A fellow member of the Bay Area Audiophile Society recently forwarded to me a link to Wikipedia's entry for audiophile. It's a horror. Even before the page defines the word, it begins with a large question mark, circled in green, and the warning, "This article or section may contain original research or unverified claims. Please help Wikipedia by adding references."
Treasured as much for her bubbling personality and administrative acumen as for her extraordinary voice, coloratura soprano Beverly Sills died of lung cancer on July 2. One of the finest high-flying sopranos of the latter 20th century, she leaves behind a rich legacy of recordings and an opera scene revitalized by her tireless efforts on behalf of American singers.
Now that more and more music lovers are turning to the Internet to purchase CDs, DVDs, and downloadable files#151;see WP's story on iTunes this week—Naxos isn't taking any chances. The world's largest classical music label, whose US branch, Naxos of America, also claims to be the #1 independent distributor of classical music in the US, has recently set up multiple websites to lure music lovers into the fold.
The 10th annual The Home Entertainment Show (T.H.E. Show), which will run January 7–10, 2008, concurrent with the 2008 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), has expanded its exhibit space to include both the completely renovated Alexis Park Resort Hotel and its neighbor, the St. Tropez Hotel. By using both venues, T.H.E. Show, in effect, throws down the gauntlet to CES, which last year abandoned its traditional high-end audio home at the Alexis Park and moved High-Performance Audio to the Venetian Hotel.
ArkivMusic, one of the Web's leading sources for classical music recordings, has struck a deal that enables them to release on their own reissue label, ArkivCD, out-of-print titles from the extensive catalogues of EMI Classics, Virgin Classics, and Angel Records. The reissues are available "on demand," copied from actual out-of-print CD releases (not master tapes) without compression or enhancement, and are often accompanied by copies of the original liner notes.
Our meeting was propitious and totally unexpected. The locus was Los Angeles' Sheraton Gateway Hotel last May, on which we had all descended for Home Entertainment 2006. As a contributor to Stereophile's Show blog, my assignment was as liberal as they come: Go where you are drawn, listen as you will, and record your impressions.
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra has taken its first giant steps into the digital domain. Hard on the heels of launching the orchestra's new in-house CD label, CSO Resound, it has announced a partnership with digital distributor IODA that will make CSO Resound recordings available for download via iTunes, Yahoo! Music, Rhapsody, Napster, Verizon, Sprint, and other online retailers.
"Slava" has died. The great Russian cellist, known as much for his defiance of the Soviet oligarchy as for the more than 170 compositions dedicated to him, had been hospitalized in Paris at the end of January, but chose to fly to Moscow shortly thereafter to spend his last months in his beloved homeland. He is survived, not only by his two daughters and his wife and frequent collaborator, the soprano Galina Vishnevskaya, but also by the huge number of recordings that attest to his eloquence.
With buds and 'phones in hand, headphone enthusiasts from around the US and beyond are about to plug in in San Jose, California. Their destination is the Radisson Hotel, where the Second Annual International Head-Fi Meet takes place on April 21 and 22. Organized by Head-Fi, an online discussion board boasting 53,907 members and a whopping 2,810,005 posts annually, the meet promises two very full days of interactive panels, DIY demos, and vendor exhibits.
Amelia S. Haygood, the sound-conscious founder and president of record company Delos International, died on March 19 at the age of 87 after a 12-year battle with cancer. Survivors include pianist Carol Rosenberger, her closest friend and Delos vice president, artists and repertoire; Robert Haygood, her stepson; several nephews and nieces; and her extended family at the pioneering classical label she founded in 1973.