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Rock Meets Classical Pt. 1

Progressive Rock has always had a close connection with classical music and these albums/artists are particlarly notable for fusing the two different types of music together, some more succesfully than others. This list concentrates on the period between 1967 and 1972.
1The Moody Blues
Days of Future Passed


The Moody Blues were not only one of the first bands to be labelled progressive rock but also one of the first to mix classical music with rock and pop. From it's dramatic orchestral opener to the more refined arrangements accompanying the classic Nights in White Satin, Days of Future Passed is a fantastic early example of how clasical music can be used effectively in a rock setting.
2Jethro Tull
Stand Up


While Tull never made a full album deicated to combining classical music with thier progressive rock sound, they've never been afraid to embrace thier classical influences. Thier first experimentation with classical music came in the form of a re-arrangement of Johan Sebastian Bach's Bouree, which appeared on thier second album, Stand Up, which was released in 1969.
3Ekseption
Ekseption


Ekseption were a Dutch progressive rock band who were known for incorporating elements of classical music into thier instrumental prog sound. Thier debut opens with a version Beethoven's The 5th and interestingly also includes a cover of Jethro Tull's Dharma For One.
4The Nice
Five Bridges


Keith Emerson's first band, The Nice, played an intense type of keyboard-driven psychedelic rock but thier 4th album saw them experiement more with classical music featuring versions of pieces by Tchaikovsky and Bach as well as thier own lengthy piece entitled The Five Bridges Suite.
5Deep Purple
Concerto For Group and Orchestra


Concerto For Group and Orchestra was the first release featuring the band's Mk. 2 line-up and was surprisingly influential. The live album sees the band performing with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, playing music composed by keyboard player Jon Lord specially for the event.
6Yes
Time and a Word


Although not one of the band's most revered albums, Time and a Word is notable for being recorded with a live orchestra, much like The Moody Blues' Days of Future Passed although nowhere near as effective.
7Emerson Lake and Palmer
Pictures at an Exhibition


While Keith Emerson had already tried his hand experimenting with classical music with his previous band, The Nice, ELP took the whole thing one step further. Pictures at an Exhibition is an interpretation of Mussorgsky's classical piece of the same name, the entire piece runs for over half an hour and features words sung and written by Greg Lake.
8Procol Harum
Live with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra


Procol Harum began to experiment with classical music in the late 60's but it wasn't until 1971 that they were able to perform with a full orchestra. Live with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra is similar to Deep Purple's Concerto For Group and Orchestra in that it sees the band performing their own material with the aid of an orchestra but the music on this album was already well known to fans as opposed to being specially written for the performance.
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