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Friday, August 6. 2021
Mrs. B. says "Bach isn't classical music - he's Baroque." OK.
I keep it simple: There is folk/pop/Broadway music, and there is more demanding music. No idea about where to put jazz. I won't obsess about the categories because jazz makes me focus completely. Keith Jarrett. I enjoy all sorts of music but music which demands more of me, as a listener, keeps me interested longer.
But to obsess a little longer, are Verdi's operas pop, or other? What about Charles Ives, and Benjamin Britten? All music is for fun and entertainment, or for spiritual enhancement.
For the non-musically trained, I believe a bit of (legal) cannabis can enhance listening.
There was a time in north America, and lots of other places, when every kid had some musical instruction, whether voice or instrumental and regardless of talent.
This is apropos to MacDonald's Classical Music’s Suicide Pact (Part 1). Succumbing to specious charges of racism, America’s orchestras, opera companies, and conductors are abandoning the Western canon.
She quotes this:
I am in trouble, I guess. It's my Easter music, and I feel I have it memorized.
Posted by The Barrister in The Culture, "Culture," Pop Culture and Recreation at 13:40 | Comments (21) | Trackbacks (0)
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The Barrister: Mrs. B. says "Bach isn't classical music - he's Baroque." OK.
Heh. Two uses for the same term. Classical music is usually divided into periods, including the Classical Period (Haydn, Mozart).
abandoning the Western canon.
Most classical musicians know all about being ba-roke.
Early, Pre-Baroque, Baroque, Classical, Romantic, Nationalist, Late Romantic . . .
So MUCH magnificent noise. I've been spending some time in the youtube first reactions universe, and some of the interesting things are how LITTLE "classical" music is listened to, and how open most of the youngsters are to the good stuff. (Of course the positive reactions will be emphasized.)
Anyway, good quotes from Thomas and Adams. We did include music on the Voyager disc.
[Douglas Adams, someplace...]
“Beethoven tells you what it's like to be Beethoven and Mozart tells you what it's like to be human. Bach tells you what it's like to be the universe.”
[Lewis Thomas, from "Ceti" in Lives of a Cell (1974)]
"Perhaps the safest thing to do at the outset, if technology permits, is to send music. This language may be the best we have for explaining what we are like to others in space, with least ambiguity. I would vote for Bach, all of Bach, streamed out into space, over and over again. We would be bragging of course, but it is surely excusable to put the best possible face on at the beginning of such an acquaintance. We can tell the harder truths later."
Forwarded this to the wife and my sister, who don't believe any of this because they haven't been paying attention.
My wife's reaction to this piece, "Nonsense. Utter nonsense."
Faure Clair de Lune (not Debussy!) student recital
Thank you for sharing. I had a long rant about my kids and musical training for my grandkids, but I removed it for your pleasure.
I concur with your observations about every kid getting music training back in the day…. 50s & 60’s. My small town high school had about 320 students (4 year HS) in the late 60s to early 70s. The band held more than 85 students each year. More than 25% of the student body was in band. Marching, jazz, concert and all. It was a force, and supported much like sports was.
Yep, same here. Small MIssissippi town. THE BAND , was a thing. Sheriffs Dept. would meet us at the county line when returning from State Band Contest. All superior from 7th grade until our senior year. Got a 2 in sight reading. We were devastated.
Many athletes also in the band, still went to marching practice during football season. Had to play at state capital once during football season , stadium was only half full. Great memories.
The suicide of classical music started with "The Rite of Spring."
I love the Rite of Spring. Even have a CD of it in my car. Helps me stay awake on long drives.
"Rite of Spring"? I've heard it argued that it was all downhill after Monteverdi.
I don't what America you grew up in but most kids I Knew in the 50's and 60's didn't receive any music training. Oh, and please inform your wife of her ignorance. Baroque is a sub genre of Classical. Out of 5 children in my family only 2 did.
K thru 12 small school, in 2nd grade everyone had to do Tonett. thru the 50's and 60's
It only appears that way, just as it only appears that art is non-representational political statements. That's just museums and academia.
A lot of genuine art and music go into the creation of advertisements. It may seem like a trivial use of talent, but it pays the bills for artists, and the works look good. The great classic painters drew flattering images for their patrons--it paid the bills.
I would counter that "You are complicit in racism every time you think criticising another group elevates yours."
The problem (for them) is that the music is self-evidently excellent. Label it howsoever they might, listeners won't be fooled for long.
A generation from now, the music will still be beloved, but their organizations will have dried up and blown away.
I went through grade school in a small town in Southeastern Washington state (1950-56). In a crime against most ears I was given instruction on the violin. My younger brother learned the trombone. He was okay. As for me I was so bad that my violin was afraid of me--and I was afraid of the violin.