Music Here and Now

Music Here and Now

Music Here and Now

Music Here and Now

Excerpt

This book will survey the entire field of Western music, not just the music of America or the musical events of today; it will examine its problematical features and endeavor to explain how they developed. "Here and Now" sets the tasks incumbent upon professional and amateur musicians, as well as laymen, at the present turning point in music's history; it implies that these problems can and should be solved at once. In granting that human affairs are products of history, we should never forget that history is produced by the deeds of mankind.

One of the chief purposes of this book will be to show that not all contemporary music is "modern," or, as I would rather say, new.

Throughout history, the only music of lasting importance, contributing tangibly to the evolution of new artistic thoughts, means of expression, and methods of construction, has been progressive. An intention to symbolize a steadily increasing degree of consciousness by musical means, to intensify the emotional expressiveness of music, has always been the common denominator in historical mutations of the art.

In the nineteenth century, however, this view was considerably dimmed by the inertia which increasingly affected the mentality of the middle classes. Owing to . . .

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