As I pull into my parking space at school, I see a jock roll up blasting a new rap song. The bass pounds the pavement and makes heads turn. He steps out to talk to his friends about football practice that evening. What am I doing tonight? After cross country I go to my piano lesson -- where the real music is.
The oldest type of piano music, and actually my personal favorite, is baroque. The main composer at this time was Bach. Johann Sebastian Bach (what a mouthful) was a baroque Austrian composer during the late 1600's to early 1700's. My first thought when I hear about him: BORING! But then I take a glance at his music. As a whole, it sounds like a normal classical piece of music, another dumb song casted away. But I took a closer look. The thing about Bach is that he took the time to give each hand, each voice, a different melody than the other. When you play each hand alone, they sound like they are two completely different pieces. Bach, however, was so particular with the melodies that they could be played together. Now you tell me the last time you took that much time on anything! He knew that each voice is important; he knew that in a whole there are many parts.
And what about Beethoven? Yeah, the old deaf guy. He was actually pretty cool too. He was a crossover between a classical composer and a romantic composer. He had structured pieces like a classical composer, but he had enormous dynamic contrast like a romantic composer. Only problem was that the pianos back then couldn't sustain a ton of sound. So Beethoven broke them. He played so loud that the strings would all snap! The dude was crazy. When's the last time you heard of a rapper tearing stuff up in the name of music? Oh wait... never. And he was doing stuff like this his whole life. Beethoven started piano when he was five years old. I don't know about you, but when I was that age, I was lucky to be coloring in the lines in a coloring book. This guy was legit.
So who's the new revolutionary person today? What are they known for? Lady Gaga, the definition of eccentric? Beyoncé, a true goddess with a fresh new song all the time? I feel like recent stars just come and pass without a true influence. Bach made up all the chords on the piano (which is some 1,200 with major, minor, augmented, etc.) and made them all systematic. Beethoven made songs that have lasted for hundreds of years. He was an idol for tons of later composers and paved the way for the more dynamic piano we have today. So as I hear the bass of the car next to me, I just keep my head up and walk by, waiting for a new revolution.