Friday, July 16, 2010

What's Your Favourite Classical Piece?

I listened to Symphony 92.4 FM last night, and it was playing a piece from Johann Pachelbel. Dubbed by the DJ as the one hit wonder by the composer, Canon in D.
It has been quite a while since I last heard it on the radio. Has been my favourite classical piece of all time, it was a love at the first hearing. I heard it first during my A-Level years, from a Baroque collection cassette (okay, that was back during the dino age) produced by EMI (can't remember it was played by which orchestra). I bought the cassette in Ipoh during a short stay at my buddy Akmal Hisham's place (yes, Akmal Hizam's buddy is Akmal Hisham aka Imam).
I was pleasantly mesmerised right from when I heard the opening of the track, with the low notes subtly heard and progressively joined by other strings and it goes up and down and sort of the strings are having a relax and joyful conversation on a splendid summer evening.
It almost seems like it started with a simple 'Hi, how do you do?', and followed by a string of conversation (pun intended) between strangers about things; not too complicated, just plain subjects that everyone would agree upon, instilling harmony in the breezy air. That experience was in Imam's car on the way back to Shah Alam. Well, who doesn't listen to Baroque music, anyway?
Canon is actually quite popular, I'm sure you've heard it too without realising it. It's also the inspiration for numerous other songs, including rap and even rendered in rock, too. Basically because it is quite simple, and being a piece of Baroque music, it is widely acceptable to the 'commoners' ears.
You can find a list of songs derived from Canon in here.
My favourite among them: Coolio's C U When You Get There, a soundtrack from the movie Nothing To Lose (1997).
I heard it live played by string quartets at least twice. One was in front of Boots store in Manchester (at Arndale Centre) with Naza, and another was in London with Amri and Ibu nearby a market. Really breathtaking moments, they were. Goosebumps on both occasions. I bought the self made CD from the London string quartet ZHL String Ensemble, and that's the only Canon I have on a CD. However, I still think the piece rendered by the orchestra in my lost EMI cassette was the best I've heard so far.
Whoever took my Coolio CD single, please return it back to me. You're already forgiven.
links for sheet music, and the electric guitar rendition video clip in Wikipedia's page.

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