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Recordings to celebrate the world of the oboe

by Jeremy Polmear

Oboe Classics CDs can be bought from this site, or from sites such as Amazon, or from shops in the UK or around the world. Most of them can be downloaded (either the whole album or selected tracks) from sites such as Amazon or iTunes. Or streamed from sites such as Spotify.

From the cost point of view, a CD from here is £11.99 ($18.22, €16.31 approx) plus postage, and a shop or online store such as Amazon is similar (of which £5 comes to Oboe Classics). Downloads cost about £8 for an album, less than a pound for a track. Streaming, if you are prepared to put up with Ads, costs nothing.

We all like something for nothing, including me. Especially off the net. But, to take the two extremes, an album bought from here earns Oboe Classics roughly 1000 times more than one streamed on Spotify (shared 50/50 between me as the label and the principal performer). This is not because Spotify is bad at paying Royalties, but because streaming is considered as being similar to a play on a radio station with a single listener.

If you find music here that you come to value, there are two ways you can help: with money, by buying the original CD or with a donation (change the shipping method to 'Donation' and shipping costs will vanish); or for free by checking out our Spotify playlists, and Following and Sharing them. Everything helps!

To find a CD on a download/streaming site, the most reliable way is to search on the artist's name, not the CD name.
This is because these sites are mainly designed for pop music, where the artist's name is paramount.

The download/streamed versions are lower-fi than the CD versions; they also lack programme notes.
Where the differences are greater than this, they are mentioned below. There are also details of a download only album.

The World of the Oboe
The download/streaming version is shorter. Type in the full album name to avoid similar titles.
Han de Vries
The Radio Recordings

For copyright reasons, this limited edition is not available for download/streaming.
Britten Metamorphoses
The performances are available, but not the 20,000-word study notes.
Orpheus Elegies
The CD has an interview with the composer about these Elegies, and an explanation of the text of each.
Ready Steady Blow!
The download/streaming version has 14 main tracks; the CD has 33, plus piano only tracks to play along with, and how to get the music.
Janet Craxton
For copyright reasons this CD is not available for download/streaming.
The art of Han de Vries
For copyright reasons only the Bach and Andriessen Concertos are available for download/streaming.
Baroque Spirit
For copyright reasons this CD is not available for download/streaming.

Musical Meze album cover
The Polmear Ambache Duo have given recitals in 33 countries on 5 continents, and have also performed many programmes of words and music. For these situations they look for short, expressive pieces that can appeal to a wide range of listener. This album contains some of their favourite such pieces.

On the oboe, some works are unfamiliar, such as Maria Parke's Andante espressivo or the Danse de la Mer Noire by Turkish composer Erol Erdinç. Some are better known, such as Gabriel's Oboe. The four cor anglais tracks include Dido's Lament and Ravel's Habañera.

The six alto sax tracks are arrangements of jazz and show tunes, such as Duke Ellington's It don't mean a thing and George Gershwin's Summertime. [Total 18 tracks; 46:36]

PDF (printable) track details are available in A4 or CD booklet format.

You can see The Watermill (oboe) and Dido's Lament (cor anglais) on YouTube.
(The YouTube page of The Watermill contains a direct link to iTunes.)

"The music is delightful and varied and the performances equally attractive"
Brian Wilson, MusicWeb International

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