Thursday, December 12, 2019

Life-affirming new creations are needed for old musical forms (from 2011)

The hard bop blues of, say, Art Blakey, make you feel better than the beautiful sentimental adagios of Miles Davis which can make you feel even bluer. After a glass of wine who can beat Diane Krall's "Quiet Nights?"

Classical composers were usually composing for a world of aristocrats, which is why the music could be so excellent, but that is not our world today. Bach is eternal, but we need serious modern composers. Atonal music has been a damaging farce, like much of modern art---hundreds of years of Western music was stopped. Wagner's classical-romantic ethos needed to be extended in tonal not atonal Western forms rather than destroyed following the World Wars. “Twilight of the Gods”? Why not another birth? (see "Can There be Great Composers Anymore?")

Rock? Mostly goalless anarchy, or pure hedonism. Hip Hop? It's base is violent anti-white black racism. Country music? White boys trying to hold on to some dignity in a world that denigrates them, but usually lost in Celtic drunkenness. Folk and ethnic revival? Holds promise but hides totally in the past.

Modern life-affirming new creations are needed for all these old musical forms.

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