They might as well do this to all the classical composers: Cedric Ludwig van Beethoven, Donald Robert Schumann, Franz 'Philly Joe' Schubert, etc. Just give them random names that are not actually their name.
It's unfortunate that we lost the war to Last.fm's insistence on referring to him as "Franz," but in the interest of trying to stimulate some discussion about his music, I'll say that I've really been enjoying the Op. 76 String Quartets (particularly No. 1 and No. 4 ("Sunrise")), Te Deum and The Seven Last Words of Christ recently. The Takács Quartet is, as always, a great bet for the former, and I'm loving the Fitzwilliam String Quartet's version of the latter. Yet another great thing about Haydn is that he lived a long and happy life so we have a huge amount of wonderful music to enjoy from him as opposed to if he'd died young like so many other greats.
"Though his full name was "Franz Joseph Haydn", the name "Franz" was not used in the composer's lifetime, and the use of "Franz" when referencing him is avoided by scholars." (https://musicbrainz.org/artist/c130b0fb-5dce-449d-9f40-1437f889f7fe)
@Ohr16. First, a great majority of classical recordings, for their title, only list the composer's last name so it would mostly just be "Haydn". Second, it's "Franz Joseph Haydn" not "Franz Josef Haydn"....not even Last.fm spells it this way. Perhaps you should check your own spelling before criticizing others. Third, I have DG recordings where it is spelled as "Franz Joseph Haydn" while others just say "Joseph Haydn". Which spelling you think is correct is a matter of preference, neither of them is wrong per se. If you don't like it, disable auto correct and scrobble it as "Joseph Haydn".....and please NOT "Jozef Haydn", like you seem to suggest,...that for sure IS wrong.
He never reminds me of Vivaldi... for me he is closer to Beethoven than to the earlier composers. That might be because his music is firmly Classical, with many new forms and ideas, in a way unrecognisable from the Baroque era music. I think he has an architectural thought in his music which is unprecedented, and it inspired the genius of Beethoven no end.
I think Haydn is undervalued for these reasons: 1) he has an unique sense of humor which is suspect among a lot of very serious classical music listeners 2) he wrote so much music that it is hard to take him all in.
I would start with the 'Farewell" no.45, the most well known and still my favourite haydn symphony. Any of the 'sturm und drang" symphonies:
Symphony No. 49 in F minor La Passione (1768)
Symphony No. 44 in E minor Trauer (Mourning) (1772)
Symphony No. 45 in F sharp minor Farewell (1772)
Symphony No. 26 in D minor Lamentatione
And the london symphonies, his last twelve