Archive for the ‘Music’ Category

Rouge Musings for November 17, 2008

You can’t really make anybody do anything–including yourself. I have been meaning to write a whole post on this, but the one sentence suffices, I think.

One thing I always wonder when the GOP is chanting, “Lower taxes, lower taxes,” is just what tax rates they think would serve the country best? You can’t assume that taxes should always be lower than what they are, and basic math tells us there is a rate than which nothing lower is possible.

I am in love with Brahms’ second string sextet. The tonality reminds me of Debussy. In the second movement, the scherzo, Brahms delivers one of those sinuous dances with tears in its eyes. Brahms, Brahms, Brahms–how much you have taught me in the past five months, I cannot even begin to relate. Thank you, dear friend!

I continue my relationship with Beethoven’s 8th Symphony; for more than a year now it has been a shot in my spiritual arm, so to speak. Four movements, four melodic tours de force. It’s Beethoven, so of course you are getting brilliant instrumentation, but this has special appeal to me. This symphony is short (Beethoven’s shortest, in fact), punchy, upbeat, and unforgettable. I am curious why it is not more well known.

I have this two-CD set as well, “The Best of Boccherini.” He is, in a word, great. I really need to explore his work more, as does the world, for he has been overly ignored.

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Rouge Musings for November 3, 2008

This is my first “Rouge Musings” post, in which I just write about what’s on my mind without forcing too much discipline on the process. I hope you enjoy it, and–

Did they change the recipe for M&M’s Peanut Butter? I bought a bag recently and they seemed bigger and cruder, with more chocolate and less peanut butter. Indeed, the chocolate therein tasted pretty poor (whereas it seems better in the M&M’s Peanut–maybe for reasons intrinsic to the chocolate, maybe because the combo of cruddy chocolate and peanut and shell just doesn’t taste too bad).

We’re talking Hershey bar-level grunge chocolate.

Went with friend to Noblesville this evening, and people in a long line outside the county building to do some early voting. It’s good to see people participating in politics with enthusiasm. I am not a pessimist about our country or my generation, or the next several generations working their way up in age. Things are OK.

In the line was one of my friends, who said he was going to follow me on Twitter, and I started following him. Should you care to follow me, you will find my Twitter profile link on this page. Enjoy.

I’m not one of the many people who are worrying about the election (which is to say, I’m not worried that Obama will lose). Obama is going to win; Obama has “winner” written all over him right now, and, the beautiful thing about this man is that he gives all of it, or nearly all of it, back to the people in love and service. Sound corny? The next eight years will demonstrate the corn level; I’m patient.

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Music sets the standard; you and I can only follow

Dear One, going through my albums the other day, I found that I had Piece Heroique by Cesar Franck on vinyl; I had thought I would need to buy it on CD. I found I had his Piano Quintette on vinyl; I had already bought the CD (no loss). I’m listening to the quintet now, thinking of it, thinking of you.

What’s the difference between you and music? Music wrote the Universe, the Universe wrote music. The two of them together wrote the two of us.

Music is the standard: it is venerable old rules and principles that your ear can hear. Your piano tells you this whenever you play it (an altar, no less). However much you or I may deviate from its teachings, its pronouncements, there it is, in our ears and brains, telling us what is true. Love itself must bow or at least nod its head in recognition as this truth in sound passes by.

Franck fought. Brahms persevered. Schoenberg battled. It is up to us, and to the rest of the world, to make their efforts worth their efforts.

I hope the big sky has been good to you. Do you think I don’t still love you, even after all? There are not enough as if!s in the world to respond to that thought. But if I don’t have you, I do have Franck and Brahms and Schoenberg: they’ll take care of me in your absence; and they’ll take care of you, too: the truest you, who lives in their notes.

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"Back to Basom" by Ween

“Back to Basom” by Ween is a great but weird song. Seriously weird. I listened to it a bunch of times on my way back from New York City, and it is now running through my head incessently. Great, sophisticated melody; weird lyrics. Seriously weird. It suggests to me some horrific, post-apocalyptic world, in which the narrator is nevertheless trying to make the most of things; but he doesn’t seem like a good person himself. It’s just weird. It’s a song that will freak you out.

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