B0215. ALAN BLYTH, Ed. Opera on Record, Vol.I. London, Hutchinson, 1979. 663pp. Index; Photos; softbound. Final used copy has very minor underlining in some passages. - 0-09-139981-5
"Alan Blyth wrote regularly for more than 40 years, for Gramophone beginning what proved to be the major strand of his critical writing - the recorded voice. His Fleet Street journalism later included reviews for the Financial Times and the Daily Telegraph, where he was a staff music critic from 1976 until 1991. In recent years he contributed elegant obituaries to the Guardian, his last of the singer Teresa Stich-Randall on July 27.
A sure judge of the human voice, Blyth was supremely qualified to write and edit several major publications concerned with the recorded voice. The first of these was Opera on Record (1979), the favourable reviews of which led to two further volumes covering less well-known operatic repertory, and two volumes of Song on Record and Choral Music on Record. These were edited meticulously, with Blyth himself contributing essays on Verdi, Wagner, and the songs of Schubert, Wolf and Duparc. Among his other publications were guides to opera on CD and video, a layman's introduction to Wagner's Ring cycle, and 'Remembering Britten'(1981).
A specialist on singers and singing, Blyth held trenchant views on the modern school of opera production, particularly those offering radical reinterpretations ("misrepresentations" might be Blyth's word) of the classics."
- Philip Reed, THE GUARDIAN, 15 Aug., 2007