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Percy Aldridge Grainger


Born: July 8, 1882l Brighton, Melbourne, Australia    Died: February 21, 1961; White Plains, NY  
Percy Grainger was known during his lifetime as a virtuoso pianist and arranger of popular English folk song. His primary contribution to music, however, lies in his prolific output as a composer of expert and highly original works. Grainger's early years were spent in Melbourne where he studied first with his mother, and later with Louis Pabst. From 1895-1899 he attended the Hoch Conservatory in Frankfurt, Germany, and then settled in London in Read more 1901. The next 10 years or so were devoted to a combination of concert touring and folk song collection. Grainger's early reputation was as a brilliant and eccentric pianist, and it was this talent that not only provided his income for the rest of his life, but also brought him into contact with other composers. Grieg and Delius, in particular, had great influence on Grainger's development of a sympathy and sensitivity toward unique national and folk styles. In 1914, Grainger moved to New York, beginning a long career as a composer, arranger, collector of folk music, and educator; he became an American citizen in 1918. In 1925 and 1927 he collected and published over 200 Danish folk songs, and returned to Australia in 1924, 1926, and from 1934-1935 in order to establish a Grainger Museum at the University of Melbourne devoted to ethnomusicological research. His final years were spent completing and arranging his earlier works and trying to develop a workable form of his "free music" using primarily theremins, one of the earliest electronic instruments. The project remained incomplete, and Grainger died embittered and in relative obscurity, known only for a handful of light works that he referred to derogatorily as his "fripperies."

Early in his life, Grainger rejected the central European tradition of Western classical music, seeking instead a "democratic" music that was more closely related to natural sounds, speech, and world music. In his quest to assimilate as much unique musical culture as possible, Grainger became one of the first ethnomusicologists to use the wax cylinder phonograph in the collection and transcription of indigenous music. His arrangements of many of these are among the best ever done, capturing not only the melodies and harmonies, but also the timbres, inflections, and performance styles of each individual piece. In his own compositions, Grainger experimented with nontraditional rhythms, forms, and instrumental combinations in an attempt to create what he called "free music." He also created a large body of more traditional works and arrangements intended for more popular consumption, motivated, no doubt, by his experience with the Edwardian music hall and later with the U.S. Army Band. Read less
Grainger: Lincolnshire Posy, Etc / Junkin, Dallas Wind Symphony
Release Date: 01/13/2009   Label: Reference Recordings  
Catalog: 117   Number of Discs: 1
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Grainger: The Power Of Love / Keith Brion, Slovak Radio So
Release Date: 10/06/2000   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8554263   Number of Discs: 1
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Shepherd's Hey - Grainger, Holst, Etc / Paramount Brass
Release Date: 09/24/2002   Label: Centaur Records  
Catalog: 2547   Number of Discs: 1
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Grainger: Folk Inspired Works For Duo Piano / Bilder Duo
Release Date: 11/13/2012   Label: Grand Piano  
Catalog: 633   Number of Discs: 1
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Grainger: Music for Saxophones
Release Date: 12/11/2015   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8573228   Number of Discs: 1
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Browse 1-25 of 279 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Silence & Music / McCreesh, Gabrieli Consort
    Label: Signum Classics   Catalog: 490 Release Date: 10/06/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Charles Villiers Stanford,  Sir Edward Elgar,  Ralph Vaughan Williams,  Herbert Howells  ... 
    Conductor:  Paul McCreesh
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gabrieli Consort
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  • 2.
    Bushes & Briars: Folk-songs For Choirs Books 1 & 2
    Label: Msr   Catalog: 1606 Release Date: 09/18/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Rutter,  Traditional,  John Byrt,  Sir David Willcocks  ... 
    Performer:  Michael [Bass Vocal] Popplewell,  Karen [Soprano Vocal] Lukose,  David Hartley,  David [Tenor Vocal] Hunt  ... 
    Conductor:  Jeffrey Hunt
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  • 3.
    Cliburn Gold 2017 - 15th Van Cliburn International Piano Competition / Sunwoo
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 002700802 Release Date: 08/18/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Marc-André Hamelin,  Franz Joseph Haydn  ... 
    Performer:  Yekwon Sunwoo
    CD: $21.99
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  • 4.
    Zoltan Kocsis A Tribute
    Label: Hungaroton   Catalog: 32803 Release Date: 06/02/2017   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Zoltán Kodály,  Franz Liszt,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Frédéric Chopin  ... 
    Performer:  Zoltán Kocsis,  Miklós Perényi,  János Bálint,  Péter Csaba  ... 
    Conductor:  János Rolla,  Zoltán Kocsis
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Franz Liszt Chamber Orchestra,  Hungarian National Philharmonic Orchestra,  Tomkins Vocal Ensemble Budapest
    CD: $34.99
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  • 5.
    Percy Grainger: Folk Music / Booth, Glynn
    Label: Avie   Catalog: 2372 Release Date: 04/21/2017   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger
    Performer:  Claire Booth,  Christopher Glynn
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  • 6.
    The Key Collection: 3 Centuries of Rare Keyboard Gems
    Label: Grand Piano   Catalog: 75355 Release Date: 03/10/2017   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Christian Gottlob Neefe,  Daniel Gottlob Turk,  Leopold Anton Kozeluch,  Johann Baptist Vanhal  ... 
    Performer:  Susan Kagan,  Michael Tsalka,  Kemp English,  Biliana Tzinlikova  ... 
    Conductor:  Kerry Stratton
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Invencia Piano Duo
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  • 7.
    Christmas Clarinets / Estrin, University of Florida Clarinet Ensemble
    Label: Mark Records   Catalog: 52394 Release Date: 11/18/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Leroy Anderson,  Engelbert Humperdinck,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Scott Wilson,  Elizabeth Druesedow,  Jonathan Haas,  Aaron Janosa  ... 
    Conductor:  Mitchell Estrin,  John Watkins Jr.,  David Waybright
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  University of Florida Clarinet Ensemble
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  • 8.
    Wind Band Masterworks, Vol. 7 / Rhea, Texas A&M University Wind Symphony
    Label: Mark Records   Catalog: 52357 Release Date: 09/30/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Steven Bryant,  Kenneth Alford,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Johann Schop  ... 
    Conductor:  Timothy Rhea
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  • 9.
    Cowell & Grainger: Works for Saxophones / Krieger
    Label: Mode   Catalog: 293 Release Date: 08/05/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Henry Cowell
    Performer:  Fabian Muller,  Christoph Enzel,  Frank Ziegert [aka Frank Z],  Ruth Velten  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Peltz
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Percy Saxophone Ensemble,  Intersax,  New England Conservatory Wind Ensemble
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  • 10.
    The Magnificent Steinway / Hyperion Knight
    Label: First Impression Music   Catalog: 97 Release Date: 03/18/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Pachelbel,  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Aram Khachaturian,  Traditional  ... 
    Performer:  Hyperion Knight
    On sale! $26.98
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  • 11.
    Grainger: Music for Saxophones
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8573228 Release Date: 12/11/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Claude Le Jeune,  Guillaume de Machaut,  Johann Sebastian Bach  ... 
    Performer:  Joyce Griggs,  Casey Dierlam
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  • 12.
    The Music Lover's Grainger
    Label: Altissimo   Catalog: 4042 Release Date: 11/13/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger
    Conductor:  Michael J. Colburn
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  United States Marine Band
    CD: $17.99
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  • 13.
    The CBSO Years / Rattle
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 552758 Release Date: 10/09/2015   Number of Discs: 52
    Composer:  Leos Janácek,  Benjamin Britten,  Kurt Weill,  Ralph Vaughan Williams  ... 
    Performer:  Felicity Palmer,  Ameral Gunson,  John Mitchinson,  Malcolm King  ... 
    Conductor:  Simon Rattle
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra,  City of Birmingham Symphony Chorus,  Christ Church Cathedral Choir Men and Boys  ... 
    CD: $126.99
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  • 14.
    Orchestral Concert
    Label: Divine Art   Catalog: 28554 Release Date: 09/11/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Nelson,  Peter Lieuwen,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Thomas Fortmann
    Performer:  Andrzej Grabiec
    Conductor:  Franz Anton Krager
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  • 15.
    Memories & Variations
    Label: Phoenix Park-kim   Catalog: 5638553852 Release Date: 09/03/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Earl Wild,  John C. Griffin,  Dave Brubeck  ... 
    Performer:  Phoenix Park-kim
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  • 16.
    Martin Jones - 75th Birthday Tribute
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 1718 Release Date: 06/09/2015   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Carl Czerny,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Johannes Brahms,  Anatole Liadov  ... 
    Performer:  Martin Jones,  Richard McMahon,  Adrian Farmer
    Conductor:  William Boughton
    CD: $29.99
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  • 17.
    My Heart at Thy Sweet Voice
    Label: Gothic Records   Catalog: 49294 Release Date: 05/12/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Giacomo Puccini,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Richard Strauss  ... 
    Performer:  Peter Richard Conte,  Andrew Ennis
    CD: $18.99
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  • 18.
    Label: Valor Brass   Catalog: 5638482782 Release Date: 05/09/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claudio Monteverdi,  Darius Milhaud,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Victor Ewald  ... 
    Performer:  Valor Brass
    CD: $23.99
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  • 19.
    Grieg: Cello Sonata; Grainger: Scandinavian Suite / Brantelid, Hadland
    Label: Bis   Catalog: 2120 Release Date: 04/14/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edvard Grieg,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Carl Nielsen
    Performer:  Andreas Brantelid,  Christian Ihle Hadland,  Lars Bjornkjaer
    SuperAudio CD: $19.99
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  • 20.
    British Classics / Central Band Of The Royal Air Force
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 10847 Release Date: 03/31/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ralph Vaughan Williams,  Gustav Holst,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Ernest Tomlinson  ... 
    Performer:  Jonathan Hill
    Conductor:  Duncan Stubbs
    CD: $18.99
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  • 21.
    Adirondack Songs
    Label: Mark Masters   Catalog: 51320 Release Date: 02/10/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Scott Lindroth,  Chen Yi,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Timothy Kramer  ... 
    Performer:  Ethan Cypress,  Ryan Sparkes,  Andrew Lammly,  Mark Carr
    Conductor:  Brian K. Doyle
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Crane Wind Ensemble
    CD: $14.99
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  • 22.
    Carnival of the Animals / John Morris Russell, Cincinnati Pops
    Label: Fanfare Cincinnati   Catalog: FC-004 Release Date: 11/11/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Recorded Sound,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Leonard Bernstein  ... 
    Performer:  Ilya Finkelshteyn,  Randy Bowman,  Jonathan Gunn
    Conductor:  John Morris Russell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cincinnati Pops
    CD: $17.99
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  • 23.
    Deck The Halls / Susanna Andersson, Little Venice Ensemble
    Label: Stone Records   Catalog: 8044 Release Date: 11/11/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Traditional,  Antonio Vivaldi,  Leroy Anderson,  Harold Edwin Darke  ... 
    Performer:  Suanna Andersson
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Little Venice Ensemble
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  • 24.
    James Galway - The Complete RCA Album Collection
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 302633 Release Date: 09/16/2014   Number of Discs: 73
    Composer:  Arthur Smith,  Various,  Traditional,  Stan Lebowsky  ... 
    Performer:  James Galway,  Sylvia,  Marisa Robles,  Phillip Moll  ... 
    Conductor:  Claudio Scimone,  Sir Neville Marriner,  Jörg Faerber,  Eduardo Mata  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  I Solisti Veneti,  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  Galway Pops Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $199.98
    CD: $184.99
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  • 25.
    Fervent Reverberations
    Label: Mark Records   Catalog: 50836 Release Date: 08/12/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  James Barnes,  Morten Lauridsen,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Edward Green  ... 
    Conductor:  Adam F. Brennan,  Julia Federico,  Graham Kerick
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Mansfield University Concert Wind Ensemble
    CD: $14.99
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