It’s National Album Day!
For the second year, it’s time to celebrate the format of the album, and its relevance and legacy across all musical genres. Now in its second year, the idea of National Album Day is to celebrate the nature of an album – of whatever genre - as a creatively programmed, thought-through work of art, to be listened to from beginning to end. However you choose to do this – vinyl, CD, or streaming – listening to the greatest albums from beginning to the end, whether it be a symphony coupling or collection of arias, can reflect an artistic vision that might well be lost if not listened to as a whole.
This year’s main theme is ‘Don’t Skip’ and National Album Day is also promoting the idea that listening to an album in its entirety can have positive wellbeing and mental health benefits.
In the videos below, pianist Gabriela Montero tells us why she feels the album is such an important format, and we also asked cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason and his pianist sister Isata Kanneh-Mason to name their favourite albums.
Now you know their choices, why not share with us your favourite album, and the reason why, at Twitter, tagging in @gramophonemag and using #NationalAlbumDay
National Album Day is jointly organised by UK record industry body, the BPI, and the organisation representing the nation’s music retailers and digital/streaming platforms, ERA, (Entertainment Retailers Association). Others involved include BBC Sounds, the official broadcast partner.
Last year, Gramophone’s Editor Martin Cullingford was asked by National Album Day to reflect on what an album means: you can read his article here.
And if you're inspired by Sheku Kanneh-Mason to explore the music-making of Josef Hassid and his chosen album, then you can read Tully Potter's fascinating overview of the tragically short life of the violinist here: Icons - Josef Hassid