Too Much Tchaikovsky

The Shock of the Old

What’s Old? In classical music, everything and nothing. Steve Reich…

Andrew Norman: Pinball Wizard

As I write this, I am sitting in a grade-school…

Mahler Tall, Grande, Venti

Maybe you’ve experienced this: you offer your friend a bracing…

Flutes

It’s not that complicated. Lauren Bacall said it best, in…

Box Sets: Threat or Menace?

I hate it when my most cherished assumptions take a…

The Fine Print

They used to be called liner notes. Nowadays, since there’s…

Organizers and Decorators

Isaiah Berlin gave us foxes and hedgehogs. Classical Greece offered…

More Flutes

A few weeks ago we stuck one toe in the…

Liszt, Show Business, and Art

Franz Liszt (1811–86) practically invented the showbiz end of classical…

Three New Choral Passions

Steinberg: Passion Week There once were two young Russian composers,…

Bad Manners

We were just sitting there, listening to music. My friend…

Starter Kit

This column began as a Gift Guide kind of thing.…

Berlioz for Christmas

And Liszt for the New Year! Here we go. Hector…

Rest of the Best, 2016

As I write this, the Old Year is drawing to…

Rhythm

Boulez called it duration. By that he meant the whole…

Melody

Onward and upward with our New Year’s survey of musical…

Style, Part 1

Okay, we’ve done some work with Rhythm and Melody. Time…

Style, With Sprinkles

Dear Friends, Congratulations! Copper’s readers, writers, faithful Editor, and visionary…

Five Uneasy Pieces

It is not pretty, any of it. But its maker,…

Bridges and Boundaries

Can we put Arnold S. on hold for a bit?…

Schoenberg After Pierrot

I haven’t said much so far about Arnold Schoenberg’s craft,…

American Symphonies

Writer Philipp Meyer said something worth repeating a couple of…

Exiles

Last time our subject was Americans, and a varied lot…

Classical Concept Albums

They’re baack. Concept albums, that is, those packages that attempt—with…

Getting to Know György

György Kurtág (b. 1926) is old. Really old. If his…

Guitar Madness

Ah, but none dare call it madness. We’re speaking of…

Fireworks and Fizz Water

Hey there, classical fans. Let’s talk shallow pleasures! Excuse me?…

Pledge(s) of Allegiance

I’ve been reviewing classical records for, like, ever. In the…

Dry vs. Juicy

Writing about music is like dancing about architecture.  Well, it’s…

Oboe Quartets

What does an oboe sound like? If you fancy yourself…

Special Effects

It’s holiday season as I write this, and I can’t…

Voices

  Whenever people talk seriously about recorded music, sooner or…

Searching For Big

I’ve been listening to, or watching, a lot of new…

Awards Season!

Once every year, a year passes! Pundits, critics, observers far…

Daughters, Part 1

  Choose your parents carefully. That’s probably the best advice…

Violin + Orchestra, Part 1

Our story begins with Beethoven. (What else is new?) His…

Daughters, Part 2

Talk about in medias res. In “Daughters, Part 1” we…

Violin+Orchestra, Part 2

  So many concertos, so little time. When I decided…

So Far, So Good

That’s a punch line! It belongs to the joke about…

There’s a Record Store in Newnan

Newnan, Georgia, is the little town I live in, just…

Why Messiaen (Still) Matters

This is not a Messiaen Year. It would be the…

Letter from London

New York, May 22. I’ve had some of my favorite…

Our Annual Summer Edition

Sweet summer! Calendar-wise, it’s not quite here, but musically it’s…

Part Deux

[Or: Another Mess O’ Messiaen—-Ed.] This column usually follows a…

The Ondine All-Stars

For the classical record industry, it’s gotten hard to tell…

Winds From the North

Oh Bernhard Henrik Crusell (1775–1838), where have you been all…

Bert van der Wolf

[Bert van der Wolf is a distinguished Netherlands-based engineer/producer with…

In the Matter of M. Weinberg

He escaped, and not just once. The outward circumstances of…

Steve Jobs, the Opera. Really.

Mason Bates wrote the music, Mark Campbell the libretto. They…

Snobs and Slobs

Here’s a (lightly edited) exchange that took place right after…

Why Do You Think They Call it Classical?

Larry: Greetings, music lovers. Today we have a question or…

Hearing Bach

Among the most-played and -recorded of J. S. Bach’s instrumental…

More Mostly Quiet Music

Have we today forgotten how to speak softly and with…

Putting Down Roots

I’ve just seen a documentary about a food writer. It…

Collaborators

Nearly all the great creative musicians were good collaborators. It…

Stocking Stuffers 2018

It’s that time of year again; maybe you’re still in…

Telling the Story

Every picture tells a story. That’s utterly true, regardless of…

Telling the (Vocal) Story

In TMT #75 we talked about narrative in instrumental music.…

Stay Warm

It’s cold, it’s gray, it’s wet. Time for comfort food:…

Stay Hot!

Last week I finally signed up for a streaming service.…

Purcell’s King Arthur

Merlin waves his Wand; the Scene changes, and discovers the…

How I Became an Audiophile

My earliest memories of listening to recorded music go back…

Violin Plus One

Or two, or six. There’s no end to what you…

Eine kleine zuviele Nachtmusik

This is about Mahler and his Seventh Symphony. Which means,…

Pan and Perséphone

Today we begin with Mahler and his Third Symphony. Then…

Prokofiev Piano Concertos

What I’m writing about this week: Sergei Prokofiev (1891–1953) and…

Hall Sounds

Late this May I fulfilled a longstanding wish—to attend Choral…

“Who the hell is Allan Pettersson?”

  Not my words. Just the title of a 1974…

Standard Time

It may seem like I seldom devote space here to…

Copycats

Today we’re talking about musical imitation and modeling. Also ripoffs,…

Ear Candy

Of the four strictly definable parameters of any musical sound—pitch,…

Maurice Duruflé

Maybe you’ve heard about FOMO—Fear of Missing Out. It’s a…

Doin’ It

My friend Dale Cockrell has written a remarkable book, Everybody’s…

Russian Composers: Rachmaninov, Medtner and Prokofiev

They were contemporaries. Sergey Rachmaninov (1873–1943) was born seven years…

Haydn and the Theatre

Today we most often encounter Joseph Haydn (1732–1809) as the…

Rarities and Remembrances

This TMT will appear in Copper #100 on December 16,…

Beethoven Plus One: Songs

2020 marks the 250th anniversary of the birth of Ludwig…

Steve Waksman, Rock Musicologist

(Author’s note: Last November at a meeting of the American…

Steve Waksman, Rock Musicologist: Part Two

(Author’s note: In our interview with Steve Waksman in TMT…

Beethoven Begins

When did Beethoven become Beethoven? That is, when did he…

Joshua Redman’s Sun on Sand

We’re taking a break from Beethoven Plus One in order…

Beethoven (and Other) Landscapes

I’m pretty sure I discovered Ludwig van Beethoven’s Sixth Symphony…

A New American Oratorio

It’s been a while since we featured any oratorios in…

Opera and Immersive Sound

This is the first of two articles I’ve planned on…

Immersive Sound Part Two

When I started planning this column, the task seemed simple:…

Multichannel Hall of Fame Mk I

Recently, I’ve had more time to poke around my “record…

Multichannel Hall of Fame Mk II

(Last time we offered overviews of several recording labels that…

Routine, Ritual and Wabi-Sabi

In the past few weeks, I’ve rediscovered something: routines can…

Four Figaros

In the last six weeks, I’ve watched Mozart’s opera Le…

Why Collect?

Part 1: Adventures in Time Travel Last week I unboxed…

Mozart’s Tito and Idomeneo

Earlier this month I watched the Met’s free streaming presentation…

Comfort and Adventure

Good: If I ever start making playlists again, or decide…

Beethoven and . . . Britten?

Remember Beethoven? Late in 2019 the classical-music world set out…

Symphonies and Social Movements

Even when artists write manifestos, they are (hopefully) aware that…

Two Violas and a Cello

Dear Reader, Hi there! Yes, I’m back from a self-imposed…

Winners

For weeks now I’ve been planning a column on the…

Bel Canto, Part 1

Recently I’ve been watching a lot of Dark, now streaming…

Holiday Music, Naughty & Nice

  First, the Nice part: One of my earliest memories…

Rossini (Bel Canto Part 2)

Here’s a question that should be a softball: who was…

Award Season

Christmas came early last month! In the space of ten…

When You Wish

Dear readers: as I write this, Christmas is over, the…

Serenades

Serenade (Fr. sérénade; Ger. Serenade, Ständchen; It. serenada, serenata). A…

Passions

Last month I made a single New Year’s resolution: to…

Bach’s Saint John Passion

High on my list of all-time favorite Bach arias is…
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