There was hardly anybody that had a more crystal clear and hauntingly beautiful voice than Gundula Janowitz. It fitted particularly the songs of Franz Schubert ,which are intimate and need a kind of modesty in approach. Schubert's music approaches the listener like a friend,that particular quality I always found special and unique. That Schubert wrote over 700 songs ( amongst over 1000 works altogether ) in only 31 years lifetime is remarkable.
Here is a rather unknown song by Schubert: "Der Fluss" ( "The River" ).
This particular recording is in my opinion one of the highlights of Schubert singing.
Gundula Janowitz - Schubert "Der Fluss" live1972 - YouTube
(English translation,poem by Friedrich von Schlegel )
Like a pure song that winds itself
through the wonderful sound of strings playing,
finding itself again
as the tunes switch back and forth
so that the listeners are always newly delighted;
So the silvery bulk flows with dignity,
winding like a snake
through swaying bushes
sweetly and magically entranced
to find themselves mirrored;
Where hills and bright clouds
like to melt themselves into softly vibrating images
when the distant, faint stars
rise from the blue depths
and the sun lowers its intoxicated eyes.
So shine all creatures,
like silhouettes in the childlike mind,
which is selected for beauty
by the gentle goodness of the Gods,
and in which fleeting blossoms are preserved in crystal.