BBC Radio 3 Record Review

There used to be a programme on Radio 3 thirty or more years ago called ‘Interpretations On Record’, which listened to great recordings that had been made of pieces of music, whether or not they were still in the catalogue.

I found it a bit pointless to be told of a great recording that had been deleted years, decades or whatever before. Not a lot of point in knowing of a great recording that was never likely to come back into the catalogue.

In decades past, when the s/h classical market was all but non-existent, I agree entirely that it would have verged on the cruel to tell the audience the best recording was long-deleted, but that’s why I referred to ‘the state of the s/h CD market’. Given how cheaply one can pick up old CDs, it can be really easy now to pick up recordings you can’t buy new, which is why I think there’s an argument for telling people about deleted recordings if they’re particularly good.

For example, I heard the most fabulous performance of Ah, ch’infelice sempre from Vivaldi’s cantata RV684 on Radio 3 last year and was irritated to find that both the original 1997 release and the 2007 reissue were both long-deleted. Spotify had it in compromised SQ, Presto had it on download only, but that’s not my cup of tea and all the s/h copies on Discogs or fleaBay were silly money. I listened to all the currently available recordings from other performers of but they were very pale imitations. At that point, I could have just shrugged my shoulders and thought ‘well, that boat’s sailed, what a shame’, but I’m glad I didn’t. About a month later, I checked again, and found a 1997 copy for a fiver which is now sitting on my shelf.



Tom Service is excellent,
His The Listening service and his Guardian introductions.

Also on Radio 3 “talking about music” by Anthony Hopkins from the mists of time in my brain.

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You can often buy downloads of CDs that are not available otherwise.

You’re absolutely right, Douglas, what a brilliant and illuminating programme that used to be. I haven’t heard of him for years, so I rather assume that he is no longer with us.

He died aged 93 in 2014, but the BBC made four programmes about ‘Talking about Music’

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Thank you, that’s kind. I can’t follow the link at present (sick Mac), but I will try to remember to do so, when I’ve got it sorted.

You are welcome. The title of the programme is ‘Talking about Anthony Hopkins’ It is good that R3 remember him.

Radio 3’s Building A Library section on Record Review is covering Vaughan Williams’s sublimely beautiful ‘The Lark Ascending’ at 10:30 this morning.

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I enjoyed this section this morning. My collection is limited to David Nolan/Vernon Handley on EMI as well as 1953 Pougnet/Boult on Dutton.
Will definitely have to add the Hugh Bean/Adrian Boult recording to my collection.
The Janine Jenson version sounds worth seeking out for a different interpretation.

It seems to be difficult to find a recommended version on LP. Record Review used to be meticulous in recommending a chosen LP version, but that practice seems to have fallen away recently.

It is a lovely piece of music, so I will keep up my efforts.

Mozart’s ‘Paris’ symphony this morning, just started a few minutes ago.

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Record Review’s ‘Building A library’ this morning (10;30) will feature a lovely old warhorse, Tchaikovsky’s First Piano Concerto.

I have LPs of the work played by Martha Argerich (who has recorded it four times, I believe), Sviatoslav Richter (with Karajan connecting the Vienna Symphony Orchestra, not an orchestra that I have heard of otherwise) and probably a couple of others that I’ve forgotten.

Should be interesting.

PS How could I have forgotten Lazar Berman with Karajan,/Berlin PO?

Programme just starting.


Hello Graham

Watching the cricket , but I know you enjoy this programme

Hoping you have a peaceful day

best wishes


Thanks, Ian, I hope that the cricket is going well - are England playing?

Yes, Record Review is my favourite few hours of radio every week, although I do listen to quite a lot else. Looking forward to being home with my lovely NAT-01, which Naim HQ have been fixing (I hope).

Any idea of when ?

best wishes


I have been a longtime fan of the Building a Library section of Record Review, including the period when it changed its name to CD Review - remember that? However, I much preferred it when the Building a Library slot was more of a lecture style rather than the discussion with Andrew approach, which we have now. Still, it’s a brilliant programme nonetheless.

Someone earlier mentioned that it was difficult to locate the earlier recommendations from past years. I agree, this is a challenge, but once found, there is a download option where the lists can be saved in either .pdf or MS Word formats.


Have this on vinyl and these too.

They were so helpful when I was first starting to listen to classical music.
Think some of the other broadcasts are available on Amazon Prime


Ian, sorry, just seen your note. Was struggling with Times x-word!

I have a psych assessment (my term) tomorrow morning, when I will be seen/assessed by two people individually, one after the other. I have no idea what to expect, so I can’t prepare in any way. If they ask me to raise my own topic for discussion, I’ll suggest the recorded legacy of Carlos Kleiber or Jeff Buckley. Sadly, not nearly enough in either case, although for different reasons!