John Heaton (jheaton) wrote,
John Heaton


Poking around Spotify today, I found that I could listen to a radio station based on a choral work I dearly love, Psalm XLVII by the French composer Florent Schmitt. You've probably never heard it, but it dates to the early 20th century, and like many such works, it's pretty out there. If you're familiar with Stravinsky's Rite of Spring, that'll give some idea of what it's like. I couldn't imagine what a radio station based on it would sound like, so I gave it a listen.

As it turns out, Spotify can't imagine it either, because I didn't hear anything that was more than vaguely reminiscent of Psalm 47 or anything else I've ever heard by Schmitt. For example, they playing a cover of John Lennon's "Jealous Guy" by Yasushi Ide and Tony Joe White, and it had about as much in common with Psalm XLVII as, to name two things that happen to be sitting nearby, a twist tie and a water bottle. They did play one jazz number that was reminded me a bit of some of the works for saxophone Schmitt recorded, but I don't believe there are any saxophones in Psalm XLVII.

So I gave up on that and just listened to Psalm XLVII. I recommend you do the same. It's good for what ails ya.

This recording is by Orchestre National de l'ORTF, under the direction of Jean Martinon. The soprano is Andréa Guiot. Be aware that the work in its entirety is a little over 27 minutes. I know the player says it's only 8:39, but it was uploaded to YouTube in three parts. I created a playlist containing all three parts, and when the player reaches the end of one part, it will automatically go to the next. You probably won't even notice it happening, unless you're watching the player for some reason.)

Tags: music: classical, videos

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