May 2, 2014

"What Was the Last Piece of Music that Gave You the Chills?"

"Studies have shown that our brains tend to send us a shot of dopamine in the anticipatory seconds leading up to our favorite parts of compositions, and that we respond similarly to grand changes in pitch and melody. It's something truly great, and it just happened to me...."

112 comments:

Mr. Colby said...

Ella Fitzgerald and Joe Pass, "The Thrill is Gone", ~ halfway in.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tx-l_k8QKMY

traditionalguy said...

Lara's Theme from Zhivago: Somewhere My Love. And Bocelli's It's Time to Say Good Night.

sydney said...

There is a phrase in Ralph Vaughn Williams' Dives and Lazarus that gives me the chills every time I hear it without fail.

cassandra lite said...

Vivaldi's Winter from the Four Seasons suite.

Kevin said...


Carl Orff - Carmina Burana - O Fortuna

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AdIpoE2LEps

Low - Just Make It Stop

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5rAdzJ1U0RU

Paul Kersey said...

This: Dawes "A Little Bit of Everything"

http://youtu.be/yqhRK_g7WJc

john said...

This never fails to give me the chills.

Paul Kersey said...

This: Dawes "A Little Bit of Everything"

http://youtu.be/yqhRK_g7WJc

AFChiling said...

Last evening while watching, and listening, to a concert in homage to Kate McGarrigle. When "Mendocino" started, my eyes filled with tears and a chill went down my back. Happens every time.

rhhardin said...

Faure piano quintet 2

The Drill SGT said...

Music that gives me the chills?

Bach's Prelude and Fugue in D Minor

Amazing Grace (Judy Collins)

Beethoven's Ode to Joy

Hallelujah (KD Lang)

Anglelyne said...

Every other piece I've got on my "walkin' around" mp3 clip does that to me. Exhausting, if I go out for too long a walk. Last chill up: Jessye Norman does Dido's Lament. (As one of the youtube commenters remarks: "pure heavenly misery".)

Richard Dolan said...

Nocturne, op. 27, no. 2. Never fails.

Lyle Sanford, RMT said...

I took up French horn in my late 50's - now 65. Have played a lot of instruments -piano, guitar, banjo, flute and alto flute mostly - and nothing has given me more chills than playing horn with voices. Last spring in a community production of the Brahms Requiem had the closest thing to "transcendence" for me ever while playing music. This past weekend put together a brass group to play with a pipe organ in a little church during a Garden Week tour and we just did a bunch of hymns and people sang and there were the chills again - though I tend to describe it as a "visceral response" - as I think it's in part due to the strength and quality of the sound vibrations of the brass - sort of a sonic massage. I realize you're asking for listening experiences and not playing ones - but the response is the same.

lgv said...

In Your Eyes - Peter Gabriel. Wife's BFF and I shared of love of that song from the Cusack movie. She died of AIDS at age 33. If I hear the song, it gives me chills, but not in a good way.

James said...

Bob Dylan's "Thunder On the Mountain"

Alex said...

No doubt for Althouse it's some 1960s oldie. So out of touch with the younger generation and their music.

TCombinator said...

Brahms violin concerto (crescendo in the first movement?)

Jack Wayne said...

Only with music? Not with movies, kisses, family gatherings, etc.? I call bullcorn.

khesanh0802 said...

If you have ever been to a military funeral where the Navy Hymn has been played you really know what chills are.

Bruce Hayden said...

Celtic Singers, a couple of weeks ago, live, singing Amazing Grace, accompanied by a bagpipe. Just the bagpipes themselves with this song are usually sufficient, but those women are amazing, esp. in they way that they can blend their voices, and they can sometimes do that to me on TV with this song, absent the bagpipes. Combining the two, live, was more than sufficient.

Marc said...

Bruckner's Te Deum, last Sunday at dawn, after watching the canonisations at Rome.

Ann Althouse said...

I already linked to "Stand With Governor Walker" in the previous post...

Joe said...

The Black Hawk Down soundtrack.

chuck said...

Fifteen year old Hilary Hahn playing the Sibelius violin concerto. But I'm easy, lots of classical music affects me that way. Popular music hardly ever does.

Lucien said...

If memory serves there's a passage in Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas where HST is in the bath and asks someone to turn on "Go Ask Alice" on the tape machine, and then, at the climax, when Grace Slick sings "Feed your head", toss it into the bathtub.

Which wouldn't really be chilling.

Drago said...

"Right Back Where We Started From", Maxine Nightingale from the movie Slapshot.

I laughed.

I cried.

And that was before I made it into the theater.

MathMom said...

Two things:

Mozart Clarinet Concerto in A Major, Adagio,

and

the opening scene in Top Gun. Crank that sucker up until you think you're on the deck of the carrier. The jet sounds really improve Danger Zone.

sinz52 said...

The "Neptune" movement from Holst's "The Planets Suite."

That's music to watch a snowstorm by. Makes me chilly just listening to it.

Fred Drinkwater said...

Most recently? "Crossing the Bar" sung by my nieces and nephews at my father's memorial.
First I remember? Beethoven 7th, 2nd movement (probably von Karajan & Berlin Philharmonic), about 1968.
The one that came immediately to mind? "Lionheart" Kate Bush
You ask, I give TMI.

Michael K said...

Saint Saens Symphony #3, the Organ Symphony .

Anglelyne said...

Math Mom: ...Mozart Clarinet Concerto in A Major, Adagio...

Second that. All of it, really. And the Clarinet Quintet in A Major.



Joe: The Black Hawk Down soundtrack.

I haven't seen the movie or heard the soundtrack. But I looked it up and see that "Minstrel Boy" was incorporated into the score. That one always does it for me. (As does "Garry Owen".)

(Tune of "Minstrel Boy" was also used to great effect by Maurice Jarre in The Man Who Would Be King.)

Blue Ox said...

This.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fX0B9ZpdZEA

Irene said...

Tired of Waiting for You

Wilbur said...

"You Are the New Day" - The King's Singers

"Lonesome 7-7203" - Hawkshaw Hawkins

"Cotton-Eyed Joe" - Bob Wills

"Sky High" - Jigsaw

MathMom said...

Angelyne,

You are right - the whole thing. But I listened to that over and over when the Twin Towers fell. It felt like salve on an open wound.

Minstrel Boy was used to great effect in the movie about Sarah Palin, The Undefeated, too. I don't think it had made much of an impression on me if I'd heard it before, but it certainly does now.

Hammond X Gritzkofe said...

"Amazing Grace" on bagpipes.

Lola Beltran "Cucurucuru Paloma."

The Drill SGT said...

Anglelyne said...
I haven't seen the movie or heard the soundtrack. But I looked it up and see that "Minstrel Boy" was incorporated into the score. That one always does it for me. (As does "Garry Owen".)


As my moniker hints at, I'm a sucker for laments.

Sgt. MacKenzie (used in We were Soldiers)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A9E7L_gYbWI

She Wore a Yellow Ribbon

http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=she+wore+a+yellow+ribbon+youtube&FORM=VIRE1#view=detail&mid=15F74EAFF7F671ECA5CA15F74EAFF7F671ECA5CA

WestVirginiaRebel said...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4WXYjm74WFI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MtsmuVA0m7c

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lK5ZQgoDi90

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zi8vJ_lMxQI

MrCharlie2 said...

Finlandia:

This Finlandia, for instance:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aL6z2XjFsuQ&list=PL84ED6BFD0EB86199

RecChief said...

"Scotland the Brave"


Two sets of pipes. It was at a memorial service at night.

Jason said...

Slow part of Gershwin's Piano Concerto in F.

The first minute or so of the 2nd half of the Bach Chaconne for violin in Dm.

The Hawaiian spoken word poetry in the cover that Hapa did of Bob Marley's Redemption Song.

Some of Randy Rhoads' playing on Ozzy Osborne's "Tribute" album



Phil 3:14 said...

Was the music in the link supposed to give me a thrill?

Iapetus said...

Vissi d'arte from Puccini's Tosca

The Drill SGT said...

Marc said...
Bruckner's Te Deum



I like the Henry V version better:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hPXXuEel0fU

Titus said...

Tristan und Isolde by Wagner

Bob Ellison said...

Nina Simone: "Cotton-Eyed Joe".

I get chills from audio all the time, but this recording ices me completely.

Todd Grimson said...

"Les Noces" Stravinsky (conducted by Bernstein)

"Then She Remembers What She Said" the Dream Syndicate

The Drill SGT said...

another favorite is the world class "Band of Brothers Speech" MUSIC

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cRj01LShXN8

pm317 said...

Scheharazade..

Titus said...

Stravinsky Rite Of Spring

Stephen said...

Impress your friends! There's a word for this phenomenon: appoggiatura.

(See
http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052970203646004577213010291701378)

Titus said...

Short Ride in a Fast Machine by John Adams

Michael said...

Chants d'Auvergne, kiri Te Kawana

Titus said...

Simple Gifts/Appachallian Spring-Copeland.

Titus said...

Jeremiah-Leonard Bernstein.

The Drill SGT said...

Melissa Venema plays Il Silenzio

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H4l3Rgq-L1M

Michael said...

Overture Lohengrin

Dan said...

Taps. Star Spangled Banner.

Michael said...

I shall be released. Dylan

Titus said...

PHillip Glass 1000 Airplanes on The Roof-I saw it at Madison Civic Center!

Titus said...

Scheharazade..agree

Titus said...

Stephen Reich Different Trains.

rcocean said...

Beethoven Violin Concerto and Piano Sonata No. 8

annk said...

Today: Terrapin Station by the Grateful Dead and La Stravaganza by Vivaldi

Mr. D said...

sinz52 said...
The "Neptune" movement from Holst's "The Planets Suite."


Me too.

Henry said...

I'm a fan of the lugubrious ballad. A singer like Joe Purdy or Adam Duritz or a band like Fanfarlo or Beruit can do wonders with a simple change in inflection or instrumentation. It's those moments that get me.

I'm thinking of the way Duritz turns the single phrase "three thousand five hundred miles away" into the emotional climax of It's Raining in Baltimore, or the way Leon Beckenham's trumpet takes over the melody in many of Fanfarlo's songs on Reservoir.

Just for example.

harrogate said...

Stand With Governor Walker.

Hahahahahahaha

Christy said...

Thank you all. I've enjoyed listening to your choices.

The Ashoken Farewell
Johnny Cash's God's Gonna Cut You Down
Earl Hagen's Harlem Nocturn
The beeps behind the words "The Eagle has landed."

Lyle Sanford, RMT said...

What a terrific thread!

Fernandinande said...

"Gimme Shelter", esp. 1972/3 Brussels, 1st set. I have 73 versions, 42 by the Stones.

"Wreck Of The Old 97", Boxcar Willie

Fernandinande said...

How could I fergit "Sister Morphine" with Ry Cooder's amazing slide.

Dave said...

Varen by Grieg - vocal version.

traditionalguy said...

For lively and serious music combo a surprising winner is the soundtrack from The Pacific. Use Althouse Amazon portal and you will be happy you spent the $11.49 for a download. I play it all of the time.

Michael said...

Wild Horses. Stones

Zedediah Grimm said...

Celtic Woman 'Caledonia' and 'Amazing Grace' and Big Daddy Weave 'Redeemed'. There are a ton more but those are the first which come to mind.
Oh, and anything with a demolished chord in it. Bliss!

Jim S. said...

The second movement of Ravel's piano concerto. Before that, the first movement of Beethoven's violin concerto. Before that, the first movement (Emerson) of Ives's Concord sonata.

Joe said...

Anglelyne, the version of Minstrel Boy is by Joe Strummer and is fantastic: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EteWTJowEVE

St. George said...

"Box of Rain" Grateful Dead. March 20, 1986, Hampton Coliseum, Hampton, Va.

First live performance in 13 years at the end of the band's first set.

Bassist Phil Lesh wrote this love song for his dying father. It goes "What do you you want me to do to see you through...Love will see you through."

The entire audience experienced hair-raising ecstasy. You could feel the most intense joy when the song ended. Total shivers. "The place was on fire with excitement," as one YouTube commenter says.

And, of course, "La Marseillaise" from Casablanca. Most of the extras and bit players had fled from Nazi-occupied Europe, lending to the scene's vividness. Just look at Ingrid Bergman's face!

Gimme Shelter. The Altamont version. Sounds like German bombers over London.

Uncle Pavian said...

Prelude and Yodel by Penguin Cafe Orchestra

Scott said...

Why Should I Care - Diana Krall
Hurt - Johnny Cash

gadfly said...

Whitney Houston - I Will Always Love You

Ronnie Milsap - Smokey Mountain Rain

john said...

Strangely, not yet mentioned is this most chilling piece of music: the resolution of a musical chord and a cadence begun more than 3 hours earlier, and now completed in the consummation and death of Tristan and Isolde. Watch this small part, then enjoy Jonathan Tsay's interpretation of the whole piece. No one plays it like him. Or better.

Bob said...

Like chuck said, lots of classical music.

Does crying count? After all, getting the chills over art can be a prelude to a good cry. For me this is especially true if I have a bad cold, and the underlying cause is stress of some kind. Whether I really feel anything depends on mood. Often the same music doesn't affect me.

Tchaikovsky, Swan Lake Finale, the rising strings and harp just before the final tutti.
Beethoven, 9th Symphony, 3rd movement, the pause which in some performances sounds like a great sigh.
Vaughan-Williams, The Lark Ascending.
Evita, Don't Cry for Me, Argentina and other songs from the musical.
Rimsky-Korsakov, The Three Miracles from The Tsar Sultan, mostly because I made a video of my grandson using that music (so it's really the combination)
Vaughan-Williams, overture to The Wasps, also because I used it in a video of my grandson.
Mussorgsky, Dawn Over the Moscow River, both the Rimsky-Korsakov and Shostakovich arrangements, because I anticpate two videos of my grandaughter.
Dvorak, portions of both the 6th and 8th symphonies. They don't make me cry as much as they make me itch inside, like I can't get enough of the music. There's other Dvorak like that for me.
Wagner, the Parsifal overture and Finale
Holst, the Jupiter movement from the Planets suite.
Holst, the opening strains of the Jig from the St Paul Suite, yet more "itchy" music.
Sibelius, Andante Festivo
Ravel, Daphnis and Chloe, Le Tombeau de Couperin, Menuet Antigue....various feelings.
One time the roar of the bass in the opening strains of Keep On Loving You by REO Speedwagon got to me.

Numerous others, some popular as well...

madAsHell said...

The Rolling Stones

The first few measures of "Can't you hear me knocking". Well...the entire piece is good, but the opening salvo is up there with Beethoven's 5th.

Greatest guitar riff...EVAH!!

Larry Davis said...

This one does it for me:

Link

Meade said...

O Holy Night by the Gourds.

Tank said...

Natalie Cole singing Whipping Post with the Allman Brothers last year at the Beacon Theatre, NYC.

Classic killer blues rock.

Clyde said...

Dvorak, Slavonic Dances, Op. 46, B78 - No. 7 in C Minor - About the last minute or so. Awesome piece.

Susanna Hoffs - Her cover of Cyndi Lauper's Unconditional Love - When the organ swells about 30 seconds before the end.

Sunny Sweeney - Lavender Blue (duet with Jim Lauderdale) - the bridge: "How could it stop without me ever knowing?"

Greg Hlatky said...

Bruckner: 9th Symphony, from the tremendous unison fff octave drop to the grinding dissonance that ends the first movement to the shriek that climaxes the adagio to the peaceful coda.

Schmidt: Intermezzo from "Notre Dame".

Richard Strauss: Beim Schlafengehen and Im Abendrot from the Four Last Songs.

Korngold: "Gl├╝ck das mir verblieb" from "Die Tote Stadt".

Walton: Belshazzar's Feast.

Sibelius: 7th Symphony and the Andante Festivo.

Dan said...

Jeff Buckley - Hallelujah

Oso Negro said...

I have sent my son to war for this fucked-up country three times. When I hear LeAnn Rimes sing the Star-Spangled Banner, I am ready to do it again and lead the first wave to the beach myself.

gratefulgee said...

The chill returns for almost any version of Loenard Cohen's "Hallelujah". Just found this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AdyTXBT5CQE

Meade said...

Precious Memories by Bill Monroe is dope...amine.

pm317 said...

Why! Titus, I didn't know you had such good taste. I thought you were all tits.

Here is another I am listening to right now: Concierto de Aranjuez (adagio starts at 7:26.. makes me cry).

Another thing, it is a pleasure to read youtube comments when they are insightful, when they are discussing technicalities and intricacies.

Zedediah Grimm said...

The Rolling Stones 'Wild Horses'; Johnny Cash 'Hurt'; Judas Priest 'Sad Wings of Destiny' (the whole album but esp. 'Victim of Changes', 'The Ripper' and 'Tyrant'); Old Jefferson Airplane ... the list is endless.

Jason said...

Heifetz. Nana Berceuse.

Recorded near the end of his career.

Chills.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b-NR_aSfPvM

Charlie said...

I got chills watching this the other day.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ubM5ricQn8

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Oh, golly.

The slow movement of Mahler 6, a little before the end, where it goes back into the tonic. Never fails.

"This ae night" from Britten's Serenade.

The beginning of the development of the first movement of Brahms' Op. 111.

Three moments, three different sorts of "chills." The first is the catharsis of long-pent-up emotion finally released. That transition back to the tonic is just unbelievable.

The second is sheer eeriness. The text, always repeated to the same sung phrase, and then the music slowly creeping and expanding around it, as it were. By the end you think you've gone through Purgatory yourself.

The third is something like shock at the sudden change of mood and affect. It's like coming off a sweltering street into a church, cool and quiet and altogether lovely.

Unknown said...

When I read the question, my first thought was, "there are too many pieces to count." However, the most prominent at the moment is Bruckner's 6th... reacpitulation in the first movement, and the coda of the second.

Close behind: the finale of the Bruckner's 5th, at the final entry of the Chorale
theme.

eddie willers said...

O Holy Night by the Gourds.

Glad (and a little surprised) to see this.

Though I am not familiar with the Gourds, I spent some time thinking about music one day and I came to the conclusion that "Oh Holy Night" was the best song ever written.

Virtually each verse changes timbre and each one has a definitive hook.

The chills begin at 'fall ...on your knees...'

Anthony said...

Parts of Jesus Christ Superstar or Allegri's Miserere.

NotquiteunBuckley said...

Do stop believing ... not!

Fred Drinkwater said...

Christy: you reminded me of other odd evocative sounds:
The radio morse of the Woodside VOR (--- ... ..), and
the sound of instrument gyros spinning down after turning off the master switch. Especially the latter - that's the sound of being home.

NotquiteunBuckley said...

This is very personal. - said Gram Parsons and me.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qySqaPnI0as

Lotta folks don't appreciete Twain Shania.

I hear that.

But the attitude, the conviction, much like the more recent Rhianna, of making a vow, seeing it through the end, honoring honor...

Mike Rophone said...

The ending crescendo of the Adagio in C Major,BWV 564 (arranged by L. Stokowski) on Stokowski: Bach - Transcriptions for Orchestra performed by the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra & Matthias Bamert

Mike Rophone said...

The Adagio in C Major,BWV 564 (arranged by L. Stokowski) on the album, "Stokowski: Bach - Transcriptions for Orchestra" performed by the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra & Matthias Bamert

Jason said...

Eminem - Love the Way You Lie. Among many others.

NotquiteunBuckley said...

This html is more than you can handle.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGbxrNqK4-4

Chubfuddler said...

Sorry that I'm late to the party, but "Sonny," performed by Mary Black, Emmylou Harris & Dolores Keane, has done it for me for the past 20 years. Partly it's their harmony, partly it's the uilleann pipes. Apologies if I've screwed up posting the youtube link, but it's definitely worth tracking down if you've never heard it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WaLZt11D7E

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WaLZt11D7E

Crunchy Frog said...

Queen - "The Prophet's Song"

richardsson said...

There are a lot of contenders in this category. For me, for raw emotion it would mostly be film noir type theme music. Here are mine all equally moving:

Johnny Hodges (alto sax), Passion Flower
Lee Wiley, How Deep is the Ocean
Peggy Lee, Don't Smoke in Bed
Billie Holiday, When a Woman Loves A Man.