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November 10, 2005
Vol. V, No. 23

"The Grand Canyon of Music"
This past Sunday was a Bach day at church. I played the Fantasy & Fugue in C Minor for the prelude. The Collection was "Durch Adam's Fall ist ganz verderbt" (Orgel-Büchlein). The postlude I played was the Fantasy & Fugue in A Minor. Using a moderate registration this last piece can be performed in a rather straightforward manner with the result being somewhat uneventful. Using a postlude registration, the result can be quite the opposite, dramatic and downright flashy. Obviously, I chose the latter.

A visitor to the church stayed and listened to the entire postlude. I spoke with this person afterward and was pleased to find out that they were really jazzed about the A Minor. After they left, a friend of mine said that the visitor was obviously really into Bach and must have an inclination toward music that's complicated to listen to. My response was that Bach is certainly not complicated to listen to. My belief is that Bach's organ music is perfectly accessible to the average person. If you play a Bach prelude and fugue for the average person and they don't get it, you're either doing something wrong or that person has some sort of an emotional obstruction.

Take, for instance, the Grand Canyon.
Pick an ordinary person, plop them down on the rim, and they will ooh and ahh, quite naturally impressed with the grandeur of the scene. Of course, there is always someone who will say, well, it's just a big hole or that's just a bunch of rocks. However, they would be the exception.

Picture this great image: Bach's organ music is the Grand Canyon and I'm Evil Knievel flying over it in my motorcycle. Talk about grandeur (delusions of, that is). As so often happens, this Rampage has completely deteriorated. Therefore, I'll leave you with this: What's another name for a musical round? A Bach's Canon. Get it? Box Canyon. Oh well, maybe I read too many westerns. Jack Schaefer anyone? (Author of "Shane," born in Cleveland, educated at Oberlin!)

Click this link to read comments and offer your own:

If the universe is in a musical key, what key do you think it is in?

C Major 3 vote(s) 10.00%
A Minor 1 vote(s) 3.33%
G Major 1 vote(s) 3.33%
E Minor 0 vote(s) 0.00%
D Major 5 vote(s) 16.67%
B Minor 0 vote(s) 0.00%
A Major 2 vote(s) 6.67%
F# Minor 0 vote(s) 0.00%
E Major 1 vote(s) 3.33%
C# Minor 1 vote(s) 3.33%
B (Cb) Major 1 vote(s) 3.33%
G# (Ab) Minor 0 vote(s) 0.00%
F# (Gb) Major 0 vote(s) 0.00%
D# (Eb) Minor 0 vote(s) 0.00%
C# (Db) Major 1 vote(s) 3.33%
A# (Bb) Minor 1 vote(s) 3.33%
Ab Major 1 vote(s) 3.33%
F Minor 0 vote(s) 0.00%
Eb Major 5 vote(s) 16.67%
C Minor 1 vote(s) 3.33%
Bb Major 2 vote(s) 6.67%
G Minor 1 vote(s) 3.33%
F Major 1 vote(s) 3.33%
D Minor 2 vote(s) 6.67%

Total number of vote(s): 30

Updated Pages
Independent Artists:
Added is new community member Thomas Wikman.

WHAT I'M LISTENING TO..."This Land Is Your Land: The Asch Recordings, Vol. 1" by Woody Guthrie. It's good to hear the actual voice of the man who wrote the song we all know, a unique American voice. It's always good when a great man is prolific, something Guthrie shares with Bach, and I was surprised at how many of his songs I knew. This CD is a good soundtrack to Guthrie's autobiography, which I'm currently reading. Click the link below for more information on this CD:
Click this link to see all selections in Dan's CD Club:

WHAT I'M READING..."Bound for Glory" by Woody Guthrie. The setting is what you'd expect, given that Guthrie is an Okie but the level of detail he provides in his autobiography puts you "right there," in a land that we've all heard about but that just doesn't exist anymore. We should all have the ability to wax so eloquently about our youth. Click the link below for more information on this book:
Click this link to see all selections in Dan's Book Club:

WHAT I'M WATCHING..."Three Days of the Condor (1975)" Starring: Robert Redford, Faye Dunaway; Director: Sydney Pollack. I couldn't believe it but this film is even more relevant today than when it was released. It's a thriller, right to the end, and the cast is first-rate. Click the link below for more information on this DVD:
Click this link to see all selections in Dan's DVD Club:


Have a great week everybody everywhere!

Dan Long

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