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The very first CD you bought


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Showing 51-75 of 158 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on 22 Jul 2012 12:00:32 BDT
Last edited by the author on 24 Jul 2012 20:49:07 BDT
JayJayDee says:
> Lez Lee, are you sure you don't have to wind up that CD player?
And have a box of rose thorns handy....?

> Austen, as a teenager I stepped in and took my Mum to a JLT concert when my Dad found he had an evening meeting. The original JLT with Christian Garros and Pierre Michelot. We already had a few early Play Bach LPs and I think most of my liking for Bach stems from that jazzy introduction!
If it goes out of fashion, let it...we may get some cheapies on marketplace!
That Rozhdestvensky Rachmaninov was one of my earliest (on Pickwick) and bought at The Collectors' Room, Endless Street, in Salisbury in 1991 amongst a hatful that included the Kovacevich Philips Concert Classics mentioned earlier by Malx. I always stocked up there when on holiday back in UK, combining it with a Market Day visit buying freshly roasted coffee from all over the world. The proprietor at the record shop (upstairs from the bookshop-of course!) was always playing something I really liked and I envied him his job. Happy days indeed!

Posted on 22 Jul 2012 16:25:03 BDT
Last edited by the author on 22 Jul 2012 21:23:13 BDT
Edgar Self says:
After my first CD of William Kapell's Chopin sonatas, the next ones I bought were RCA's first reissue of Rachmaninoff playing his concertos. They were so bad that RCA withdrew them over, still not very well.. It was left to Naxos to show them how it can be done and how good they can sound. I haven't heard the Zenph treatment of Rachmaninoff's solo-piano recordings.

Posted on 22 Jul 2012 19:22:42 BDT
JayJayDee says:
I just recently downloaded the Weingartner Brahms 4 on some strange .ogg format which I had to translate into mp3.
That was the last of my parents' 78s that I remember trying out (gawd knows when). I remember thinking how transparent and delicate the sound was - coming from 1938 to maybe 1968. That was the first time I think I recognised that a historic performance could possible be better than a modern one.
After all: in those days everything was in black and white and they walked funny, like Charlie Chaplin.....

Posted on 23 Jul 2012 09:13:09 BDT
Last edited by the author on 23 Jul 2012 09:13:25 BDT
Mondoro says:
My very first LPs were birthdays presents from parents, starting with the Decca Beethoven symphonic cycle. A very early LP - possibly not the first - was the Munchinger Eine Kleine, from family friends, which I played little at that stage but came back to later when I discovered Mozart. And these were personal discoveries, in the tropics, with a local radio station that never wandered beyond the light classic lollipops.

My first CD was the Norrington Beethoven 9, which very quickly fell out of favour when I came to his rushed slow movement.

Posted on 23 Jul 2012 12:54:13 BDT
Last edited by the author on 23 Jul 2012 12:54:47 BDT
My first classical purchase on CD was Solti's Ring cycle which was sold presumably as a loss-leader introductory offer in order to tempt people to join the now-defunct Britannia Music mail order company. This was 1999, I think. The only classical music I had on vinyl prior to that were two or three Wagner 'bleeding chunks' albums but by this time I had long decommissioned my turntable and switched exclusively to CDs.

In reply to an earlier post on 23 Jul 2012 13:41:57 BDT
Last edited by the author on 23 Jul 2012 13:44:48 BDT
Bella says:
SCH: It's nice to know that I am not the only one who delayed CDs until around 1999, also from the Britannia Music mail company! In my case a recording of Welsh Male Voice choirs was my first CD, not, as it happens, a great success because I find the singing a little too self-conscious. I then splurged on the golden-oldy re-issues that filled the Brittania catalogue, until it occurred to me that I wasn't doing much for to-day's artists; nowadays I try to match each purchase of a re-issue with a recent release. When the turntable gave out my partner and I actually bought a new one...... I'm really pleased to still be able to listen to our LPs, most of which play pretty well though less convenient to handle and store than CDs.

In reply to an earlier post on 23 Jul 2012 21:30:18 BDT
D. M. Ohara says:
the Munchinger Eine Kleine, coupled with K.131. on a 10" Decca lp, was among the first half-dozen I bought. Another was Karl Bohm and the VPO in Schubert's Unfinished.

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Jul 2012 11:57:21 BDT
Dear Bella: Don't feel bad, I almost always buy reissues or originals of older performances. It is rare that I buy a new(ish) recording. The decline of the recording studio and commensurate lavish recording values may have something to do with it. But I just don't think that contemporary artists have as much to offer as the 1950s to early 1980s artists did.

As for talk of turntables, I am the proud owner of a new one - which was gifted to me last Christmas by my sister. It's a bobby dazzler: the sound is exceptionally vivid through it's speakers. I am still awaiting my (NEW) La Gioconda on LP, starring the marvelous Renata Tebaldi in the title role. The LP set is an original from 1967.

I'm an odd creature.

Posted on 24 Jul 2012 12:22:07 BDT
Last edited by the author on 24 Jul 2012 12:22:22 BDT
No sir, you are not. You've learned the invaluable lesson that some things are neither old-fashioned nor its opposite, but simply timeless.

In reply to an earlier post on 24 Jul 2012 12:34:05 BDT
Last edited by the author on 24 Jul 2012 14:23:26 BDT
Bella says:
Ryan: I didn't feel bad, merely realistic. Contemporary artists in any generation are usually compared unfavourably to greats of the past ( was brought up on some very aged recordings indeed, by the likes of Pinza, Stracciari and Plancon) unfortunately without them the music will die.......And of course what one hears of the past is selective, while contemporary performances have not yet been edited, so to speak. But it's very likely the case that 19thC Italian opera, which is your main interest, is not as well-served to-day as in earlier and less frenetic eras.

In reply to an earlier post on 25 Jul 2012 12:11:24 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 Jul 2012 12:11:43 BDT
Ryan - Odd? Not at all. But please also try the Anita Cerquetti Gioconda. Together with Tebaldi they had the soprano world sewn up - NO GREEK EXCEPTIONS.(I'm the odd-ball apparently.)

Austen

In reply to an earlier post on 25 Jul 2012 12:22:27 BDT
Thanks Harry and Austen: I do however feel like the odd one out in going back to vinyl. But as I was not alive in the LP era, I like to think that I am rekindling some of the magic that my older, fellow collectors enjoyed.

Austen: I have sampled 'bits' of Cerquetti's Gioconda and am impressed. The complete sets of many of the older Giocondas are extremely hard to find. But I intend to eventually get the Cerquetti, along with Caballe (which is frequently available at the moment) and also Zinka Milanov's one. The last mentioned was a famous Gioconda of the 1940s and 1950s. I understand that her Gioconda was a much loved fixture at the Met for many years. As for Callas, I have her second recording which I do appreciate Austen. But I understand your misgivings about her work. I also enjoy Fiorenza Cossotto's work on that set. I often quip when listening to her recording that hers is the 'mezzo of one's dreams'. Her voice is so beautiful as to beggar belief: I am looking forward to soon receiving her Amneris in Aida in the mail.

Posted on 25 Jul 2012 17:59:38 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 Jul 2012 20:05:25 BDT
JayJayDee says:
Ryan, I enjoyed the music in the days of vinyl. And possibly even more than now, because it was all so new. But I despaired and removed tufts of hair because of the poor quality of the pressings. And on enquiry/inquiry (?) further into the technicalities I discovered the built-in disadvantages of the long playing record/turntable and stylus method. But we were literally stuck in a groove with it!
As soon as the cassette was introduced I transferred my vinyls and those copies accumulated no extra surface noise from increased usage/wear and tear. But commercially available cassettes were very poor value, inconvenient and often had lousy audio credentials. AND tiny print booklets. (YUKHHH!) Even great copies from vinyl onto the most expensive audio cassettes (Maxell UDXLII) had identifiably degraded sound with loss of frequency extremes and tape hiss and of course preserved the clicks and pops. (Aaaaargh) Worse than that the cassettes degrade and self-destruct really quickly in tropical conditions, or anything above 25 degrees and 60% humidity!

I thought sliced bread had been greatly surpassed when CDs came in. Still there were complaints (well-documented), but as with swings and roundabouts I have found that CDs are so much better for classical music that I have never yearned for the old days. I had to send so many LPs back that it ruined my pleasure, and the replacements were often little better. I finally gave up, and suffered miserably, when postal costs exceeded the original purchase cost!
There is no doubt an improvement in all the various specs of turntables and some people cling (almost stubbornly) to those old ways of reproducing music. Most supporters of the turntable are rock enthusiasts - they like the colouration caused by surface noise and cross-talk between channels. But there are a few classical vinyl enthusiasts too. They have to spend thrice on the discs and thrice on the equipment to get the equivalent sound. OK if you have the cash!

But if I were forced to go back to LPs instead of CDs and digital transfer I would have given up collecting decades ago and just put up with whatever was coming over the radio.
For many people the first CD they listened to seriously totally won them over. And that's before you look at the convenience.
Everyone to their own preference, though - of course, and I would be fascinated for a classical enthusiast to satisfactorily explain to me the alleged extra musicality available from vinyls. And justify it against the noise during 'Ewig....ewig....ewig...ewig....'

Posted on 25 Jul 2012 18:13:15 BDT
Hard though that final challenge is to take up in mere words, I'll give it a go. In a word: atmosphere - the best of LP sound has, for me at any rate, a feeling of being in the concert hall at a real performance. I just don't get that from CDs. I love their clarity, and welcome their ease of use, but don't get that same sense of occasion.

Posted on 25 Jul 2012 18:25:30 BDT
Harry: I am glad you say 'for me at any rate'. My own highly subjective opinion is that neither CDs nor LPs even remotely resemble being at a live concert. I certainly don't buy into this 'vinyl warmth' nonsense. I have plenty of LPs that are dull, distant, muffled, harsh, tinny, thin etc and that is without the swish, clicks and plops so beloved of JJD.

Posted on 25 Jul 2012 19:13:25 BDT
On 20th September 1985, I "won" a CD player (Philips CD304 about £400) at the HFN/RR hi-fi show at the Penta Hotel, Heathrow airport. HFN/RR test CD was pressed into my hand (thanks JA), then I went to the Covent Garden Records stand and purchased my first CD. The latest sonic blockbuster ? No, the Beethoven and the Brahms violin concertos, with Jascha Heifetz, Boston SO/Munch and Chicago SO/Reiner both recorded in 1955. Some 1700 CDs later and still going strong.

Ciarain.

Posted on 25 Jul 2012 19:37:44 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 Jul 2012 19:39:09 BDT
Geoffrey: I also took care to say "the best of LP sound", recognising from half a century of record-collecting that not all LPs are of equal quality. With that qualification, I stand by what I say above. In my experience the "vinyl warmth" observation is anything but "nonsense".

In reply to an earlier post on 25 Jul 2012 20:01:11 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 Jul 2012 20:03:04 BDT
JayJayDee says:
Vinyl 'warmth' is admitted, even by it's apologists, to be colouration, i.e NOT the sound you would get from a live performance.
I have no doubt that vinyl enthusiasts like the sound (self evident) and find it 'warm' but they simply cannot argue that it is accurate.
I find that a very good recent CD issue is steadily getting a damn sight closer to the concert experience than any vinyl disc.

And I agree with Kieron that sometimes it is the old analogue recordings that finally come up trumps after the digital transformation. {{Heifetz without surface noise...yummie}} Aren't we lucky!?

Amplified-rock music fans simply need not reply. That preference disqualifies any pundit of a semblance of rationality because their chosen sound source is already an artificially created sound in the first place!

Of course distortion sounds better with vinyl....it becomes 'warmer'.

Posted on 25 Jul 2012 20:25:25 BDT
Last edited by the author on 25 Jul 2012 20:28:00 BDT
JayJayDee says:
A cat amongst the pigeons.
The Barenboim Klemperer set of Beethoven Concertos doesn't sound the same, in its recent remastered issue, as the vinyl LPs used to sound.

Superficially I can imagine many a Beethoven enthusiast, intoxicated and besotted by the memory of learning such wonderful music in the late sixties with the aid of Otto and Daniel, being seriously disappointed by the CD sound.
But quite probably we are actually now, at last, hearing a much closer approximation to the sound that was laid down by Robert Gooch at Abbey Road.
Beethoven: Piano Concertos Nos. 1-5 / Choral Fantasia is fabulous.

No photograph of Klemps and Barenboim on the pedestrian crossing, though.

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Jul 2012 04:40:16 BDT
Thank you all for your insightful comments about vinyl. I was particularly fascinated to read about the 'warmth' opinion. In my own recent experience, as much as I love the format, I must admit that I am quite terrified when I get one out of its sleeve and place it on the turntable. They just seem so fragile to me and I've always been warned by many older family members to make sure you do this and that to ensure that they don't warp or damage in any way.

So they are definitely much harder work. But yes there's something special about it. To watch the record in motion is one thing, but it's also the sound - sometimes I have noticed it is bigger and 'boomier' than the digital transfers/recordings. I empathise with JJ though: my uncle told me a story of how he once had to take his (then) newly acquired Berlioz Requiem back to the store because the entire batch were defective. To this day, he has never had that performance on LP or CD transfer. It goes to show how many times LPs were defective due to a variety of problems with the disc itself.

But it's not perfect with CDs either: I've had a couple of devastating experiences. One in particular when a clock dropped on top of a up-turned stack favourites!! Suffice it to say: they are fragile too! Still, my preference will always be with them: I grew up with them. The LPs chiefly represent curiosity value I suppose. Although, I am spending a lot on this Gioconda set!

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Jul 2012 09:20:16 BDT
Mondoro says:
Nor forgetting that period when Woolies dropped the price from £3.99 to £2.99 (I think it was). Alas, not to last - I think it was shortly after this that they simply dropped Naxos overnight.

Posted on 26 Jul 2012 09:21:39 BDT
[Deleted by the author on 26 Jul 2012 09:23:20 BDT]

Posted on 26 Jul 2012 09:31:10 BDT
Echoing Ryan's experience I have had accidents with CDs but it has always been the plastic cases that have suffered not the discs themselves. On one occasion I dropped a piles of CDs and the cases burst open and I was terrified that the sharp pointed corners of the cases would scratch the discs. Fortunately the discs were robust enough and survived unharmed.

In a previous posting I said I had only bought one defective CD; perhaps I should modify that to 'one new CD'. A secondhand disc I bought from Amazon Marketplace (Used -as new) arrived with a large visble scratch. The disc was unplayable; on a more expensive player than my own the disc played but the scratch was clearly audible. I contacted the seller and he apologised but said all his discs were checked by hardware that identified scratches. It clearly failed in this case. Rather than return it immediately I cleaned the disc and it then played with no problems whatsoever even though the scratch was still clearly visible. LPs with scratches are a complete write-off.

In reply to an earlier post on 26 Jul 2012 09:41:26 BDT
Brass Neck says:
Re accidents with cds - a near neighbour shares my love of the blues (his son is the singer/guitarist in a band called The Brew) so I took a pile round for him to listen to or, Heaven forfend, copy. They were wrapped in a carrier bag and well-received. After a week or so when they hadn't been returned I went round to find his distraught wife explaining that their greyhound can't resist placcy bags and had bitten through a good proportion of them - CDs and cases - and they were waiting for replacements they had ordered - must have cost him about £70 but good on him they were all replaced.

Posted on 26 Jul 2012 17:07:40 BDT
Last edited by the author on 26 Jul 2012 17:14:45 BDT
Bella says:
Some years ago I bought a CD with slight, but annoying, faults in two of the 15 tracks, and when I took it back to our specialist shop (we had one at the time) the owner diagnosed a "pressing" problem that had affected the whole batch. He was gloomy about the prospect of an unblemished replacement, saying that these days companies weren't usually prepared to go to the expense of re-pressing and that I would probably have to settle for a refund; also the enquiry would take months because he couldn't get in touch directly, only via the distributor. The company was Tudor, a Swiss Independent, and when I got home I e-mailed them myself, and got an instant, and very grateful, response. The chap, whoever he was, unhesitatingly announced that they would do a new, and unblemished, run, and even offered me a free CD as a reward for drawing attention to the problem; though not surprisingly that offer later metamorphosed into an advertising CD of excerpts! Any way I was only interested in getting a fault-free version of my purchase, which arrived in the post months later. I'm happy to say that when I last checked Tudor was still in business.
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Initial post:  21 Jul 2012
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