Learn all you need to know to play Brahms in three easy steps:
1. Get this CD:
[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="266" caption="An amazing recording."][/caption]
2. Listen to the first 20 seconds. Rock out to Julius Katchen and Janos Starker.
3. Repeat number two as much as you can.
The way Julius Katchen plays those first two notes (F# and B), and the way Janos Starker joins the melodic line sum up for me what Brahms is all about: long lines, depth of expression, a warm sound and playing with a lot of soul.