Music: Bach: Suites for Solo Cello – Janos Starker
I discovered that my old Apple Pismo Laptop, which I selected to be the house-music-server because it runs very cool and no fan ever kicks, in can send Apple Lossless files via the 802.11G Wi-Fi protocol to the stereos in my house. That, and the fact that I bought a silent (no fan) external LaCie 250GB HD with lots of space, is making me re-rip a lot of my CDs. I hear subtle differences in the sound of a trumpet and piano when I listen to Lossless instead of a regular AAC file between 128 and 224 on my stereo. Probably nothing I would hear on an iPod, but since HD space is becoming so inexpensive I might as well afford the luxury of better sound.
Regarding the music I am listening to right now: it is the most beautiful cello recording I have heard, although I have read about a another Starker recording of this music from the Sixties, which has a legendary sound – I haven’t heard that one yet. In the liner notes Starker writes:
I was often asked why, at age 70, I am recording Bach’s Suites for the fifth time when the previous statements have been received with praise. I recoil from using poetry to describe my music. I prefer to express poetry through music. Playing Bach is a never-ending quest for beauty, as well as in some sense truth. One only hopes to get near to it. As the years and decades go by, the understanding grows while the technical means weaken.
Beautifully said, Mr. Starker, and beautifully played! One hears vitality and strength, tempered with understanding and experience.
This recording reminds me of the book Memoirs of Hadrian by Marguerite Yourcenar. It is one of my favorite books and Yourcenar wrote it several times. The difference is that she destroyed every copy of the book except for the one that was published. I believe she started on the book for the first time when she was fairly young, and published the version she wrote in her middle age. She expressed that she had to gain experience and become older to really write the story of Hadrian.