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Ten empowering books to read in celebration of Black History Month

Anna J. Cooper once said: “the cause of freedom is not the cause of a race or a sect, a party or a class—it is the cause of human kind, the very birthright of humanity.”In observance of Black History Month, we are celebrating our prize-winning authors and empowering scholarship spanning a variety of topics across African American history, the civil rights movement, Black Lives Matter, the Harlem Renaissance, jazz, and more. Explore our reading list and update your bookshelf with the most recent ...
Tags: Books, Music, Featured, Africa, America, History, Biography, Louis Armstrong, Black History Month, Trump, Angela Davis, Nat King Cole, Editor's Picks, Stewart, Armstrong, Locke

Tips for adapting the elementary music curriculum to online teaching

Teachers of the performing arts are adapting their classes to go online. The problems and challenges range from ensuring enough physical space for movement around each student’s computer to overcoming audio and video syncing delays during the live feed. Some of the solutions include doing less movement during the class and turning off students’ video so there is less latency in the audio. But what about elementary music?Young students are inspired by seeing others move with them. The teacher can...
Tags: Books, Music, Usa, Featured, Education, Social Sciences, Salvador, Elizabeth Caldwell, Music Education, Arts & Humanities, Subtopics, Elementary Music Education, Lyda, Kim Milai, Elementary Music, Online Teaching

Grove Music’s 2021 spoof article contest is now open!

I think we can all agree that recent months of pandemic and political unrest have been difficult ones, and often entirely bereft of humor. I am therefore pleased to announce the revival of the Grove Music Online Spoof Article Contest 2021.Spoof articles have had a long history with Grove Music. Grove’s particular style and format have inspired all kinds of parodies. In previous iterations of the contest, we’ve received articles on instruments (“Musical Cheesegrater” submitted by Caroline Potter ...
Tags: Books, Music, Featured, Elise, Grove, Oxford University Press, Arts & Humanities, Online products, Caroline Potter, Grove Music Online, Anna Lise Santella, Sara Levine, Joanna Wyld, Grove Music, Subtopics, Daniel Melamed

Joseph Riepel and a very long hello

Joseph Riepel’s celebrated music theory treatise, Anfangsgründe zur musicalischen Setzkunst, unfolds in a lively and witty manner. Most of its chapters are framed in the guise of lessons, presented as dialogues between a teacher and student. The teacher is a bit of a goofball who peppers the lessons with numerous sarcastic asides, often at the expense of mathematically oriented music theorists whose approaches he finds too dry and inartistic. The student is no mere pushover, and on numerous occa...
Tags: Books, Music, Featured, Haydn, Joseph Haydn, Ludwig van Beethoven, Neubauer, Arts & Humanities, Music Theory, Subtopics, Galant, Wolfgang Mozart, Joseph Riepel, Riepel, Franz Christoph Neubauer, Riepel Neubauer

Technology in the elementary music classroom after the pandemic

The pandemic will leave a lasting impression on music education for years to come. Even when the ending of the pandemic is finally in sight, music education will reel from the effects. When it comes to elementary music education, we thrived on incorporating ensemble performances using instruments from ukuleles to xylophones. We adored allowing our students to improvise using movements, chants, poetry, and instruments. We integrated cultural dances with social-emotional learning skills. When the ...
Tags: Books, Music, Technology, Featured, Education, Microsoft, Teaching Music, Social Sciences, LMS, Arts & Humanities, Nearpod, Subtopics, Teaching Music Online, MusicFirst Google, Matic Flipgrid, Peardeck

Online music-making with nearly no lag time—really!

Susan Alexander found a way to fill the “big, depressing hole in your life where playing music with other people used to be”—a hole caused by this year’s official restrictions on in-person gatherings to limit the spread of the COVID-19 virus. That hole grew smaller when this avocational Maryland pianist discovered JamKazam, one of several free music-making software programs that nearly eliminate the annoying lag time in sound transmission that occurs when musicians try to make music together on ...
Tags: Apple, Facebook, Books, Music, New York, Featured, Maryland, Colorado, Virginia, Canada, Dallas, Seattle, Skype, Griffin, Stanford University, Austin Texas

Nineteenth-century US hymnody’s fascination with classical music

The aria Zerlina sings to Masetto, her fiancée, late in Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni is a study in sexual innuendo.Masetto’s just received a brutal beating from the Don (whose lascivious designs on Zerlina were only narrowly averted). But if Masetto will come home with her now, Zerlina coaxes, she’s ready to administer her own pleasant balm. It’s a natural cure, she says, that she carries with her everywhere. One no chemist can make. Just as erotic undercurrents threaten to surface (“Do you want ...
Tags: Books, Music, New York, Featured, Religion, US, Broadway, Beethoven, John, John Williams, Mozart, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Don, Don Giovanni, Arts & Humanities, Hymns

10 little-known facts about Sissle and Blake’s Shuffle Along

In May 1921, Shuffle Along, a musical with music and lyrics by Noble Sissle and Eubie Blake, premiered on Broadway. Written, staged, and performed entirely by African Americans, it was the first show to make African-American dance an integral part of American musical theater, eventually becoming one of the top ten musical shows of the 1920s. Despite many obstacles Shuffle Along integrated into Broadway and introduced such stars as Josephine Baker, Lottie Gee, Florence Mills, and Fredi Washington...
Tags: Books, Music, New York, Featured, Paris, Broadway, Johnson, Weir, Baker, Harlem, Miller, Broadway Musicals, Blake, Matthews, William Grant, Cotton Club

Playing the opposite of what Brahms wrote

What might we learn from an oddity concerning the first movement of Brahms’s Violin Sonata No. 1 in G, op. 78, that has led many violin-piano duos either to ignore Brahms’s tempo markings or actually play the opposite of what he wrote?Brahms’s score is explicit. The basic tempo is Vivace ma non troppo (lively, but not overly so). Near the middle of this mostly lyrical movement, when the movement’s most agitated music begins, Brahms wrote più sostenuto (more sustained). Then, leading into the ope...
Tags: Books, Music, Featured, Beethoven, Clara, Robert, Valentino, FELIX, Brahms, Chopin, Arts & Humanities, Clara Schumann, Subtopics, Szigeti, Joseph Szigeti, Hubay

A conversation on music and autism (part two)

In the first part of Music and Autism: Speaking for Ourselves author Michael Bakan’s interview with his Chapter 7 musician co-author Graeme Gibson (who is on the spectrum) and Graeme’s parents, the renowned science fiction novelist William (Bill) Gibson and autism researcher Dr Deborah Gibson, things left off with Bill telling Michael about how being Graeme’s dad had influenced his creation of “unnervingly human” AI (Artificial Intelligence) characters in his novels. Next in the conversation, Mi...
Tags: Books, Science Fiction, Music, England, Bruce Springsteen, London, Featured, Autism, David Bowie, Literature, Nashville, Nebraska, Bill, Michael, Steely Dan, Deb

A conversation on music and autism (part one)

Earlier this year, Music and Autism: Speaking for Ourselves author Michael B. Bakan sat down for a Zoom conversation with his Chapter 7 co-author, the Vancouver-based multi-instrumentalist and music instrument collector Graeme Gibson, and with Graeme’s parents, autism researcher Dr. Deborah Gibson and bestselling science fiction author William (Bill) Gibson. Their four-way conversation covered a range of topics, from how raising a child on the spectrum shaped Bill’s writing of iconic novels like...
Tags: Books, Music, London, Featured, Autism, Literature, Vancouver, Bill, Santa, Mom, Michael, Casio, Deborah, Graeme, Science & Medicine, Arts & Humanities

Reimagining our music classes for Zoom

Let’s start our Zoom session with a warm up for your musical imagination: Hear a single note in your mind, played on a violin without vibratoNow hear the violinist add vibratoThe note begins to crescendoNow it is fortissimoNow hear the note played sfzpp and held with a fermataThe note slides upward in a glissando and fades away into silenceAll of us who are devoted to music education are facing new challenges due to the pandemic, and while we are lucky and grateful to have extraordinary technolo...
Tags: Books, Music, Featured, US, Social Sciences, Juilliard, Arts & Humanities, Subtopics, Musical Composition, Viola Spolin, Gabriel BenoisThe

They may not be pros—but they’re recording artists now

“If you give yourself to something that you think isn’t going to work, sometimes it does,” says retired school teacher and lifelong choir member Linda Bluth. She’s commenting on a surprising new musical bright spot that has popped up during the coronavirus pandemic: ordinary people becoming recording artists. From Brooklyn’s Grace Chorale to the New Horizons ensembles of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and East Lansing, Michigan, as well as students at New York’s Third Street Music School and Baltimo...
Tags: Books, Music, New York, Featured, Media, Brooklyn, Baltimore, Vermont, Fleming, Kathy, Portsmouth New Hampshire, Alexandria Virginia, Bluth, East Lansing Michigan, Hecker, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra

Beethoven’s virtual collaborations

Since the onset of the pandemic, online platforms like Facebook and YouTube have become indispensable hubs of musical collaboration. Simply scroll down your Facebook feed to encounter collaborative virtual performances of everything from “Over the Rainbow” to Mahler’s Third Symphony, each one painstakingly assembled from individual recordings of sequestered singers and isolated instrumentalists.While physically distant musical collaborations might seem shockingly new, they actually have a long h...
Tags: Facebook, Europe, Books, Music, Featured, Media, History, Vienna, Beethoven, Edinburgh, Arts and humanities, Aba, Chester, Walter Scott, Scott, Bangor

From Stradivari to Spotify: How new technology has always inspired new music

Successful composers, authors, and scientists have distinctive writing styles which define all their works. They are rarely in isolation from their contemporaries, so their work is inherently time stamped. Similarities can exist with their students and followers, so they set the pattern of writing over one or two generations.The normal assumption is that the evolution of music has been primarily from emulation of winners and current fashion. Certainly, this is a major factor, but it overlooks ex...
Tags: Spotify, Books, Music, Featured, History, Engineering, History of science, Sound Engineering, Science History, Science & Medicine, Arts & Humanities, Antonio Stradivari, Stradivari, Peter Townsend, Subtopics, History Of Music

Writing about jazz in the post-modern gig era

How should music reference works deal with jazz in the era of multi-genre freelancing? Back in November 1983, when I asked Stanley Sadie, series editor for Grove Dictionaries of Music, if he’d ever thought of having a New Grove Dictionary of Jazz, jazz seemed to be a reasonably coherent genre with a connected succession of styles. Maybe I was just being young, naive, ignorant. Or maybe the notion of jazz as something coherent hadn’t yet started to completely unravel, even though all sorts of cha...
Tags: Books, Music, London, Featured, America, Dubai, New Orleans, Jazz, Nashville, John Coltrane, Bebop, Music History, Time Out, Tanglewood, Yefim Bronfman, Bill Frisell

The maestro speaks: Ennio Morricone on life and music

Over his esteemed six decade career, Italian composer Ennio Morricone has scored hundreds of movies across numerous genres, most famously the Spaghetti Westerns of Sergio Leone. Many of his most iconic musical cues—to name just three, the coyote-like “wah-wah” of The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly, the haunting harmonica from Once Upon a Time in the West, and the distinct oboe of The Mission—have transcended their films to cement their place in popular culture, referenced in cartoons and commercial...
Tags: Videos, Books, Music, Featured, Time, Italy, Beethoven, Westerns, Quentin Tarantino, Multimedia, The Hateful Eight, The Mission, Film Scores, Ennio Morricone, Tarantino, Django Unchained

Making music American: a playlist from 1917

The entrance of the United States into World War I on 6 April 1917 inspired a flood of new music from popular songwriters. Simultaneously, the first recording of instrumental jazz was released in April 1917, touching off a fad for the new style and inspiring record companies to promote other artists before year’s end. Victor and Columbia, the industry leaders, developed technological innovations that made possible the first recordings of a full symphony orchestra. These recordings are a sample o...
Tags: Spotify, Europe, Books, Music, Featured, Congress, France, Germany, US, Indiana, History, United States, Paris, World War I, Manhattan, Jazz

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