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Thread: Light Classical Music

  1. #1
    Recruit, Pianissimo
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    Light Classical Music

    I've been a fan of this category of music. For those of you who wonder what the heck Scott is talking about, the quickest reference would be music played behind commercials. The worst kind of this genre would be "elevator music." However the BEST examples would be on vintage Mantovani records. The best light music is very lyrical and will stick in your brain.

    The music originated in England at the end of the 19th century at beachside concerts. It's heyday was in the 50s, starting with Mantovani's "Charmaine." Then it really took off with American orchestra turning albums out by the ton with this type of music: Morton Gould, Melachrino, etc. Then about the mid 60s when rock drowned out anything with imaginative scoring, tunefulness or fun to listen to.

    Where do we find this genre now? Movie scores and serial TV shows. Those with a romantic theme. Listen to the cues. There are some pretty good composers out there, even though their music cues are buried.

    And this wicked world could use a little light music today

  2. #2
    Captain of Water Music Art Rock's Avatar
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    Hyperion has an excellent series of albums on this, including three or four on british light music Coates, ketelbey, and so on), European and American. Highly recommended.

  3. #3
    Recruit, Pianissimo
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    Yes, there are tons of light music CDs that have hit the market. I know this. However I'd like to get in an discussion. Oh well. Drive on.

  4. #4
    Midshipman, Forte Hildegard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Lewis View Post
    I've been a fan of this category of music. For those of you who wonder what the heck Scott is talking about, the quickest reference would be music played behind commercials. The worst kind of this genre would be "elevator music." However the BEST examples would be on vintage Mantovani records. The best light music is very lyrical and will stick in your brain.

    The music originated in England at the end of the 19th century at beachside concerts. It's heyday was in the 50s, starting with Mantovani's "Charmaine." Then it really took off with American orchestra turning albums out by the ton with this type of music: Morton Gould, Melachrino, etc. Then about the mid 60s when rock drowned out anything with imaginative scoring, tunefulness or fun to listen to.

    Where do we find this genre now? Movie scores and serial TV shows. Those with a romantic theme. Listen to the cues. There are some pretty good composers out there, even though their music cues are buried.

    And this wicked world could use a little light music today
    Okay I have to ask: Why do you like this kind of music?

  5. #5
    Seaman, Mezzoforte
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    I don't know much about classical music of the West but we in India have a strong culture of light music. Based lightly on the Indian classical music, these songs are a delight to hear. In fact most of are film songs are actually light music.
    I do want to hear more on western light music. Can anyone suggest a few references.

  6. #6
    Commander, Assistant Conductor
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    Who or what would be classified as light classical music? Because to me classical music seems so rich, profound etc.
    Jan

  7. #7
    Vice Admiral Virtuoso rojo's Avatar
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    Well, I think the term is from a British style of orchestral music. But the term can be widened to include other classical music as well. I think Strauss waltzes and polkas, Sousa marches and some of Leroy Anderson`s music would apply. Here`s some info -

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Light_music
    ''Music, I feel, should be emotional first and intellectual second.'' - Maurice Ravel
    ''The greatest education in the world is watching the masters at work.'' - Michael Jackson


  8. #8
    Commander, Assistant Conductor
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    Any light music on youtube?
    Jan

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    Administrator Krummhorn's Avatar
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    Herbert von Karajan conducts the Blue Danube Waltz:
    + YouTube Video
    ERROR: If you can see this, then YouTube is down or you don't have Flash installed.
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  10. #10
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    If you're really into light classical, some vintage Hollywood Bowl records are great too - the ones with Carmen Dragon and Felix Slatkin.

  11. #11
    Commodore con Forza Sybarite's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krummhorn View Post
    Herbert von Karajan conducts the Blue Danube Waltz:
    + YouTube Video
    ERROR: If you can see this, then YouTube is down or you don't have Flash installed.
    Wonderful. Thank you for that link.

    I've always understood the term to be as Rojo describes it – and I'd suggest that it's primarily based on snobbery.

    In some ways, you see a similar snobbery from 'rock' fans who are derisive of 'pop'.

    Personally, there are days when I'm in the mood for Strauss and days when I want Mahler, just as I enjoy the Pet Shop Boys one day and the Rolling Stones the next.

    I'd also agree that, in a lot of ways, film music now fits this description. Indeed, on the UK radio channel, Classic FM – generally regarded as 'light classical' – it's a staple part of the playlists.

  12. #12
    Vice Admiral Virtuoso rojo's Avatar
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    Don`t know if it`s based on snobbery per se; I think I would use it as a term to describe shorter, less complex works. Ones that are on a smaller scale as compared to larger, longer or more major works. It works better than say, 'lesser works,' anyway. Or 'minor works.' It`s all just labels anyway.
    ''Music, I feel, should be emotional first and intellectual second.'' - Maurice Ravel
    ''The greatest education in the world is watching the masters at work.'' - Michael Jackson


  13. #13
    Vice Admiral Virtuoso methodistgirl's Avatar
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    I like the blue waltz or blue danube. I fell in love with that waltz when
    I saw the movie 2001 by Arthur C. Clark. I love any kind of waltz and
    you don't have to be a snob to like it.
    judy tooley

  14. #14
    Admiral of Fugues Contratrombone64's Avatar
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    Judy ... the waltz was so popular in 19th century Vienna as to be a long lasting craze.

  15. #15
    Vice Admiral Virtuoso methodistgirl's Avatar
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    I know that this kind of music was the rage during the victorian era.
    The last time I saw someone dance to this piece was on the public
    broadcasting network. To my state it's K.E.T. network. But on this
    show the dancers were wearing blue ballgowns and the male dancers
    were wearing blue tuxes. The music and sight on television was a
    beautiful sight. When the song and dance was over they got a standing
    ovation and I was in tears. I like this song during Christmas. I know
    that these waltzes were popular during the Victorian era.
    judy tooley

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