Friday, April 09, 2010

Why Ralph Vaughan Williams RULES

I think I'm in love.

I was driving home tonight, and the radio was tuned in to Classic FM, which I like because (a) the classical/jazz/opera/showtune music is beautiful and (b) it really does make kids smarter - my son's pretty bright, just ask him *wink* and (c) loooong periods of music without obnoxious commercials, and without the cost of HD radio.

This evening, they played a concert by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, of Ralph (say "Rafe") Vaughan Williams's Symphony No. 5 in D. Classic FM does like to play a lot of Vaughan Williams. I recall liking other pieces I'd heard by him, but I didn't even know the composer at first when I heard this concert.

On first blush, I thought, "Oh, this is nice."

Then I thought, "Wow, this is really good. It reminds me of the old movie scores - the really sweeping ones that I loved as a kid."

Then I heard Romanza: Lento.

BOOM. It just about brought me to tears. I drove home and sat in my driveway to listen to it and, not wanting to miss anything, rushed into my house (with a frenzied hello to my husband) and up the stairs to find out What That Song Was.

I went to Classic FM's website and, bless them, they had a playlist up. After that, it was a short Google-walk through Amazon to download the music, and voila. I now have all kinds of writing ideas spawned by this one song. This music reminded me why I like to write by soundtrack, and furthermore, why I love to write a sweeping, dramatic story most of all. Wistful Sigh. I will now have to buy everything else this man has composed.

Ralph Vaughan Williams lived 1872-1958, and is well-known for his lyrical style and the "Englishness" of his music - sweeping and timeless and spanning a broad range of emotions. I'm already planning scenes to soundtrack with his music. Productivity, here I come!

In short, one more good reason to support public radio. So I guess I should add (d) Ralph Vaughan Williams is my new crush.

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