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Topic: Brahms - Piano Concerto #1 - Dm - 3rd Movement

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  1. #1
    Senior Member sd cisco's Avatar
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    Brahms - Piano Concerto #1 - Dm - 3rd Movement

    Hello again, I am back so soon with another tune! This is partially spurred on due to the thought and attention given to the "Piano Concerto", here on the Forum.
    The Brahms Piano Concerto #1 in D minor, was written when the composer was in his twenties. Most musical historians attribute the inspiration for the work to the affection Brahms had for Clara Schumann, wife of composer and friend, Robert Schumann. The second movement is where he really gets into that, but the third movement, presented here, is not so much lovesick as it is a brilliant display of the youthful strength Brahms possessed. In short it is a powerful piece of music and one which presses the GPO4 and Authorized Steinway to the limits, I do believe. Again, the voice management was very taxing. The file was first 'humanized" by importing it into the Studio One DAW, then exported out and brought into Cubase. I know the purists who are familiar with this piece may find the tempo, especially at the beginning, to be too fast. My apologies to you if that is the case. If you start referencing other performances of the music, you will see it is often played slower, but the version I first heard, was played by Alfred Brendel and he definitely took it at a gallop. So, I don't like it slower, I like it faster, and that's the way I did it.
    The woodwinds play a big role in Brahms' orchestra, just like with Beethoven. The flutes and bassoons, as used by Brahms, constitutes his "signature" sound, IMHO. Here, it was very easy to have the piano get halfway lost in the mix with the orchestra, so when I did this, I kept the volume slider for the piano tracks (2) very active, so as to meet the challenge of the orchestra. Just like everything else, I know this render is not perfect. As with the Beethoven 5th, this piece has been beckoning since I first had the Garritan instruments, but only now have I finally been able to put it together. See what you think
    Best regards,
    sd cisco

    http://www.box.com/s/i8zh14mgha4a6yb6160q

  2. #2

    Re: Brahms - Piano Concerto #1 - Dm - 3rd Movement

    Tempo is a little bit too fast...
    Other than that, good job.

  3. #3
    Senior Member sd cisco's Avatar
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    Re: Brahms - Piano Concerto #1 - Dm - 3rd Movement

    Quote Originally Posted by Symphonynumbertwo View Post
    Tempo is a little bit too fast...
    Other than that, good job.
    ..........are you sure? It could just be the power of suggestion at work here? Nonetheless, thanks for listening and commenting and I appreciate it!

    sd cisco

  4. #4

    Re: Brahms - Piano Concerto #1 - Dm - 3rd Movement

    Sounds nice! I love that music. Overall good work on the programming. It must have been quite an undertaking. The tempo seems to be ok, but it can feel a bit quick because the instrument isn't "breathing" properly, at least not all the time. Give it some extra microseconds before/on/after certain notes and phrases to make it even more organic.

    Thanks for posting.
    Halvor


  5. #5

    Re: Brahms - Piano Concerto #1 - Dm - 3rd Movement

    I second to symphonynumbertwo.

    Saw some on Youtube, the tempo is somewhat slower. Allegro non troppo.
    I personally own one recording by Ashkenazy on the piano. That track is 12:36, and yours, over 9 min.
    Somehow the strings and winds are too "close" for comfort. The solo piano is realistic though.

  6. #6

    Re: Brahms - Piano Concerto #1 - Dm - 3rd Movement

    This is one of my favorite concertos. I like the faster tempi. Maybe a bit less, but still this is Brahms in his youth (all "Sturm und Drang"), when not yet converted to a crumpy old man. Don't believe it, but I don't have a recording this work. You did a fine job, still it is Garritan Orchestral library, nothing wrong with it, but limited. By the way which Piano setting did you use? IT sounds so bright in the lower registers!!! Wonderful.

    Raymond

  7. #7
    Senior Member sd cisco's Avatar
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    Re: Brahms - Piano Concerto #1 - Dm - 3rd Movement

    Quote Originally Posted by halvor View Post
    Sounds nice! I love that music. Overall good work on the programming. It must have been quite an undertaking. The tempo seems to be ok, but it can feel a bit quick because the instrument isn't "breathing" properly, at least not all the time. Give it some extra microseconds before/on/after certain notes and phrases to make it even more organic.

    Thanks for posting.
    Thanks for listening and commenting! I call it, "The Final Frontier", trying to bridge the gap between virtual and real!

    take care,
    sd cisco

  8. #8
    Senior Member sd cisco's Avatar
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    Re: Brahms - Piano Concerto #1 - Dm - 3rd Movement

    Quote Originally Posted by tweirdo View Post
    I second to symphonynumbertwo.

    Saw some on Youtube, the tempo is somewhat slower. Allegro non troppo.
    I personally own one recording by Ashkenazy on the piano. That track is 12:36, and yours, over 9 min.
    Somehow the strings and winds are too "close" for comfort. The solo piano is realistic though.
    tweirdo
    the piece is not always started out so slow, just with some performances. I can only go by my own tastes and what I know. I feel it sounds quite dreadful the slower it is played. The strings and winds in the piece represent the biggest challenge, as Brahms really uses the winds especially, and inspite of all the classical renders I have done so far, getting this one close to right is a pretty tall order. the way Brahms uses the winds is very fluid and expressive, and reliant upon a good balance with the strings. For the strings on this, I used individual instruments to build the sections, not just the preset sections. I mixed just the winds and just the strings first, before trying them together, which then requires further tweaking and so on. You would need to be sitting at your DAW, with the midi file for this open and RTG, then see for yourself what happens to the melodic structure in certain places when you slow it down. There are a couple of spots where I would likely slow it down, if I was going to. You should clearly understand, what I posted here is the last in a string of at least a dozen variants on assorted stylistic elements, including tempo. It is not that I did not experiment. Among the collection of renders I have completed of this piece, there may be one which fits your sensibilities like a glove. But I had to settle on the one that seemed to have the best balance of virtue and flaw.

    Best regards,
    sd cisco

  9. #9
    Senior Member sd cisco's Avatar
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    Re: Brahms - Piano Concerto #1 - Dm - 3rd Movement

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymond62 View Post
    This is one of my favorite concertos. I like the faster tempi. Maybe a bit less, but still this is Brahms in his youth (all "Sturm und Drang"), when not yet converted to a crumpy old man. Don't believe it, but I don't have a recording this work. You did a fine job, still it is Garritan Orchestral library, nothing wrong with it, but limited. By the way which Piano setting did you use? IT sounds so bright in the lower registers!!! Wonderful.

    Raymond
    Thank you, Raymond. I just used the Basic of the piano, with the sustain and sympathetic resonance on and the tone and ambiance turned off. The reverb is a Cubase specific plug-in, just sort of medium room but only about 30% of the way up on the slider, One thing that is likely a factor, is that the right and lefthand parts are separated into two tracks. So they could be mixed individually and they were. For example, there is a place near the end where the piano is playing a trill in the righthand and the melody is carried for a bit, by the lefthand. At that point, I lowered the volume for the righthand track and subsequently increased it in the lefthand track. But anyway, I was pretty sure you knew this music and no doubt loved it, as I do. I was about 16 or 17 when I bought my first LP of this concerto, with Alfred Brendel, (can't remember the orchestras name, lost the LP). Not only did he start it out just as quick, but the music itself so closely matched my own youthful state of mind that it informed my emotions in such a way, as does a great novel or play, or etc.

    Thank you!
    sd cisco

  10. #10

    Re: Brahms - Piano Concerto #1 - Dm - 3rd Movement

    Some 46 years ago, when Raymond met Sally (my wife's name is Dolores), I fell in love and luckily she too. She knowing that I was a "classical guy", just to please me, bought that Pianoconcerto. We played it on one of those portable grammophones, you know where the lid was also the speaker, until all grooves were flattened. I never purchased it for Cd, don't know why. Must do, maybe next week. Since then, I never heard it again, until your rendering.

    Thank you for bringing this back into my memory,

    Raymond

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