Zumwalt Poems Online

Must Listen To Music

Must Listen To Music: Classical, Rock and Jazz

(Most impressive or accessible works/albums in bold)

Messe de Notre Dame

Missa se la face ay pale

Missa mi mi

Robert Fayrfax
Missa Tecum principium Maria plena virtute


Membra Jesu Nostri

Rosary Sonatas (also known as Mystery Sonatas)

Il cimento dell’armonia e dell’inventione, Op. 8 (1-6, 8)

The Messiah

J.S. Bach
Mass in b minor
St. Matthew Passion
The six Brandenburg Concertos
Passacaglia and Fugue in c minor for Organ
Toccata and Fugue in D minor
Well-Tempered Clavier
Goldberg Variations
Two-part inventions
Cantata BWV 140, “Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme”

Franz Josef Haydn
Symphonies 22, 26, 39, 44, 45, 49, 52, 104

W.A. Mozart
Symphonies 25, 29, 35, 36, 38, 39, 40 and 41
String Quartet No. 19 in C major, “Dissonance”, K. 465 (1785)

String Quartets, all
Symphonies, all (3rd, 5th, 6th and 9th Symphonies)
Piano Sonatas, all (Sonatas #14, #21, #29, #32)
Missa Solemnis
Diabelli Variations
Variations in c minor for Piano
4th and 5th Piano Concertos

Polonaise in A Major, Opus 40, no.1
Polonaise in A-flat Major, Opus 53
Ballade #1 in G minor, Op. 23
Ballade #3 in A flat Major, Op. 47
Ballade #4 in F minor, Op. 52
Études, Op. 10 (Etude No. 3)
Scherzo #2 in B flat minor, Op. 31
24 Preludes, Op. 28 (Preludes #2, #4)
Nocturne, Op. 9 No. 1 in B minor
Nocturne, Op. 27 No. 2 in D major

Symphonie Fantastique

Fourth Symphony in E minor, opus 98

Ninth Symphony in C Minor

Tristan und Isolde, Act 1, Prelude
Tannhäuser, Overture
Die Meistersinger, Act 1, Prelude & Hymn
Das Rheingold, Prelude

Pictures at an Exhibition (original piano version)
Night on Bald Mountain

Scheherazade, Op.  35

Requiem in D minor, Op. 48

Symphony No. 2 in C minor (“Resurrection”)
Symphony No. 6 in A minor
Das Lied von der Erde
Symphony No. 9 in D major

1910 Firebird
1911 Petrushka
1913 Le Sacre du printemps (Rite of Spring)

Porgy and Bess

Roy Harris
Symphony No. 6, “Gettysburg Address”

Leonard Bernstein
West Side Story

Louis Armstrong
Hot Fives, Volume 1
Hot Fives and Hot Sevens, Volume 2 and 3

Charlie Parker
The Best Of The Complete Savoy & Dial Recordings

Duke Ellington
Ellington at Newport 1956
And His Mother Called Him Bill

Billie Holiday
The Complete Commodore & Decca Masters
The Silver Collection (Verve)

Coleman Hawkins
The Essential Sides Remastered, 1929-39 (JSP)
Body & Soul Complete Victor Recordings 1939-45 Master Takes (includes Body & Soul)

Thelonious Monk
Genius Of Modern Music: Vol. 1
Genius Of Modern Music: Vol. 2
Thelonious Monk with John Coltrane
Brilliant Corners

Bud Powell
The Amazing Bud Powell, Vol. 1

Miles Davis
1949/1950 (released 1957) Birth of the Cool
1954 (released 1957) Bags Groove
1957 Cookin’ with the Miles Davis Quintet
1959 Kind of Blue
1969 In A Silent Way

Chet Baker
1956 Chet Baker Sings

Cannonball Adderly
1958 Something Else

Eric Dolphy
1961 At the Five Spot Volume 1
1964 Out to Lunch

Clifford Brown
1954 Clifford Brown & Max Roach
1955 Best Coast Jazz
1990 Clifford Brown Memorial Album (Blue Note)

Bill Evans
1961 Sunday at the Village Vanguard

Sonny Rollins
1956 Saxophone Colossus

Charles Mingus
1959 Mingus Ah Um
1960 Charles Mingus Presents Charles Mingus
1960 Mingus at Antibes
1963 The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady

Hank Mobley
1961 Workout

John Coltrane
1957 Blue Trane
1959 Giant Steps
1961 My Favorite Things
1961 Thelonious Monk with John Coltrane
1963 Live at Birdland
1964 A Love Supreme

Stan Getz/Joao Gilberto
1964 Getz/Gilberto

Rahsaan Roland Kirk
1968 The Inflated Tear

Louis Hardin (Moondog)
1969 Moondog

Beach Boys
1966 Pet Sounds

1967 Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
1969 Abbey Road

1968 Odessey and Oracle

Chicago (II)


Gentle Giant
1971 Acquiring the Taste
1972 Three Friends
1972 Octopus
1973 In a Glass House
1974 Power and the Glory
1975 Free Hand
1976 Interview

Peter Hammill
1974 The Silent Corner and the Empty Stage
1975 Nadir’s Big Chance
1977 Over

Van Der Graaf Generator
1971 Pawn Hearts
1975 Godbluff
1976 Still Life
1976 World Record
1977 The Quiet Zone/The Pleasure Dome

1973 Arbeit Macht Frei
1974 Caution Radiation Area
1975 Crac!
1976 Maledetti
1978 Gli Dei Se Ne Vanno, Gli Arrabbiati Restano

Jethro Tull
1969 Stand Up
1970 Benefit
1971 Aqualung
1972 Thick As A Brick
1972 Living In The Past
1973 A Passion Play
1975 Minstrel In The Gallery

King Crimson
1969 In the Court of the Crimson King
1970 In the Wake of Poseidon
1970 Lizard
1973 Larks’ Tongues in Aspic
1974 Starless and Bible Black
1974 Red
1995 THRAK

1971 The Yes Album
1972 Fragile
1973 Close to the Edge
1974 Tales from Topographic Oceans

Pink Floyd
1973 Dark Side of the Moon
1975 Wish You Were Here

1972 Per Un Amico

Emerson, Lake and Palmer
1970 Emerson, Lake and Palmer
1971 Tarkus
1973 Brain Salad Surgery

1972 Foxtrot
1973 Live
1973 Selling England by the Pound

1974 The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway
1976 A Trick of the Tail
1976 Wind and Wuthering

1977 Garden Shed

1975 Si On Avait Besoin D’Une Cinquieme

1975 Royal Bed Bouncer

Highly Recommended Albums
One can miss out on listening to these and still have a meaningful life, but life is even more meaningful with any or all of the following:

Fred Katz
1958 Folk Songs for Far Out Folk
Great arrangements of African, Hebrew and American folk tunes in captivating stereo. I often sat in on jazz classes Mr. Katz taught, but was not aware of the genius of this man until listening to Chico Hamilton albums. I would probably place this in the Must Listen To album list, but wanted to make a comment on it also. You probably have never heard of this album, but is one of the best examples of skilfull, highly entertaining, artistically satisfying arranging. Review

Tommy Flannigan
1982 Thelonica
Mr. Flannigan’s personal tribute to Mr. Monk and Monk’s friend, and jazz patroness, Countess Pannonica de Koenigswarter.

Erroll Garner
1955 Concert By The Sea
An amazing opportunity to hear Erroll Garner live, full of endless creativity and artistry.

Cab Calloway
Classic Chu Berry Columbia And Victor Sessions
Cab Calloway was an innovative band leader, singer, showman and composer: overlooked to some degree today.  This set, now out of print, contains tracks from Cab Calloway and other bands including Fletcher Henderson and Teddy Wilson with appearances from Roy Eldridge, Mildred Bailey and Bessie Smith.  If you can’t get a hold of this set, be sure to get at least one CD with Cab Calloway recordings from the 1930s.

Charles Tolliver
1968 Paper Man
Hard to imagine anyone’s debut album being this good, but Mr. Tolliver gets excellent support from Herbie Hancock and others for this to be an album worth listening to over and over. 


Additional Links

Top Progressive Rock Albums: http://tinyurl.com/mknchn
100 “Must Buy” Classical Albums: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/3670355/100-classical-albums-you-must-hear.html
Western Classical Music Recommendations by Category: http://www.cs.rochester.edu/~bh/must_listen.html
Top Jazz Albums: http://home.austarnet.com.au/petersykes/jazz100/top100.html
Best Albums Ever: http://www.besteveralbums.com/overall.php?rank=5717#25706

Comments on: "Must Listen To Music" (3)

  1. Have you listened to Maurizio Pollini’s renditions of the Chopin Polonaises, Preludes, and Études? They are simply magnificent. His dynamic control and emotion are so exquisite that I imagine that with the way Pollini plays Chopin’s pieces, Chopin himself would be happy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I have some Pollini, but it was great when I could access more of his recording at college. I love Pollini — amazing delicacy and control and most importantly musicality. Just magic!


  2. Leo the Deacon said:

    Z-man, I know better than to argue with your musical knowledge (and I strongly endorse your ‘Trane selections) but might I humbly suggest that some of the late great Bill Evans’ work be included in your list? Perhaps his “Live at the Village Vanguard” album? Every time I hear that I am envious of the audience that got to hear that live one Sunday afternoon. Also, I would add Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue to the list–just because it’s accessible doesn’t mean it’s not a work of genius.

    Liked by 1 person

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