Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Ein frohes neues Jahr!

The Penitent Wagnerite, not entirely immune to the charms of the season, wishes all its readers a Happy New Year.

In keeping with the textual tradition, if not the most modern criticism, Johann Sebastian Bach's wonderful cantata BWV 143, "Lobe den Herrn, meine Seele," was the primary listening for the day. The tenor aria, "Tausendfaches Unglück, Schrecken...," has - after a positively Catholic litany of troubles, the new year's sentiment, "Aber wir ein Segensjahr."

Not exactly Tiny Tim, but it'll do. By the way, The Penitent Wagnerite recommends Ton Koopman's splendid recording (vol. 21 of the integrale) of BWV 143. That set has, hands down, the most lovely BWV 140 in my experience. The big tenor chorus (if you know - you know) is handled marvelously. Not at all that soppy business which occasionally infects it.


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