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(Die Musik und das Werk von Klaus Ogermann)

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Claus Ogerman, conducting in Paris, 2001.

 


 Introduction

I became better acquainted with the arrangements of Claus Ogerman in the early 1970s when I began buying albums by Antonio Carlos Jobim for the first time. I had just graduated from high school. And I loved the arrangements on those albums. They were full and rich sounding, and I really liked the way Claus used the string section. I would guess that the most famous album he was associated with at that time was Tom Jobim's "Wave" album, which, of course, is a classic. That album accompanied me to college and was my main source of comfort during times when it was discouraging for me to be a music major playing the drums and trombone in what was then an all-women's school. Ogerman's arrangements of Jobim's "Look to the Sky" and "Antigua" were my favorites on that album.

Every once in a while I would come across another album that had more of Claus' arrangements on them. I have two all-time favorite Ogerman instrumental arrangements which appear on the "A Certain Mr. Jobim" & the "Terra Brasilis" albums and that same piece is Jobim's own "Someone to Light Up My Life". Both arrangements have something to recommend them and I'm not able to choose one above the other for preference.

But my actual introduction to the work of Claus Ogerman came much earlier in 1963 when I was just ten years old. I was on vacation with my parents in New York City and we stayed at the Hotel Manhattan. I distinctly remember what the radio in the hotel room was playing when we arrived. It was the Kai Winding hit "More" from the movie Mondo Cane.  Soon after, I bought the 45 rpm version of the hit song. That Claus Ogerman arrangement where Kai plays the ondioline and trombone definitely caught my ear and I probably played that record to death. It remains one of my favorites to this day.

The sheer versatility of Claus simply cannot be overstated. I know of no one else who is so at home within SO MANY varied styles of music and works in them equally well, across the board.  I believe that this openness and non-prejudice toward varied musical styles is one of the greatest gifts he brings to music.  He has arranged top hits for rock and roll stars, music for soul artists & rhythm and blues musicians.  This is in addition to all the music he has arranged from the Broadway stage as well as his orchestrations for many jazz artists and bossa nova pioneers Jobim, Joao Donato & The Gilbertos.  Not to mention Claus' many arrangements crafted for easy-listening orchestras and even a Roaring 20's album.  It seems as though there is almost no style of music that has escaped his exquisite touch.

And if you are not familiar with any of Claus Ogerman's own compositions, you are missing out on a whole other side to this musician.  He has composed individual pieces of pop instrumental music, music for the Broadway stage, concertos (both classical and jazz), a suite for ballet and orchestra, other substantial classical works, a suite which has a mix of classical, jazz, and modern elements within it; film scores for German films, tracks for his own German Oktoberfest album, tracks for big band albums and much more.  All of this work is listed throughout this website.  

My own personal homage to Claus is contained on the pages listed at the end of the main Index below and will all eventually become part of what is shaping up to be "Part II" of this site.  Among several other things, Part II will consist of items I have written myself and which I will hope visitors to this site will take the time to read. They are an "unofficial" part of Claus' site - but certainly important enough to be included.  Right now, these items can only be accessed directly from the Index.

No discography is created with albums one person alone owns. I would like to acknowledge special thanks to Doug Payne - CTi Discographer, for his faithful support in this project when it began and also for providing me with six Claus Ogerman albums - without which I would not have been able to add those cover scans and complete listing information to this site.  Likewise, my sincere thanks extends to Tom Johnson for his numerous textual contributions to this site and also for providing me with many more Ogerman album scans and photos for inclusion on the site. Thanks also to Forrest Patten for providing rare album cover scans for the site. I am grateful to Michael Newcomb and Jose Sanches Perez for their contribution of album covers & sheet music book scans.  Gratitude goes out to Alan Watts for writing the condensed bio on Claus which is included in this site.  Sincere appreciation likewise goes out to Arnaldo DeSouteiro and Ithamara Koorax for providing many album listings, scans of photos and albums for this site - as well as to Eric van Aro from ERAKI Entertainment for supplying the Caterina Valente information & photos. Appreciation also goes out to Randy Kosht, Sal Presti, Paul Lewis, Marcel Gärtner, John ("JAK") Knowles, Wolfgang Weissbrodt, Hans-Peter Huebschen & Peter Schlinke for providing missing album listing information, foreign 45 rpm listings, rare acetate scans and many other needed details for the site. My gratitude to Suitbert Kempkes for not only providing some missing listing information covering several albums, but for also providing valuable information on Claus Ogerman's career in the early 1950s. Thanks also go to Harry de Louw of the International Pop Music Consultancy for providing listing information and cover photos for some European releases of Claus' records and to Jim Braun for his contribution of the Gene Lees Jazzletter. I'm grateful to Serge Elhaik for his purchase of rare, online auctioned items - which color scans of those same items have helped to complete this site. It is always great for me to have artists themselves involved and willing to contribute items to the site - and to this end, I am most appreciative for the rare photo that Hannelore Cremer permitted to be used on the site and heartfelt thanks to Oliver Härle for scanning it (and for providing other needed info as well in email to me).  My gratitude to Chris A. Radcliffe from Black Patch Productions/Lucky Duck Music Publishing for sending me label scans belonging to records made by his father Jimmy Radcliffe, who worked with Claus Ogerman in the recording studio.  Appreciation also goes out to Oliver Schneider - Nürnberg, Germany for his contributions of German 45 rpm listings and scans for this site.  Thank you to Michael Fishberg of Harkit Records [UK] for his assistance in providing licensed UK listings for the site.  And very special thanks to Peter Bay, Conductor & Music Director of the Austin Symphony Orchestra, who has gone above and beyond the call of duty many, many times in sending me whole packages of numerous album photos as well as providing technical information and listing information about the recordings for inclusion on this site from his hours of library research.  A good portion of this site exists because of the many contributions of material that Peter himself has donated.  Many thanks to Mike Feingold for supplying .pdfs and .jpg scans for many of Claus' scores.

Last but certainly not least, I'd like to thank the man who was and who continues to be the inspiration for this site, Claus Ogerman himself, for his interest in the project and for the items he has personally submitted to me for inclusion on this site.

I hope you enjoy this tribute to a most wonderful composer/conductor/arranger, Claus Ogerman.

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--B.J. (Barbara J.) Major
Introduction amended on 08/10/14.


Index

PART I - Claus Ogerman Pictorial Discography
& Career Details 
  DISCOGRAPHY and VIDEOGRAPHY:  ALL-RECORDINGS INDEX--HERE
Including 45 rpm, 78 rpm, Extended Play (EP), LP, CS, Reel-to-Reel, CDs, CD Singles and Radio Broadcasts;
Broadcast TV, Live Concert, LaserDisc, VCD, DVD, Blu-Ray, DVD-Audio, VHS, Film Composer (Germany & USA) & YouTube
  Claus Ogerman Published Sheet Music Covers--HERE
  Claus Ogerman Sheet Music and Scores (Original & Printed Manuscripts)--HERE
 PHOTO GALLERY:
Claus Ogerman Through the Years--
HERE
  INTERVIEW SECTION: Impressions of Claus Ogerman--HERE
 Comments on the Artist from Site Visitors--HERE
Claus Ogerman's Influence On Other Arrangers & Composers--HERE
  INFORMATION:  Claus Ogerman Tidbits and NEWS--HERE
 Order Form for Claus Ogerman Sheet Music (classical and non-classical)--HERE   
BIOGRAPHY:  About Claus Ogerman--HERE
  FILMOGRAPHY: Claus Ogerman--HERE
  Claus Ogerman GRAMMY® Nominations and Awards--HERE
  EDITORIALS - Why is Claus so hard on himself?--HERE
  In Defense of Claus--HERE
Gene Lees and Claus' Work For Pop Artists--HERE
  LINKS:  Jazz and Brazilian Music Links--HERE
PART II - "My Great Love" - Personal Writings to, for and about Claus Ogerman
(all items this section will eventually contain are not yet listed or available for viewing)
"My Favorite Arranger" Essay--HERE
 Fictional Story - "The Influence of a Lifetime" - written
in 2004 for Claus Ogerman's 74th Birthday--
HERE
 Poems written for Claus Ogerman--HERE
Or read a specific poem: 
Presence, Original Ogerman Composition Verse, Dreams and Despair, It All Began in New York, The Consummate Conductor,
Pieces of a Puzzle, The Craving, Mail Time, Change For a Cymbal,
Following The Path, Depth of Feeling, Dream Number 4,
Three Years Ago
 Some Claus Ogerman Humor--HERE

NOTE:  THIS SITE HAS NOW BEEN TOTALLY REORGANIZED AND REDONE IN RECORD LABEL ORDER.

**  This discography online since January 2001  **


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Original site layout and textual content of this site Copyright © 2000-2014, B.J. Major. Interview transcriptions have not been edited for content. Claus Ogerman contributed information for inclusion in this site directly to the webmaster.  Pictured album cover photos, record label images and CD booklet pages are copyright of their respective record labels and are used here only for information and illustration purposes. Original writings - including poems, verse compositions, fictional story, editorial and essay are Copyright © 2003-2014, B.J. Major and may not be quoted or used elsewhere without permission.  This is a private site and is not owned in part or whole by any company or corporation.  Claus Ogerman has contributed information and material for "The Work of Claus Ogerman" directly to this Webmaster.


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