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CLASSICAL PIANO/REPERTOIRE: Recordings
THOUGHTS OF A CLASSICAL PIANIST: My Classical Piano Blog
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Thursday, August 18, 2022
While Felix Mendelssohn has nice melodies, they don't evoke deep emotions. They are light and happy on the surface, but sometimes - that is enough. Basically - how a songwriter can compose a simple song about everyday things such as coffee to an upbeat or catchy melody. It would be a nice break. However - Mendelssohns' Rondo Cappricioso has a very dreamy, waltz-y atmosphere (you can probably hear several different composers in this one, if at all). After all - his most famous melodies are the Wedding March and from "A Midsummer Night's Dream".
"The Rainbow Connection" is a known melody from one of the Muppet movies back in the day. It's very sentimental - looking forward to Lang Lang's music video. Could be visually nice.
Wednesday, August 17, 2022
Favorite fried chicken: Jollibee (over Popeyes). Favorite fast food burger: Five Guys (over In-N-Out, even moreso since this place is only available in 1 or 2 states).
Social media has gotten to the point where everyone is just competing against each other for views, followers. And they end up relying on that to become famous, make money, etc. While networking / being social or outgoing helps, they are not guarantees. While having a lot of followers helps, they are not guarantees. What happened to the days where you just have them to mainly communicate with others or your friends, family, acquaintances and share your interests / share who you are. Instead - social media has become a negative machine used mainly to become famous and belittle / step on others.
What to do when it's hot - find a nice cove or area near a cold, clear river / lake (mountain lake perferrably where the water looks clear / pristine) to swim or picnic at, or go to a water park (ideal - but it can get crowded as hell).
Tuesday, August 16, 2022
I heard about Simu Liu in a possible "The Simpsons" episode. I'm surprised that the show is even continuing to run (I thought it had ended a few years ago), but why not. Who can't get enough of the "The Simpsons", which started / re-ignited cravings for Donuts haha.
Jo Koy's "Easter Sunday" is something I'd be interested in watching. From any indications of the trailer, it looks hilarious. Sometimes, down-to-earth stories involving family conflict / strife can make for funny stuff. Especially that this is an Asian-centric film (Philippine Culture specifically). I have to babysit while my wife watches it in the theater with friends. Perhaps in return, she'll agree to rent "Don't Make Me Go" (starring John Cho) on Amazon Prime? haha. It's a worth a shot.
There isn't anything worth watching in terms of films this year - this year has been lackluster in terms of films to look forward to. I only saw "Everything Everywhere All At Once", and that was worth every penny. After that, there is only handful to rent as I've listed (but unfortunately, I cannot watch them all). "Don't Make Me Go" would be the next to rent.
Saturday, August 13, 2022
Further proof that J.S Bach's "Goldberg Variations" is not meant for sleep-inducing. I got only up to Var. 15 before my 6-month old was getting fussier and fussier. Probably my playing haha. Well - up to Var. 10, she had that blank stare. Anyway - going through this in its entirety is further practice for me in finger agility and stamina. So I'll continue with it.
I'm not second guessing any musician's cover of a song - in fact, they are sometimes more preferrable (especially parodies haha). It's the original that I despise or hate, whichever suck-ass / lame band it comes from haha. Well, most modern day bullshit band / singers at least (except if it's Elton John, Billy Joel or Phil Collins - then it's the cover singer who suck ass haha. That trifecta of classical oldies can be sung over and over. Over and over.). This is why I prefer a Youtube musican's / content creators original compositions or songs rather than covers - etc. Goh Nakamura, Tomo Nakayama, etc. Andrew Huang is no exception - "Rappin' Without The Letter E" is still my favorite to this day.
Friday, August 12, 2022
Classical Live Stream concerts (mostly ones that are free), are very rare. Unfortunately, I missed Lang Lang's performance in Salzburg (time zone differences can really put a damper on viewing these things - any live streamers would know). And it's a one-chance only deal where you cannot go back and watch it (it's removed once finished). I'm not sure what he performed, except it's repertoire that is different. I think it's important to have a diverse repertoire. It definitely speaks volumes about a musician's versatility. However - I have no shame in admitting that I do not like or I am not inspired at all by certain pieces or composers, regions, or whatever. To each their own I guess.
Leo Vice aka "The Lion Emperor" on The Steebee Weebee Show. It's absolutely important to continue to talk about stereotypes, and continue to break them down.
Jo Koy's "Easter Sunday" is a possibility (at least for my wife). And I heard Jimmy O. Yang is in it - probably a minor role. Sorry, Bobby Lee - you were too stubby / fat, "shifty", and "Too Asian" to be considered haha. It's ok - I was in the same boat in other situations (as far as being "Too Asian" is concerned). I hope you get invited to "something" or "anything" eventually.
Wednesday, August 10, 2022
The sudden proliferation of Sungwon Cho skits is heaven - they are quick, and to the point. No need to waste time, and drag a video out haha. Sungwon mentioned he only does them when he feels like it, the way it should be. He's not obligated at all - I'm sure he prefers board game videos and "try all this" type of food videos. Speaking of which, almost every foodie out there is doing "try all this at this place" video. It has become too saturated and uninteresting - as if anyone can do it. It's easy views and money for a lot of foodie or mukbang Youtubers.
I'm still debating whether I should temporarily sign up to Amazon Prime to watch John Cho in "Don't Make Me Go". I just despise signing up or registering for any shit.
I just browsed through a reference score of Horowitz' transcription on themes from Bizet's Carmen (I did have a listen to an RCA recording long ago - astounding and very technical. Sounds like an improvisation off of the Habanera theme). Now this is a challenge. Well, I guess any Liszt transcription / paraphrase is a challenge - in terms of having patience and discipline.
Monday, August 08, 2022
I think State Fairs or even Street Fairs can be more fun or appealing than actual Amusement Parks - in terms of food vendors at least haha. Food is what makes Fairs in my opinion, because who doesn't love food. Just don't tell Nikocado or the HFC - there'd be none left hahaha. C'mon, Tim Chantarangsu - are you just going to sit there and take it. Are you going to let that "Cuban" (or whatever the fuck he is) special guest think you're Korean - "Let me guess, You're Korean"? hahaha.
Saturday, August 06, 2022
Well, I wasn't expecting an Ethan Klein guest spot on TigerBelly but what a surprise. I guess the "beef" over the Mole incident can rival the Choe beef - the ultimate freakout podcast video haha. It's ok, Bobby Lee. I have moles, skin tags - never got them removed and don't give a shit. But - they are not big-ass moles as what Bobby Lee had. Hell - I would've noticed it and commented on it myself hahaha. Just don't tell Ethan about your Foot Fungus haha. I would like to see an Ethan Klein vs. Nikocado (btw - he's back! probably took a break to patch up his relationship) wrasslin' match.
For music production videos / music videos that are both entertaining and informative: Andrew Huang. For skits that are both entertaining and informative - Sungwon Cho ProZD.
I am putting together tips or suggestions in learning a piece:
1. Listen to a piece from a performer first and get to know / familiarize the melody. If inspired or interested, proceed to step 2.
2. Learn the notes and dynamics.
3. Once learned, interpret the piece in a way that move / inspires you without overdoing it.
4. Memorize the piece (if performing or just as a bonus). *Memorization is another skillset - some can memorize a piece right away or unconsciously, while others like myself need to focus on a piece more (only did it for "Un Sospiro" so far). Which is why I prefer just using the sheet music, since my mind is all over the place. There is nothing wrong using it - as long as you don't stop or get interrupted for too long. If you can make the performance still flow seamlessly, by all means use the sheet music.
Thursday, August 04, 2022
I prefer Andrew Huang's original compositions or songs rather than any reworks or covers. Still - his production / music gear tips, tricks and other information is useful and makes his videos entertaining. Even though I have no idea what he's talking about - since I am not a music production enthusiast / composer / song writer.
I am looking forward to a Schubert Adagio piece. On paper - it appears complex. Once you get in the groove or the hang of it, it is heavenly. Actually, I look at this piece like a poem or poetry. Or a Nocturne. It unfolds as such to me.
Tuesday, August 02, 2022
Who has steadier hands than Sungwon Cho for his skits haha. Even with one of them hand-held selfie stick thingies (no idea what they are called), a lot of creators still tend to have the shakes most of the time. Or have their thumbs get in the way of the picture or video, Beavis & Butt-Head style haha. I would fail miserably. For us - we should just stick with tripods.
I look out for podcast topics or subjects when it is just like an everyday conversation or ramblings. When you talk about how Elon Musk's titties are bigger than Nancy Pelosi's hahaha. Or when you compare weird head sizes / shapes. Roll call - D-So has a big, alien head. P.Riley has a tiny head. Nick The Ear - can't say, his Ears are too big to even notice his head haha. Others (the no-neck tier): Bobby Lee has a big, fat head. Danny Cho has a big, ugly head. And the finale - Doc Willis has a Covid-shaped head with a touch of a Grimace or Hamburglar hahaha.
Saturday, July 30, 2022
I thought Lang Lang's new video track would be "Poor Unfortunate Souls" from "The Little Mermaid" haha. You know, that Fat Ursula sea w (b)itch (commonly mistaken for the HFC) hahaha. That has a catchy beat to it, with more possibilities.
After the Goldberg Variations, a Schubert piece and Brahms might be next. I've been practicing them on and off, but practicing.
You know somebody is guilty or if something is staged / faked (a bike thief sketch for instance) if the excuse is "My brother / mother / father / uncle or whatever Gave It To Me" hahaha. My favorites - The Tire Busters fiasco, and the Fat lady at the drive-thru not leaving unti she gets her sauce. Give her damn sauce already! hahaha.
Friday, July 29, 2022
Some very important points in playing music or anyone wanting to perform - efficient practicing habits (know your repertoire to practice or themes beforehand - it'll give that extra kick if you have a sense for the theme of the day), confidence / believing in yourself, and of course - passion / dedication to the craft. A pianist's or a musician's development is different for everyone. But here is the thing - anyone or everyone has the potential. It depends on how dedicated / passionate you are. I think any concert pianist can tell you that it takes a certain amount of discipline / hard work (and some luck) to have a career. It is not an easy path. As a consolation, even just playing as a hobby or for enjoyment should be more than enough - as long as it affects your life in a positive, enlightening way. And to others as well.
When social media platforms such as Twitter, video platforms such as Youtube (to some extent) and now Instagram are trying to force followers to click on "suggested content" (as well as annoy the content creator themselves), you know things are getting more corrupt. Really - they are more like "Throw In The Garbage / Auto-Delete" content. You have to minimize / re-size your browser window so you don't have to see that or accidentally mis-click (which these platforms hope you would do). Especially Twitter - the "more tweet" section randomly shows irrelevant crap. And "Their trending" section - that can be avoided by re-sizing your browser window to completely hide it. I'll never sign up for these. If anything, I'll look for newer platforms or innovative ones that can eventually challenge the existing ones in the future (if at all). "Jesus, God, Buddha, Vishnu, help me wregheeh" hahaha.
Thursday, July 28, 2022
Could that "Popeyes" baby be one of the cutest thing ever - a pudgy baby (or "Lookin' Like The Michelin Baby or The Stay Puft Baby" haha") jabbing at some Popeyes container with chicken, as if the baby is either pissed off at it or wants to devour the whole thing.
Jay Chou's new album could be the "greatest" of his albums - but I haven't really had the chance to listen to his older ones. I became a part-time fan of Jay Chou via his collaboration with Lang Lang in the "Dream" video. And then his "J-Style Trip" show introduced his Magic / Illusion prowess. Sorry, Ryan Hayashi. I think he can one-up you.
Only Var. 26 is left! I might get to a Schubert or a Hisaishi piece before being able to polish Var. 26.
Awesome news - the Forward Party merging with some formidable groups to form a major, legit third party. (It's The New Voltron Crew - Ready For Battle haha). It's about time - change is coming, and change is inevitable. The way things are, the status quo has always been complacent and apathetic. Things would never change the way they are. It's absolutely true for any demographics. If you want to get things done, you have to do it or create for yourself.
Tuesday, July 26, 2022
So we're playing the guessing game - it's always fun. Lang Lang's new track announcement, and what the Forward Party's announcement is. For the new track, I would say a track from the "The Little Mermaid" (the bluish color in the video picture / and what appears to be showing seafood in another picture could be clues). Or it could be something entirely unexpected, like Aladdin (the cartoonish blue genie anyone? haha).
As for the Forward Party's announcement, it could be a collaboration / partnership of some sort, or a new venture / project, or a new video / advertisement of some sort. I highly doubt that Andrew Yang is considering running again. If at all - it might be somone from the party. First off - the issue of getting a third party on the ballot is an obstacle.
For me, little annoyances such as "do this", "do that", "why this", "why that" are enough reasons for me to break off any relationship. Under normal circumstances, I would be much happier being independent and without a partner. Simply because I could think, say and act as I want to. I still do in private haha. But the reality is - being a parent and having a spouse are life-changers, and have changed me. Other than having a caregiver as well, which is a benefit haha.
Monday, July 25, 2022
C-Mac or Mac Eats / Mac Talks, said it well - "embrace the pain". It's the only way to move on and be happy / or at peace. Or turn it into something positive. This is why I stick to music as an identity - it is soothing and therapeutic. I think the "Goldberg Variations" has a permanent place in my heart. It's not just beautiful music to me - it's also sort of like a journey. A theme that is turned into a variety of different forms that can evoke certain emotions. I'm ultimately looking forward to Var. 26.
Sunday, July 24, 2022
The Video Game Pianist does not stream often or frequently (due to a busy schedule I reckon), but it's always nice when there is an upload. So what is Lang Lang's new video about? If I had to guess, it's another track from his new album - perhaps from "The Little Mermaid"? Considering the coloring.
I don't enjoy crowds nor gatherings. Hell - I don't even enjoy being around people in general. But when food is involved, who knows haha. At any rate - it is only a very rare occurrence that I attend anything like this. Sometimes, I have to be more flexible.
Saturday, July 23, 2022
A personal journey can be either literal, figurative or metaphorical. In the case of Munko Roland, he's apparently hiking across this country. Good luck! Definitely watch out for treacheries (actually, I'm not sure who that Munko is in the Choe clip or video). I just went through the entire Goldberg Variations during yesterday's practice, sort of in a semi-finished form. As I said, Var. 26 is going to take time - essentially, on how I want to express it.
I'm taking a break from Podcasts - not the "obsessively listening" all day, everyday I used to do. Sometimes, podcasts can get stale (at least uninteresting and irrelevant in the topics / subject matters) and you just need to take a break - unless there is something that's to my taste or relevant. In the meantime, I'm lookin' out for new Sungwon Cho skits, witty / sarcastic tweets from the Music Production Guru Andrew Huang, and Munko revelations / epiphanies. See ya, wouldn't want to be ya.
Friday, July 22, 2022
There are reports breaking out about Simu Liu in a relationship. He has been very silent or absent on social media these days - I'm sure still doing a press tour for his new book, and some new films coming out. One tweet that I think was clue - "She doesn't like cooking her food at the table" - could that be her, and didn't any of Simu's followers get that? I guess not. If I were Simu, I'd just focus on my career. Take relationships with a grain of salt - chances are, the person might be using you for some nefarious or self-serving reasons. But hey - if it works out, it works out. If not, then fugheddaboutit. Most eventually will just get sick and tired of each other, get on each others' nerves, etc. Having a Part-Time relationship might be better off. Unless the said person is committed in being a Caregiver as well haha.
I initially reacted negatively to Shane Gillis' controversial, "racist" comedic act without getting to know the person. He came out and appeared to be sincere about this whole ordeal - probably only after getting axed from SNL. Some folks never learn however. In this society, most can't be trusted to begin with. When they say these things or when accidents come out, that's exactly who they are. Just take a look at any hollywood fucks. No wonder why prejudices and discrimination still happen - especially in the lowly sci-fi genre. But I trust Andrew Yang, and the folks who say Shane isn't like that. Can I call you "Suga" Shane Gillis? haha. Why is Suga attached to every Shane guy haha. It just comes off as smooth.
I think playing a piece on any instrument (whether it's a violin or a piano) with or without having to be inspired first, is a type of talent or skillset in of itself. For me - I need to be inspired by the melody first or find purpose. If you feel light and happy, play light / happy piece. If you had a traumatic life and just want to share, play sorrowful pieces. I think the danger is that the emotions can overwhelm you sometimes, and affect your life.
Wednesday, July 20, 2022
Here are some interviews with John Cho on his new film and issues involving Asian-Americans in film:
"Don't Make Me Go" should be the next film to watch - not sure if I'll find time, or convince my wife (very particular about saving money and it's only rentable on Prime). I already have a hefty must-watch list, but the reality is I won't get to all of them."Yes" To "NOPE"? "NOPE" is another film perhaps - if anything, since Bobby Lee was actually invited! hahaha. Among others: "The Humans", "After Yang", "A Shot Through The Walls" (all on different platforms).
Monday, July 18, 2022
Rented / watched "Everything Everywhere All At Once" last night, and it was one heck of a fun movie and more - my thoughts on my Film Forum page.
Comedy Central needs to pick up the new Beavis & Butt-Head somehow. Two shows on there that are worth watching - "Drunk History" and "Key & Peele" (how did I just find out about these guys (masters of parody), after all - what can top their "Slap Ass' skit hahaha).