Johannes Brahms

Biography

Born: 1833   Died: 1897   Country: Germany   Period: Romantic
The stature of Johannes Brahms among classical composers is well illustrated by his inclusion among the "Three Bs" triumvirate of Bach, Beethoven, and Brahms. Of all the major composers of the late Romantic era, Brahms was the one most attached to the Classical ideal as manifested in the music of Haydn, Mozart, and especially Beethoven; indeed, Hans von Bülow once characterized Brahms' Symphony No. 1 (1855-1876) as "Beethoven's Tenth." As a Read more youth, Brahms was championed by Robert Schumann as music's greatest hope for the future; as a mature composer, Brahms became for conservative musical journalists the most potent symbol of musical tradition, a stalwart against the "degeneration" represented by the music of Wagner and his school. Brahms' symphonies, choral and vocal works, chamber music, and piano pieces are imbued with strong emotional feeling, yet take shape according to a thoroughly considered structural plan.

The son of a double bassist in the Hamburg Philharmonic Society, Brahms demonstrated great promise from the beginning. He began his musical career as a pianist, contributing to the family coffers as a teenager by playing in restaurants, taverns, and even brothels. Though by his early twenties he enjoyed associations with luminaries like violinists Eduard Reményi and Joseph Joachim, the friend and mentor who was most instrumental in advancing his career was Schumann, who all but adopted him and became his most ardent partisan, and their esteem was mutual. Following Schumann's death in 1856, Brahms became the closest confidant and lifelong friend of the composer's widow, pianist and composer Clara Wieck Schumann. After a life of spectacular musical triumphs and failed loves (the composer was involved in several romantic entanglements but never wed), Brahms died of liver cancer on April 3, 1897.

In every genre in which he composed, Brahms produced works that have become staples of the repertory. His most ambitious work, the German Requiem (1863-1867), is the composer's singular reinterpretation of an age-old form. The four symphonies -- lushly scored, grand in scope, and deeply expressive -- are cornerstones of the symphonic literature. Brahms' concertos are, similarly, in a monumental, quasi-symphonic vein: the two piano concertos (1856-1859 and 1881) and the Violin Concerto (1878) call for soloists with both considerable technical skill and stamina. His chamber music is among the most sophisticated and exquisitely crafted of the Romantic era; for but a single example, his works that incorporate the clarinet (e.g., the Trio in A minor, Op. 114 and the two Sonatas, Op. 120), an instrument largely overlooked by his contemporaries, remain unsurpassed. Though the piano sonata never held for Brahms the same appeal it had for Beethoven (Brahms wrote three to Beethoven's 32), he produced a voluminous body of music for the piano. He showed a particular affinity for variations -- notably, on themes of Schumann (1854), Handel (1861), and Paganini (1862-1863) -- and likewise produced a passel of national dances and character pieces such as ballades, intermezzi, and rhapsodies. Collectively, these constitute one of the essential bodies of work in the realm of nineteenth century keyboard music. Read less
Brahms: Violin Sonatas / Kavakos, Wang
Release Date: 04/15/2014   Label: Decca  
Catalog: 002032902   Number of Discs: 1
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Helene Grimaud Piano Recital - Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Rachimaninov
Release Date: 10/29/2013   Label: Kultur Video  
Catalog: 4891   Number of Discs: 1
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Brahms: Symphonies 1 & 2 / Gergiev
Release Date: 10/08/2013   Label: Lso Live  
Catalog: 733   Number of Discs: 2
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Brahms: Symphony No 2, Academic Festival Overture / Judd, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Release Date: 02/10/2009   Label: Royal Philharmonic Masterworks  
Catalog: 28500   Number of Discs: 1
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Brahms, Schumann, Frühling: Trios / Isserlis, Collins, Hough
Release Date: 10/12/1999   Label: Rca Victor Red Seal  
Catalog: 63504   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Wiegenlied (Lullaby)

Browse 1-25 of 231 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Brahms: Complete Edition
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 94860 Release Date: 04/29/2014   Number of Discs: 58
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Daniel Barenboim,  Cécile Ousset,  Yehudi Menuhin,  Emmy Verhey  ... 
    Conductor:  Jaap Van Zweden,  Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos,  Günther Herbig,  Heinz Bongartz  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra,  Radio Philharmonic Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 2.
    Brahms: Violin Sonatas / Kavakos, Wang
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 002032902 Release Date: 04/15/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Leonidas Kavakos,  Yuja Wang
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  • 3.
    Brahms: Complete Music For Cello And Piano
    Label: Avie   Catalog: 2300 Release Date: 04/08/2014   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Martin Roscoe,  Jonathan Aasgaard
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  • 4.
    Keep Calm It's A Baby Boy
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 1223550 Release Date: 03/18/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Pachelbel,  Edvard Grieg,  George Frideric Handel,  Erik Satie  ... 
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  • 5.
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 1189412 Release Date: 03/18/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Pachelbel,  Edvard Grieg,  George Frideric Handel,  Erik Satie  ... 
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  • 6.
    100 Hits: Classical Greats
    Label: 100 Hits   Catalog: 1017490 Release Date: 02/25/2014   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Myra Hess,  Antonio Vivaldi  ... 
    Performer:  Geraint Jones,  Karl Münchinger,  Yehudi Menuhin,  Myra Hess  ... 
    Conductor:  Geraint Jones,  Karl Münchinger,  Yehudi Menuhin,  Leopold Stokowski  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  I Musici,  Members of the Vienna Octet (Members)
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  • 7.
    Johannes Brahms: Clarinet Chamber Music
    Label: Leonardo   Catalog: 14011 Release Date: 12/10/2013   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Luigi Magistrelli,  Fabio Storino,  Claudia Bracco,  Danilo Zaffaroni  ... 
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  • 8.
    Classical Music For Dogs
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001916602 Release Date: 11/25/2013   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Johann Pachelbel,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  András Schiff,  Wilhelm Kempff,  Marisa Robles  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Richter,  Karl Münchinger,  Sir Georg Solti,  David Zinman  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  I Musici
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  • 9.
    Lullabies Of The World
    Label: Carus   Catalog: 83012 Release Date: 09/24/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Traditional,  Princess Te Rangi Pai (Fa,  Lebanese Traditional,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Domra] Joseph [Guitar Holzhauer,  Elena Danko,  Alexander Danko,  Jens Trondle  ... 
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  • 10.
    Brahms: Lieder / Barbara Hendricks, Roland Pontinen
    Label: Arte Verum   Catalog: 11 Release Date: 07/16/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Barbara Hendricks,  Roland Pöntinen
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  • 11.
    Cortot: Piano Arrangements / He Yue
    Label: Grand Piano   Catalog: 641 Release Date: 06/25/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gabriel Fauré,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Johannes Brahms,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  He Yue
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  • 12.
    Brahms: Lieder / Bernarda Fink, Roger Vignoles
    Label: Harmonia Mundi   Catalog: 501926 Release Date: 06/11/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Roger Vignoles,  Bernarda Fink
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  • 13.
    Lullaby & Nocturne / David Hays, Peter Collins
    Label: Msr   Catalog: 1436 Release Date: 05/14/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Xaver Neruda,  Igor Stravinsky,  Sergei Lyapunov,  Fritz Kreisler  ... 
    Performer:  Peter Collins,  David Hays
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  • 14.
    Ernestine Schumann-heink: The 1934 Broadcasts
    Label: Bel Age   Catalog: 7702423 Release Date: 05/03/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Spoken Word,  Johannes Brahms,  Franz Xaver Gruber,  Alexander MacFayden  ... 
    Performer:  Ernestine Schumann-Heink
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  • 15.
    Violin Lullabies / Rachel Barton Pine
    Label: Cedille Records   Catalog: 139 Release Date: 04/30/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Eugčne Ysa˙e,  Vladimir I. Rebikov,  Amy Marcy Beach  ... 
    Performer:  Rachel Barton Pine,  Matthew Hagle
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  • 16.
    Mother And Child: Lullabies The Whole World Loves
    Label: Abc Classics   Catalog: 3734356 Release Date: 04/23/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Enrico Toselli,  Alois Melichar,  Stephen Foster,  Franz Joseph Haydn  ... 
    Performer:  André Rieu,  Suzan Erens,  Kimmy Skota,  Mirusia Louwerse  ... 
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  • 17.
    10 Classic Albums / Mischa Maisky [11-CD Set]
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001801402 Release Date: 03/05/2013   Number of Discs: 11
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Charles Gounod,  George Frideric Handel,  Jean-Baptiste Lully  ... 
    Performer:  Mischa Maisky,  Pavel Gililov,  Daria Hovora,  Martha Argerich  ... 
    Conductor:  Giuseppe Sinopoli,  Michael Tilson Thomas,  Zubin Mehta
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Orpheus Chamber Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $61.49
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  • 18.
    Gottwald: Hymnus an das Leben / Grun, Kammerchor Saarbrucken
    Label: Carus   Catalog: 83458 Release Date: 02/26/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Robert Franz,  Johannes Brahms,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Conductor:  Georg Grün
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Saarbrücken Chamber Choir
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  • 19.
    Liederreise - Songs Of Schubert & Brahms  / Kirchschlager, Lehrbaumer
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 90809 Release Date: 01/08/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Robert Schumann,  Franz Liszt,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Robert Lehrbaumer,  Angelika Kirchschlager
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  • 20.
    Mendelssohn, Schumann, Brahms: Duets & Songs / Alois & Christoph, Florian, Karsten
    Label: Preiser Records   Catalog: 91207 Release Date: 01/08/2013  
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Alois Mühlbacher,  Franz Farnberger,  Christoph Schlögl,  Karsten Köhne  ... 
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  • 21.
    Philips Original Jackets Collection  [55-CD Set]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001767702 Release Date: 12/04/2012   Number of Discs: 55
    Composer:  Max Bruch,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johannes Brahms,  Gioachino Rossini  ... 
    Performer:  Salvatore Accardo,  Elisabeth Unger,  Claudio Arrau,  Thomas Zehetmair  ... 
    Conductor:  Kurt Masur,  Bernard Haitink,  Frans Brüggen,  Simon Rattle  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra,  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  Beaux Arts Trio  ... 
    On sale! $169.98
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  • 22.
    Alfred Cortot: Anniversary Edition
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 4907 Release Date: 11/19/2012   Number of Discs: 40
    Composer:  Isaac Albeniz,  Claude Debussy,  Frédéric Chopin,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Performer:  Alfred Cortot,  Pablo Casals,  Jacques Thibaud,  Charles Panzera  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  International String Quartet
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  • 23.
    Mezzo Moon / Pia Heise
    Label: Danacord   Catalog: 720 Release Date: 11/13/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Alexander von Zemlinsky,  Christoph Ernst F. Weyse,  Franz Schubert  ... 
    Performer:  Pia Heise,  Roger Vignoles
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  • 24.
    Toward The Light - The Voice Of Elaine Huckle
    Label: Ravello   Catalog: 7848 Release Date: 08/28/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  George Frideric Handel,  César Franck,  Roger Quilter,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Elaine Huckle,  Ian Clarke
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  • 25.
    Best Of Brahms
    Label: Berlin Classics   Catalog: 300344 Release Date: 07/10/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Bruno Canino,  Jan Vogler,  Peter Rösel,  Peter Damm  ... 
    Conductor:  Václav Neumann,  Hartwig Eschenburg,  Günther Herbig,  Helmut Koch  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Radio Solistenvereinigung
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