23. Sibelius: 7th Symphony
[…] when Sibelius reached 40 he shaved
all the hair from his head, walked
into his house and never
came out again until they
came for him.
Excerpt from Sibelius And Etc. by Charles Bukowski
Symphonies consist of 3 or 4 movements. Ever since Haydn came up with them, nobody bothered to ask why. They just do. Sibelius’ 7th consists of 1 single movement. Because fuck you Haydn, that’s why!
Sibelius 7th is sometimes referred to as the most depressing symphony of all time. A soundtrack to the end of the world. But we shouldn’t rule out that the 7th is merely a tribute to whiskey, since Sibelius drank crates of it in order to steady the tremors in his hand while writing it. And from that trivial piece of musical history it’s only a small step to Sir Alexander Gibson & His Scottish Drinking Buddies.
Sir Alexander Gibson & Royal National Scottish Orchestra