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Friday, November 25, 2011

Einstein and the violin

Albert Einstein once pronounced those wise words on happiness: "A table, a chair, a bowl of fruit and a violin; what else does a man need to be happy?"

Wouldn't it be nice if we indeed only needed about four things to be happy? But wait a minute... we do!

Yours might not be the same as Einstein's, but the right four things, if picked carefully, can do the job.

I would say computer (with Internet access), running shoes, chocolate ice cream, and a good bottle of wine.

(A comfy armchair and a fireplace could be nice too... oh, and my bathing suit. That's still only 7 items!)

What would you say? What are your happy objects?

To honor Einstein and his violin, I put together a list of pieces in which beautiful violin can be heard.

(Please bear in mind that this list is FAR from exhaustive - I might come back with more in another post - and that unfortunately, YouTube does not always offer the best acoustic quality... if you love a piece, go buy it!) (And sorry for the advertisements... nothing I can do I'm afraid.)

Listen to these and tell me why would anyone need drugs.

I mean.


Beethoven's Pastoral Symphony (Can't you picture the sheep frolicking?)

Dvorak's Humoreske (Puts me in a good mood) (And... is it me or is Yo Yo Ma about to orgasm?!?) (I don't blame him, of course.)

Grieg's Peer Gynt (This part and so many more!)

Mascagni's Cavalleria Rusticana (Intermezzo) (This is another one that makes me forget I am mortal... or makes me think I have already arrived in paradise: even the harp is there!)

Paganini's Caprice 24 (And most of Paganini)

Prokofiev's Montagues and Capulets (Tragic... as it should)

Rachmaninov's Rhapsody on a theme of Paganini (Romanticism at its best!) 

Rimsky-Korsakov's Flight of the bumblebee (You can totally hear the bumblebee...)

Strauss II's Klipp Klapp Galop (... and see the horses)

Verdi's La Traviata's (Overture) (I had the chance to listen to this in person at the Montreal's Place des Arts... and I shivered in delightment. In this link's case, the sight of the conductor itself is worth it!)


  1. Un bon fauteuil (ou un grand tapis de plage et un coussin), une brise d'été, un livre.

  2. I would add that for someone who claims (claimed?) not liking romantic books or movies, your choice of music is quite romantic!

  3. Proof that the masterpieces of the Romantic Era (musical or in literature and paintings) have nothing to do with "modern romanticism". I am still NOT mushy or lovey-dovey! ;-)