What kind of non-classical music do you listen to?

Max KasperOur Principal Bass Max Kasper recently shared some of his favourite non-classical music with us! Check out Max’s “Happy” Playlist below, as well as his always-insightful comments about each song.

“Hi everyone,

You may notice that none of these suggestions are “classical” music. (For those who would like that I point you to the last movement of Mozart’s “Jupiter’ Symphony (No. 41), and the last movement of Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No. 6.)

“There is a good reason for that: I have had the good fortune to have an older brother (Fred) who is an amazing musician and avid record collector. He worked at Sam the Record Man until it closed, and he would drag me to record stores all over the place.

“He passed on many amazing artists that I would not have ordinarily heard of, and because of him, my tastes are quite eclectic. You may not have heard of some of the people I am recommending to you, but I urge you to give them a try regardless!

Listen to Max’s “Happy” Playlist on Spotify:

  1. Don’t Worry Be Happy – Bobby McFerrin
    “A song (I hope) that needs no introduction…”
  2. Walkin’ On Sunshine – Katrina & the Waves
    “A song that always puts a smile on my face!”
  3. I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) – The Proclaimers
    “Made popular on this side of the world by being in the soundtrack of Benny and Joon.
  4. Air à Danser – Penguin Cafe Orchestra
    “A group I discovered from the soundtrack to the great Aussie movie Malcolm.
  5. Tom and Sally Drake – Taj Mahal
    “One of my favourite albums growing up was Taj Mahal – Live at the Filmore East. He went on tour with a full horn section, including four tubas!! This is an amazing banjo and tuba duet featuring Howard Johnson.”
  6. Red Balloon – Alison Brown Quartet
    “There is a great Peanuts cartoon from the early days of the strip where Linus says that every baby should be given a banjo at birth because it’s impossible to play sad music on a banjo.”
  7. Midnight in Harlem – Tedeschi Trucks Band
    “While not strictly a ‘happy’ song, it makes me smile just because of the incredible groove!”
  8. Give Me Back My Wig – Hound Dog Taylor
    “He was the first artist signed to the Alligator Blues label. There are many versions of this, but the live one is my favourite.”
  9. Thandaza – Soul Brothers
    “A group I am sure almost none of you will have heard. Trust me. They are fantastic!”
  10. Kuma – Salif Keita
    “When my brother dragged me into a record store in Berlin on his quest for more records, this was playing on the house system. I bought it immediately! Produced by the great Joe Zawinul of Weather Report fame.”
  11. Sir Duke – Stevie Wonder
    “Again, a song that needs no introduction!”
  12. Happy – Pharrell Williams
    “A great groove and happy song! What more could we ask?”

I am sure there are many, many more that I have missed, but this is a good start! Enjoy!”

Max Kasper
Principal Bass, Symphony Nova Scotia

Watch Max’s “Happy” Playlist on YouTube: