Percy Aldridge Grainger

Biography

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: The Complete Piano Music / Martin Jones
Release Date: 11/18/1997   Label: Nimbus  
Catalog: 1767   Number of Discs: 5
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Grand Piano - Percy Grainger Plays Grainger
Release Date: 12/03/1996   Label: Nimbus  
Catalog: 8809   Number of Discs: 1
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Grainger: Country Gardens & Other Piano Favourites / Jones
Release Date: 05/02/1994   Label: Nimbus  
Catalog: 7703   Number of Discs: 1
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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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Browse 301-325 of 328 Available Recordings
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  • 301.
    Holst: The Planets;  Grainger / Gardiner, Philharmonia
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 445860 Release Date: 09/19/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Gustav Holst
    Conductor:  John Eliot Gardiner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Monteverdi Choir members
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  • 302.
    Romance - Greatest Hits
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 68459 Release Date: 08/22/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sir Edward Elgar,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Maurice Ravel,  Edvard Grieg  ... 
    Performer:  Michie Koyama,  Ayako Shinozaki,  Marie-Claire Jamet,  Riri Shimada
    Conductor:  Sir Andrew Davis,  Eugene Ormandy,  John Georgiadis,  Richard Kapp  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  BBC Symphony Orchestra,  Philadelphia Orchestra  ... 
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  • 303.
    The London Viola Sound
    Label: Cala Records   Catalog: 106 Release Date: 05/23/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Billy Strayhorn,  Burt Bacharach,  Sergei Prokofiev  ... 
    Performer:  Rivka Golani
    Conductor:  Geoffrey Simon
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields violas,  BBC Symphony Orchestra Violas,  English National Opera Orchestras Violas  ... 
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  • 304.
    Themes Of Grainger / Asmf Chamber Ensemble
    Label: Chandos   Catalog: 9346 Release Date: 03/21/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Kenneth Leighton
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields Chamber Ens.
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  • 305.
    Gabrilowitsch - Issued And Unissued Recordings (1923-29)
    Label: Vai Audio   Catalog: 1018 Release Date: 02/01/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Anton Arensky,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Léo Delibes  ... 
    Performer:  Ossip Gabrilowitsch,  Harold Bauer
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Flonzaley String Quartet
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  • 306.
    Beachcomber - Encores For Band / Frederick Fennell, Et Al
    Label: Reference Recordings   Catalog: 62 Release Date: 01/20/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Samuel Augustus Ward,  Bin Kaneda,  Naohiri Iwai,  Jack End  ... 
    Conductor:  Frederick Fennell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dallas Wind Symphony
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  • 307.
    The Music Of Percy Grainger Vol 3 / University Of Houston Wind Ensemble
    Label: Mark Records   Catalog: 1523 Release Date: 07/17/1994   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger
    Conductor:  Eddie Green
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  University of Houston Wind Ensemble
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  • 308.
    Grainger: Country Gardens & Other Piano Favourites / Jones
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 7703 Release Date: 05/02/1994   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Charles Villiers Stanford,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  John Dowland
    Performer:  Martin Jones,  Philip Martin,  Richard McMahon
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  • 309.
    Pomp & Pipes! - Powerful Music For Organ, Wind Symphony, Etc
    Label: Reference Recordings   Catalog: 58 Release Date: 02/04/1994   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ron Nelson,  Jaromir Weinberger,  Charles-Marie Widor,  Marcel Dupré  ... 
    Performer:  Paul Riedo
    Conductor:  Frederick Fennell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dallas Wind Symphony
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  • 310.
    Romantic Violin Favourites / Takako Nishizaki, Wolf Harden
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8550125 Release Date: 06/25/1993   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Georges Bizet,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  George Frideric Handel  ... 
    Performer:  Takako Nishizaki,  Wolf Harden
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  • 311.
    Grainger: Piano Music For Four Hands Vol I
    Label: Pearl   Catalog: 9611 Release Date: 01/21/1993   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger
    Performer:  Penelope Thwaites,  John Lavender
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  • 312.
    To The Fore! Percy Grainger's Great Symphonic Band Music
    Label: Delos   Catalog: 3101 Release Date: 12/11/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Gabriel Fauré,  César Franck,  Percy Aldridge Grainger  ... 
    Performer:  David Cleveland
    Conductor:  Keith Brion
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Michigan State Symphony Band
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  • 313.
    Famous Marches / Brand, Newsome, Black Dyke Mills Band
    Label: Chandos Collect   Catalog: 6516 Release Date: 10/28/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Kenneth Alford,  Giacomo Meyerbeer,  Arthur Sullivan,  Eric Ball  ... 
    Conductor:  Geoffrey Brand,  Roy Newsome
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Black Dyke Mills Band
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  • 314.
    Grainger: Famous Folk-Settings / Montgomery, Bournemouth Sinfonietta
    Label: Chandos Collect   Catalog: 6542 Release Date: 10/28/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger
    Performer:  Philip Martin
    Conductor:  Kenneth Montgomery
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bournemouth Sinfonietta
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  • 315.
    The American Virtuoso - Alan Feinberg
    Label: Argo   Catalog: 436121 Release Date: 10/13/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  George Gershwin,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Louis Moreau Gottschalk,  Teresa Carreño  ... 
    Performer:  Alan Feinberg
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  • 316.
    The Music Of Percy Grainger Vol 1 / University Of Houston Wind Ensemble
    Label: Mark Records   Catalog: 1086 Release Date: 07/22/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger
    Conductor:  Eddie Green
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  University of Houston Wind Ensemble
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  • 317.
    Live In Osaka / Hunsberger, Eastman Wind Ensemble
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 47198 Release Date: 05/19/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  John Philip Sousa,  Michio Mamiya,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov  ... 
    Performer:  Marie Alatalo
    Conductor:  Donald Hunsberger
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Eastman Wind Ensemble
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  • 318.
    The Begian Years Vol 2 / University Of Illinois Symphonic Band
    Label: Mark Records   Catalog: 1211 Release Date: 01/01/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss,  Dmitri Shostakovich,  Percy Aldridge Grainger
    Conductor:  Harry Begian
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  University of Illinois Symphonic Band
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  • 319.
    Grainger, Persichetti, Et Al / Eastman Wind Ensemble
    Label: Mercury Living Presence   Catalog: 432754 Release Date: 08/09/1991   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Vincent Persichetti,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Bernard Rogers,  Walter Hartley  ... 
    Conductor:  Frederick Fennell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Eastman Wind Ensemble
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  • 320.
    The University Of Texas Wind Ensemble At Carnegie Hall
    Label: Mark Records   Catalog: 2697 Release Date: 01/01/1991   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Richard Wagner,  Traditional,  Gustav Mahler  ... 
    Conductor:  Jerry Junkin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  University of Texas Wind Ensemble
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  • 321.
    Stars & Stripes / Fennell, Cleveland Symphonic Winds
    Label: Telarc   Catalog: 80099 Release Date: 10/25/1990   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  John Philip Sousa,  Ralph Vaughan Williams,  Johann Strauss Sr.  ... 
    Conductor:  Frederick Fennell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Symphonic Winds
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  • 322.
    Vaughan Williams, Barber, Grainger, Fauré / Slatkin, St Louis So
    Label: Telarc   Catalog: 80059 Release Date: 10/25/1990   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Erik Satie,  Ralph Vaughan Williams,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Gabriel Fauré  ... 
    Performer:  John Korman,  Beverly Schiebler,  John Sant'Ambrogio,  Thomas Dumm
    Conductor:  Leonard Slatkin
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  St. Louis Symphony Orchestra
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  • 323.
    Label: Living Era   Catalog: 5155 Release Date: 04/18/1995   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giacomo Puccini,  Manuel de Falla,  Joaquin Valverde,  Francisco Tarrega  ... 
    Performer:  Jussi Björling,  Joan Hammond,  Conchita Supervia,  Andrés Segovia  ... 
    Conductor:  Nils Grevillius,  Leslie Heward,  Gustav Cloëz,  Otto Dobrindt  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hallé Orchestra,  Berlin State Opera Orchestra,  Rosario Bourdon
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  • 324.
    Capital City / Band Of The Honourable Artillery Company
    Label: Bandleader   Catalog: 5170 Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Joseph Horovitz,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Kenneth Alford,  Winson  ... 
    Conductor:  Stuart A. Watts
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Honourable Artillery Company Band
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  • 325.
    Early One Morning / Stuart Stirling, Ever Ready Band
    Label: Bandleader   Catalog: 5056 Release Date: 06/03/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Max Bruch,  Tomaso Albinoni,  Percy Aldridge Grainger,  Franz Liszt
    Conductor:  Stuart Stirling
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ever Ready Band
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