12/23/2019

Classical music for $100

"No box sets. I know it’s tempting when you can get the complete works of Bach, Mozart, and Brahms for $85.93. But it’s useless to the early-comer in classical music. Not so much because it’s quantity over quality (there are some very high quality dirt-cheap box sets out there) but because it’s an overwhelming quantity. The experience will be like an argument without cohesion; a narrative without structure. Even all the Beethoven Symphonies, just five CDs, is overkill. Experiencing this music for the first time is a piece-by-piece event and needs to be as focused as possible. Too many CDs are more a distraction to that end than they are an aid. The Beethoven Piano Concertos is as close as I’ll come to bending that rule."