Another exceptional recording with outstanding dynamics is "English Harpsichord Music" performed by Igor Kipnis on Epic Records.
I picked this up for 25 cents last spring in the 4 for a dollar bin at the front of Westsider Records, 233 W 72nd St in Manhattan.
There was a label called "wildboar" that has excellent Harpsichord music on Lp and cd. Also Mercs had "Puyana" on Lps and Cds. I would also look at the excellent "Albert Fuller" recording on Reference Recording's along with the Decca label and their recording artist Sylvia Marlowe. There's so many more and I'm sure many Audiogon members will have their favorites.
are you primarily interested in sound or performance ?
if it is sound, consider recordings on the glossa and naive labels.
There's no question that for some reason solo harpsichord is very difficult to record well. I think also that a lot of harpsichords themselves just aren't that enjoyable to listen to. So it's a tough combination.
Anyway - I've had A LOT of harpsichord LP's go through here and I listen to every one at least briefly just because of the above. The good ones are rare, but very satisfying! I'd say my favorites sonically are the EMI Reflexe series with Colin Tilney playing. The William Byrd is a great one that comes to mind. I assume these are available on CD.
In a related but different vein, a wonderful lp is :
J.J. Froeberger Clavichord Music, Thurston Dart playing on the L'Oiseau Lyre label. A very warm and detailed recording of some very interesting (in a mellow way) music.
HAMBURG 1734-Andreas Staier, Harmonia Mundi
This is not only an absolutely stunning fidelity recording but also a virtuoso performance of an incredible instrument.
If your system is truly capable of full range frequency response, this is one hell of a hair raising ride which captures a very real presence with astonishing depth and dynamics rarely captured on CD this well !!
if you want to hear an expert play the harpsichord, listen to pierre hantai, sophie yates or raphael puyana.
since the harpsichord is my favorite instrument, i own 100's of solo harpsichord recordings. most sound overly percussive and focused. they don't sound anything like a live harpsichord.
oh, i forgot to mention trevor pinnock.
MrT: Can you recommend some that you think sound right?
i find that the cd labels i have mentioned preserve the timbre of the harpsichord. accent, naive, astree, some of the sophie yates recordings on chandos and most of the recordings on the glossa label are worthy of audition.
you can find these recordings on amazon.com .
if you want specific performances, please let me know. i'll browse through my cd collection and provide titles.
Specific performances would be great, when you have the time. I'd be more comfortable starting with known quantities to get a sense of how the recordings should sound.
Ralph Kirkpatrick's Goldberg Variations on Archive.
here are some recordings by the harsichordist, pierre hantai:
scarlatti: 22 sosnats pour clavecin astree e 8502
scarlatti: 1 mirare mir 9918
scarlatti: 2 mirare mir 9920
bach: goldberg variations opus 111 3084
fandango--scarlatti in iberia chandos 0635
chromatic fantasy and fugue: archive arc 2 533402
some of the above may be hard to find, or may have been reissued. hope this helps.
Thank you. That is very helpful.
One question: Do you recommend the 1993 or the 2000 version of the Goldberg Variations?
You need to look up Christopher Hogwood. He pays a lot of attention to historical detail with period instruments and makes outsanding recordings.
if one is referring to pierre hantai's recordings, the earlier recording would represent the performer at a different level of creativity. as for sound, without comparing the two recordings, there is nothing to say.
i think you are on your own, unless you want to own both recordings.
Hip hip hooray for Cristofori for making harpsichords but more importantly for inventing the piano!
Don't pluck it, HIT IT!
oops, sorry, nothing much to do with the thread.
Well if you're talking Cristofori, then the must have recording is Horszowski playing Music of Lodovico Giustini on the 1720 Cristofori Pinaoforte at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, on Titanic Records. This is the very first music composed specifically for piano being played on the oldest surviving piano! And at the time of the recording Horszowski, who lived to 100, was almost as old as the piano! It's a warm 2 lp recording. Not sure if it has made it to CD as well.
Many Harmonia Mundi releases are of excellent quality so I'm not surprised.
I agree!! The other HM Purcell recording is the consort music, which is equally fabulous.