Classical music has its own noble history like the rest of the music types. Every culture and tradition has its own form of classical music that is played with the assistance of different instruments. It is a broad, somewhat inexact term, referring to music produced, or rooted in the traditions of art, ecclesiastical and concert music. Classical music is also described as complex, lasting, transcendent, and abstract. While the classical genre might not be everyone’s cup of tea, there’s always a few exceptions to the rue.
Here are five compositions that will make you fall in love with classical music:
1- La Monte Young: Trio for Strings
Being at the center of 1960s counterculture, it's expected that avant-garde composer La Monte Young would experiment with various narcotics. Keith Potter writes in his book Four Musical Minimalists: La Monte Young, Terry Riley, Steve Reich, Philip Glass that Young was particularly fond of cannabis, which led him to discover underlying connections in Stockhausen’s Gruppen and also helped him compose his breakthrough Trio for Strings. However, he warned that smoking up was not as helpful when it came to less creative tasks, such as counting.
2- Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique
One of the most famous hallucinations in all of classical music comes courtesy of Hector Berlioz, an opium user whose Symphonie Fantastique was described by Leonard Bernstein in his Young People’s Concerts as “the first psychedelic symphony in history, the first ever musical description of a trip.” It wouldn’t be the last. The Symphony follows the dream of a lovesick young man who unsuccessfully attempts suicide by opium overdose and instead experiences a series of visions, from ecstatic scenes of love to a nightmarish witches' sabbath. In doing so, the composer set the bar for music written under the influence.
3- Lyapunov: Hashish: An Oriental Symphonic Poem
The title of Sergei Lyapunov’s orchestral work, Hashish: An Oriental Symphonic Poem, pretty much speaks for itself. A student of Tchaikovsky and Sergei Taneyev, Lyaponov (1859-1924) also owes much to Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s Sheherazade for this romanticized depiction of the East. Hashish is a bit of a departure for the composer, who spent much of his career collecting 300 Russian folksongs and incorporating the themes into his works.
4- Leibowitz: Marijuana: Variations non sérieuses
The French conductor, composer and author Rene Leibowitz (1913-1972) is probably best known for his Beethoven recordings which were the first ones to adhere to Beethoven’s metronome markings, along with helping to revive 12-tone writing in post-World War II Europe. But he makes this list with his lesser-known composition, Marijuana: Variations non serieuses, a rather plodding and comical six-minute quartet for piano, violin, vibraphone and trombone.
5- Nico Cartosio: Cocaine March
Nico Cartosio’s latest composition “Cocaine March” was recorded at Abbey Road Studios, with the help of more than 100 artists. The neo-romantic composer who’s mostly known for his Snow Above The Earth music video, has just released yet another captivating video representing the 4 horsemen of the Apocalypse. The title speaks for itself already. “Cocaine March” holds a deep understanding of the world’s misery and portrays a realistic image of our actuality.