Farrago (see my blogroll) requested that I do the music meme, wherein you choose seven songs that have meaning for you - or that you like. I only knew one of his choices, since his music favorites antedate my listening pleasures.
As a young girl of six, my mother decided I should learn to play the piano, and put me in weekly lessons. My piano teacher was a shrewd woman who knew how to get young children to play classical pieces; she offered me the opportunity to learn any popular piece I wanted, as long as I would promise to learn and play (well) three classical pieces to every one popular song. It seemed like a fair trade-off to me. Little did I know at the time that she was providing me with the basis for a love of classical music that would last a lifetime.
I also love jazz, and I think that the artist in me appreciates jazz as a musical art form. It is fairly easy for me to imagine colors, lines and pulses when I am listening to jazz - so I view it as "musical art." Yesterday I heard a jazz version on the car radio of some Beatles pieces, and I truly love them. Back in the late 60's and early 70's, when covers of Beatles songs were being done by all sorts of musicians, I managed to fool my mom, whose opinion of the Beatles was low, to say the least. I had bought an album of Beatles music done in symphonic style and I played it for my mom, without telling her who or what it was. She liked it very much, and she was surprised when I told her it was the Beatles' compositions. I took great pleasure in getting her to admit (finally) that perhaps they did know a little something about music - or at least- melody. Don't let me fool you, though, I can wail "I Want to Hold Your Hand" with the original Beatles record and enjoy every minute of it!
One album that I have always loved is by the composer Ferde Grofe; the Grand Canyon Suite. Listenening to that music, one can easily imagine riding down into the canyon on a donkey, which I have never done and wouldn't, but I enjoy imagining it. Some parts of the music evoke the grandeur of the canyon, and others lead you to envision the sunrises and sunsets and preparation for the nighttime. If you want to know more about Grofe (whose name ought to have an accent over the last 'e' but I don't know how to do it), go here:
and go here to learn more about the Grand Canyon Suite:
Russian composers have always held a special fascination for me; Rachmaninoff, Tschaikovsky, and Rimsky-Korsakov stir inner fires and evoke awe. I won't list particular pieces, because almost anything by these men is a joy for me.
Dvorak and Debussy are two additional favorites, and you owe it to yourself to listen to some of their works if you are not already familiar with them. At this point, I fear that most of you are no longer reading. Either the post is too long or too boring for you. There are many other composers and many types of music I enjoy, but that is grist for another day. The rhythm and blues alone would take a whole post! Farrago, I hope this is sort of what you meant, and that I haven't strayed too far from the original meme.