by Ofra HarnoyOfra Harnoy


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In the late '80s and early '90s it had become somewhat fashionable, trendy, and chic for symphony orchestras to perform and record rock & roll classics. Indeed, some of the orchestral transcriptions of Yes and Pink Floyd are amazing and even essential. No rock & roll artists have been more exposed in this light than the Beatles. There are literally dozens of CDs available of John Lennon/Paul McCartney tunes by symphony orchestras, classical pianists, and/or chamber orchestras. Imagine by Ofra Harnoy is one of the best. This CD features Harnoy on solo cello accompanied at times by the Oxford String Quartet or the Armin String Quartet. But the real treats on this outstanding CD are her solo performances. Harnoy plays with such grace, restraint, and feeling that these pieces, sans vocals, take on new meaning. Hearing these familiar pop tunes in ambient and minimalist stylings is a delightful experience. Lennon and McCartney have been justifiably hailed as the greatest songwriting duo ever. Their lyrics tell great stories and are great poetry. Harnoy's restrained and reverent cello tells new versions or adds chapters to the originals. Her version of "Michelle" becomes a bittersweet dirge and powerful dark minimalism. "Yesterday" will have deep listeners contemplating their own fates and mourning losses. Of course, no Beatles collection is complete without George Harrison or Ringo Starr selections. Harnoy's arrangements of "Here Comes the Sun" and "Octopus' Garden" are brilliant. There are two of Lennon's solo compositions as well. The title track, "Imagine," is killer. "Free As a Bird," one of the "lost pieces," is true to form also. Oddly enough, there are no pieces from McCartney's solo career. This CD is lots of fun, entertaining as hell, and absolutely essential for ambient listeners and fans of the Fab Four.

Product Details

Release Date: 03/26/1996
Label: Rca
UPC: 0090266837625
catalogNumber: 68376

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Ofra Harnoy   Primary Artist,Cello
Jeremy Wall   Piano
Orford String Quartet   String Quartet
Doug Riley   Synthesizer
Adele Armin   Violin
Paul Armin   Viola
Richard Armin   Cello
Anthony Flint   Violin
Terrence Helmer   Viola
Andrew Dawes   Violin
Arden String Quartet   String Quartet

Technical Credits

George Harrison   Composer
John Lennon   Composer
Paul McCartney   Composer
Ringo Starr   Composer
Jeremy Wall   Arranger
Doug Riley   Arranger
Doug Doctor   Engineer
J.J. Stelmach   Art Direction
Julian Rice   Executive Producer
Anton Kwiatkowski   Engineer
Jacob Harnoy   Producer,Musical Supervision
Doctor Doug   Engineer
Joseph J. Stelmach   Art Direction

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Imagine 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago