Saturday, March 29, 2008

In Review--Got Bach?

Murray Perahia
Bach Partitas 2, 3 & 4
Sony Classical

It has been over a decade ago when I ran into an old friend that mentioned he was into Bach. I found that friend pretentious at the time and did not listen to any Bach myself. I did not think that I would understand it since most people that I knew that listened to Bach were academic or they were classically-trained musicians.

Then after I started using different types of alternative healing, one of the modalities that I discovered was healing with music. Classical music came up a lot and so did the musical architecture of Bach's compositions. But the real clincher came much earlier when I had heard Glenn Gould performing various Bach compositions. Then I too could see the aesthetic and healing values of Bach. I would imagine listening to Bach everyday for at least an hour would lighten my moods, boost my immune system and offer other positive health effects. (If only I would get around to launching that plan).

Now, another pianist, mastering Bach's repertoire has come to my attention--Murray Perahia on his most recent recording, Bach Partitas 2, 3 & 4. (At some point I would like to listen to his recording of Goldberg Variations). Perahia plays masterfully, while caressing a range of emotions from his piano. His fingers run lightly over the keys and the music that emerges is fluid, passionate, and at times it reflect a lightness of being.

While you can find plenty of information about Bach in the liner notes, you will find no information about the pianist Murray Perahia, which is unfortunate. I am not a classical music aficionado so I have little knowledge of this performer to share with you. However, I recommend this recording to people who enjoy different types of music and are seeking music for healing purposes. I believe that beauty, grace, and thoughtfully composed music can in itself prove healing. And this particular CD has come in handy during stressful times.

I wish I could run into that friend again and tell him that he was right all along, Bach is truly wonderful. And you do not need to be a genius or a church-goer to enjoy Bach's music.


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