Classical cover: ‘Also Sprach Zarathustra’

From 1972.

Here’s how the opening of Richard Strauss’s Also Sprach Zarathustra sounds in its original form, as famously used to launch Stanley Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey.”

What’s that tune in ‘Outlaw King’?

We noticed the new trailer (kind of violent) for “Outlaw King” on Netflix uses a famous classical tune as underscoring.

The tune? Albinoni’s Adagio, of course, which probably wasn’t actually composed by Albinoni, but by 20th-century musicologist Remo Giazotto. Here’s how it normally sounds.

The piece has been heard in many films before, including “Gallipoli” in 1981.

Shostakovich’s ‘Festive Overture,’ for ocarina septet

Shostakovich composed his Festive Overture for full symphony orchestra, of course, and that’s the version that conductor Carl St.Clair and Pacific Symphony will perform at the annual Tchaikovsky Spectacular on Sept. 8. Meanwhile, here’s another version, amusing but impressive all the same, performed entirely on ocarinas by Jordan Moore, a student at the Eastman School of Music. –TM

The ocarinas used are:

Focalink Double Soprano G
Rotter 12-hole Soprano C
Rotter 10-hole Soprano G
Rotter 12-hole “Fairy” Alto C
Claudio Colombo Alto G
Claudio Colombo Bass C
Claudio Colombo Bass G
Claudio Colombo Contrabass C

Classical cover: Borodin’s ‘Polovtsian Dances’

The 1953 musical “Kismet” used the melodies of Russian composer Alexander Borodin (1833-1887), adapted and given different words by Robert Wright and George Forrest. One of the tunes, from the “Polovtsian Dances,” became a popular song called “Stranger in Paradise.” First, listen to it in its original form, as “The Gliding Dance of the Maidens” section of the “Polovtsian Dances” from the opera “Prince Igor.” (I have it cued up to the proper spot; there’s an intro, then the famous melody.)

Here now is Tony Bennett singing the popular song in 1954.

Classical cover: Schubert’s ‘Erlkonig’

I love a good cover song. The term usually applies to a pop or rock song — some of my favorites in that category include DEVO’s “Satisfaction,” Cake’s “I Will Survive” and The Clash’s “Brand New Cadillac.”

But broadly speaking, classical music is filled with cover songs, if we think of transcriptions, arrangements and paraphrases as such. At any rate, here’s one of my favorite classical covers: First, the original Schubert song, “Erlkönig,” sung by Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau (English subtitles included); and then Heinrich Ernst’s violin transcription of same, played by Hilary Hahn.