Happy birthday, Bach

Johann Sebastian Bach was born on 21st March 1685. At least, that’s what he thought. Translated into our modern Gregorian calendar the date becomes 31st March. If that means he can have two birthdays, so much the better. I tend to be wary about making absolute statements, but what the hell. Let’s celebrate 325 years of the greatest composer who ever lived.

Here’s Ton Koopman playing the great chorale prelude on Schmücke dich, o liebe Seele, BWV 654:

And Dinu Lipatti playing Myra Hess’s transcription of Jesu bleibet meine Freude from the Cantata Herz und Mund und Tat und Leben, BWV 147:

If you’re feeling anarchic or in a rush, you can play both at once. Not recommended.

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3 Responses to “Happy birthday, Bach”

  1. Evie Says:

    Oh, thanks for the reminder – happy birthday to the great man! (He was godfather to one of my ancestors – groovy!) The greatest composer bar none. Will play the Magnificat in D later, suitably springlike and fabulous.

  2. Evie Says:

    PS now have the Bach cello suites on in the background as I work (am marking essays – a few distractions are always good…though I need to refrain from stopping to listen too often!). :0)

  3. Gareth Says:

    I’ll put on some of the chorale preludes this afternoon. My favourite Bach, I think, if pressed. The Schübler and Leipziger Chorales and the third part of the Clavier-Übung. I believe that if I could hear no other music than those chorales ever again I would not feel bereft.

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