Classical Vs. Pop Music


Steven Fry speaks on Classical Music, Pop Music and the culture of music snobbery. 

He has some interesting thoughts to generate conversation on this issue. 

I have some thoughts of my own . . . 

Classical music was often popular music at the time it was written.  The nice thing about “classical music” (which I am defining as western art music) is -- like folk music, folk tales, and nursery rhymes -- it has stood the test of time.  There is something inherently good, inherently likable, and I would argue inherently valuable about art that we are still listening to a hundred years after it was introduced. 

There’s no doubt in my mind there will be “pop” music written today that will also stand the test of time.  In fact, I teach a unit on the history of Jazz and the history of Rock and Roll in my general music classes, because I already feel there are pieces that are historically important to our present musical culture, and I want my students to be culturally literate.

Another reason I teach classical music is I want to broaden student’s horizons.  They are already listening to today’s hit song . . . by introducing them to the last decade’s hit song, and the last century’s hit song,  I am opening their musical ears to history, to what is possible, where we came from, perhaps where we are going, and -- I believe -- to a standard that is high . . .

Because this is the music that has endured.

Happy watching!

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