...aka "any excuse to buy random music downloads off Amazon.com"
Well, it's October. So next month is November. Which is NaNoWriMo. Which means I should hack out some characters, plots, settings, etc. etc. etc.
But no. Instead I hear a random bit of music on the radio and think "ha ha ha ha ha! That's such a hilarious concerto. Man, that's way more dramatic than my NaNo plot so far." So my first selection this year is Paganini's first violin concerto (and the second concerto, which came on the same album). I downloaded this version:
with Salvatore Accardo. It's an older recording but still my favorite out of the different ones I listened to before buying. Anyway, it starts out so dramatically... it reminds me of an opera... Carl Maria von Weber and Rossini came to my mind... and goes on and on for three minutes, promising some kind of grand entrance (trumpets and all): a god or emperor or something. And then... and then... it's a violin! Yep, all that build-up, and all we get is a violin!? You have got to be kidding me! But the violin just totally pwns. Mwah ha ha ha! But then it does keep going and going and going. I admit to getting bored around the 15 minute mark. Luckily there's only about five more minutes and then we're into the second movement. Again, here we are with the operatic melodrama. This is the super-emo bit where the violin wails and struts about the stage singing about its doomed love affair. Or something. (I have no idea what Paganini was thinking. This is me pretending it's the music for my novel.) Finally we have the last movement: wow, so cute! It's so totally violin-y in a way that only someone like Paganini would write. Adorably non-singable. The second concerto is pretty fun, too. The third movement ("La Campanella") with the little bell is probably the most famous bit. (Cool enough to be borrowed and elaborated by other composers, just like his Caprice No. 24).
Which is all very well and good, but to avoid dying of a violin overdose, I have as my second pick the soundtrack from "Ashes of Time". The only (legal) download I could find was the "Redux" version:
Actually I bought it ages ago, but I haven't listened to it in awhile. Just like the Paganini pieces, the Ashes of Time music turned out to be so awesome that it was borrowed for a bunch of completely unrelated movies/TV series. I know of at least three that I personally watched. It's a little distracting if you remember where the music came from, but you get used to it. The emotional bits are still the emotional bits, even when the story is a different story.
And then we jump back in time to some Vivaldi (Trevor Pinnock leading the English Concert, playing on period instruments):
A massive album. Actually, I only bought the Vivaldi A minor Violin Concerto (RV 356), aka "the one that all the Suzuki students play" (yes, the radio announcer actually said that). And it's so true. My son (not a Suzuki student, but using the Suzuki books) is currently playing this piece, which is why I bought the download. Simon Standage, such a speed demon! (My son was terribly impressed with the third movement.) It is a totally compelling concerto. How can anyone resist? I had to steal the violin from my son and play it myself! His little sister had to steal the music book and try to play it too! And "accidentally" memorize it (at least the opening). Aieee! Back in the day, I was never officially assigned this piece, so I had to sneak out and buy a copy for myself and secretly play it!
Well, we'll see how far this playlist gets me this year.
Now, about the novel planning... umm... uhh... yeah. I'll do that. Honest. I am. I will. I have. Riiiight...