Soundtrack Suggestions for Slide Shows

Hi. For DVD slide shows of my European travels I always add music - but seem to have trouble finding the "right" composers...and seem to end up duplicating things (with way too much Mozart). I'm not the most knowledgeable about classical music in the first place. Any suggestions for decent music to accompany these slide shows is appreciated. I spent 3 years in Germany so I travelled from Scandinavia to Naples, Madrid to St. Petersburg...meaning I have lots of pics to put on DVD's. Thanks.

Posted by Tom
Hüttenfeld, Hessen, Germany
9094 posts

Can you give us a better idea of what you're looking for? Do you want recommendations on composers or specific pieces of music? If the former, are you trying to match the nationality of the composer with the location of the pictures? If the latter, are you looking for specific moods? Do you need specific time periods, ie medieval, renaissance, baroque, classical, romantic, modern or post-modern?

Posted by steven
white plains, ny, usa
649 posts

In addition to the fine advice Tom has given you ,might I add a further component to bear in mind ? I would assume that your pictures would be grouped in a thematic manner , for instance , by country . It would be helpful to have a rough idea of the time frame for a given series of shots , say 5 ,8 ,12 minutes per section . Doesn't have to be exact , just a rough idea . That would help us to suggest compositions that would fit time frames as well as moods . I spent my working career as a bassoonist in NY City , playing in theater orchestras and symphony environments and would be more than happy to make some suggestions .

Posted by Brian
Silverdale, WA
43 posts

I guess what I am most after is something which is mid-tempo rather than too slow and moody. And, on second thought, not necessarily limited to classical music. I have a CD of Italian "classics" (50's-60's) which creates a fun soundtrack for the wine/food of Italy. Ditto for France with a CD with the quintessential café/accordion music. I just need more music like that for those countries. For Germany I mix in some standard beer hall songs for the festivals, then various classical music pieces otherwise. Then typically classical for all other countries since I'm not sure what else would work for Austria, Croatia, Spain, Czech R, etc. Matching the composer with the country would be ideal, but again I want an upbeat tempo.

Posted by Brian
Silverdale, WA
43 posts

Timeframe would be tough to pin down, but I would say one country could easily be 10-15 minutes. That depends on who the DVD is for - if immediate family, it's somewhat of a year-in-review so time is longer. For others it would be probably 8-10 snapshot of a country.

Posted by steven
white plains, ny, usa
649 posts

Brian ,Got it!! Here are a couple of things to look at ; for the french cafe choices , listen to some French Chanson . Artists like Yves Montand , Leo Marjane , Edith Piaf , Charles Trenet , and my all time favorite , Jacqueline Francois are perfect for Paris, indeed , France in general . On YouTube you can listen to Jacqueline perform songs ; Mademoiselle de Paris , Sous les Ciels de Paris , L'Ame des Poetes ( a favorite ) and more . She had " Une voix d'ange " ( voice of an angel )For Austria any of the well known waltzes by Johann Strauss ( the younger ) such as" Blue Danube " , " Emperor " , " Tales From the Vienna Woods " , or overtures from his operettas ," Die Fledermaus " , and especially , " Die Waldmeister " would be great . For Spain look at selec tions from Manuel De Falla's ballet " The Three-Cornered Hat " or Maurice Ravel's " Alborada del Gracioso " ( He was French but had a strong Spanish influence ) Czech Republic , Antonin Dvorak ," Symphony 8 in G major " . also Czech , Bedrich Smetana , his symphonic poem cycle " Ma Vlast " ( my country ) " Vlatava " ( The Moldau ) is the best known of the cycle . Hope this gives you a start ,let me know if you need more , the choices are legion !!

Posted by Brian
Silverdale, WA
43 posts

Wow! Thanks for all of the suggestions. Any chance you have a bunch of suggestions for Italy like the French artists? I have lots of territory to cover there. This gives me lots of music to search for at my local library.

Posted by Zoe
Toledo, Ohio, US
2452 posts

For Italy, listen to some of Mina, a pop legend. Also Zucchero and Adriano Celentano. If you can get Italian (or any country) radio on your computer (try booking a train ticket without it), you can sample some contemporary and classical artists.

Posted by Denny
Columbus, OH, USA
733 posts

Waitaminute! There is no such thing as "way too much Mozart" :-)

Posted by steven
white plains, ny, usa
649 posts

Brian , a few selections for Italy ; Any of Nino Rota's film music ( composer of the " Godfather " score , really good on it's own , but a favorite of mine is the music for " La Strada " Some others are " Amaracord " , " Juliet of the Spirits " , " 8 1/2 " . A good Rossini opera overture is " La Scala di Seta " ( The Silken Ladder ) a real lively one . Also a great , Rota's music for " Nights of Cabiria " The story of the film was the basis for a broadway show entitled " Sweet Charity " .

Posted by steven
white plains, ny, usa
649 posts

Brian , As much as I love libraries ( there are anumber of them in which I spend a great deal of time ) , you will find all of my suggestions conveniently posted on youtube , making your initial searches very convenient .

Posted by Brian
Silverdale, WA
43 posts

Good point on YouTube. I will start there with the suggestions. Thanks all.