Sunday, August 16, 2009

Two questions come to mind: "Who's he when he's at home?" (I believe that's in Ulysses somewhere) and "What kind of company do you want to keep?"

Doesn't music have a lot to do with both questions? Isn't there a kind of music to which we respond on our own with no one around? More precisely, don't most of us use an assortment of musics to fill that need?

In the same way, most people I know -- people of all ages -- enjoy different kinds of music in different kinds of company.

If all that is as obvious as it seems then why is music study so narrowly channeled in the form of minuets and other 18th century relics -- standard fare for learning at the early stages.

Nobody loves music of the 18th century more than I do, but it is a personal taste--one I grew into, by the way. Much more vital for young students is their musical milieu which is notably short on minuets. A wealth of music has been written within the past 100 years specifically for today's children.