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The Best of Joshua Bell: The Decca Years

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Manheim
On this three-disc Best of Joshua Bell collection, the Decca label basically delivers what it promises, and is even generous about it. True, nothing actually tells you that the "Decca years" were from the first part of Bell's career, but the various boyish photos of Bell should get the point across. Bell started out like most young violinists, recording standard concerto repertory with a pure tone that did not foreclose strong forward momentum. Of his various forbears among violinists of the twentieth century, Henryk Szeryng is perhaps underestimated for his importance. The third disc in the set shows Bell developing the style that has made him famous, applying his ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Manheim
On this three-disc Best of Joshua Bell collection, the Decca label basically delivers what it promises, and is even generous about it. True, nothing actually tells you that the "Decca years" were from the first part of Bell's career, but the various boyish photos of Bell should get the point across. Bell started out like most young violinists, recording standard concerto repertory with a pure tone that did not foreclose strong forward momentum. Of his various forbears among violinists of the twentieth century, Henryk Szeryng is perhaps underestimated for his importance. The third disc in the set shows Bell developing the style that has made him famous, applying his high-flying playing to Fritz Kreisler and the other composers of violin encore pieces that were forgotten during the era of high modernism. It's been a potent combination, and one that was by no means obvious when Bell was young. In fact, the third CD, "Favorites," may appeal even to owners of Bell's later discs covering the same territory; there's a snap in, say, his reading of Kreisler's "Caprice viennois" CD 3, track 8, that comes from the consciousness he was rediscovering all this delightful stuff that was consigned to the dustbin by tight-lipped modernism. Check out also the thoroughly corny and thoroughly enjoyable "Waves at Play Wellenspiel" of Edwin Grasse CD 3, track 10. In between the standards and the favorites comes a disc of chamber performances that, if they don't exactly qualify as rarities, may at least be missing from many Bell collections. The set as a whole collects recordings that made Bell's reputation, and fans and collectors will welcome the chance to have a wide variety of them in one place.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/22/2009
  • Label: Decca
  • UPC: 028947821007
  • Catalog Number: 001337202
  • Sales rank: 42,348

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–3 Violin Concerto No. 5 in A major ("Turkish") K. 219 - Joshua Bell & Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (31:47)
  2. 4–6 Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 77 - Johannes Brahms & Joshua Bell (40:11)
Disc 2
  1. 1–4 Sonata for violin & piano No. 1 in A major, Op. 13 - Gabriel Fauré & Joshua Bell (23:56)
  2. 5–8 Sonata for violin & piano No. 2 in D major, Op. 94 bis - Olli Mustonen & Sergey Prokofiev (24:24)
  3. 9–12 Piano Trio No. 2 in E minor, Op. 67 - Olli Mustonen & Dmitry Shostakovich (24:49)
Disc 3
  1. 1 Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso, for violin & orchestra in A minor, Op. 28 - Camille Saint-Saëns & Joshua Bell (9:50)
  2. 2 Méditation, for violin & orchestra (or other arrangement) (from opera "Thäis") - Jules Massenet & Joshua Bell (5:17)
  3. 3 Variations on an Original Theme, for violin & piano, Op. 15 - Henryk Wieniawski & Joshua Bell (12:30)
  4. 4 Pieces (4) for violin & piano, Op. 78: No. 2 - Jean Sibelius & Joshua Bell (3:05)
  5. 5 Perpetuum Mobile, conzert caprice for violin & orchestra, Op. 5/4 - Ottokar Novacek & Joshua Bell (2:48)
  6. 6 Sicilienne and Rigaudon in the Style of Francoeur, for violin & piano - Fritz Kreisler & Joshua Bell (3:59)
  7. 7 Syncopation, for violin & piano - Fritz Kreisler & Joshua Bell (1:51)
  8. 8 Caprice Viennois, for violin & piano (or orchestra), Op. 2 - Fritz Kreisler & Joshua Bell (4:38)
  9. 9 Hungarian Dance for piano, 4 hands, in G minor, WoO 1/1 - Johannes Brahms & Joshua Bell (3:25)
  10. 10 Waves at Play (Wellenspiel), for violin & piano - Edwin Grasse & Joshua Bell (1:46)
  11. 11 Scherzo-tarantelle, for violin & piano in G minor, Op. 16 - Henryk Wieniawski & Joshua Bell (4:48)
  12. 12 Zigeunerweisen, for violin & piano (or orchestra) ("Gypsy Airs"), Op. 20 - Pablo de Sarasate & Joshua Bell (9:06)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Joshua Bell Primary Artist
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    In my Top 10 for 2009

    LOVE this CD!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 18, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews