Ride of the Valkyries

I just listened to Wagner’s Ride of the Valkyries for the first time… or so I thought. I recognized it from start to finish, having heard it hundreds of times without knowing what it was. Cool. I wonder what other famous songs I think I’ve never heard when I have in fact heard them loads of times.

[sub]Disclaimer: If this post is incoherent or if it is not clear what I’m trying to achieve with it, it’s because I’m drunk. Sorry about that.[/sub]

Johann Sebastien Bach’s “Toccata and Fugue in D Minor”

Sometimes known as “that spooky music”. Did you see the original “Rollerball” movie? It’s the opening theme, as the stadium is prepared for play. You’ll know it when you hear it.

Found it in Pricegal’s extensive Bach collection. Oh yes, I know it. Amazing, I’ve never known that was Bach.

More suggestions!

There are two passages entitled “Morning” that are very familiar – one is from the Grieg’s Overture to Peer Gynt; the other, I’m suffering an acute brain cramp about. Whenever you see a cartoon image with a flowery meadow and fluffy bunnies and other cutesy stuff (presumably just before the action of the cartoon wreaks havoc of flowers, bunnies, et al.), one or the other is the background music.

You know that song in Latin they play when the Devil appears … The one that goes

dah-dah dah-dah
dah-dah dah-dah
dah-dah-dah DAH DAH dah-dah

dah-dah dah-dah
dah-dah dah-dah
dah-dah-dah DAH DAH dah-dah


That’s O Fortuna from Carmina Burana

Polycarp, that was the music played during Sol’s(E G Robinson) death scene, in the movie Soylent Green, wasn’t it?

I assume you are familiar with the last 3 minutes of Rossini’s William Tell Overture.

You certainly know Aaron Copeland’s “Rodeo,” which was made famous by the Beef People.

Here are a few-

The traditional wedding march (Here Comes the Bride), is the Bridal Chorus from Wagner’s “Lohengrin”. The other famous “falling in love” piece (which I think can be heard whenever two characters in “The Sims” get to smoochin’ :stuck_out_tongue: ) is from Mendelssohn’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”

Let’s see, the 2001 Space Odyssey theme is from Strauss’ “Thus Spoke Zarathustra.” The infamous circus music is from Julius Fucik’s “Entry of the Gladiators” And of course there’s the William Tell overture by Rossini- more popularly known as the Lone Ranger theme.

But this could go on for awhile. For better or for worse classical music is all over the place (…I still get a bit miffed whenever that Snickers energy bar commercial comes on- that’s the 2nd mvmt. of Beethoven’s 7th in the background).

I’ll give you a list of “classical hits”, I hope that when you listen to them, you’ll try to listen to more things. There are hundreds of years of the best music for you to find. A couple of favourites:

Mussorgski: Promenade, Baba Yaga hut’s, The great gate of kiev, A night on the bare mountain.-

TChaikovsky: Most of Nutcracker, 1812 overture, specially the ending, Slav March, the first bit of his Piano Concerto. If you want to listen to music you’ll instantly recognize, this is your composer.-

Manuel de Falla: Pantomima and Ritual Dance fire from “El Amor Brujo”.-

Ravel: Bolero.

Chopin: All his piano pieces are famous. Polonesa N°6 is a hit.-

Gershwin: An American in Paris and Rhapsody in blue.-

Sibelius: Vals Triste and Finland.-

Bizet: His Carmen Suite is and will always be famous.

Beethoven: His Romances for Violin and Orquestra, the 1st movement of his 6 symphony, For Elise, Moonlight sonata.-

Debussy: Moonlight Sonata, Arabic N° 1 and 2, prelude to the nap? of a faun.

Ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo I hate it so much when you guys call them songs.

The Dih-dih-dih-DAH of his 5th Symphony, made famous by the BBC using it (it’s also the Morse “V” pulse) during WWII. The setting of Schiller’s “Ode to Joy” from the 9th Symphony.

“Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun” is the accepted English title – my French is rusty, but “L’Apres-Midi d’un Faune” is I believe the original.

I might also note that anyone who’s a fan of Disney’s older full-length animated features has a strong familiarity with a lot of classical music, particularly Tchaikowsky – the song “Once Upon a Dream” from Disney’s Sleeping Beauty is lifted straight from T’s “Sleeping Beauty” ballet, where it’s an instrumental piece. There are several other examples. Peter and the Wolf is a cartoon setting for Tchaikowsky’s tone poem; Fantasia and Fantasia 2000 are strict visual depictions for the named classical pieces featured in them.

And, of course, Saint-Saens’s “Dance of the Hours” (the flamingo dance in Fantasia 2000) is familiar to everybody through the depredations of Allan Sherman (many of whose songs are take-offs on classical pieces, such as Liszt’s “Hungarian Rhapsody” which became Sherman’s “Hungarian Goulash.”

Been ages since I saw the movie, but IIRC, Sol passed on to Beethoven’s 6th Symphony, Pastorale. See Fantasia (The Grecian picnic part) for a sampling.


‘Ode to Joy’ is the fourth movement of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.

Listen to Tsaichovsky’s ‘Nutcracker Suite’ or the score of Disney’s ‘Fantasia’ and you’ll realize you know all the pieces.

Now that’s a losing battle if I’ve ever seen one. :smiley:
(although honestly, I find it annoying, too)

Schubert’s “Der Erlkönig” - listen to track 8 on this page - http://www.towerrecords.com/product.aspx?pfid=3022447

It’s by Prokofiev, not Tchaikowsky.


Well, I’m terribly sorry, but English isn’t my first language and I don’t know the proper word to use. Educate me.

Estilicon, I’m not a complete ignoramus, I actually know a lot more classical music than most people you’d bump into in the street. I have heard a lot of the music you mention and seen Nutcracker performed. It’s not that I don’t like or know of classical music, I just hadn’t a clue that that bit of music (now that I can’t call it a song) was Ride of the Valkyries.

:cool: http://www.polleng.freeserve.co.uk/gp_d-kt.mid :eek: :smiley:

:cool: http://www.polleng.freeserve.co.uk/gp_syl-2.mid :eek: :smiley: