Classical Music Forum banner
21 - 40 of 69 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,827 Posts
Your idea of logic is extraordinarily limited. The simple fact is that if I attempted to write like Vivaldi and even got it completely convincing I would not be writing classical music - I would either be making a forgery or producing an unneeded pastiche. You referred earlier to the classical tradition but you cannot find anywhere in that tradition examples of composers forgetting about the preceding 100 years and writing music that a distant forebear might have written. You may not like it but the tradition has been one of change and development. Influences from the past are important but if all a composer can do is copy them then I wonder why he bothers. No, he writes popular music for popular films and that is that. As I said earlier, there is nothing wrong with that but - and this is how we got into this discussion - but please don't pretend it is something that it isn't.

I fear we are taking this thread on a detour ... and to discuss something that has been regularly discussed already on this forum. I know I won't change your taste for that type of music and you probably know that you won't change my suspicion and disdain of it. Is there more to say?
I think our problem is not my logic, but your idea of what constitutes classical music. And your idea seems utterly unfounded as far as I can tell. (What constitutes classical music may have broadened a bit over the centuries, but surely nothing that once applied has been eliminated from it.) It is, indeed, so utterly unfounded that pursuing it further is probably pointless.
 
G

·
Discussion Starter · #23 ·
Of course it's classical music. Music just like Vivaldi's would be lousy, but it's still classical by any reasonable definition.
No it's not; it's "writing in the style of" classical music, or as Enthusiast put it, "pastiche". I teach 2nd and 3rd-year university music students how to harmonise a choral melody in the style of JS Bach or how to complete a given 1st violin part for string quartet in the style of Haydn or Mozart. None of us would ever claim we are writing baroque or classical music because that period is over, finito, geddit?
Maybe I should start asking my students to wear 18th and 19th century costumes (wigs and all that rigmarole) when completing their homework assignments.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
37,499 Posts
No it's not; it's "writing in the style of" classical music, or as Enthusiast put it, "pastiche". I teach 2nd and 3rd-year university music students how to harmonise a choral melody in the style of JS Bach or how to complete a given 1st violin part for string quartet in the style of Haydn or Mozart. None of us would ever claim we are writing baroque or classical music because that period is over, finito, geddit?
Maybe I should start asking my students to wear 18th and 19th century costumes (wigs and all that rigmarole) when completing their homework assignments.
That the baroque period is over is irrelevant.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,743 Posts
The host was an employee. He went rogue and got himself fired. That's what happens when an employee acts as if he's self-employed and all full of himself. Diversity is not an issue here.
Yes but many in the media are looking for diversity issues everywhere and if you always look for something, you're bound to see it be it real or not. And the titles of articles are often written in a way to imply racial discrimination. "only black classical host". So we are led to think, not only did they fire a black host but they had only employed one of them. Hmm, they must be racists.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
6,735 Posts
McQueen argued that the process for changing the playlist, which programmers set for him ahead of time, didn't allow him to quickly respond to the news of the day with works from a more diverse slate of composers and musicians.

"I had conversation after conversation about this issue," he said, "and the resulting 24 percent of diverse programming wasn't enough for me."
So he had a job, he knew the parameters of the job, he didn't like those parameters, he decided to change them. Hardly a surprise that his employers thought he should go. Whatever about the rightness of his cause, "I'll just do a different job than the one I'm being paid to do" isn't something many of us can get away with.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,743 Posts
So he had a job, he knew the parameters of the job, he didn't like those parameters, he decided to change them. Hardly a surprise that his employers thought he should go. Whatever about the rightness of his cause, "I'll just do a different job than the one I'm being paid to do" isn't something many of us can get away with.
Indeed. This shouldn't even have been a story but the extreme hysteria around racism these days creates issues from thin air.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,943 Posts
Indeed. This shouldn't even have been a story but the extreme hysteria around racism these days creates issues from thin air.
"the extreme hysteria around racism these days"

I know nothing about you, other than you're from Toronto, but on the surface this phrase is the most racist thing I've seen all day.

Racism is the continued lynchings of POC since colonial days. Being sensitive to that isn't being "hysterical" (which, not surprisingly, is quite the loaded misogynistic insult word*); it's acknowledging that from the terrible killings of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery, to the countless, untold acts of racism that take place every day across America, these are the issues that are defining the moment, just as our response will define who we are and will be in the 21st century and beyond.

Truly, the very nature of our "national soul" is at stake, and we all have a deep responsibility to be a part of the solution.

* "Hysterical is a sexist term (as are the words hysteric, hysterics, and hyteria).

It originates from the greek word hystera - the womb. It was originally used in the 1800s to describe a neurotic condition that is caused by the dysfunction of the uterus. Its meaning changed with the centuries to "unhealthy emotions or excitement". In the 19th and 20th century a way to heal a woman from her hysteria was through a clitoridectomy. A clitoridectomy is the removal of the clitoris. Until the 1950s doctors used "hysteria" to describe multiple mental health issues, used almost exclusively in regards to women. Imagine: You go to see your doctor because you don't feel well. Instead of giving you a diagnosis, he/she calls you "hysterical" and sends you home without proper treatment. Today people mainly use it to describe women, who cannot control themselves or are too emotional (because..you know..women have a uterus). To call a man hysterical means that he is behaving "unmanly", another insult inferring that women aren't "strong" like men, which in tern infers inferiority.


.

Or maybe I'm just being "hysterical"?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,743 Posts
"the extreme hysteria around racism these days"

I know nothing about you, other than you're from Toronto, but on the surface this phrase is the most racist thing I've seen all day.

Racism is the continued lynchings of POC since colonial days. Being sensitive to that isn't being "hysterical" (which, not surprisingly, is quite the loaded misogynistic insult word*); it's acknowledging that from the terrible killings of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery, to the countless, untold acts of racism that take place every day across America, these are the issues that are defining the moment, just as our response will define who we are and will be in the 21st century and beyond.

Truly, the very nature of our "national soul" is at stake, and we all have a deep responsibility to be a part of the solution.

* "Hysterical is a sexist term (as are the words hysteric, hysterics, and hyteria).

It originates from the greek word hystera - the womb. It was originally used in the 1800s to describe a neurotic condition that is caused by the dysfunction of the uterus. Its meaning changed with the centuries to "unhealthy emotions or excitement". In the 19th and 20th century a way to heal a woman from her hysteria was through a clitoridectomy. A clitoridectomy is the removal of the clitoris. Until the 1950s doctors used "hysteria" to describe multiple mental health issues, used almost exclusively in regards to women. Imagine: You go to see your doctor because you don't feel well. Instead of giving you a diagnosis, he/she calls you "hysterical" and sends you home without proper treatment. Today people mainly use it to describe women, who cannot control themselves or are too emotional (because..you know..women have a uterus). To call a man hysterical means that he is behaving "unmanly", another insult inferring that women aren't "strong" like men, which in tern infers inferiority.


.

Or maybe I'm just being "hysterical"?
Thanks for the etymological insight into the word hysteria. I was using hysteria to mean exactly what most English dictionaries would define it: "exaggerated or uncontrollable emotion or excitement, especially among a group of people". I did not know and therefore intend any sexist meaning to my use of the word.

From where I see the world, I do see a lot of exaggerated or uncontrollable emotion or excitement around racism these days; some justified and some not.

You can view my comment as racist, that is your right of interpretation, but there is nothing racist in it, if you unpack it rationally.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,827 Posts
I suspect that a lot of the attention at the moment is the idea that we might finally be able to deal with racism, which, sadly, is probably not true. Cell phones have made the treatment of people of color by the police clearly a widespread problem, and not merely an unsubstantiated impression. Having shown that it is a problem (and just one form of the broader issue), solving it is a very different matter.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
6,735 Posts
Racism is the continued lynchings of POC since colonial days. Being sensitive to that isn't being "hysterical" (which, not surprisingly, is quite the loaded misogynistic insult word*); it's acknowledging that from the terrible killings of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery, to the countless, untold acts of racism that take place every day across America, these are the issues that are defining the moment, just as our response will define who we are and will be in the 21st century and beyond.

Truly, the very nature of our "national soul" is at stake, and we all have a deep responsibility to be a part of the solution.
I think the McQueen story poses some interesting questions relating to being "part of the solution".

It's fair to say that the fact that he's black is very relevant to his decisions about programming which got him fired. But was the fact that he's black relevant to the decision to fire him? Should MPR have done more to be "part of the solution"? What - in the context of the middle-of-the-night programming decisions of a classical music station - even is the solution? What's the end goal supposed to be?

Personally I'm sceptical of the notion that the selections from a thousand-year-old art-music repertoire played at 3 A.M. should "respond to the news of the day", whatever the news might be. I've never been convinced of the need for classical music to be relevant - what does that even mean? It's pretty much by definition music of another time and place - and when you combine this desire for relevance with a desire to solve societal racism... that's a lot of heavy lifting in the small hours.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
37,499 Posts
Personally I'm sceptical of the notion that the selections from a thousand-year-old art-music repertoire played at 3 A.M. should "respond to the news of the day", whatever the news might be. I've never been convinced of the need for classical music to be relevant - what does that even mean? It's pretty much by definition music of another time and place - and when you combine this desire for relevance with a desire to solve societal racism... that's a lot of heavy lifting in the small hours.
Totally agree. Personally, I don't listen to music to keep abreast of the news of the day; I listen to get away from all the crap news of 2020.
 
G

·
Discussion Starter · #38 · (Edited)
I've never been convinced of the need for classical music to be relevant - what does that even mean? It's pretty much by definition music of another time and place [...] .
'Pretty much'...well, yes, and no. As we all know, the definition of 'classical' music is fought over by folks with many different perspectives, one of them being that what is written and composed now in what is claimed to be classical has a right to be included in the canon alongside LvB's and WAM's output.

I have a very limited awareness of what gets recognised as 'modern' classical music. Not that I've not heard any (I heard a couple of world premieres just last week at the Proms) but I don't have the same overview of what has happened over the last, say, 25 years, or what is happening now in the same way that I have a sense of what happened from Beethoven to Berio or Scarlatti to Stravinsky.

So, if, for the moment, we accept that 'classical' is a genre alive and kicking today, and that it includes a range of music that is quite different than CPT, then I can understand the idea that radio programming ought to be more 'relevant' to this concept of classical, and not just reflect the traditional canon. Consequently, it is legitimate to expect compositions and performances reflecting the concerns of the day, in the same way that some composers wrote 'about' WW2.

As I have no knowledge of understanding of radio in the USA, I can't comment on that side of matters, but 'employee gets sacked for breaking the rules of his job' should only attract interest if the relevant 'human resources' regulations, polices and procedures have been breached.

[add] Of course, if you believe that classical should only include music up to, but not including Schoenberg or Boulez and all their consequences, I realise that 'relevant' would only mean works that belong to CPT, or something similar.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,827 Posts
. . . Personally I'm sceptical of the notion that the selections from a thousand-year-old art-music repertoire played at 3 A.M. should "respond to the news of the day", whatever the news might be. I've never been convinced of the need for classical music to be relevant - what does that even mean? It's pretty much by definition music of another time and place - and when you combine this desire for relevance with a desire to solve societal racism... that's a lot of heavy lifting in the small hours.
I only need classical music to be relevant to me. I also need it to be viable enough as a product for it to be available to me. I don't understand the apparent need that some have to reinterpret the past to fit modern conventions, or ideas.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,943 Posts
'Pretty much'...well, yes, and no. As we all know, the definition of 'classical' music is fought over by folks with many different perspectives, one of them being that what is written and composed now in what is claimed to be classical has a right to be included in the canon alongside LvB's and WAM's output.

I have a very limited awareness of what gets recognised as 'modern' classical music. Not that I've not heard any (I heard a couple of world premieres just last week at the Proms) but I don't have the same overview of what has happened over the last, say, 25 years, or what is happening now in the same way that I have a sense of what happened from Beethoven to Berio or Scarlatti to Stravinsky.

So, if, for the moment, we accept that 'classical' is a genre alive and kicking today, and that it includes a range of music that is quite different than CPT, then I can understand the idea that radio programming ought to be more 'relevant' to this concept of classical, and not just reflect the traditional canon. Consequently, it is legitimate to expect compositions and performances reflecting the concerns of the day, in the same way that some composers wrote 'about' WW2.

As I have no knowledge of understanding of radio in the USA, I can't comment on that side of matters, but 'employee gets sacked for breaking the rules of his job' should only attract interest if the relevant 'human resources' regulations, polices and procedures have been breached.

[add] Of course, if you believe that classical should only include music up to, but not including Schoenberg or Boulez and all their consequences, I realise that 'relevant' would only mean works that belong to CPT, or something similar.
Welcome to Capitalism 101. This is how the business sector deals with civil disobedience.

I'm tempted to make an analogy to a student speaking "ebonics" (or urban dialect) in a classroom. You can "correct" him/her until midnight, but if they still don't grok "correct" speech, the teacher might then send that student to the principal for "corrective" discipline.

The problem here is that there is an arbitrary rule that could easily be changed to accommodate this single student, and wouldn't have any real consequences.

Same would apply for the student sent home for an "inappropriate hairstyle" ( A Georgia school is currently under fire for their display showing "wrong" hair https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/03/us/hairstyles-black-students-appropriate-inappropriate.html)

Or gay marriage . . . . let people marry for gawds sake. It does NOT impact YOU; not allowing gays to marry is a stupid rule, and changing the law is a BETTER solution than denying people a chance to show their love for each other through marriage because "God".

Not perfect analogies, of course. But the point is that the DJ was fired, EVEN THOUGH THE MANAGEMENT APPLAUDED HIS CHOICES. Damn, just change the rules, or change how the rules are handled. How difficult can it be to track your playlists?
 
21 - 40 of 69 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top