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Album: Various Artists Sacred Baroque Masterpieces (Naïve)

For once, the apparent hyperbole is simple statement of fact: the four albums compiled together here are all indeed masterpieces of baroque music, delivered with grace and majesty by outstanding performers.

Album: Karlheinz Stockhausen, Michaels Reise um die Erde (Wergo)

In his later years, Stockhausen gave himself more and more to monumental works, such as the 29-hour operatic cycle Licht, a grand mythopoeic fable based around the days of the week, from whose Donnerstag (Thursday) opera derives Michaels Reise um die Erde (Michael's Journey Around The World).

IoD album review: Georgie Fame, Lost in a Lover’s Dream (Three line whip)

Six decades into his remarkably consistent career, Fame has made one of his best albums: a bare-bones trio recorded in Slovenia with guitarist Primoz Grasic and bassist Mario Mavrin.

IoS album review: Mexican Institute of Sounds, Politico (Chusma Records)

Mexican producer Camilo Lara has been making kitsch, cool, funky sonic collages from the old, new, borrowed and blue for six years now.

Three of the Johnny Dankworth Seven in 1951: from left, Dankworth, Harvey and Don Rendell

Eddie Harvey: Expressive trombonist who became one of the finest teachers of jazz

'Show us your balls, pal!' was Woody Herman's cry to any player who he felt was underperforming

Album: Mike Svoboda, Da Lontano: Scelsi, Cage, Stockhausen, Nono (Wergo)

In Da Lontano, trombonist Mike Svoboda explores the expressive range of his solo instrument in ways reflecting the diverse agendas of the composers involved.

Album: Alison Balsom, Sound the Trumpet (EMI Classics)

Trumpeters were the star musicians of the Baroque era, their shiny, golden tones vital to evoking the glory of victory and the majesty of kings.

Album: Armonico Consort, Let The Bright Seraphim (Signum Classics)

The Armonico Consort follow up their dazzling second volume of Naked Byrd acappella pieces with this programme of baroque works for trumpet, soprano and chamber ensemble.

Album: Mozart/Strauss/Lanner, Walzer Revolution – Concensus Musicus Wien/Harnoncourt (Sony)

Nikolaus Harnoncourt and CMW offer a history of the waltz and other dances in music from Mozart to Johann Strauss and his contemporary Joseph Lanner.

What To Do, See & Buy:

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These perky perches from Irish knitwear/furniture designer Claire-Anne O'Brien come in various shades and stitches. From £495, claireanneobrien.com
Smith, left, with the singer Wee Willie Harris in the late 1950s

Mike Smith: Record producer who had a string of No 1 hits but turned down the Beatles

Between 1963 and 1970 Mike Smith produced six No 1 records for Brian Poole, the Tremeloes, Georgie Fame, Marmalade, Love Affair and Christie. He produced many other hit records too – but he missed out on the Beatles, turning them down at their audition for Decca Records on New Year's Day, 1962.

Alex Clare

My Fantasy Band: Alex Clare

Drums - Ginger Baker
I think we need to go with a vintage drummer such as Ginger Baker, who played in bands like Cream and Blind Faith, because he was a machine. There's no other word for it. I used to play drums, it was the first instrument I learnt, and although I never really got into Cream that much, I used to drum along to what he was doing on record because I thought he was great.

Thieves with brass neck sought after tubas disappear

Police in Los Angeles are advising the city's schools to tighten security after a rash of burglaries in which thieves have broken into music department classrooms and made off with tubas.

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