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Paul McCartney's: Standing Stone

Paul McCartney , Lawrence Foster , London Symphony Orchestra Audio CD
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)


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Audio CD, 1997 --  
Audio Cassette, Box set, 1997 --  

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It is the eternal question for an artist of Paul McCartney’s stature: what next? What next when you have… well, that list of achievements, with even the long-touted standards album now ticked off with last year’s ‘Kisses On The Bottom’, hardly needs re-iterating. On one level, you might reasonably think that in terms of awards, honours, sales figures, shows and ... Read more in Amazon's Paul McCartney Store

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Product Details

  • Orchestra: London Symphony Orchestra
  • Conductor: Lawrence Foster
  • Composer: Paul McCartney
  • Audio CD (September 23, 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: EMI Classics
  • ASIN: B000002RZ7
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #158,045 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Fire - Rain
2. Cell Growth
3. Human Theme
4. Meditation
5. Crystal Ship
6. Sea Voyage
7. Lost At Sea
8. Release
9. Safe Haven - Standing Stone
10. Peaceful Moment
11. Messenger
12. Lament
13. Trance
14. Eclipse
15. Glory Tales
16. Fugal Celebration
17. Rustic Dance
18. Love Duet
19. Celebration

Editorial Reviews

4 songs

Customer Reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
(39)
3.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
28 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If music were... February 5, 2003
Format:Audio CD
If music were only a form of high-level mathmatical play, or if it were a game with set rules, the violation of which should and would disqualify you from play, then the task of music critics would be easy. But there are no rules, as far as I can tell: there is only taste in the kind of sounds you can make and call music. What music is actually about is emotion--music is about moving your audience, about touching one or a combination of the spectrum of human emotions. And Paul McCartney has been doing that since he finished the melody to When I'm Sixty-four at the age of sixteen.
Now, the form of Standing Stone is a symphonic, or orchestral poem. That means that the music is meant to tell a story, and to me it does. I had been listening to the music in fascination and admiration for at least six months before I read the poem the composer provides to tell the story in another form. The Standing Stone Poem is great fun--you can feel the author relishing the musical qualities of the language as he plays it like an instrument to tell his tale. The tale is about the dawn of everything, including human beings, it is about adventure, peril, triumph, and the joy and serenity that follow bloodless but real victory. The various sections of Standing Stone are chapters in a story told in orchestral and wordless vocal sound until the last section, Celebration, which includes a song with words.
So, I sugggest that formal training in music has nothing to do with the quality of a piece of music. Some musicians got together one day and invented rock 'n roll, and they did not have to present diplomas from Juilliard to do it. The symphonic form or lack thereof has nothing to do with the quality of a piece.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Journey to a state of wisdom February 22, 2000
Format:Audio CD
Standing Stone is a tremendously focused piece of work, and what it's focused on is the story it has to tell. That story is told in another form in the Standing Stone Poem, an original epic tale marked by a very distinctive tone that combines narrative compression with verbal gusto. One can almost see McCartney up to his elbows in adjectives, throwing them into a bubbling pot on the stove with glee in his eye, and serving the resulting dish to his guests with several flourishes. And this image captures, for me, something of the experience of listening to the music as well. But it is not necessary to read the poem first-- I had been listening to the music in fascination for at least six months before I read the poem. The music itself is action packed and adventure filled, and communicates itself with no wasted gestures. Every note, theme, tempo change, and instrumental color has a purpose, and conveys emotional images which progress from chaos through a magical journey which ends in a resolution which has nothing to do with rest, but with traveling onward in a transformed state. It is a journey through high adventure to a state of wisdom. The theme of the work is how the human capacities for wonder, curiosity, and perseverance can win triumph from the forces of darkness. It is about how victory can be achieved by wits, and courage, and good timing, rather than swords and gore. It is also about what the prize for victory is--about love in peace. McCartney has always been naive in the best sense of the word--neither ignorant nor cynical, but open to experience, willing to be affected. That naivete, combined with his considerable musical ingenuity and exuberance, have produced a series of musical scenes painted with equal delicacy and power, and united by haunting melodies and a strong narrative drive. I have really never heard anything quite like it before, and recommend it to your attention.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
Uneven, Yes absolutely
Childish in places, also guilty..
I don't know if McCartney meant the work in part as a musical autobiography of his growth into the classical field. The first time through, I thought he was letting us take his journey with him has he experimented with the different sounds of the orchestra, gradually finding his way and finally merging them into a wonderful finale. It wasn't until after two weeks of ridding around listening to the CD that I was able to read the liner. McCartney says he was showing the evolution of man. The parallel is stunning.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not for the rock fan, but for a lover of all music February 1, 2004
Format:Audio CD
The problem that I find in many of the negative reviews that people are giving to this album is that people have certain expectations when they see the name Paul McCartney on the cover of the CD. What must be understood is that this is music from the same mind, but a different part of that mind. It is obvious that certain parts of music by The Beatles and by Paul McCartney and Wings contain elements that transcend rock and roll and pop genres. If it weren't for these elements nobody would distinguish the music of these groups from other performers and the Beatles wouldn't be considered one of the best, if not the best, band ever.
"Standing Stone" is the result of what comes from filtering this extra element from the music that Sir Paul has written in the past. This results in music that is the art of the Beatles minus the rock and r&b that make most people comfortable with it. This album, in short, is for a lover of pure music, not somebody who relies on a heavy beat or groove. You won't find music to move to or remakes of classics, this is wonderful, original, modern but not completely abstract collection of ideas that McCartney put together with great success. I recommend this album for lovers of ALL music, not lovers of Paul's past music.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Wanted to listen to "new" classic music.
Paul McC. is talented and wanted to be able to listen to this at my leisure and as often as I liked.
Published 7 months ago by J. Foster
5.0 out of 5 stars Classical music from a classic person...
How can one not expect a musician of his magnitude not to produce such classical piece? one, two, three, fah!
Published 7 months ago by Carlos Rodriguez
5.0 out of 5 stars Really surprised................
I thought the entire piece really gave the feeling of a time before the Romans came to Britian.You can picture that island full of mysteries of the past.Give this a try.
Published 13 months ago by MusicLover
5.0 out of 5 stars incredible
of all of the McCartney classical pieces this is the best. the music is tight and flows from movement to movement. This reveals much of the genius behind Sir Paul.
Published 16 months ago by vulture12
1.0 out of 5 stars Nope.
Can't recommend it. It goes nowhere. The march song is a total flop. Man I wish 'ol JL was here.
Published 18 months ago by James Czubak
5.0 out of 5 stars Peaceful, relaxing music.
Paul McCartney is my all time favorite musician for oh so many reasons. I love this CD as much as anything else he's done. Read more
Published 21 months ago by W. Clay
1.0 out of 5 stars I Prefer Macca on Terra Firm: Pop Ditties and Songs for his Aunties
We all know that Macca went through a stage when he preferred one legged objects, and this clearly illustrates that weakness. Read more
Published on April 3, 2012 by Marcus Aurelius
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice piece of work, a good listen, yet...
I'm glad to hear Mac extending the range of his eclectic brilliance and I DO find this a worthwhile listening experience, one I've not had for the last time. Read more
Published on April 24, 2011 by Jeff Walker
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful music
Another of Paul McCartney's composition of classical music. Lovely,relaxing to listen to.
Published on June 10, 2009 by Deborah J. Siconolfi
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent musical experiment
The included booklet mentions how much McCartney loves experimenting with new musical styles and techniques; this performance continues that tradition fantastically. Read more
Published on February 7, 2008 by B. Beck
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