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Nigel Kennedy

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Having just been playing my lovely recording of Nigel Kennedy playing Vivaldi's 4 seasons, I also very much like Paganini and thought he must have recorded those concertos some time.

Well apparently not, if this interview is to be believed...

NK: "Paganini? I hate that bastard, because it just seems like self-gratuitous stuff to me. He's the enemy of music as far as I'm concerned. I really can't deal with that cat, or Wieniawski, 'cos it's just all about prowess on the fiddle and there's really not a lot of heart in there — or if there is, I don't find it. Paganini's got a good enough excuse for playing it because it was his music, but why some other violinist would want to get up and play loads of notes like that, I can't get that at all. It's just about proving you can play. I don't want to spend hours and hours every day getting that shit together when I could either be writing my own stuff or learning some more Beethoven — real composers."

:?:roll:

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He plays the stuff so I suppose he has a right to be critical of it. But truth is he is of a generation of mouthy psuedo rebels from the 80's who have discovered the power of a good sound bite. After all, the quote has prompted this discussion, hasn't it?

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He plays the stuff so I suppose he has a right to be critical of it. But truth is he is of a generation of mouthy psuedo rebels from the 80's who have discovered the power of a good sound bite. After all, the quote has prompted this discussion, hasn't it?

Indeed - there is just a touch of irony in NK mouthing off about Paganini being a showoff...

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me too. I'm not a Nige fan but between him and Pag, i'd pick Nige any day.

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So how much has Kennedy composed, compared with, say, Paganini? I don't mind Kennedy, by the way, but wouldn't put him in the first rank of current virtuosos.

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I quite like a bit of Paganini now & then. The 1st violin concerto is a favourite of mine. Very difficult finale to play - most top violinists can't do it proper justice, imo. And the 24 caprices for solo violin are excellent.

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He's a twat. :KH:

((Nige, not Pag)

I must admit his fake "watcha, mate" style of conversation is a bit tiresome.

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I must admit his fake "watcha, mate" style of conversation is a bit tiresome.

...and totally manufactured. If you look at video of him in his younger days, he had a posh accent. His whole persona is a sham.

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A bit like Leopold Stokowski putting on a fake east european accent to make himself sound more exotic. :) - he was a London Lad, born and bred.

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Indeed - there is just a touch of irony in NK mouthing off about Paganini being a showoff...

NK is show off no doubt. The part that really turns me off about NK is the rebel without a cause moniker - the fake accent, the foul mouth couldn't care less attitude that was all manufactured. His playing even managed to get worse as his mouth turns into a sewer.

However, I could not argue over his opinion of Paganini. Sorry Jerry, I find Paganini Concerto 1 very superficial. It was full of cadenzas but it hasn't communicated any music to me. The orchestra and virtuosic were disconnected like they had nothing to do with one another. No questions, no answers.

The only Paganini I still listen to these days is Rachmaninoff's rhapsody.

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