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Books - History - Historical Study - Music > History & Theory - 4

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    The Billboard Illustrated Encyclopedia of Classical Music
    by Vladimir Ashkenazy, Stanley Sadie
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (01 September, 2000)
    list price: $45.00 -- our price: $45.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (2)

    5-0 out of 5 stars The first great book on music of the millenium
    I have never read a book like this one before.
    So well written and illustrated. It is forwarded
    by Vladimir Ashkenazy. The book starts with a section
    about music in non-western civilizations, there it
    explains the role of music in early cultures of the world,
    From Ancient Egypt, to China; from the Ancient American
    cultures, to Africa; and from Oceania to the near east to
    the Holy Roman Empire, this section of the book has it all.
    Then the book is divided in by order of musical periods
    thru the ages. Starting with the medieval era, it lists
    key events of this period, starting in the 800's. It mentions
    and tells about the great names of the era in music,
    including de Vitry(1291-1361) and Machaut(1300-1377).
    It also explains such teaching devices as the 'Guidonian Hand'.
    Then comes the Renaissance, here, it explains the rise
    of humanism, it speaks also of major events of the time.
    It also tells a bit about the Reinassance courts of Europe
    and the composers of the time:Cristobal de Morales(1500-53)
    Thomas Morley(1557-1602), Orlande de Lasuss(1532-94). This
    section also speaks of the rise of instruments.
    One to the Baroque where the where we are start seeing the
    the start of new musical forms and procedures, sucha as the
    masque, the music drama, the French grand motet.Also music in tenary form etc. The section on the classical period again famous
    composers and musicians, explinations of classicism, rococco, and the instruments of the time.More on composers, specially Mozart and Beethoven.On to the the romantic period where we start
    to see development in musical instruments, and styles, we also
    see how the orchestra gets bigger. Finally, the book comes to
    the early and late 20th century. The book does a wonderful job, pictures and tales of 20th century composers.This is the first
    book that I have where I find a picture of John Adams and Sofia Gubaidulina in in the same book, in this book, for the first time also, our contemporary composers are treated with great respect, and as equal to their counterparts of the bygone ages. I picture that I like very much is in PG.324 where Cage, and Boulez shake hands in fron of Massien. The art work is of the best quality.This is indeed a good book that I recomend to every classical music lover, and friend. The amazon.com price is so
    affordable, and competitive.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Valuable both as a reference and for browsing
    A team of writers and scholars compiled the Encyclopedia Of Classical Music, an in-depth encyclopedia of classical music which packs in over 900 color illustrations to accompany a thorough history and survey which extends from ancient through modern times. Introductions for each major period includes surveys of key composers, changes in musical styles, forms, and analysis of instruments. Recommended CD listings, a glossary and extensive discography and bibliography, and subject and name indexes make this valuable both as a reference and for browsing. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0823076989
    Sales Rank: 155437
    Subjects:  1. Bio-bibliography    2. Encyclopedias    3. Genres & Styles - Classical    4. History & Criticism - General    5. History and criticism    6. Music    7. Music History And Criticism +    8. Reference   


    The Billboard Illustrated Encyclopedia of Music
    by Paul du Noyer
    Hardcover (01 October, 2003)
    list price: $45.00 -- our price: $29.70
    (price subject to change: see help)
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    Isbn: 0823078698
    Sales Rank: 524697
    Subjects:  1. Encyclopedias    2. Music    3. Reference   


    A History of Western Music, Sixth Edition
    by Donald J. Grout, Claude V. Palisca
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (December, 2000)
    list price: $73.85 -- our price: $73.85
    (price subject to change: see help)
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    Reviews (18)

    5-0 out of 5 stars History is history
    History is history. We cannot change it, no matter how we try to rewrite it to make it sound better. This book is a fair account overall, of the path that western music has taken. If you are looking for a novel, try finding something about Mozart or Beethoven, more specifically. This book is not meant to entertain, although I find it very interesting. If it were to go into minute detail, it would be a three-volume set. Thanks Norton. I give this book five stars.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The 6th edition still sets the standard !
    I remember the First edition of Grout's "A History of Western Music"--it was the main text in use when I was a first year undergraduate student.In fact it was one of the standard texts in use at a large number of colleges.The good news is that I was pleased to see the excellent changes. I didn't have to look far to find my first (1 st) edition Grout ( I've used it still until I purchased this new 6th edition several weeks ago)--there are101 more pages of text.In reality there is much more to look at as the 1st edition book was only 6 x 9 inches.The new 6th Edition is larger: 7 1/4 by 10 1/2 inches.In addition, there is a highlyattractive layout; the best feature? A wonderful highlighted-in-blue area (appearing every 40 pages or so) in which the composers themselves speak about a wonderful range of topics such as Francois Couperin 'On the Union of the Italian and French Styles' or, the great J.S. Bach'sdescriptionof one the church service's he organized (known as an 'Order of Service') taken from a collection of his memoirs.
    Lastly, I enjoyed seeing the addition of an overall"Time-Line of Events" which prefaces each unit.This includes not only items from music, but any historical event which remotelyaffected change in music or musical thought.
    My singluar critical note is perhaps something which the authors had little time to devote to. The 6th edition ends with composers who, in this reviewer's opinion, were certainly not 'mainstream'--like John Cage (1912-1992)(who's infamous "4'33" is actually a period of four minutes and thirythree seconds in which the 'performer' remains totally silent).Cage was popular in the late 70s more for his extremism than anything else. The last paragraph of the book does state, in effect, that composers are being more sensitive to their audiences. (No doubt! Their INsensitivity nearly killed classical music in the 70s)As with any textbook, deadlines must limit speculation--there will undoubtedly be a 7th edition to address more changes in our musical world.
    Lastly, the reader should take note that the current author of this work, Claude V. Palisca, is also the author of the "Norton Anthology of Music" which can be used in conjunction with this text.Also, the publisher, W.W.Norton and Co., has a website for readers (which is also mentioned in the text: http://www.wwnorton.com/grout.).The website is still active (I just visited it) and has a wealth of information and listening resources---too bad we didn't have this back in 1967 !

    3-0 out of 5 stars A concise cure for insomnia
    For better or worse, this is the standard music history text that most college music majors use. For that purpose, I've yet to find anything as complete and concise. It also works well as a reference, when trying to place some composer or composition in the correct historical context. However, as any freshman music student can tell you, the book is also a fantastic cure for insomnia. Reading this book for any purpose other than academic interest is going to be a hard slog, and I wouldn't recommend it. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0393975274
    Sales Rank: 38014
    Subjects:  1. History & Criticism - General    2. History and criticism    3. Music    4. Music History And Criticism +    5. Reference    6. History of specific subjects    7. Western music: periods & styles   


    Tonal Harmony, With an Introduction to Twentieth-Century Music
    by Stefan Kostka
    Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (01 February, 2000)
    list price: $69.60
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    Reviews (18)

    1-0 out of 5 stars Not helpful to a serious musician
    This book represents everything that is wrong in music theory education.This book approaches music as an abstract entity even though it provides many examples and exercises.It tries to compartmentalize different aspects of music, like harmony, melody, rhythm and form.I don't think it's the authors' fault entirely.

    This is a book on tonal harmony.It has become the standard textbook for music theory in the United States.This is extremely misguided since it will give the student an extremely incomplete understanding of how music works.For example, counterpoint is not taught in this book.Counterpoint has been considered essential for the serious musician for the past 500 years.All the different aspects of music mentioned above are wholly intertwined.Any approach that seperates them misses the point.

    This book also puts too much emphasis on harmony as a vertical phenomenon.Most people experience music as a horizontal phenonmenon and I haave found that approaches to music theory that treats music as such has had much more success.This goes back to why counterpoint is so essential in music theory.Learning harmony through an approach that pays attention to how melody, rhythm, and counterpoint affect harmony is the most honest and least troublesome way of learning how music works.

    This may explain why many have had trouble with this book(I had for 5 years).You'll know how to name things such as chords and form after completing this book, but it won't help you understand how a piece works.It focuses more on nomenclature than on syntax and function.

    There are a slew of books that will give the music student a more complete picture of theory.Most importantly, these more integrated methods will give better tools to understand the music they may be performing and/or studying.These books include Leo Kraft's Gradus, Aldwell and Schachter's Harmony and Voice Leading, Horton and Ritchey's Harmony Through Melody, Siegmeiter's Harmony and Melody, and to a lesser extent Forte's Tonal Harmony in Concept and Practice.

    I am an active conductor and I feel I have a much stronger grasp of music after having been taught a more honest and comprehensive way of studying music and this was only after years of deprogramming what I had learned through the Kostka and Payne.I am still struggling with this issue.If you're serious about music, DO NOT GET THIS BOOK!

    4-0 out of 5 stars It's quality stuff.
    It's ridiculous to say that this book is hard to understand; I use this book for my high school theory class and I can understand it. It's true that it is a little dry and has some errors, but overall it's really helped me learn theory.

    3-0 out of 5 stars This book has some good points but a lot of flaws
    Anybody who has seen the latest edition, knows it's got the theory there, and of all the editions, it was more clearly written than in any of the other ones, however the examples are crap and there are quite a few typographical errors.i guess if they ever proof read their book and make a next edition, it'll get another star from me, and also another thing they did in the book, which is probably not the best of ideas, is in their examples quite often towards the beginning having secondary functioning chordsthere before they're even introduced in the book.but with the errors in the text it still is probably one of the best in print.i don't think too many people would buy this book for independant studies, so there will be a teacher there to clear the confusion and hopefully spot the errors for the students. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0072415703
    Sales Rank: 149364
    Subjects:  1. History & Criticism - General    2. Instruction & Study - Theory    3. Music   

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