Thursday, November 14, 2013

Farewell John Tavener

More well known to audiophiles on his Technics adverts than his contemporary Classical compositions that barely goes louder than 60 decibels, sometimes I wonder if the music industry had done enough to made John Tavener more well known to the music buying public? 

By: Ringo Bones 

Unless if you are praised / commended during your stint in a military / defense outfit modeled after the United States Marine Corp’s Force Recon by your ability to hear a sleeping person snoring softly 100 feet away from you in a non-electrifired village somewhere in the poor parts of the globe whose average ambient noise at night barely rises above 30 decibels sound pressure level – chances are, you may criticize most of contemporary British Classical music composer John Tavener’s Eastern Christian Orthodox themed liturgical works as “too quiet” . I mean as an audiophile, I find some of his 1990s era recordings released on CD easily swamped by the ambient noise of your home audio system with a signal-to-noise ratio rated at around 90 decibels. Thus his now (in) famous to the audiophile world the Technics SU-A107 Integrated Amplifier advert from around 1999 – as in the advert for Technics’ SU range of Variable Gain Control Amplifier slated to be quiet enough for the 144 dB signal-to-noise ratio capable next generation of ultra-high resolution 24-Bit 192-KHz sampling rate digital recordings.  

Even though John Tavener played his Songs of Angels during the funeral of the late Princess Diana back in 1997, it was that “notorious” reworked Candle in the Wind by Elton John that would forever be remembered of the much beloved Princess Diana’s passing. Born in January 28, 1944, he wasn’t like one of those Vienese w√ľnderkinders who’s Classical music composition prowess made them popular at a relatively young age. Even though only a few remembered this little factoid, it was The Beatles who thrusted Tavener into wider popularity back in 1968 after the Fab Four confessed their admiration of the contemporary British Classical Music composer during an interview back then. And by the way, John Tavener also won a Grammy for Best Classical Contemporary Composition. Sadly, he passed away back in November 12, 2013 aged 69. Even if I’ve only discovered John Tavener’s music during the middle of the 1990s when I got seriously into high fidelity audio, his loss would surely be missed by both the recently curious and long-time hardcore fans alike.  


VaneSSa said...

Given that John Tavener was a Classical Music composer and composes and records Classical Music exclusively, how come his recordings are released by Linn Records - well known for making hi-fi gear very well suited for playing back rock and heavy metal music?

VaneSSa said...

Do you find it strange how John Tavener's Classical Music releases are on Linn Records - isn't Linn more famous for making hi-fi gear more suitable for reproducing rock and heavy metal music than in reproducing Classical Music recordings?