Conductor and musicologist Jean-François Paillard was one of the most visible French exponents of Baroque music from the 1960s onward. Paillard earned a degree in mathematics from the Sorbonne, but he turned to music soon after. He attended the Paris Conservatory as a musicology student, where he won first prize in music history; he later studied conducting at the Salzburg Mozarteum with Igor Markevitch. He formed the Ensemble Jean-Marie Leclair in 1952, which was renamed the Jean-François Paillard Chamber Orchestra the following year. Comprised of a dozen string players and a harpsichord, the group paralleled such small-scale English ensembles as the Boyd Neel Orchestra in performing Baroque-era works - especially those from France - as well as contemporary works for string orchestra. As the public's interest in Baroque music rose, the orchestra's popularity grew and was aided by a series of international tours covering dozens of countries.
Pachelbel was not only a famous organist, but also a prolific composer. This recording offers the chance to hear his six suites entitled "Musical Delight". These pieces are true gems of 17th-century instrumental music, just like his famous "Canon and Gigue", in which Pachelbel skilfully combines his knowledge of counterpoint and his creativity in the field of variation
Music played by The Magic Orchestra which is a sequel of the work that the composer, arranger and director Gian Piero Reverberi Italian (Genoa, 1939) developed with the musical group founded in 1979, the 'Rondo Veneziano'. This group achieved a huge success with 20 million copies sold in Europe based on a musical style of baroque influence (based on Vivaldi, Albinoni, Boccherini, etc.) structured as light music, limiting the link to the music of 18th century to the orchestral sonority, but particularly channeled to pop and rock music.
"James Last was a German big band leader with a large fan base in Europe, although he has never had a comparable following in the United States. Last's trademark was arranging pop hits in a big-band style; his series of "party albums" is equally well-known. Over the course of his career, he has sold well over 50 million albums." James Last died on 9 June 2015 in Florida at the age of 86.
Jacques Loussier has spent most of his career blending jazz and classical styles into a lightly swinging and highly melodic hybrid. He is most well-known for tackling Bach, but here he covers a range of Baroque composers. Loussier, bassist Benoit Dunoyer De Segonzac, and drummer Andre Arpino play pieces by Handel, Pachabel, Scarlatti, Marcello, Albinoni, and Marias. Loussier has a very light touch and the trio is laid-back, never distracting from the melodies. You can hear the influence of Dave Brubeck in Loussier's playing (especially on Marais' "La Sonnerie de Sainte-Geneviève du Mont"), and much like Brubeck's best work, there is a strong sense of warmth and intelligence on Baroque Favorites. The only complaint one might have is that the brevity of some of the songs breaks up the flow of the record. Nevertheless, Baroque Favorites is a very nice album.
Since her early success in Glyndebourne’s now famous production of Handel’s Giulio Cesare, Danielle de Niese has become most closely associated with the music of the Baroque. The New York Times commented: “A voice seductive enough to woo gods as well as mortals”.
In October, 1738, a collection entitled "Six Concertos for Organ and Harpsichord, also for Violin, Oboe, and Other Instruments, in Seven Farts, composed by Mr. Haendel, Op. 4" appeared at Walsh's in London. The Concerto No. 6 in B-Major, transcribed here for harp, in keeping with the intentions of the composer and performance practices of the time, is issued from that collection. These concertos were all initially conceived to fill up the intervals during the oratorio, and their success depended greatly on Haendel's extraordinary talent for improvisation on the organ and harpsichord; Haendel would play a long, solemn, free prelude, and then would come the concerto that he would execute with spirit and grace. Haendel knew, in writing such works, of the need to capture the imagination of a large audience, which explains his taste for vigorous contrast, picturesque eloquence, and imposing effects…
A great melody is one of the most important ingredients in writing a memorable song or piece of music. It’s the melody that catches your attention and stays in your head long after the song is done playing. The best melodies are often very simple to play or sing. Writing them is where the real challenge lies.