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Bach: The Goldberg Variations 1955 [CD]

Glenn Gould Audio CD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
Price: 4.75 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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 : Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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Frequently Bought Together

Bach: The Goldberg Variations 1955 + Bach: The Art of the Fugue + Bach: Goldberg Variations, BWV 988
Price For All Three: 14.70

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Product details

  • Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach
  • Audio CD (26 July 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Sony Classical
  • ASIN: B0002ISFRK
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,969 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. "Goldberg Variations, BWV 988"
2. "The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book II"
3. Aria
4. Variation 1 a 1 Clav.
5. Variation 2 a 1 Clav.
6. Variation 3 a 1 Clav. Canone all' Unisuono
7. Variation 4 a 1 Clav.
8. Variation 5 a 1 ovvero 2 Clav.
9. Variation 6 a 1 Clav. Canone alla Seconda
10. Variation 7 a 1 ovvero 2 Clav.
11. Variation 8 a 2 Clav.
12. Variation 9 a 1 Clav. Canone alla Terza
13. Variation 10 a 1 Clav. Fughetta
14. Variation 11 a 2 Clav.
15. Variation 12 Canone alla Quarta
16. Variation 13 a 2 Clav.
17. Variation 14 a 2 Clav.
18. Variation 15 a 1 Clav. Canone alla Quinta. Andante
19. Variation 16 Ouverture a 1 Clav.
20. Variation 17 a 2 Clav.
See all 37 tracks on this disc

Product Description

I will ship by EMS or SAL items in stock in Japan. It is approximately 7-14days on delivery date. You wholeheartedly support customers as satisfactory. Thank you for you seeing it.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
61 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Iconic Disc 23 Sep 2008
Format:Audio CD
This is a truly iconic disc, the legendary performance that introduced an eccentric Canadian pianist to the world at large. Gould had made a sensational debut in New York with a programme that included Beethoven's Op 109 sonate, a Sweelinck fantasia and the Webern variations. Snapped up by a CBS talent scout, he requested his first release should be Bach's Goldberg Variations, a seldom performed work the Leipzig cantor wrote for an aristocratic insomniac. As the recording took place, Gould sat on his pigmy stool, swaying, groaning, humming and playing like a god. Inbetween takes he popped pills, donned his overcoat and ate arrowroot biscuits washed down with spring water as the press gathered curiously to see the spectacle. The resulting LP sold 40,000 copies, redefined Bach playing and made Gould an instant star. Today, with many more fine recordings of the work, this is still the one that sets the benchmark. Invest and be dazzled by some of the greatest and most exciting piano playing ever committed to disc.
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112 of 117 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DA CAPO 9 Jun 2006
By DAVID BRYSON TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
Sony's earlier release of this set, dating from as lately as 1992, is still available, but I'm sure they have some terribly good reason for reissuing it now. There is a reference to remastering of the sound, but I can't find out whether this is against the 1992 issue or the original one from 1955. The new disc sounds much like the old one to me, the sound of that was excellent (particularly for engineering now half a century old), and as for the performance...

This is the recording that first announced the Gould supernova to the musical world. He was 22 years old in 1955, he disavowed this account when he recorded the work again in1981, but much as I admire the latter this is the one for me. It is historic in more ways than one. In the first place it restored Bach-playing on the piano to fashionable respectability, as even Rosalyn Tureck had not quite managed to do. In the second place it marked the debut of one of the greatest geniuses, I am in no doubt at all, that ever played the instrument. Gould was a scholar and intellectual (although an unpretentious one), and his feeling and respect for the spirit of Bach's style were as acute as his interpretative sense was imaginative. However what pinned everyone's ears back when Gould came on the scene was just his phenomenal skill as an executant. Michelangeli himself was not more of a perfectionist than Gould was, and the cut-diamond super-perfection of his runs, trills and ornaments remains a thing to astonish the listener even in an age of ultra-accomplished technicians of the instrument. He has never been to everyone's taste, so I have no way of knowing whether he will be to yours with his rocketing speeds in certain variations, but I simply can't get enough of him.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Glen Gould playing the Goldberg Variations by Bach 18 April 2009
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Bach's keyboard music can take so many styles and approaches, but none can better Glen Gould's original touch and manner.
He is genius, and seems to have J.S. Bach's ear for phrasing and expression and a great love of his music.
He can however be heard humming to himself as he plays at one or two points.
This does not actually detract from the performance but emphasizes his "empathy".
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Truly Awe-inspiring Recoring!!! 19 Nov 2008
By Scriabinmahler TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Audio CD
If I must choose three recordings of solo piano music which deserve the word 'awe-inspiring', my first choice is this recording of Goldberg Variations by Glenn Gould, second choice is Richter's Well-tempered Klavier (Bach - The Well-tempered Clavier, Books 1 & 2) and the third is Glenn Gould's 1981 recording of Goldberg Variations. Like Rony O'sullivan's 147 in 5 minutes 20 second, I don't think anyone can surpass this 1955 recording by Gould as long as mankind lives on, on this planet!

If you can actually watch how he plays the work on DVD (Glenn Gould - The Goldberg Variations [1981]), you will be even more amazed!!
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just beautiful 9 Dec 2008
Format:Audio CD
Glenn Gould's first recording of the Goldberg Variations is fresh and vibrant. Apparently Bach wrote the music as a kind of extended lullaby, but I've never yet managed to sleep through any of this recording. (Gould's later recording, from 1981, is more soothing.)

On this disk there are also two fugues from the Well Tempered Clavier. I think of the E major fugue (BWV 878) as a kind of ultimate idea of fugue: if someone wants to know what a fugue is, this is what they need to hear. Gould takes the E major fugue rather quickly in his recording of the whole of the Well Tempered Clavier, but the recording on this disk is slow and clear and wonderfully resonant.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gould's early Goldbergs. 8 Jan 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
By rights one should have both of Gould's recordings of what many think is the greatest set of baroque variations. I was a student when this recording and his version of the italian Concerto hit the scene. They caused immense ripples and generated much critical interest.
Do they stand up well today nearly 60 years later? Well apart from the fact that most people now expect them to be performed on the harpsichord, I would say yes, they do. One tends to forget the instrument choices by the time you are into the second variation and begin to enjoy them for what they are--insightful and technically brilliant performances of an immortal work. Julian MIncham
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Gould the mould-breaker
Still a marvellous, exciting reading of the Goldberg after all these years, despite his later recording slowing down all the tempi. Read more
Published 5 months ago by levelheaded
5.0 out of 5 stars Glenn Gould Goldberg
What a superb performance! Glenn Gould's grasp of this classic Bach piece is astonishing. It must rank among the best performances ever.
Published 12 months ago by Francis Coggs
5.0 out of 5 stars Ho is to say which is better, The '55 or the '81?
Well this is a personal review. So I get to say which is better.
It's the '81 by a mile.
Published 14 months ago by michael gill
5.0 out of 5 stars Breattaking.
His interpretation and performance stands far above any of his rivals. A privilege to hear him. Words are inadequate. Wonderful
Published 14 months ago by H. R. Bennett
5.0 out of 5 stars Bach and Gould
I can't rate Bach! The recording is an old one but no worse for that and I like the recording
extras at the end.
Fast and easy ordering and delivery.
Published 15 months ago by Mrs. J. Shelley
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb interpretation
Wonderful recording and a great artist's interpretation of one of the greatest baroque composers of all time. Highly recommend to all Bach enthusiasts
Published 15 months ago by J. Whitehead
1.0 out of 5 stars Bach?
This recording as you may expect for being recorded in 1955 is poor quality. That aside Glenn Gould interpretation of the music is anything but what I love about Bach's music. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Mr. S. T. Hodges
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic
It's hard to rate a combination of the purity of Bach and the slightly eccentric playing of Glenn Gould - worth every penny
Published 16 months ago by Mr Andrew W N Probert
4.0 out of 5 stars Gould at his best.
The Goldberg variations from that era don't get better than this. Gould's interpretation is difficult to better and 4 stars because we need to encourage others to try and improve... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Peter Vowles
4.0 out of 5 stars Lively!
I'm not usually into this sort of music, but was given it as a gift and felt i had to write a review! Read more
Published on 13 July 2012 by Susan Johnstone
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