Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Moderator: kcleung

ZacPB189
forum adept
Posts: 66
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 6:37 pm
notabot: YES
notabot2: Bot
Location: Wisconsin
Contact:

Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby ZacPB189 » Mon Aug 02, 2010 1:39 pm

I didn't see anything like this yet (though I probably haven't dug deep enough) on the forum. I mean we have threads dedicated our favorite composers and pieces, but let's get to the heart of it. What's you favorite genre (and feel free to include any sub-genres i.e. Orchestral can be symphonic, chamber, etc... Chamber music can be string quartets or piano solo or woodwind ensembles etc, and each time perios has it's own genre as well)? This isn't limited to "Classical" music, either, so stuff such as metal (which, like "classical" music has many sub-genres), pop, rock, etc... Or if your eclectic but there's a certain few genre's you don't like, you're more than welcome to say why you don't like them. Because I started the thread, I'll go first. :mrgreen:

My favorite genres are:

  • Orchestral (Symphonic) because I get to hear how all of the instruments sound in different situations, which is why I like Mahler and Bruckner. This is also one of the reasons I don't like Brahms very much is because his Trumpet writing a terrible and his orchestration was much too "classical/early romantic" in terms of color and texture.
  • Chamber Music (anything Brass+Percussion, Brass+Percussion+Organ, Solo Brass+Organ, with emphasis on Baroque era). This one I'm a little more perticular with in that I'm partial against horn and tuba solos (due to the fact that I was quite literally forced to play them "full time" in Band when I specifically told the directors I only wanted to play them "part time"). As a trumpet player who also plays in my Parishs' Masses (Catholic, if you really care. Not Lutheran or Anglican), I just love the seemingly simple music that floods this genre. That, and I LOVE trills (especially when I'M the one playing them...another reason I love Mahler so much, his brass trills).
  • Celtic New Age. My favorite 3 are Enya, Loreena McKennit, and Enya's sister Moya Brennan. Their voices are just so well used and they can all compose fairly well and make decent arrengements of various folk songs from the Brittish Isles. One of the few times I don't dislike arrangements.
  • Mediaeval choral music. This stuff is so simple and at the same time so complicated. The best part is that there is little to no heavy operetic vibrato in most recordings of these pieces.

My least favorite genres are:

  • Solo Piano/Piano Feature (including concertos). While there are a few piano concertos (Beethoven 5 and Mendelssohn 1), sonatas (any by Mozart), and general solos (I know Enya did a few, and Satie is very good with piano writing) I like, the piano has been used and written for so many times that it just gets old, at least organ solos can use various stops, but piano is just endless hammering of strings. That, and about 70% of concertos are probably for piano, with the rest being given to violin, 'cello, or clarinet, and the scraps going to the trumpet, tuba, harp, english horn, oboe, bassoon, anything contrabass, and so on.
  • Rap (and Hip-Hop). While it used to be a legitimate genre in it's beginning, the mainstream "sex-drugs-gangsta" stuff has polluted it so much that it's extreamly hard to find anything else, and unlike Opera (which is almost always similar in moral topic), there is no musical value outside the rhythm of the words. In it's diffence, it has notable literary value.
  • Country (not Bluegrass or Folksong). While you can clearly hear the words in this genre, most of the songs are like Vivaldi concertos. Once you've listened to a few, you've listened to them all. The instrumentation, the twangy vocals, lyrics talking about the same things, etc...
  • Band (Concert Band, Wind Ensemlbe, Symphonic Band). While I believe that in the far future that Band music will become equally as popular and respected as Orchestra and String Ensemble music, this genre has alsmot no pieces of any value to work with. Anything that's worth playing is usually transcriptions of an already popular non-band pieces, marches, the suites by Holst, and the band pieces of Charles Ives and William Schuman (of which there are too few). With the exception of educational music, everthing, and I mean everything else is the "contemporary" crap that composers such as Ticheli, Granger, Vaughn Williams (his band music), and Rick Kirby. Pierre le Plant is mostly folk medlies otherwise, a very overused band-music technique, and everything by Robert W. Smith is the same thing with different titles. Anyway, I digress and end my rant on this genre.
  • Clarinet Solo/Feature. This one's just because I don't really like the clarinet's sound that much. With the exception of the Bass and lower clarinets, the timbre is just too whiney for me.
  • Marching Band/Pep Band. This genre is just bad arrangements of pop-tunes or poorly writen original pieces that are probably bad arrangements of pop-tunes that were thrown in the trash. This is art at it's lowest point.
ZacPB189

Tr~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~:)

KGill
Copyright Reviewer
Posts: 1289
Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2009 10:16 pm
notabot: 42
notabot2: Human

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby KGill » Mon Aug 02, 2010 2:23 pm

ZacPB189 wrote:at least organ solos can use various stops, but piano is just endless hammering of strings.

OK, but at least the piano can use a hugely varied dynamic range without resorting to a swellbox. And isn't the organ just 'endless blowing through pipes', no matter what stop you use? Piano also probably has a wider textural variety available to it, although I admit that could just be the styles normally associated with it.
Anyway, my personal preference for instrumental combination is the standard string quartet (2 violins, viola, cello). As a composer myself, I can attest to the incredible ease this medium offers in terms of dynamic and textural variation, not to mention the wide timbral possibilities that come with any bowed string instrument. With only four players, it is compact by any standards, and yet capable of as vast an expressive range as the largest orchestra.

vinteuil
Groundskeeper
Posts: 1445
Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2008 3:01 pm
notabot: YES
notabot2: Bot
Location: U.S.A.
Contact:

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby vinteuil » Mon Aug 02, 2010 5:08 pm

I think that a properly written Piano Quartet is a great thing. Quintets can be too heavy sometimes, but Fauré, Saint-Saëns, Brahms, Mendelssohn, and Schumann have shown that the quartet can be a fabulous form.

Also, string quintets. The richness of texture here is very appealing to me.
Those are probably my favorite chamber music genres, at least. However, I think that Song Cycles and Variations (forces don't matter) are my favorites.
Formerly known as "perlnerd666"

pianogirl23
regular poster
Posts: 31
Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2010 11:18 pm
notabot: 42
notabot2: Human

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby pianogirl23 » Mon Aug 02, 2010 7:33 pm

My favorite genres:

Concertos: They are nice to listen to and play (especially ones for cello, violin, and piano).

Operas: They are beautiful and nice to listen to, too, but only when I have some sort of translation or when I know the opera enough to know what's going on (ie. Madame Butterfly, Don Giovanni, etc...)

String quartets: THey are also marvelously beautiful with so many layers and textures. Many composers (ie. Beethoven, Schubert, Mozart, etc....) have expressed wonderful musical ideas through string quartets.

I pretty much like all music, though, except stuff like country, pop, rap, heavy metal, etc... I just don't find the expression and the beauty in those sort of pieces compared to the baroque/classical/romantic/impressionistic/contemporary-style music which has lasted for centuries. (BTW this is just my opinion and I'm not meaning to offend anyone)

Regards,
Pianogirl23
"...Love, love, love that is the soul of a genius..."
~ WA Mozart

allegroamabile
active poster
Posts: 531
Joined: Fri Aug 08, 2008 2:13 am
notabot: 42
notabot2: Human
Location: United States

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby allegroamabile » Mon Aug 02, 2010 11:06 pm

Clarinet Solo/Feature. This one's just because I don't really like the clarinet's sound that much. With the exception of the Bass and lower clarinets, the timbre is just too whiney for me.


:( Maybe you have been listening to bad clarinetists.

You also mentioned that the clarinet get a descent amount of concertos compared to the trumpet and oboe. There are few clarinet concertos that are played, the Mozart, three Weber counting the Concertino, Copland, and Nielsen. The french horn has a ton which I find impressive; four Mozart :shock:, Gliere, two by Richard Strauss, Schumann Konzertstuck (for four horns), Rosetti, etc. I would be in heaven if I had that much written for the instrument I played. :wink: Trumpet does not have a shortage of them as well; Haydn, Telemann, Vivaldi, Hummel, and Handel. I don't mean to change the topic and all but I thought I should throw in my two cents being a clarinetist.

I like chamber music the best due to the intamacy it provides. I prefer strings, like in works by Brahms, Dvorak, Borodin, etc. I am listening as I write to the first movment of Oskar Bohme's Trumpet Sextet in E-flat minor. The intimacy in this piece is wonderful, especially being written for brass which have a reputation for being rather outward. Another chamber work I like for brass is Victor Ewald's Brass Quintet No. 1. The last movement is amazing.

Another thing chamber music provides where symphonic music does not as much is the wealth of rich melodies which are displayed throughout chamber works. I get the feeling that composers tend to worry too much about orchestration when it comes to writing for the symphony, and tend to leave out long melodic lines.

I would say I like violin music the best, which is ironic for me being a wind player. The composers I like wrote many of their pieces for violin, which is probably the best reason why I prefer the instrument's music.

steltz
active poster
Posts: 1852
Joined: Sat Dec 13, 2008 2:30 pm
notabot: 42
notabot2: Human

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby steltz » Tue Aug 03, 2010 6:20 am

I agree with Allegroamabile, Zac, I think you've been listening to the wrong clarinettists, though if your history is one of band, that might explain it. Try listening to the Mozart Clarinet Concerto with one of the really top-notch players: Sabine Meyer, Robert Marcellus, etc. (there are many good ones, actually).

Any instrument can have good and bad--I generally don't like organ music, because it is too often played by people who took the organ because they weren't succeeding on piano. They become button-pushers playing with no expression. When I hear a really good organist, though, it becomes a different thing altogether . . . . .

My preferences are chamber and symphonic (including concertos), though I can also like choral music when I'm not sitting close enough to hear individual voices (which doesn't happen when I'm sitting inside the orchestra :lol: ). To a lesser extent solo. When the mood hits me, Renaissance madrigals with lute.

Mostly I find my preferences change according to what I'm working with at the time. If I'm doing a lot of solo stuff, I need to "get away" and do something else. So preferences are pretty fluid. Keeps it interesting!
bsteltz

ZacPB189
forum adept
Posts: 66
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 6:37 pm
notabot: YES
notabot2: Bot
Location: Wisconsin
Contact:

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby ZacPB189 » Tue Aug 03, 2010 3:18 pm

Actually, I've heard some amazing clarinettists; I just don't like the sound very much, with the exception of the bass and contrabass. Usually, when composing, if I want a woodwind solo at that range, I'll write it for English Horn, which has the most beautiful tone of all the instruments, I think :mrgreen: . And I'm not partial against non-brass chamber music, it's just not my favorite stuff, just like string ensemble music. :)
ZacPB189



Tr~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~:)

aldona
active poster
Posts: 384
Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2007 11:09 pm
notabot: 42
notabot2: Human
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby aldona » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:43 pm

Reminds me of the old quote (can't remember off the top of my head who was responsible for it)..."there's only two things worse than a clarinet, and that is two clarinets." :lol:

My favorite genres/ sub-genres:

1. Lieder. Not just Schubert, but any art songs. I also like a lot of songs by Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann and others. A Polish friend who sings soprano has recently introduced me to Chopin and Moniuszko songs. (Moniuszko = the "Polish Schubert". 8) :D ).
I could never figure out why this form of music always pushed all of my buttons and spoke my language (since I was a child). On reflection I think it's because my dad is a musician and my mum writes poetry. Hence the fusion of the two art-forms seems to be uniquely "me".
When I'm in piano-playing mode, I get much more satisfaction from accompanying a Lieder-singer than from performing even the best solos I'm capable of.

2. Chamber music.
3. Choral music.
“all great composers wrote music that could be described as ‘heavenly’; but others have to take you there. In Schubert’s music you hear the very first notes, and you know that you’re there already.” - Steven Isserlis

allegroamabile
active poster
Posts: 531
Joined: Fri Aug 08, 2008 2:13 am
notabot: 42
notabot2: Human
Location: United States

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby allegroamabile » Tue Aug 03, 2010 10:23 pm

I forgot to mention that I do like symphonic music. I prefer a less dense orchestra, so I am too crazy with the Mahler, Bruckner, and Richard Strauss orchestral works. Brass is good on some parts, but when used too much I feel it can drown out the whole orchestra. Russians write for brass very well; they use them in good spots which I find are very appropriate.

I like choral works with orchestra, especially Dvorak's Mass, Te Deum, Saint Ludmila, and Requiem. I don't listen to that much Baroque music, but I do like Handel's Coronation Anthems and the oratorio, The Triumph of Time and Truth. What a majestic title!

I would say my favorite period is Romanticism, especially the Russian Nationalistic movement. I love Russian folk music, especially when it is used in works by Balakirev, Glazunov, Borodin, Lyapunov, etc. It is so passionate and emotional, and very recognizable. I would say my favorite ethnic group of composers would be the Russians.

ZacPB189
forum adept
Posts: 66
Joined: Wed Aug 13, 2008 6:37 pm
notabot: YES
notabot2: Bot
Location: Wisconsin
Contact:

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby ZacPB189 » Tue Aug 03, 2010 11:52 pm

allegroamabile wrote:I forgot to mention that I do like symphonic music. I prefer a less dense orchestra, so I am too crazy with the Mahler, Bruckner, and Richard Strauss orchestral works.


This seems to be a very unfortunate mistake that a good number of people make. Bruckner didn't call for extreamly big orchestras. Sure, his last 3 symphonies have Wagner Tubas and the last 2 have triple winds instead of pairs, but that was really the most Bruckner did. In fact, Bruckner and Brahms usually used very similar instrumentations. Heck, those two were almost alike, if not for their polar opposite personalities. The biggest difference is that Bruckner was a church based composer, and that Brahms was a more secular based composer. I personally think you'd probably like Bruckner's motets and earlier works, Allegro A.
----
I forgot to mention that I'm also enjoy Symphonic + Choral music for the same reason I like symphonic-orchestral music. My preferred are Bieber's Missa Salbergenisis, Bruckner's Te Deum, Helgoland, Psalm 112 and 150, and Requiem, and Brian's 1st Symphony (the Gothic), as well as most of Elgar's choir + orchestra music and all of Mahler's works including choir (It's ashame Mahler's opera was destroyed, because it would have been amazing).

Period wise, though, I have to say Baroque and late Renissance, when surround sound in Church music was quite literal :mrgreen: . In terms of orchestration, the late romantic isn't far behind.
ZacPB189



Tr~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~:)

vinteuil
Groundskeeper
Posts: 1445
Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2008 3:01 pm
notabot: YES
notabot2: Bot
Location: U.S.A.
Contact:

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby vinteuil » Wed Aug 04, 2010 3:47 am

ZacPB189 wrote:
allegroamabile wrote:I forgot to mention that I do like symphonic music. I prefer a less dense orchestra, so I am too crazy with the Mahler, Bruckner, and Richard Strauss orchestral works.


This seems to be a very unfortunate mistake that a good number of people make. Bruckner didn't call for extreamly big orchestras. Sure, his last 3 symphonies have Wagner Tubas and the last 2 have triple winds instead of pairs, but that was really the most Bruckner did. In fact, Bruckner and Brahms usually used very similar instrumentations. Heck, those two were almost alike, if not for their polar opposite personalities. The biggest difference is that Bruckner was a church based composer, and that Brahms was a more secular based composer. I personally think you'd probably like Bruckner's motets and earlier works, Allegro A./quote]
Actually, even coming from a Mahler-hater's standpoint, Mahler's orchestration is most often very thin (actually, Mahler and Schoenberg are depressingly similar in almost every way...except Schoenberg's better :D).
Formerly known as "perlnerd666"

dwil9798
active poster
Posts: 142
Joined: Wed Jul 16, 2008 6:43 pm

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby dwil9798 » Wed Aug 04, 2010 4:26 am

Favorite genre would have to be opera. Opera combines every element of music into one single art-form. It encompasses all that I love about music. I like several of Rameau's and Handel's operas, as well as Orfeo ed Euridice by Gluck, but not many other Baroque operas. German opera is my favorite, but I also really enjoy Russian operas. I don't mind Italian opera, like some Verdi and Puccini. I also love symphonic music, and being a pianist, the piano is my favorite solo instrument as well as for concertos.

I love all types of classical music, but my very favorite music is pretty much Wagner and into the twentieth century. I especially like lesser known, but still often recognized composers. Right now I'm listening to quite a bit of Schrecker, Othmar Schoeck, and Reynaldo Hahn.

I'd say my least favorite genres are the bel canto and verismo styles of italian opera. I find most of that very boring, and too reliant on "money notes".

Gesamtkunstwerk
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Aug 04, 2010 6:58 pm
notabot: 42
notabot2: Human

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby Gesamtkunstwerk » Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:29 pm

Yes, opera is one of my favorite genres too. Although I love all genres of (classical) music and don't believe one genre is "better" than any other, it's true that opera is the "total art form." It has endless possibilities and can combine almost every element of art: orchestral and vocal music, drama, story, dance, visual art and design, spectacle, etc. I'm especially interested in grand romantic opera (as you can probably tell by my username), such as those by Wagner (of course) and Strauss!

Even though I'm not a serious pianist, I also do think pianos are one of the most effective instruments for concertos, since they aren't necessarily standard orchestral instruments and their sound is very distinctive against the background of the orchestra.

Symphonic music from the romantic period forward is great too!

sbeckmesser
active poster
Posts: 501
Joined: Tue May 19, 2009 5:23 pm
notabot: 42
notabot2: Human

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby sbeckmesser » Thu Aug 05, 2010 11:40 pm

While from my handle you could probably tell that opera is my favorite genre, it is just one among many. Here are a couple of others for which I have a deep affection:

1. Songs for voice and piano (or some other single accompanying instrument) in English. While I'm perfectly comfortable listening to Lieder and chansons in the original, there's something even more personal about a song when it's in my native language. And the solo song itself is to me the most intimate of genres, even more than solo instrumental works and even though songs usually have accompaniment.

2. Religious choral polyphony from the period between Dunstaple and Dufay and up through Josquin and Ockeghem. I find this music to have a more appealing balance between polyphonic complexity and rhythmic interest than music either immediately before or after this era. Ah, for the good old days, before the Council of Trent . . .

--Sixtus
Last edited by sbeckmesser on Mon Aug 09, 2010 2:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

vinteuil
Groundskeeper
Posts: 1445
Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2008 3:01 pm
notabot: YES
notabot2: Bot
Location: U.S.A.
Contact:

Re: Favorite Genre(s) and Why

Postby vinteuil » Fri Aug 06, 2010 12:02 am

sbeckmesser wrote:2. Religious choral polyphony from the period between Dunstaple and Dufay and up through Josquin and Ockeghem. I find this music to have a more appealing balance between polyphonic complexity and rhythmic interest than music either before or after this era. Ah, for the good old days, before the Council of Trent . . .
--Sixtus

Walter Frye is a fairly recent discovery of mine, and I like it a lot...but...I really like Lassus, Victoria, and Palestrina. And Cabezón, but he's a Josquin epigone, basically.
Formerly known as "perlnerd666"


Return to “Music Related”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest