I may have a different take on how one changes/intakes/ different types of music. Ok,much of my "new,life- style" changes were/are tied to other outside influences. Say for an example you met a new friend,who played the piano/fell in love with someone who loved this music. I feel sort of forcing a new music type, may not work. Sometimes when I was listening at the local salon;the music wasn't my type; but the speakers or amp were so far superior to mine,I developed an attachment.Many movies have great classical scores and I attach to them. You know how they say ( they do say this)classical music is great,but you can't dance to it?--Straus & family excepted.Get you some Rossini overtures,for starters./ Listen on a good system. Are you beyond help?? I doubt it, you just need the right environment/exposure.
I also just started listening to classical music (the only thing that I really listened to in the past were piano concertos, because I like piano). AVGuy makes a good suggestion in that you look into motion picture soundtracks as I seem to enjoy many of these more than our straight classical CD's. Curiously enough I have not seen any of the movies, but do enjoy the soundtracks. I don't know if this is good or bad but I like John Williams stuff "Angela's Ashees" for example and find his sound more contemporary. AVGuy mentions Rossini which is one of my favorite straight classical composers and I will also add Berloiz as well. Since you are coming from a R&R background you can also have a little fun with it and pick up orchestrated music by such writers/producers as John Cale/Brian Eno "Words for the Dying" and something that is fairly recent by Iggy Pop "Avenue B". Another favorite, right now, is "Pictures at an Exhibition" by Mussorgsky performed ny the Montreal Symphony on London.
I'll take back "Iggy" it's mostly French cafe music and is just orchestrated at the start (listening to it now while consious:-).
Good suggestions, gentlemen. When I started getting weaned from acid rock into classical, I started with tone poems like the Mussorgsky (I'd add the Levi/Atlanta Symphony version on Telarc), Sheherezade (Reiner and the Chicago SO on RCA) and Respighi's Roman Trilogy of the Pines of Rome, Fountains of Rome and Roman Festivals. I found it interesting to tie the music to a picture or story. In this vein, I'd also suggest shorter pieces, like on Mephisto and Company on Reference Recordings (Night on Bald Mountain, Sorcerer's Apprentice, Danse Macabre) and Copland's Appalachian Spring (might as well go for the Reference Recordings new version, which has the Fanfare for the Common Man and, when you get more adventurous, Symphony No. 3). I found that I gravitated more to the Russian composers at first, as they had a "power music" like in rock that I found exciting. You might want to give these pieces and recordings a try; heck, check your local library, they may have them available for you to borrow so you don't spend money on a piece you don't like. I think you'll enjoy them.
funny how so many of us started with russian composers. the first classical record i ever purchased was tschaikovsky's 1st piano concerto with van cliburn. i still enjoy the "war horses" fom grieg, mussoursky, stravinsky, et al. an excellent "starter classical cd" that has lots of short flashy pieces is "kaleidoscope" on mercury living presence (434 352-2). and, you can usually find it discounted.
Excellent suggestions here and some I will have to try myself. This list would not be complete without Richard Wagner's "Ride of the Valkyries," (which was used on the air assault scene in "Apocalypse Now.") Rowdy orchestral music for sure. I would also second the Rossini. It is the only orchestral music I ever witnessed my 12-year-old daughter bob her head to. She usually just ducks down in my truck from embarrassment as I tend to "air baton" most of the orchestral music I play and am familiar with. I think I'm pretty good, she doesn't appreciate me at all. [:)]
Check out violin works by Paganini (Niccolo). He was an Italian violin virtuoso of the late 18th/early 19th century. He really "pushed the envelope" by employing harmonics, double and triple stops, and even used alternative tuning of the instrument. Don't quote me on this, but story has it that he was so gifted and intense that he had to convince his fellow countrymen that he indeed wasn't posessed by the Devil (the ORIGINAL Satanic music!). I also want to say that his music was an influence for Yngwie Malmstein (not sure of the spelling there, but you probably know who I mean.
Here's a "stupid" confession. I realized recently, now that we have approx. 60 or so classical CD's that much of my exposure to this music came from classic cartoon (Bugs, etc.). I have fun (with my wife) remembering the cartoon scene in which the musical piece (or part of it) was played.
No need for embarassment, Dekay. I must admit every time I hear the second half of Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2 I think of the Bugs Bunny and other Looney Tunes cartoons, which used that music all the time in chase scenes. My son learned Grieg from the Smurfs. And of course, with Rossini it was the Lone Ranger, as well as some of the cartoons. And our parents thought those shows were a waste of time......
For sheer adrenaline, I think you ought to check out Holst's "The Planets" (first movement, especially), Thomas Ades's "Asyla" (third movement, especially) and probably Stravinsky's "Rite of Spring". Just as with Rock and Metal, you'll find some part of the piece that you really like, and the rest will probably grow on you as you listen...
Stravinsky: "Rite of spring" (explosive, visceral heart pumping stuff)
Orff: "Carmina Burana" (a 'war horse' but exciting, not for all tastes)
milder but still exciting,
Schubert: "Death and the Maiden" (Quartet fire!)
Beethoven: Symphony #5 (THE beginner's best starter symphony)
Bach: any organ collection played REALLY LOUD!!!!! rattle the fillings of the people across the street!!!!
Ccerny: Great question. I just got into this high end thing myself and am currently going through the growing pains of actually critically listening to the music. Those old Grateful Dead recordings just don't cut it. But I recently picked up the Reference Recording of the Minnesota Symphony playing some of Coplands' works and it Rocks! The first cut should be familiar to you: Fanfare for a Common Man covered by Emerson Lake and Palmer - what bass! I only have the one classical album and am afraid that nothing else will touch this. I look forward to listening to all these suggestions.
At a Judas Priest show in the late 80's a sociologist asked members of the crowd as they were leaving who was their favorite band. Of those who answered Judas Priest about 1/4 listed their second favorite band as classical music. I can't add too much to the list but I will add what I think are intense and well recorded performances. Dutoit conducting Montreal for Holst's The Planets, Berlioz Symphonie Fantastique, and Respighi's Pines of Rome. Rite of Spring conducted by Ozawa and Chicago on the new RCA HP remaster. Bach, Virgil Fox CD on the Clearlight label. For Wagner selections Reiner or Solti conducting. For russian selections try Solti's Romantic Russia CD.
You may know that chord progressions in Heavy Metal typically came from Classical Music. You might be surprised at how many heavy metal rockers studied classical music for this reason. But that wasn't your question--I too would recommend Russian composers. They are energetic, dynamic, and passionate. 2 that have not been mentioned that I would try out is Rachmoninov Piano Concerto # 3 and Tchaikovsky 1812 Overture. I also agree that Wagner's Ride of the Valkaries is great. This is slightly off the subject, but if you haven't seen the movie "Crossroads" you might like it--Classical meets Heavy Metal. It's not on my top ten list--but I would list it as one of those "guilty pleasures". And Dekay--I love Barber of Seville--the bugs bunny version too!
Deeper in the repertoire are great works for headbangers, Janacek "Sinfonietta", Liszt "Todtentanz", Berlioz Symphonie Funebre et Triomphale", Tchaikovsky "Capriccio Italien" and Boito Prologue To Mefistofele". For Hendrix lovers like me, Tchaikovsky "Violin Concerto in D" played by Heifetz, RCA Red Seal CD re-issue. These are in no particular order, not even alphabetical. Back in the day, I was entertaining friends including the lead guitar for Pacific Gas and Electric, enjoying some rare herbs and put Heifetz on the Rek-O-Kut. A couple of bars into the cadenza in the first movement, this well known guitarist threw himself on the floor in front of the purple naugahyde covered A-7 (Bogen PA Amp) and grooved all the way through the first movement. He got up from the floor and exclaimed, "wow, that guys fast!"
So right Kitch29. For the lead guitarist in your life also play the Heifitz recordings of the concertos by Sibelius, Walton, Bruch, Mendelssohn and Brahms. (The order is based on my experience with several HM guitarists)
Although i only listen to 200 year old dead guys on movie soundtracks,you can find classical trained musicians like joe satriani,yngwie malmstein and others that do modern versions of classical music.I will try a few of the above if only for the sake of argument in the future.
Malmstein's Concerto for Electric Guitar and Orchestra is an interesting example of how close many Metalurgist's techniques intersect with standard classical compositional methods. While hardly one of the monuments of western music, each movement is in a different classical style and should be of interest to any guitarist.