I’ve been spending quality time viewing and listening to works by Sergei Rachmaninoff on YouTube (played by Anna Fedorova, the great Ukrainian pianist). Fantastic music, and even I can see that it is extremely challenging to play this.
Surprise, surprise: one piece sounded a bit familiar, and as it turned out, the 1975 smash hit “All by Myself,” a song by American artist Eric Carmen is based on the second movement (Adagio sostenuto) of Sergei’s Piano Concerto No.2 in C minor, opus 18 (1901).
Seems Eric should have titled his song and changed the lyrics to “Not by Myself, but by Sergei” – which admittedly isn’t very catchy and might not have lead to a top 20 ranking in the hit parade.
By the way, during my exploration of Rachmaninoff’s work, I also discovered that his music is also used in the beautiful ice skating scene in Ronin; that action packed John Frankenheimer thriller with Robert DeNiro – one of my absolute favorite movies of all time.
“The show must go one” illustrates my hunger for music. It is also one of my all time favorite songs by Queen. And for the show to continue I need MUSIC. Any kind of music; my radio is playing the whole day, from the moment I get up, when I get in my car, late at night… and when needed even in the early morning, when the world is still asleep.
I have assembled for you a list of some of the music pieces that I love most and that I never get tired of hearing. The list is a wild mix of all types, styles and periods. I hope it inspires you to pick up some tunes that you mare unfamiliar with. My typical day may start with Miles Davis’ hard bob jazz (his beautiful 1959 album Kind of Blue, unbelievable I wasn’t even born then, so fresh and revolutionary is the sound), then switch to pop tunes, rock or metal during the day, and listen to Rachmaninoff in the evening – see Anna Federova’s exceptional interpretation of his Second Piano Concerto in the Concert Gebouw in Amsterdam. Weeks pass by in which I only listen to Country Music: Billie Jo Spears’ Blanket on the Ground and Johnny Cash can still move me to tears, or Tift Merritt’s Another Country (listen to the guitar on that one!), then switch over to Nusrat Fateh Ali Kahn, one of the greatest vocalists the world has ever seen, singing Qawwali (Sufi Islamic devotional music). Or that famous singer Oum Kalsoum who moved Egypt for so long. And then? Back to Neil Young, or fast forward to Republica with Ready to Go. Some Scottish Texas, French Erik Satie Trois Gymnopedies or American Van Halen’s Jump.
Let me stop there. Curious to hear about your absolute favorite piece of music. Especially curious to learn about artists that I have never encountered before. I am hungry to extend my list.