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SEON

Ehud Shiloni wrote (September 16, 1998):

I have just posted on the Bach Page the following little gem which you may say is "desert island" material:
Solo bass cantatas BWV 56 ("Kreuzstab") and BWV 82 ("Ich Habe Genug").

Soloist baritone: Max van Egmond ("Who are the great voices"...); Conductor: Frans Brüggen, directing a small original instruments ensemble going by the name of "Baroque Orchestra".

The recording is from 1977, originally issued on the Seon label, and now re-issued in 1998 by Sony after successful re-mastering. Barely 40 minutes of recorded music, but the CD is budget priced, and the performance is very-very good (Handkerchiefs required).

I would like to quote from the inner cover:
"My founding of the Seon label (1970-1980) came about from my desire to begin recording the emerging stars of the early music movement. After several years of experimentation and pioneering work during the infancy of Das Alte Werk, I felt the time was ripe to create a record label for period music, which, with the benefit of the most advanced recording techniques then available, would ensure that the extraordinary performances of Frans Brüggen, Anner Bylsma, the Kuijkens, Gustav Leonhardt and Konrad Ruhland would be preserved, and, beyond that, take their rightful place beside the acclaimed greats of the nineteenth and
twentieth centuries. - Wolf Erichson".
Unquote

Wolf Erichson is the producer and recording supervisor on this CD, and I see his name popping up as a producer on other Bach CD's on Sony. It seems Mr. Erichson deserves a big hand from this list!

Questions:
1.Can anyone elaborates more about Erichson and about his role in JSB/HIP recordings?
2.Who is the artist Konrad Ruhland (listed by Erichson among the HIP pioneers)?

Many thinks for any info, and again: This CD is indeed a little gem.

Carlo Gerelli wrote (September 16, 1998):

< Ehud Shiloni wrote: Solo bass cantatas BWV 56 ("Kreuzstab") and BWV 82 ("Ich Habe Genug"). Soloist baritone: Max van Egmond ("Who are the great voices"...); Conductor: Frans Brüggen, directing a small original instruments ensemble going by the name of "Baroque Orchestra". The recording is from 1977, originally issued on the Seon label >

I completely agree: I own that Seon LP since 14-15 years, (it was released in 1980) and it has always been one of my favourite pearls. I just can't hide my Dutch-bias. (Brüggen, Leonhardt, Bylsma, the Kuijkens, etc. etc., and now Koopman, Wispelwey, etc.). Now every time I see the CD version I am tempted to re-buy it! Strongly recommended ... and add Paul Dombrecht on Oboe on BWV 56, and Bob van Asperen on positiv!


Laurent Planchon wrote (September 16, 1998):

< Ehud Shiloni wrote: Solo bass cantatas BWV 56 ("Kreuzstab") and BWV 82 ("Ich Habe Genug"). Soloist baritone: Max van Egmond ("Who are the great voices"...); Conductor: Frans Brüggen, directing a small original instruments ensemble going by the name of "Baroque Orchestra". The recording is from 1977, originally issued on the Seon label >

I am a big fan of Van Egmond, and obviously I did not hesitate very long to get this one, but curiously enough I was very disappointed. Not by Van Egmond who is always very good, but by the orchestra and their way to play Bach. I am not sure why though, since there are very big names in this group, but I feel very uncomfortable with their playing which does not sound idiomatic to my ears. I prefer the Harnoncourt/Leonhardt versions with two different basses (Huttenlocher and van der Meer). Too bad they did not record them with Van Egmond who was the rest of the time often invited to sing in their series (Both Huttenlocher and Van der Meer are very good though). Which raises the question why? Does anybody know? And BTW, if somebody could tell me why the always genial Harnoncourt stopped working with Van Egmond in the cantata series just after the beginning? They did a lot of very good stuff together (among them the St Matthew) and I find it strange that they stopped after a while. Didn't they get along well together?

Ehud Shiloni wrote (September 17, 1998):

< Laurent Planchon wrote: curiously enough I was very disappointed. Not by Van Egmond who is always very good, but by the orchestra and their way to play Bach. I am not sure why though, since there are very big names in this group, but I feel very uncomfortable with their playing which does not sound idiomatic to my ears. >

When my post shows up on the Bach Page you will see my comment that the instrumental sound was kind of "thin" and that later day HIP performances delivered better results. I have to agree with you that this aspect of the performance was not ideal, but for me that deficiency was not sufficient to spoil the overall enjoyment. Thanks for your comment, though, because it balances the picture, before people rush out to buy...;)

Ehud Shiloni wrote (September 17, 1998):

Recently I have posted the following with regards to the Seon label:
< Questions:
1.Can anyone elaborate more about Erichson and about his role in JSB/HIP recordings?
2.Who is the artist Konrad Ruhland (listed by Erichson among the HIP pioneers)? >
There were no specific replies from our group, but I searched the Web and found out that Konrad Ruhland is a CONDUCTOR of early music with many non-Bach recordings. This answers my own second question, but what about question no.1?? Is anyone on this list from the recording "profession"? A studio owner? A recording technician? A balance engineer? A microphone maker? We had so much great input from dear people who know about MUSIC, and I think we can all gain a lot from people who know about RECORDING. Is anybody out there? What do you say? Waiting.


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