Open Your Ears

Classical music is played around and in Toronto’s Dundas Square. Off hours, or through the night, the strains of an orchestra or piano and violin can be heard from under the eaves.
The same tactic was used decades ago at 7-11 stores to try and stop kids from congregating outside its stores; like the music of Beethoven, Bach or Rachmaninoff was so repulsive it would scare them away.
Like, who thought of that?
When did classical music become viewed as so tasteless or threatening?
Now, I get it; classical music is not everyone’s cup of tea, but then neither is country, or the blues, jazz, or hip-hop.
Classical music, having been around the longest, should probably have greater respect than it does in the greater population.
Yes, I enjoy classical music, and I have since I developed a ear for it as a teenager. As the years went on I listened more, read more, and experienced more. Now I still enjoy rock music (from punk to pop); in fact I listen, primarily, to rock and roll. Yet, I have come to know how classical will fit my moods, or soothe my senses.
I have, through trial and error, developed a taste for a wide range of classical music.
I’ve been reading a book through the year that asks people to take another look at classical music. In Playlist, James Rhodes guides you through The Rebels And Revolutionaries of Sound.
It’s an honest, graphically stimulating book that features the composers, the eras and the language of music, spelled out in an entertaining format.
Rhodes has also included “My Ultimate Playlist” that can be accessed on Spotify and with the text, will open your ear to the magic of the music.
“So, this is my plea; give this music a chance,” Rhodes writes in the introduction, an invitation to read and listen, and then (if you wish) never listen to it again.
“But maybe, just maybe, it’ll blow your mind and improve your life a little bit,” Rhodes adds.
Playlist is a good read, and a great listen.

08/23/2020                                               j.g.l.

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