By: Ryan Johnson
While being faced with the task of picking a single album to listen to on a desert island for an undocumented amount of time is quite daunting, I feel quite confident in my choice of Bach’s Unaccompanied Cello Suites performed by Yo-yo Ma. While this may seem a bit out of character for a GMN contributor, I have a variety of reasons for choosing this way.
- The cello is my favorite instrument, and Bach is my favorite composer. These suites are something I have grown up with, and as a classically trained cellist myself, they mean a lot to me, a sort of perfection and goal as a musician.
- The range of emotion that is created throughout all six suites is amazing, there is so much to listen and sort through, I never get bored of the suites.
- My favorite part of listening to classical music is the small glimpses of humanity that you are given. If you listen closely, throughout tracks you will hear a soft yet sharp inhale, these appear between phrases of a composition or before a challenging part of the piece. It is at these moments that I am reminded of the amount of focus and excellent execution that is occurring throughout these suites.
- While the human breath is comforting, I don’t think there is a human voice that I could consistently listen to while on an island without slowly sinking into insanity.
- There are two disks in this album, running for approximately two hours and forty minutes. This album is so long, the island would be a breeze.
Luckily you don’t have to be stuck on an island to appreciate the greatness of Yo-Yo Ma, so get at it and get some classical on your playlist.