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A Concise History of Western Music

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Engaging, clear and informative, this is the story of western music - of its great composers and also of its performers and listeners, of changing ideas of what music is and what it is for. Paul Griffiths shows how music has evolved through the centuries, and suggests how its evolution has mirrored developments in the human notion of time, from the eternity of heaven to th Engaging, clear and informative, this is the story of western music - of its great composers and also of its performers and listeners, of changing ideas of what music is and what it is for. Paul Griffiths shows how music has evolved through the centuries, and suggests how its evolution has mirrored developments in the human notion of time, from the eternity of heaven to the computer's microsecond. The book provides an enticing introduction for students and beginners, using the minimum of technical terms, all straightforwardly defined in the glossary. Its perspective and its insights will also make it illuminating for teachers, musicians and music lovers. Suggestions for further reading and recommended recordings are given for each of the 24 short chapters.


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Engaging, clear and informative, this is the story of western music - of its great composers and also of its performers and listeners, of changing ideas of what music is and what it is for. Paul Griffiths shows how music has evolved through the centuries, and suggests how its evolution has mirrored developments in the human notion of time, from the eternity of heaven to th Engaging, clear and informative, this is the story of western music - of its great composers and also of its performers and listeners, of changing ideas of what music is and what it is for. Paul Griffiths shows how music has evolved through the centuries, and suggests how its evolution has mirrored developments in the human notion of time, from the eternity of heaven to the computer's microsecond. The book provides an enticing introduction for students and beginners, using the minimum of technical terms, all straightforwardly defined in the glossary. Its perspective and its insights will also make it illuminating for teachers, musicians and music lovers. Suggestions for further reading and recommended recordings are given for each of the 24 short chapters.

30 review for A Concise History of Western Music

  1. 5 out of 5

    Maxim

    So, Cage (4'33") made a hole in western music and after him everything is 'ouroboros'. Repeating repeats itself. How scary to see the real does not fit our dreams. What we gonna do now?! "What water is there for us to clean ourselves?" (F.N.)... So, Cage (4'33") made a hole in western music and after him everything is 'ouroboros'. Repeating repeats itself. How scary to see the real does not fit our dreams. What we gonna do now?! "What water is there for us to clean ourselves?" (F.N.)...

  2. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Eloquent, if at times confusing, writing. (I'll probably never finish the thing.) The former, for example: "Before recording, and before notation, there was only the now. Music could not be fixed. It was like the forest and the sea, always being renewed and always remaining the same. It could last only as long as memory, for memory was the only means of holding onto past time. For people familiar with memory, and uniquely dependent on it, the past is not strange: it is present, in the mind. Time i Eloquent, if at times confusing, writing. (I'll probably never finish the thing.) The former, for example: "Before recording, and before notation, there was only the now. Music could not be fixed. It was like the forest and the sea, always being renewed and always remaining the same. It could last only as long as memory, for memory was the only means of holding onto past time. For people familiar with memory, and uniquely dependent on it, the past is not strange: it is present, in the mind. Time is whole. Its measures are all in natural observation: the cycles of the day and year, the aging of people, animals, plants and things, the flowing of water or the burning down of candles." For example, the latter: "The purpose of notation, right into the fifteenth century, may well have been to record rather than to prescribe, though modern performers have had to understand it in the latter sense."

  3. 5 out of 5

    Dani

    too confusing. Trying to study for a class with it it's horrible, the composers are in several distant pages and you just get confused. It's good to read, other than that. too confusing. Trying to study for a class with it it's horrible, the composers are in several distant pages and you just get confused. It's good to read, other than that.

  4. 4 out of 5

    A. Sebastián

    No busquen nada muy especifico, es más un pantallazo general. Muy destacable y completa la bibliografía y discografía seleccionada.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Svalbard

    Approfondito senza essere prolisso, tecnico quanto basta senza essere superspecialistico, questo libro si basa su una tesi piuttosto originale ma comunque attendibile: alle radici dello sviluppo della musica occidentale c'è un'evoluzione dell'idea e della percezione (filosofica ed antropologica) del tempo. Così, la musica occidentale può essere suddivisa in periodi ben distinti in funzione delle differenti concezioni di tempo che nel tempo si sono succedute: - Tempo intero (dall'antichità al 110 Approfondito senza essere prolisso, tecnico quanto basta senza essere superspecialistico, questo libro si basa su una tesi piuttosto originale ma comunque attendibile: alle radici dello sviluppo della musica occidentale c'è un'evoluzione dell'idea e della percezione (filosofica ed antropologica) del tempo. Così, la musica occidentale può essere suddivisa in periodi ben distinti in funzione delle differenti concezioni di tempo che nel tempo si sono succedute: - Tempo intero (dall'antichità al 1100) - Tempo misurato (dal 1100 al 1400) - Tempo percepito (dal 1400 al 1630) - Tempo conosciuto (dal 1630 al 1770) - Tempo incorporato (dal 1770 al 1815) - Tempo sfuggente (dal 1815 al 1907) - Tempo aggrovigliato (Dal 1908 al 1975) - Tempo perduto (dal 1975 al...) Rispetto ad altri compendi di storia della musica, si dedica (giustamente) molto spazio alla musica contemporanea, arrivando anche a sfondare il "muro" del Duemila. Consigliatissimo a chi deve sostenere l'esame di Storia della Musica in conservatorio e vuole andare oltre l'esasperante "catechismo" dell'Allorto. :-)

  6. 4 out of 5

    Pat Carson

    Tough read for me at the beginning - did enjoy seeing the overlap of the lives of the popular 'classical' composers. Tough read for me at the beginning - did enjoy seeing the overlap of the lives of the popular 'classical' composers.

  7. 5 out of 5

    frē

    Gaat er in als koek na de lessen van Francis Maes aan de UGent (Muziekgeschiedenis I & II). Zelfs na deze inleidende cursussen merk ik dat het boekje hier en daar wel heel kort door de bocht gaat (beschrijving van de parodiemis etc). Maar het blijft een feest van herkenning! UPDATE: De laatste 100 bladzijden vond ik aan de taaie kant (abstract/veel details). Met lange tanden heb ik het boek uiteindelijk na meer dan een maand uitgelezen.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Bruno

    Zeer interessant overzicht, met ongetwijfeld redelijk wat gaten, maar om op 300 bladzijden duizend jaar muziekgeschiedenis neer te pennen, valt dat nog best mee. Heeft mij veel bijgebracht/opgefrist. Geschreven in een niet al te droge taal, en zonder al te veel opsommingen. Een derde van het boek gaat over de laatste 100-120 jaar.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Chris Ibanez

  10. 4 out of 5

    Julius

  11. 4 out of 5

    My Name

  12. 5 out of 5

    Paolo Maria

  13. 5 out of 5

    Chase Christensen

  14. 4 out of 5

    GİZEM GÖKTEN

  15. 4 out of 5

    A. Baran Günaydın

  16. 5 out of 5

    Alfredo Rivas

  17. 5 out of 5

    Jack Caulfield

  18. 5 out of 5

    Staci

  19. 5 out of 5

    Bruscolino

  20. 4 out of 5

    Azriel

  21. 5 out of 5

    Annie

  22. 4 out of 5

    Mustafa

  23. 5 out of 5

    Thomas Fasano

  24. 5 out of 5

    Ruja

  25. 5 out of 5

    SpR

  26. 4 out of 5

    Pedro

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kelsey Fletcher

  28. 5 out of 5

    Asier

  29. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

  30. 5 out of 5

    Cristian

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