“Life is one grand, sweet song, so start the music.” –Ronald Reagan
Last month we all took pause to remember the 50th anniversary of the tragic assassination of President Kennedy. The question that always comes to mind is: how different would the world, our country and our lives have been, had President Kennedy not been taken from us at the age of 46. That same contemplation occurs to me often with composers and musicians. Do you realize how many of our most famous composers and musicians have died way before their time? Take a look and check out the links below to lead you to books and CDs available at your Library on these well known, accomplished, forever young, artists (with their ages at time of death), just to name a few :
In the popular music genres, there have also been many lives cut short, also with amazing accomplishments never the less: Buddy Holly, 22; Ritchie Valens, 17; Kurt Cobain, 27; Otis Redding, 26; Brian Jones (The Rolling Stones), 27; Janis Joplin, 27; Hank Williams, 29; Jimi Hendrix, 27; Jim Croce, 30; John Denver, 53
Our “Did You Know” composer for this post is Samuel Barber (1910-1981), the American composer whose Adagio for Strings was featured in the movies “Platoon“, “The Elephant Man” and “Lorenzo’s Oil“. Barber lived in an apartment in New York City. He became friends with his upstairs neighbor……famed clarinetist, Benny Goodman! Barber’s life partner was the composer Gian Carlo Menotti.
On a happy, musical note, to help you inaugurate the holiday season and hopefully a very musical one at that, enjoy this video of a “flashwaltz” in Israel’s Hadassah Hospital, playing part of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker. Come to the Library on December 12, 2013 at 2:30 p.m. for a presentation by Hofstra Professor James Kolb, discussing The Nutcracker (click here for free registration).
I hope The Quarter Notes Blog will help you to take time remembering and enjoying some of our long gone musicians, guaranteed to make your season full of music and joy.
Stay tuned to The Quarter Notes Blog and in tune with all the music in your life!