The late Leonard Bernstein, a classical composer, teacher and genius,
used to say he actually thought the Kinks' "You Really Got Me" was cool,
because it was a). based on the myxolydian mode, and b).
modulates rather improbably first up a whole step, then resumes the
myxolydian riff on the dominant scale degree. Naturally, he was
impressed by the Beatles, liked much of 1970's jazz-influenced rock,
but was disenchanted by the pop music of the 1980's (shortly before his
death). [Probably because the advent of Rap tolled the death-knell for
melody and much harmony].
Wilfrid Mellers and Walter Everett are musicologists who have written
superb, and serious, detailed musical analyses of the work of the
Beatles. Not to be missed for true Beatles aficionados.
Burt Bacharach is a great musical mind with very eclectic tastes... He
once said, "To understand my music, you have to listen to what I listen
to." Besides being smitten by Brazilian native rhythms like the Baião,
Axé, Forró and Samba, he was reportedly bowled over by the album AJA
by Steely Dan. He had studied composition by the French classical
composer Darius Milhaud. He derived much of his groove from Black
Gospel, which has its roots in Negro Spiritual and Slave Songs, which
of course can be directly linked to African musical idioms. Jazz's
grandfather is certainly the African bembé rhythm, with its emphasis on
triplets. When the children of Africa unwillingly came to the New World
in the "African Diaspora", wherever they settled they created something
that was a melding of their native cultural sensibilities and wherever they
happened to find themselves... Think: Reggae, Samba, Afro-Cuban,
Merengue, Batucada, Ragtime, Swing, The Blues, etc.
Only stupid people can afford to be music snobs; people who *really*
know, love and understand music can see the value and spirituality in
everything from Maori chants, to a Wagner opera, to a Charlie Parker
solo to a Beatles tune to the Sex Pistols. The rage and cynicism of
Johnny Rotten singing a discordant "I am an Anti-Christ-a, and I'm an
an anarchist-a..." Who was the philosopher who once said, "Nothing
human is foreign to me." ? I think Ray Charles, when interviewed
about his controversial album of Country-Western covers, once said "I
listen to every style, because when you get right down to it, it's *all*
Pieces like JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR, TOMMY and WEST SIDE STORY are
mindblowing in their achievement, because they represent a synthesis of
(seemingly) disparate or "irreconcilable" musical styles. But if you
stand back and breathe in all humanity, no music is necessarily
Post by catastrophic success
do classical aficionados like pink floyd the wall?