That splendid old bruiser Michael Henderson, no stranger to Spectator readers, and as passionate about music and poetry as he is about cricket, has, as so often, a bee buzzing in his bonnet. Responding to last month’s winning entry in the ‘Olden but golden’ all-time top-ten competition, he notes that Roy Beagley included Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte on his list. But which recording? huffs the mighty Hendo. ‘There are dozens, probably hundreds of Flutes. Surely the challenge you set was to select ten favourite recordings, not ten favourite pieces of music.’ Hendo is right, of course, when it comes to anoraks like me and him. The search for the best of the best when it comes to classical recordings is a time-consuming, expensive and deeply compulsive hobby, and addicts have a host of heavy, densely printed volumes to help them feed their habit, among them The Penguin Guide to Compact Discs, The Gramophone Classical Music Guide, The Rough Guide to Classical Music and 1001 Classical Recordings You Must Hear Before You Die, the last much more impressive and scholarly than its title might suggest.