a minority opinion and am open to the possibility that my failure to appreciate their space kitsch is indeed a failing on my part, but gawd knows I've tried. My omission of Floyd was fully intentional, and if that makes me a contrarian, so be it.

Whatever Harrison did post-Beatles can't match what they did together. If you want to argue he deserves recognition in his own right you'll get no grief from me, but then Lennon (not too sold on McCartney) did plenty well by himself, too. Why group the two together but not George? That defeats your insistence on singling him out, no?

Also I forgot to include a few other names earlier. Randy Newman belongs up there, and so does Eminem though his unapologetic homophobia and hip-hop in general often turn me off (much of it almost comically misogynistic, plus I like tunes). Gaga is also coming on strong. (Madonna's legacy as dance-priestess nonpareil is secure, but she's never been a top-notch lyricist. Gaga while not on par with Joni or even Kate is stronger there.)
Verdi never expressed an agnostic or atheist viewpoint....he embraced sacred music in a big way.

Schubert's late Mass in E flat, earlier Mass in A are great sacred statements, several others also.

What do you learn about life from Bizet's "Carmen"? The characters are hopelessly helpless.....my view.

Faure is beautiful but....where is the beef? (pardon the political pun)

What is he trying to communicate?
 
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NonP

Hall of Fame
(Off topic, but what the heck.)
IMHO, Mozart is hugely overrated (saccharine, fawning, sychophantic, specious, contrived, artifical, lovely, and popular now because of Elvira Madigan and Amadeus, etcetera).

I would offer--
1) Bach
2) Beethoven
3) Schubert
4) Handel
5) Haydn
6) Debussy
7) Stravinsky
8) Josquin
9) Brahms
10) Telemann
11) Tallis
12) Sibelius
13) Prokofiev
14) Schumann
15) Mendelssohn
16) Shostakovich
17) Byrd
18) Machaut
19) Verdi
20) Purcell
21) Schoenberg
22) Part
23) Chopin
24) Bruckner
25) Dufay
26) Palestrina
27) Mahler
28) Victoria
29) Vaughan Williams
30) Dvorak
31) Wagner
32) Ravel
33) Elgar
34) Puccini
35) Holst
36) Ockeghem
37) Lully
38) Couperin
39) R. Strauss
40) Isaac
41) Rameau
42) Hildegard von Bingen
43) Perotin
44) Berlioz
45) Tchaikovsky
46) Saint-Saens
47) Faure
48) Bartok
49) Copland
50) Reich
51) Hanson
52) Grieg
53) Riley
54) Corelli
55) Adams
56) Messaien
57) Satie
58) Milhaud
59) Glass
60) Poulenc


(Sorry, my iPad does not have umlauts or accents.)
Though I welcome contrarian viewpoints (GOAT lists tend to be way too predictable, no matter what the subject) I don't see how you can justify leaving out Mozart altogether while ranking Mendelssohn 15th, Saint-Saens 46th and Grieg 52th (or even including the last two among the top 50-ish at all). Pretty much all the things you take Wolfgang to task for have been lobbed against these guys one time or another, and while there's a grain of truth in these criticisms they usually focus on a selective (read: best-known) portion of their output and ignore their more obscure works that show a more serious side. And gawd knows Mozart left us with his share of the latter.

Also it's interesting that you and Lobb both underrate Tchaikovsky, when it's frankly no longer fashionable to exaggerate his admittedly real shortcomings. Yes, hypersensitive Pyotr could be vulgar and over the top. Yes, he could wallow like nobody's business. But those flaws just melt away when you listen to the Sixth Symphony, the majestic Waltz from The Sleeping Beauty, and the nonstop hit parade that is Swan Lake. Hell, even The Nutcracker is pretty damn fantastic once you step away from the holiday kitsch, sit down and actually listen to the whole thing. Schubert himself would've been hard-pressed to supply and maintain such melodic richness and invention for not one but three full-length ballets, and the number of other guys who could do the same to the greatest tunesmith in history you can probably count on the fingers of one hand (Bach, Handel, Mozart, Dvorak... who else?). This coming from someone who doesn't care much for the Muscovite's Piano (you know which one) or Violin Concerto.

I know there are real gems in Telemann's vast oeuvre and I won't pretend to be familiar with all of them, but nothing I've heard so far leads me to think he belongs in the same class as Brahms and Stravinsky. Tier 3, most likely. If there's a Telemann masterpiece you think I haven't heard do let me know.

Good call on Part and Ockeghem, though. I wouldn't place them so high but should've included them in the "maybe" category. And of course one could add other names like Buxtehude, Alkan, Albeniz, Delius, Villa-Lobos, etc.

P.S. Check out Felix's post-Sturm und Drang Second Piano Trio (the 1st ain't half bad, either), if you haven't already:


Verdi never expressed an agnostic or atheist viewpoint....he embraced sacred music in a big way.

Schubert's late Mass in E flat, earlier Mass in A are great sacred statements, several others also.

What do you learn about life from Bizet's "Carmen"? The characters are hopelessly helpless.....my view.

Faure is beautiful but....where is the beef? (pardon the political pun)

What is he trying to communicate?
What next, you gonna tell me your darling Vaughan Williams wasn't a self-professed agnostic just because he wrote a fair bit of church stuff? Hell, I never actually denied Verdi might have rethought his stance on religion at some point but even that wasn't enough for you. You should learn to quit while there's a way out.

Those "great sacred statements" of Schubert's are not considered among his greatest works and you know it. Stop playing with words.

The characters of Carmen are supposed to be "helpless" and unsympathetic. That is the whole friggin' point! And also why it flopped at first when the uptight eggheads couldn't stand a woman refusing to know her place. Are you seriously saying you share their retrograde philosophy?

The French in general don't have lots of "beef." That "lean" expression along with exactitude of form and delicacy of texture is their very calling card, which is why both Debussy and Ravel looked down upon their compatriot Berlioz who was an unruly beast in the mold of German Romantics. Given your rankings of the latter three I'm beginning to think you don't hold all the Frenchmen to the same standards.

Here, maybe this will cheer you up though I'm guessing it'll annoy you further. Earlier I had to postpone that Schubert concert till Sunday thanks to work, but that actually made my choice easier 'cause I was trying to decide whether to attend this other concert headlined by bandleader Bobby Sanabria instead. And guess what, the Sanabria concert happened to be a reimagining of none other than Bernie's West Side Story. You know, the same Bernstein that you insist isn't all that when compared to Gershwin. And this latest incarnation of WSS is an early fave to win the upcoming Grammy for Best Latin Jazz Album:


It was a highly interactive concert, with jovial congra drummer Oreste Abrantes and of course Sanabria himself frequently inviting the audience to clap and finger snap while the screen hung above the wonderfully named MultiVerse Big Band showed pictures of the Bronx's vibrant Latino (largely Puerto Rican) community. And Sanabria clearly has lots of love and respect for the score, never letting his varied treatment - in the notes I see a whopping nine arrangers in total - overshadow the original themes even when it might've been desirable (as in "Gee, Officer Krumpke"). The enthusiasm was unmistakable, with much clapping and shouting throughout, and I doubt I'll see a more engaged audience this year.

At the end of the concert Sanabria and the band paid touching tribute to their late lead trumpeter Kevin Bryan and, of course, to "Maestro Bernstein" (in Sanabria's own words), the 100th anniversary of whose birth was celebrated around the world last year. Add to that Sanabria's infectious joie de vivre and uplifting speech about the hardships and resilience of his fellow Puerto Ricans (he was born in the Bronx but both of his parents are from the island - most of the proceeds from the album go to its still ongoing relief efforts) and how we should be kind to each other and... vote in 2020! So glad I went tonight, can't believe I almost missed it.

A few post-show pix:

(The lighting is tricky but you can see Lenny's visage on the screen.)



That last pic is actually from before the concert - there were two shows at 7 and 9 pm - and the line had already been cut off, but I couldn't wait for the next singing so I got them to sneak me in. AND I scored a free ticket from another audience member at the box office whose friend couldn't come. I did him $10 cash but even the full price of $40-45 would've been almost criminally low for this nite out. Easily the highlight of the year so far.
 

KG1965

Legend
Lennon/McCartney > All
I have the utmost respect but I do not understand all this divinization for the Beatles.
Thousands and thousands of great albums and millions of songs have been played in the history by other artists or groups.
If I tell the truth the music of the 4 british has also aged badly.
 
I have the utmost respect but I do not understand all this divinization for the Beatles.
Thousands and thousands of great albums and millions of songs have been played in the history by other artists or groups.
If I tell the truth the music of the 4 british has also aged badly.
Amazing how everything you just said is wrong
 

heninfan99

Talk Tennis Guru
I have the utmost respect but I do not understand all this divinization for the Beatles.
Thousands and thousands of great albums and millions of songs have been played in the history by other artists or groups.
If I tell the truth the music of the 4 british has also aged badly.
I think half their albums have aged really well. The older I get to more impressed I am with and give more importance to their producer, George Martin. We have to remember they were an entertainment juggernaut with great marketing and timing and they spread a lot of joy.
 

Karma Tennis

Hall of Fame
My omission of Floyd was fully intentional, and if that makes me a contrarian, so be it.
Yes, it makes you contrarian. :)

Whatever Harrison did post-Beatles can't match what they did together. If you want to argue he deserves recognition in his own right you'll get no grief from me, but then Lennon (not too sold on McCartney) did plenty well by himself, too. Why group the two together but not George? That defeats your insistence on singling him out, no?
No! And to provide a succinct response. Songs do not have to become popular "hits" to be "great works".

A lot of Harrison's work, post Beatles, is sublime. It may not have charted much, but George was never about populism. He was about producing decent music.

He wrote one of the greatest love songs of all time ... "Something" ... when he was with The Beatles. But Lennon and McCartney didn't provide any input to that. McCartney is on the record as saying his most favourite Beatle song is "The Inner Light". Another one of George's that John and Paul had nothing to do with.

George wrote a song "If I Needed Someone" which inspired Jim McGuinn to create a whole new genre of Electric-Folk Rock music that rocketed The Byrds to immortality.

Randy Newman belongs up there
For sure. Randy is very under-rated. He has an incredible body of work.
 
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muddlehead

Semi-Pro
Re: Mac's commissioner youtube piece about Court posted last Monday. C'mon Mac. Luv ya, but … Guess he doesn't know his women's tennis history. Or, read our fair forums. As we all know, the knock of Court's 24 is not the number before the '68 open era. Women's tennis was unaffected by that seas change milestone. It's the number of Aussie titles when it was essentially an Aussie only tourney.
 

hoodjem

G.O.A.T.
Though I welcome contrarian viewpoints (GOAT lists tend to be way too predictable, no matter what the subject) I don't see how you can justify leaving out Mozart altogether while ranking Mendelssohn 15th, Saint-Saens 46th and Grieg 52th (or even including the last two among the top 50-ish at all). Pretty much all the things you take Wolfgang to task for have been lobbed against these guys one time or another, and while there's a grain of truth in these criticisms they usually focus on a selective (read: best-known) portion of their output and ignore their more obscure works that show a more serious side. And gawd knows Mozart left us with his share of the latter.

Also it's interesting that you and Lobb both underrate Tchaikovsky, when it's frankly no longer fashionable to exaggerate his admittedly real shortcomings. Yes, hypersensitive Pyotr could be vulgar and over the top. Yes, he could wallow like nobody's business. But those flaws just melt away when you listen to the Sixth Symphony, the majestic Waltz from The Sleeping Beauty, and the nonstop hit parade that is Swan Lake. Hell, even The Nutcracker is pretty damn fantastic once you step away from the holiday kitsch, sit down and actually listen to the whole thing. Schubert himself would've been hard-pressed to supply and maintain such melodic richness and invention for not one but three full-length ballets, and the number of other guys who could do the same to the greatest tunesmith in history you can probably count on the fingers of one hand (Bach, Handel, Mozart, Dvorak... who else?). This coming from someone who doesn't care much for the Muscovite's Piano (you know which one) or Violin Concerto.

I know there are real gems in Telemann's vast oeuvre and I won't pretend to be familiar with all of them, but nothing I've heard so far leads me to think he belongs in the same class as Brahms and Stravinsky. Tier 3, most likely. If there's a Telemann masterpiece you think I haven't heard do let me know.

Good call on Part and Ockeghem, though. I wouldn't place them so high but should've included them in the "maybe" category. And of course one could add other names like Buxtehude, Alkan, Albeniz, Delius, Villa-Lobos, etc.

P.S. Check out Felix's post-Sturm und Drang Second Piano Trio (the 1st ain't half bad, either), if you haven't already.
Quite a tome.(y)

Sorry. To be quite frank, I left Mozart off not because I rank him below the ones listed. (I usually change the station when my local classical station plays something composed by him. I have quite a few recordings of his music that I almost never listen to.)
 
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Dan Lobb

G.O.A.T.
My own rating order is very similar to yours...maybe you and I are on to something.

Level 1

1) Bach
2) Beethoven
3) Mozart


Level 2

Palestrina Victoria Handel Haydn Schubert Brahms Wagner Verdi Bruckner Mahler Debussy Bartok Stravinsky

Level 3

Monteverdi Corelli Vivaldi Purcell Bellini Schumann Mendelssohn Berlioz Mussorgsky Tchaikovsky Rachmaninoff Prokofiev Strauss Sibelius Ravel Elgar

Schoenberg Gershwin Berg Vaughan Williams Walton Britten



NON P......No, I had old Tchai in my list, on the third level, as you can see above. A great composer. Especially for ballet.

I claimed that Verdi NEVER claimed to be atheist or agnostic, so I don't get the point here.

Vaughan Williams may have claimed agnosticism, but his immense sacred output belies that.


Schubert's last two Masses in A major and E major are usually regarded as masterworks.

He accepted a job as church composer, so had he lived there would have been more.

Sure, as I said, Lenny's best work was Broadway musicals.....Gershwin's best work was in classical concert works and opera....go figure.
 
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Karma Tennis

Hall of Fame
It's the number of Aussie titles when it was essentially an Aussie only tourney.
OK, so on that basis Borg would have retired at 26 with at least 17 Major Titles. If he had continued to play on to 35, he would probably have closer to 25 Major Titles, perhaps even more.

The point is, you can only play who you play. A Title *IS* a Title as far as the Record Books are concerned.

Otherwise, there is no point in placing so much emphasis on Serena reaching 24 Major Titles.
 

suwanee4712

Professional
Court beat Bueno in two Aussie Ch, one in a quarterfinal the other in the final. She beat BJK in two others, one in a semi, the other in a final. She also beat Goolagong in two other finals when Evonne was a top player, 71 and 73. She did lose a final to BJK in 68, just coming back from a year off the tour.
I'm not a huge fan of Court. However, I've always felt the examination of her Aussie titles was one sided. She has some quality wins there, and honestly would've won most of those titles anyway. So they can't all be discounted.

Also, if some of Court's Aussie titles don't count to some as a major title, those same people should also be discounting some of Evonne's titles as well, and I LOVE the goddess Evonne. The same goes for others with some of their major wins both in Melbourne and Paris.

What a mess this all became over the years!
 

jrepac

Hall of Fame
Bobby played his best, to set up the King match.

But Margaret was playing way too cautiously, not like her usual aggressive game, just waiting for Bobby to implode and get tired, which he didn't.

Bad strategy for Court, and the commentator pointed that out.

Court recovered well and dominated the women's circuit the next year, so it didn't faze her or bother her afterwards.
I can't say I've seen much of Margaret Court as she was a bit before my time...but I have seen her 1970 final against BJK on tape and the Riggs match on YouTube. And, yes, your assessment seems correct to me...she played cautiously and dreadfully against Riggs. I was rather shocked by what I saw, since my impression of her was that of a much more aggressive player.
 

brystone

Semi-Pro
I'm not a huge fan of Court. However, I've always felt the examination of her Aussie titles was one sided. She has some quality wins there, and honestly would've won most of those titles anyway. So they can't all be discounted.

Also, if some of Court's Aussie titles don't count to some as a major title, those same people should also be discounting some of Evonne's titles as well, and I LOVE the goddess Evonne. The same goes for others with some of their major wins both in Melbourne and Paris.

What a mess this all became over the years!
Thing is there is absolutely no reason for someone to assume and give her the benefit of doubt she would win 11 Australian Opens if it were a regular slam. After all she didnt win any of the other 3 slams, the ones everyone else was playing, more than 5 times. What so magically would be so different at the Australian Open to allow her to win against everyone over twice that often? It was the same surface as 2 of the other 3 slams after all.

If one is really generous you might give her 7-8 Australian Opens if it were a real slam, and this is being very generous given that this is still 2-3 more than she won at any other slam and over twice as much as she won at another grass slam- Wimbledon. That would still cut her down to 20-21 majors, a huge difference from 24.

I agree Evonne's 7 slams absolutely should be downgraded by the Australian Open status too, especialy if Court's is. I agree with you on that point, and mentioned it on heavily downgraded Evonne's so called 7 slams in the Mandlikova vs Goolagong vs Henin thread. If people do this for the disliked bigot Court, but not for the beloved Goolagong, it is a case of extreme bias and double standards. Evonne goes without saying would be far less capable of dominating a complete slam than Court is, so her wins there should come under even more scrutiny. Other than Evert in 74 she really beat nobody there (PS- obese newcomer Martina in 75 was not a big deal at all).
 

Greatgatsby

Semi-Pro
Thing is there is absolutely no reason for someone to assume and give her the benefit of doubt she would win 11 Australian Opens if it were a regular slam. After all she didnt win any of the other 3 slams, the ones everyone else was playing, more than 5 times. What so magically would be so different at the Australian Open to allow her to win against everyone over twice that often? It was the same surface as 2 of the other 3 slams after all.

If one is really generous you might give her 7-8 Australian Opens if it were a real slam, and this is being very generous given that this is still 2-3 more than she won at any other slam and over twice as much as she won at another grass slam- Wimbledon. That would still cut her down to 20-21 majors, a huge difference from 24.

I agree Evonne's 7 slams absolutely should be downgraded by the Australian Open status too, especialy if Court's is. I agree with you on that point, and mentioned it on heavily downgraded Evonne's so called 7 slams in the Mandlikova vs Goolagong vs Henin thread. If people do this for the disliked bigot Court, but not for the beloved Goolagong, it is a case of extreme bias and double standards. Evonne goes without saying would be far less capable of dominating a complete slam than Court is, so her wins there should come under even more scrutiny. Other than Evert in 74 she really beat nobody there (PS- obese newcomer Martina in 75 was not a big deal at all).
No Martina 75 was a "nothing" she only reached the Aussie and French finals and the US semis. She also lost to Margaret Court at Wimbledon in the QF. Martina was well on her way to awesome in 75 and don't take that away from Evonne. Margaret btw is not a disliked bigot in my opinion but a fallen away Catholic.
 
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