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Johannes Brahms (1833-1897)

Brahms was one of the leading musicians of the Romantic period. Born in Hamburg, Brahms spent much of his professional life in Vienna. In his lifetime, Brahms' popularity and influence were considerable; following a comment by the nineteenth-century conductor Hans von Bülow, he is sometimes grouped with Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven as one of the Three Bs.

Brahms was at once a traditionalist and an innovator. His music is firmly rooted in the structures and compositional techniques of the Baroque and Classical masters. He was a master of counterpoint, the complex and highly disciplined method of composition for which Bach is famous, and also of development, a compositional ethos pioneered by Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Beethoven. Brahms aimed to honour the "purity" of these venerable "German" structures and advance them into a Romantic idiom, in the process creating bold new approaches to harmony and melody.

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brahms piano trio number 2
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1st movement
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2nd movement
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3rd movement
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brahms haydn variations
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brahms german requiem
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1. "Selig sind, die da Leid tragen"
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2. Denn alles Fleisch, es ist wie Gras
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3. Herr, lehre doch mich
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4. Wie lieblich sind deine Wohnungen
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5. Ihr habt nun Traurigkeit
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6. Denn wir haben hie keine bleibende Statt
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7. Selig sind die Toten
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brahms piano trio number 2
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1st movement
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2nd movement
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3rd movement
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4th movement
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brahms hungarian dance
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brahms hungarian dance
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brahms hungarian dance
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brahms hungarian dance
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brahms hungarian dance
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brahms hungarian dance
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brahms hungarian dance
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morriston orpheus welsh male choir
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brahms violin concerto
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1st movementlisten and buy

2nd movementlisten and buy

3rd movementlisten and buy

brahms string quintet no1
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1st movementlisten and buy

2nd movementlisten and buy

3rd movementlisten and buy

brahms clarinet sonata
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1st movementlisten and buy

2nd movementlisten and buy

3rd movementlisten and buy

"I find the piano colour a little low in softer parts; and I think, in the first movement, both artists might pull a rather longer stroke. The sense of going is not quite so strong as I like it -- the sweep of things. Every note of the clarinet is sweetly reproduced (the lower register with fine power), and the piano's sustainment in the trio of the second movement shows the player's sense of style and the reproducers' ability to feel just what is the right proportion to balance the clarinet, and be sufficiently full, without overbearing. The finale is a set of ripe variations. In the evening sunshine, which has no glare, we may figure two friends sitting watching, with breath-freeing comfort, the frets of the world. Yet, as we hear they can still strike a youthful spark one from the other; and the artist's sense of life's multitudinousness breaks out with a brave fling." W. R. A. writing in the Gramophone July 1937

brahms violin sonata
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1st movementlisten and buy

2nd movementlisten and buy

3rd movementlisten and buy

"The great virtues of Kulenkampff were his sweet lyrical tone and his exquisite phrasing. He came of a generation that was not afraid to scoop a little but to my mind even his scoops are musicianly. He could also play with considerable passion... As with all 78s, there are tiny fluffs here and there, and traces of faulty intonation, but this is nevertheless glorious playing by both artists. The last page of the slow movement is really tremendous, and touched with inspiration; the phrase may be trite, but it's exact." R.F. reviewing the LP re-issue in Gramophone May 1965

brahms songs
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Eight songs by Brahms:

  1. Treue Liebe Op. 7 No. 1
  2. Am Sonntag Morgen Op. 49 No. 1
  3. Auf dem Kirchhofe Op. 105 No. 4
  4. Wie Melodien ziecht es Op. 105 No. 1
  5. Alte Liebe Op. 72 No. 1
  6. Bei dir sind meine Gedanken Op. 95 No. 2
  7. Wir wandelten Op. 96 No. 2
  8. Dein blaues Auge Op. 59 No. 8

sung by Kirsten Flagstad with Edwin McArthur (piano).
Recorded in August 1956 at Decca Studio No2, West Hampstead, London.

All 8 songs
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Treue Liebe
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Am Sonntag Morgen
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Auf dem Kirchhofe
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Wie Melodien ziecht
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Alte Liebe
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Bei dir sind meine Gedankene
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Wir wandelten
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Dein blaues Auge
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brahms symphony no 1
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1st movement
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2nd movement
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3rd movement
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4th movement
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"An extremely fine performance in many ways with plenty of weight and sense of purpose. The playing of the Vienna Philharmonic is both sensitive and splendidly alive; the slow movement is throughly felt and eloquently phrased. Krips's reading combines strength and tenderness, power and lyrical feeling, " R.L. writing in the Gramophone June 1972

brahms symphony  number two  Klemperer Philharmonia
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1st movement
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2nd movement
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3rdmovement
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4th movement
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josef krips brahms symphony no 4
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1st movement
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2nd movement
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3rd movement
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4th movement
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"There are no histrionics about Krips's reading, in which everything is beautifully proportioned and carefully calculated. The music moves forward to its natural climaxes, in each of the four movements, with a wonderful feeling of inevitability that leads logically and dramatically to the crowning achievement of the great Finale. The orchestral playing is sensitive, vigorous, and poised to a nicety, and the recording does full justice to it." R.H. writing in The Gramophone November 1950

brahms symphony no 4
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1st movement
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2nd movement
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3rd movement
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4th movement
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brahms symphony no 4
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1st movement
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2nd movement
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3rd movement
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4th movement
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