The Ballad Singer (CD)

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Gerald Finley, Julius Drake

This latest release from the multi-award-winning partnership of Gerald Finley and Julius Drake features a literary and musical form which inspired the greatest voices of German Romanticism. The foremost poets and composers of the age saw the ballad as a direct link to the folk-minstrels of the past. Frequently ghoulish and sensational in character, ballads satisfied the popular taste for the Gothic. This disc contains some of the greatest examples of the form, including Schubert’s Erlkönig, as well as some fascinating and lesser-known works. The disc also includes selections from the ever popular English ballad tradition.

Gerald Finley’s unrivalled gift for characterization and story-telling, honed both on the stages of opera houses around the world and through his extraordinary Lieder recordings, makes him the ideal performer of these works. This is a genuinely entertaining and original disc.

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O where hae ye been, Lord Randall, my son?

traditional, arr. Cyril Scott


Mephistos Flohlied, Op. 75, 3


Es war ein Markgraf überm Rhein (No. 29 from Deutsche Volkslieder, WoO 33)


Alone in the desert, alone, I'm alone

Loewe, C:

Edward, Op. 1 No. 1 (Herder)

Die wandelnde Glocke, Op. 20 No. 3


Wo die schönen Trompeten blasen (Des Knaben Wunderhorn)

Porter, C:

The Tale of the Oyster


Erlkönig, D328


Die Löwenbraut, Op. 31 No. 1

Der Schatzgräber, Op. 45 No. 1


La Belle Dame sans merci (John Keats) (1877)

Sullivan, A:

The Lost Chord

Wolf, H:

Der Feuerreiter (No. 44 from Mörike-Lieder)

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International Record Review

July 2011

“Drake's playing has successfully suited the varied repertoire. Finley has enthralled with his interpretations and delighted with his singing purely as singing, combining the two aspects expertly.”

BBC Music Magazine

July 2011

“they're all tales and Finley is a fine tale-teller. In Loewe, he sounds as though he's singing just for you, the listener, so rapt and intense is his communication. Drake is a fine accomplice, tuning his fingers to full orchestral capacity for Schumann's psycho-drama 'Die Löwenbraut' and Wolf's 'Der Feuerreiter'”

The Times

18th June 2011

“Listen to these wonderfully melodramatic, mostly Victorian ballads by candlelight in a haunted house...Performances full of raging fortissimos and ghoulish tremolandos from Finley and his pianist Julius Drake.”

Classic FM Magazine

August 2011

“Their approach to text and music consistently casts light on turbulent emotions, at times glaring in its dramatic intensity at others passed through restraining filters. The recital's heart pulses with Wolf's Der Feuerreiter and a spine-tingling account of Stanford's La belle dame sans merci.”