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-   -   Classical music haters: Why? (https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=880720)

panache45 08-20-2019 03:19 PM

Classical music haters: Why?
 
Question for people who absolutely can't stand classical music: Why?

Limmin 08-20-2019 03:36 PM

If I may... I love classical music, and not just the "lite" stuff but difficult works that take years to fully appreciate. I also love tough-to-parse, challenging things in general. Like coastal navigation and sailing. And advanced university degrees.

I've noticed a certain kind of hate directed at such things...like hate directed at sailors, by powerboaters, or classical music lovers, by classical music haters, and even Tesla drivers, by coal-rolling pickups.

Perhaps we might call this "defensive" hate? As in, such haters hate because they think we're "better" than them for having more "refined" tastes? Then this makes them mad?

I'd suggest, let your likes be a positive thing, rather than a reason to feel bad because your likes aren't the same as someone else's. Don't get mad at others for liking things you don't. That's just silly. It takes all types to make a world, after all.

EinsteinsHund 08-20-2019 04:02 PM

Ok, the most important thing first: I'm a rock'n'roll guy through and through and have been all my conscious life. That includes a broad range of styles, from punk to prog, from soul to country, from from electronic music to folk, you name it. Music in this broad spectrum is what I almost exclusively listen to, but I have deep respect for classical music and Jazz, but I'm afraid to step into these musical universes because I already can't handle everything I want to listen to in the pop/rock genre. I appreciate that most classical and Jazz is deep and sophisticated, and I even listen sometimes (but too rarely) to classical symphonies and classic Jazz albums. But there's one thing I can't stand, though I also appreciate that it's good music in a way, and that's opera. I just cannot stand the opera style of singing, it just grates on me, similarly like Bon Scott's or Ozzy Osbourne's voice will grate on many opera fans. But I acknowledge that those singers can sing, but it's JUST NOT MY STYLE.

Velocity 08-20-2019 04:05 PM

As someone who played classical piano music for many years, much classical music is just dreadfully boring. It's a great deal of work for very little benefit, for the performers, and tedious for the audience.

I don't like rock, rap, hip-hop or most modern stuff either, but (most) classical is just a chore.

Thudlow Boink 08-20-2019 04:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Velocity (Post 21816447)
As someone who played classical piano music for many years, much classical music is just dreadfully boring. It's a great deal of work for very little benefit, for the performers, and tedious for the audience.

I don't like rock, rap, hip-hop or most modern stuff either, but (most) classical is just a chore.

Is there any kind of music you do like?

I can understand why someone who didn't like/appreciate music at all (e.g. because they're tone deaf) wouldn't like classical music.

Malleus, Incus, Stapes! 08-20-2019 04:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by panache45 (Post 21816364)
Question for people who absolutely can't stand classical music: Why?

Why do some people like vanilla and some people like chocolate?

I mean, I do have a preference for songs with words and strong beats, but it ultimately comes down to "Classical music just doesn't do it for me".

Velocity 08-20-2019 04:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Thudlow Boink (Post 21816464)
Is there any kind of music you do like?

I can understand why someone who didn't like/appreciate music at all (e.g. because they're tone deaf) wouldn't like classical music.

I generally like soundtracks (the more peaceful or innovative ones, not the loud bangy drums ones) and some jazz. Some computer-game soundtracks are great as well. But classical music often feels like the aural equivalent of opening up a 400-page volume of War and Peace, and rock and roll is just too loud.

Doyle 08-20-2019 04:27 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Velocity (Post 21816447)
As someone who played classical piano music for many years, much classical music is just dreadfully boring. It's a great deal of work for very little benefit, for the performers, and tedious for the audience.

I don't like rock, rap, hip-hop or most modern stuff either, but (most) classical is just a chore.

I agree with Velocity, much of old classical music is rather boring. The thing is, artists are still writing classical music that is more than very good. For a starter try Anthony Phillips' Seventh Heaven....classical, piano, medieval and 12 string guitar.

panache45 08-20-2019 05:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doyle (Post 21816501)
I agree with Velocity, much of old classical music is rather boring. The thing is, artists are still writing classical music that is more than very good. For a starter try Anthony Phillips' Seventh Heaven....classical, piano, medieval and 12 string guitar.

Yes, most people don't realize that "classical" or "serious" music is still being written and performed... a lot. And like anything else, it evolves into new territories.

Magiver 08-20-2019 08:50 PM

Classical music, like any other genre, is all over the map. I have a few CD's of various composers and some I like and others make me cringe.

I prefer something along the lines of Mozart because the music tends to be separated out so I can mentally track it. There can be a whole room full of musicians playing but structurally they are grouped so I can pick out specific melodies and beats.

I don't like music that ends up in some kind of individual competition for attention.

However, I HATE opera. Upper register opera even more. it all sounds like a cat kicking contest to me.

Ukulele Ike 08-20-2019 08:53 PM

The people I know who hate “classical” music do so because they think people who like it are snobs. It’s a defense, like hating the well-educated if you haven’t attended college.

Kind of a shame, because they’re missing out on one of the pinnacles of Western culture. And it’s not all that hard to get into. Remember Moonstruck, with the baker character played by Nicolas Cage, who adored the opera?

Ukulele Ike 08-20-2019 08:57 PM

Magiver: Plenty of boobs received an entree to opera (and classical music in general) by watching Amadeus.

Die Zauberflote is a simple fairy tale elevated by transcendent music. Just YouTube the two arias from the Queen of the Night. Or the overture, if you can’t take lyric sopranos.

Magiver 08-20-2019 09:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ukulele Ike (Post 21816985)
Magiver: Plenty of boobs received an entree to opera (and classical music in general) by watching Amadeus.

and plenty of people who listen to a broad range of music thinks it SUCKS. It's flat out irritating to listen to.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ukulele Ike (Post 21816985)
The people I know who hate “classical” music do so because they think people who like it are snobs.

well I think people who call other people boobs because they don't share the same musical taste would qualify as snobs. Maybe someone can write an opera about it so you could appreciate the irony.

cochrane 08-20-2019 10:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund (Post 21816443)
Ok, the most important thing first: I'm a rock'n'roll guy through and through and have been all my conscious life. That includes a broad range of styles, from punk to prog, from soul to country, from from electronic music to folk, you name it. Music in this broad spectrum is what I almost exclusively listen to, but I have deep respect for classical music and Jazz, but I'm afraid to step into these musical universes because I already can't handle everything I want to listen to in the pop/rock genre. I appreciate that most classical and Jazz is deep and sophisticated, and I even listen sometimes (but too rarely) to classical symphonies and classic Jazz albums. But there's one thing I can't stand, though I also appreciate that it's good music in a way, and that's opera. I just cannot stand the opera style of singing, it just grates on me, similarly like Bon Scott's or Ozzy Osbourne's voice will grate on many opera fans. But I acknowledge that those singers can sing, but it's JUST NOT MY STYLE.

EinsteinsHund put it very well. And to repeat what others said, I find classical music to be tedious, plodding, and boring. I like jangling guitars and a good drum beat, and music that gets my toes tapping and my head nodding. There's none of that in classical music. The closest thing to classical that I appreciate is Roll Over, Beethoven by the Electric Light Orchestra.

Voyager 08-20-2019 10:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Thudlow Boink (Post 21816464)
Is there any kind of music you do like?

I can understand why someone who didn't like/appreciate music at all (e.g. because they're tone deaf) wouldn't like classical music.

I'm tone deaf, and I love classical music though I realize there are nuances I don't get.
I like rock just fine, but I dare anyone to listen to the first movement of the Eroica or the fourth movement of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony or the first and third movements of the Fifth Piano Concerto and find them boring.

Before I started listening I was biased against classical movement, perhaps from listening to Roll Over Beethoven. But Beethoven was far more revolutionary than Chuck Berry - and some pieces are hilarious.

I'm not fond of opera, but that is from my deficiencies, not because opera is bad.

EinsteinsHund 08-20-2019 10:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cochrane (Post 21817080)
EinsteinsHund put it very well. And to repeat what others said, I find classical music to be tedious, plodding, and boring. I like jangling guitars and a good drum beat, and music that gets my toes tapping and my head nodding. There's none of that in classical music. The closest thing to classical that I appreciate is Roll Over, Beethoven by the Electric Light Orchestra.

Yeah, that too! Classical music mostly has no beat, and I almost exclusively react to music I can (theoretically :D) dance to. Or move my feet. Play air guitar or air drums. :)

PatrickLondon 08-20-2019 11:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund (Post 21817132)
Classical music mostly has no beat

Erm.....

Beethoven was constantly playing with syncopation (5th symphony first and last movements), and any number of classical composers used the dance rhythms of their day in different pieces. The first names coming to my mind are Brahms and Dvorak, but Spanish dance rhythms had quite a vogue too

And try Stravinsky's Rite of Spring.

But if you mean, it isn't bound by the limitations of a fixed tempo for a roughly three-minute piece, then you're not wrong. But that's a feature, not a bug. It"s the whole point.

EinsteinsHund 08-20-2019 11:17 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PatrickLondon (Post 21817166)
Erm.....

Beethoven was constantly playing with syncopation (5th symphony first and last movements), and any number of classical composers used the dance rhythms of their day in different pieces. The first names coming to my mind are Brahms and Dvorak, but Spanish dance rhythms had quite a vogue too

And try Stravinsky's Rite of Spring.

But if you mean, it isn't bound by the limitations of a fixed tempo for a roughly three-minute piece, then you're not wrong. But that's a feature, not a bug. It"s the whole point.

But does anybody dance to it ;)? (the listener, not the ballet)

EinsteinsHund 08-20-2019 11:30 PM

To clarify: I know that classical music has beats, but just not the ones that make me move my feet or shake my ass. With the music I like, I involuntarily get involved physically, and that happened rarely to me when hearing classical music. To put it this way: pop/rock music makes me want to dance, and classical music makes me want to direct with a virtual baton.

FlikTheBlue 08-20-2019 11:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund (Post 21817184)
To clarify: I know that classical music has beats, but just not the ones that make me move my feet or shake my ass. With the music I like, I involuntarily get involved physically, and that happened rarely to me when hearing classical music. To put it this way: pop/rock music makes me want to dance, and classical music makes me want to direct with a virtual baton.

The closest I’ve found in classical music that might fit that criteria is also one of my favorites. The 3rd movement of Mozart’s 17th piano concerto “rocks” and gets me tapping the steering wheel when I listen to it while I’m driving.

The_Peyote_Coyote 08-21-2019 01:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doyle (Post 21816501)
I agree with Velocity, much of old classical music is rather boring. The thing is, artists are still writing classical music that is more than very good. For a starter try Anthony Phillips' Seventh Heaven....classical, piano, medieval and 12 string guitar.

I've been listening to that on U Tube. It's a beautiful album. Thank you for recommending it.

Weedy 08-21-2019 04:06 AM

No lyrics, no consistent melody, too many goddamned violins.

Novelty Bobble 08-21-2019 04:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Limmin (Post 21816393)
If I may... I love classical music, and not just the "lite" stuff but difficult works that take years to fully appreciate.

I challenge the assertion that there is such a thing as "lite" or "difficult" music.

That in itself comes across as somewhat condescending. The implication being that those who don't share you appreciation of the latter are lacking the mental capability or application to realise that the latter is more worthy.

If that actually is the way you view people's musical tastes (I hope it isn't) then you shouldn't be surprised by the responses you get.

Sangahyando 08-21-2019 04:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cochrane (Post 21817080)
EinsteinsHund put it very well. And to repeat what others said,I find classical music to be tedious, plodding, and boring. I like jangling guitars and a good drum beat, and music that gets my toes tapping and my head nodding. There's none of that in classical music. The closest thing to classical that I appreciate is Roll Over, Beethoven by the Electric Light Orchestra.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Weedy (Post 21817303)
No lyrics, no consistent melody, too many goddamned violins.

(My bolding in cochrane's post.) My insights here may not be worth much: I'm next-door to tone-deaf, and lack physical co-ordination: the great majority of music, and dancing in any way or shape done by myself, are "closed books" to me. I get the impression though, that for very many preferrers of, shall we say, livelier musical stuff: classical music is plain boring, and very lacking in enjoyable and memorable tunes.

There are suggestions that the above, has held held good for many centuries. In Patrick O'Brian's novels, it's an ongoing thing that Aubrey and Maturin enjoy playing together, classical-type violin / cello duets. I recall in one of the books, that the two of them are going hard at it thus; "off-stage", Aubrey's devoted but surly servant, Killick, comments to the effect of: "tweedly-deedly, tweedly-deedly, all the damn time for hours on end -- it's enough to drive you mad".

Les Espaces Du Sommeil 08-21-2019 05:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doyle
I agree with Velocity, much of old classical music is rather boring

Not wrong... but then, much of pop-rock-rap is boring, too.

Quote:

Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund (Post 21817184)
To clarify: I know that classical music has beats, but just not the ones that make me move my feet or shake my ass.

But that's the thing.

In Classical music, you're supposed to feel the beat, without BANG having to BANG resort to BANG a drum BANG to emphasise BANG blindly every BANG single beat BANG. That's like underlining all the sentences in a text. When everything is emphasised, nothing gets your attention. Also, it's kind of lame (Do you really need a drum marking all the beats, like you'd be unable to feel where they are without it ?).

Add to this monotony, the fact that an awful lot of pop-rock-rap inhabits a very limited tempo range (100-120 bpm), that dynamics are often relatively flat (whereas in Classical music, you routinely go from "near silence" to "extremely loud" then "somewhat soft" then "very loud" in just a couple of minutes), that the instrumentation is limited (vocals, guitar, bass, drums, keyboards, occasionally brass) and, yeah, to me a lot of it gets boring really fast.

I still listen to 70s rock, or 80s pop daily, but it's almost entirely for nostalgic reasons. I'm not a snob : you do you. And I still sometimes hear new songs that I like, in a lot of popular genres. Frankly, I feel that a lot of snottiness comes from "the other side" (hardcore classic rock or indie fan, anyone ?).

Quote:

Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund (Post 21817184)
With the music I like, I involuntarily get involved physically, and that happened rarely to me when hearing classical music.

In the end, it boils down to what you look for in music, and in my observation, there are perhaps two main types of music listeners : those who want to move and those who want to feel, with of course some possibly significant overlap depending on the person. I don't care about dancing (or moshing or headbanging) one bit. But when I listen to Classical music, I often have powerful reactions that are almost tactile.

davidm 08-21-2019 05:50 AM

I can take it or leave it mostly. It's not something I go out of my way to listen to but I don't hate it.

There are a few pieces that I really like. I love Pachelbel's Cannon.

https://youtu.be/RWWfhzsvetg

davidm 08-21-2019 06:05 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by davidm (Post 21817356)
I can take it or leave it mostly. It's not something I go out of my way to listen to but I don't hate it.

There are a few pieces that I really like. I love Pachelbel's Cannon.

https://youtu.be/RWWfhzsvetg

That should be "Canon" not "Cannon". My editing window ran out.

HMS Irruncible 08-21-2019 06:25 AM

Classical music is mostly not designed to be accessible enough where you can just pop it on the record player for a few minutes and say "ooh, that sounds nice". If nothing else, there's the time demand.

I mean, some of it is accessible like that, but much it requires some historical and evolutionary context, some musical familiarity or ability, access to good recordings/listening equipment if not live performance. And time. Plenty of time to listen to a long piece, more than once, to take it all in.

I don't hate it by a longshot, but I will say it demands more of the listener than most people find reasonable.

GreenWyvern 08-21-2019 06:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Sangahyando (Post 21817315)
There are suggestions that the above, has held held good for many centuries. In Patrick O'Brian's novels, it's an ongoing thing that Aubrey and Maturin enjoy playing together, classical-type violin / cello duets. I recall in one of the books, that the two of them are going hard at it thus; "off-stage", Aubrey's devoted but surly servant, Killick, comments to the effect of: "tweedly-deedly, tweedly-deedly, all the damn time for hours on end -- it's enough to drive you mad".

Don't confuse modern historical novels with actual history, or imagine that fiction authors don't make things up, no matter how much research they claim to have done. Don't mistake the opinions of one fictional character in a novel for a general historical truth.

There was certainly plenty of folk music in the 18th-19th centuries, and ballads were especially popular... but most people of all levels of society were also exposed to complex choral and organ church music from childhood.

Acsenray 08-21-2019 06:43 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Malleus, Incus, Stapes! (Post 21816488)
Why do some people like vanilla and some people like chocolate?

I mean, I do have a preference for songs with words and strong beats, but it ultimately comes down to "Classical music just doesn't do it for me".

Actually, no. Preferences are not this simple. People’s preferences are influenced by their environment—what were you exposed to and by whom and in what circumstances, what were the preferences of the people around you, what were the messages you were given by individuals and by mass media regarding the value and meaning of certain choices? People are taught to and learn to like and dislike certain things.

GreenWyvern 08-21-2019 06:48 AM

I think a lot of musical preference comes down to what we were exposed to in childhood.

The more we listen to any type of music, the more we understand and appreciate it. There's no doubt that classical music is more complex, so it probably needs more exposure and more knowledge of how it's put together.

Over time I find myself listening to more and more complex classical music. I'm thoroughly enjoying music now that I thought was slow and boring only a few years ago.

HMS Irruncible 08-21-2019 06:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Novelty Bobble (Post 21817308)
I challenge the assertion that there is such a thing as "lite" or "difficult" music.

This is silly. If you have ever taken a course in musical appreciation, then you know that there are enormous ranges of complexity for melody, harmony, rhythm, and structure. Some composers deliberately put easter eggs or other opaque features in their pieces to reward those in the know (Bach and all his math fugue bullshit).

Complexity doesn't automatically make a piece better, but it's uncontroversial to say that some pieces are more complex and require more time, effort, and sophistication to appreciate.

Sangahyando 08-21-2019 06:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GreenWyvern (Post 21817406)
Don't confuse modern historical novels with actual history, or imagine that fiction authors don't make things up, no matter how much research they claim to have done. Don't mistake the opinions of one fictional character in a novel for a general historical truth.

There was certainly plenty of folk music in the 18th-19th centuries, and ballads were especially popular... but most people of all levels of society were also exposed to complex choral and organ church music from childhood.

As I indicated in my post: people have described me in the past, as "musically dead" -- anything I have to say, touching on music, is likely to have about as much value as the opinions of a fish on the niceties of high-level flight :( .

Exapno Mapcase 08-21-2019 08:07 AM

When I was in grade school (Bach was two classes ahead of me) the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra did a regular radio series that was beamed into all the schools. That was high-level music appreciation, interspersed with pieces of classical music. The first album I ever bought was Grofé's Grand Canyon Suite.

That's also when I learned that classical music albums were very much like early rock albums. Early rock had one hit single surrounded by whatever sludge could be recorded in a day, bulk for the sake of justifying a higher price.

The Grand Canyon Suite was typical of what the RPO played us. It had one gloriously melodic section surrounded by tweedly-deedly. Whenever I heard the full album of the classical snippets fed to us I heard one hit single surrounded by sludge.

I know rock has a beat, but - more importantly, I think - it has a melody. You could hum to it. You had to: it stuck in your head forever. That's a big reason why classic rockers don't appreciate much of modern music; beat is emphasized over melody. Rock developed out of the tradition of of folk music, and folk musics, at least western ones, almost always centered on a hummable melody.

I'm sure classical lovers will now rise up to insist that those dull classical stretches have plenty of melody, along with all the other virtues claimed for them. No doubt. I just don't hear them, any more than I hear the virtues in a thousand rock albums that I can't stand but are worshipped by others.

The major difference is that rock has a mechanism for just playing the hit singles, while classical forces you to listen to the whole album. Metaphorically. On radio or in concert you don't get just the one good part, although you can do it at home. A good mix tape of classical probably would attract a lot of new fans. And alienate a lot of old ones.

Dinsdale 08-21-2019 08:12 AM

Another one who just finds it boring. And modern orchestral/band music is tedious. My wife is a fiddle-maker and loves classical music, so I sleep through a few concerts/recitals a year. My kids were all in band and one majored in music in college, so I was subjected to a good amount of modern concert band music. Not for me. Give me a good old Sousa march that I can tap my toes to! :D

I went through a period that I was very much into classical music. I can remember in college being stoned and hearing Mozart's Jupiter for the first time - blew my mind! Owned at least 3 copies of Mozart's 40th, and with my roommate compared the different versions on the labels. Through 7 years of piano, was quite the Rachmaninoff devotee. Took my pre-teen kid to see Kronos. But having experienced it, not interested in repeating the experience.

That's part of it - it is so damned repetitive. Yeah, I know, if you study it, the same piece can be played at different tempos and with different instrumentation. But when you go to see it, it is basically a bunch of guys and women in black, sawing away at the same old piece. No improvisation. No visual interest.

And the snootiness plays a part in my disfavor. Really minor thing, but they lose me right at the start, when the concertmaster comes out to applause, and points to the oboe or English horn or whatever to play an A. Yeah - that's really impressive and worthy of applause!

My current tastes are for old-time, bluegrass, and rockabilly. Just this morning bought tickets to see Bruce Molsky and Del McCroury.

I sure don't mind it as background music, but that's about all it is for me. In fact, years ago I found that the only music I could have playing while I worked was classical. Any other music engaged me too much such that it distracted me from my work.

RealityChuck 08-21-2019 08:19 AM

Classical music is more complex in structure than popular music and does require you pay attention. Thus, a casual listener often finds it boring because they can't see the nuances.

But the term covers a very wide range of music created over hundreds of years. There are plenty of pieces with a strong beat -- listen to Danse Macabre by Saint-Saens, for instance, or any of Rossini's overtures, or the third movement of Tchaikovsky's Sixth.

When I was growing up, my grandfather would take me to classical concerts and I usually didn't care much for them. But as I got older, I started liking them much better, mostly because I liked long rock compositions.

But lots of people don't respond to it. That's fine. No one likes every type of music.

Doyle 08-21-2019 08:20 AM

I dare you to tell me this is not beautiful.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YDRLkf-T2_o&t=31s

cochrane 08-21-2019 08:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RealityChuck (Post 21817551)
Classical music is more complex in structure than popular music and does require you pay attention. Thus, a casual listener often finds it boring because they can't see the nuances.

But the term covers a very wide range of music created over hundreds of years. There are plenty of pieces with a strong beat -- listen to Danse Macabre by Saint-Saens, for instance, or any of Rossini's overtures, or the third movement of Tchaikovsky's Sixth.

When I was growing up, my grandfather would take me to classical concerts and I usually didn't care much for them. But as I got older, I started liking them much better, mostly because I liked long rock compositions.

But lots of people don't respond to it. That's fine. No one likes every type of music.

When I hear the William Tell Overture I don't have to tell you the first thing I associate with it.

HI-YO, SILVER! AWAYYYYY!

Pleonast 08-21-2019 08:37 AM

The term "classical music" is too wide to be useful to me. I like some of it, and dislike some of it, and am indifferent to some of it. Just like any other broad category of music (or art in general).

Les Espaces Du Sommeil 08-21-2019 08:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Exapno Mapcase (Post 21817527)
...I'm sure classical lovers will now rise up to insist that those dull classical stretches have plenty of melody, along with all the other virtues claimed for them. No doubt. I just don't hear them, any more than I hear the virtues in a thousand rock albums that I can't stand but are worshipped by others...

I agree that a lot of Classical music movements don't have particularly striking melodies but that's because... that's not the point. I've long contended that the essence of Classical music is NOT nice melodies but development.

Take Beethoven's 5th Symphony, which is entirely based on that bombastic four-note motif, you hear at the beginning. How more basic can you go ? And yet, that work is considered one of the towering achievements of Western music. Why ? Not because of that (a bit silly) theme but because of what Beethoven built with it : an incredibly complex and beautiful structure that repays every listening.

To caricature a bit, when you've found a good melody in popular music, you've got over 50% of the job done. You just need to dress it up a bit, write some lyrics and you're good to go. In Classical music, when you've got your tune, you're still nowhere. Because what really matters is what you're going to do with that melody. You're going to have to take it on an journey that will change it, perhaps up to the point where it will be barely recognizable. Perhaps, you'll want to introduce a second melody to complement it, or clash with it. That journey is the real the point of the work, not the melody. Of course, if you can come up with a beautiful tune to start with, that's great. But again, that's not the point. And believe me, listening for the 524th time to a work you thought you knew well and realize that at the 7-minute mark, what you're hear and never really paid attention to is actually the first half of second theme but inverted or realizing that the 4th variation includes an allusion to another composer's work... it's a wonderful feeling. Someone mentioned Easter eggs upthread, and that's an excellent analogy. And all this still doesn't touch the huge subject of interpretation.

The essence of pop music (in the broadest sense) is melody and beat.
The essence of Jazz is improvisation.
The essence of Classical music is development.

aceplace57 08-21-2019 09:02 AM

I prefer music with vocals.

I'll listen to a little instrumental music and then quickly get bored. I do prefer classical over jazz.

Acsenray 08-21-2019 09:04 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dinsdale (Post 21817534)
And the snootiness plays a part in my disfavor. Really minor thing, but they lose me right at the start, when the concertmaster comes out to applause, and points to the oboe or English horn or whatever to play an A. Yeah - that's really impressive and worthy of applause!

You know of course that they're just tuning their instruments. They're not doing that to be snooty.

RealityChuck 08-21-2019 09:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cochrane (Post 21817572)
When I hear the William Tell Overture I don't have to tell you the first thing I associate with it.

HI-YO, SILVER! AWAYYYYY!

Which brings up another point: a lot of classical music has been used in popular culture and is familiar to people from that.

The first time I heard the William Tell Overture, I knew the finale from the Lone Ranger and much else. But I didn't realize that Carl Stalling had often used the "Storm" and "Morning" sections in Looney Tunes. Stalling was often fond of using Von Suppe's "Poet and Peasant" overture, and there are many classical pieces that show up in Warner Brother cartoons.

Similarly, Stanley Kubrick often used classical music in his movies. He made "Thus Sprach Zarathustra" ubiquitous, and A Clockwork Orange used multiple classical pieces.

Novelty Bobble 08-21-2019 09:20 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by HMS Irruncible (Post 21817417)
This is silly. If you have ever taken a course in musical appreciation.................

You just lost me. I don't need any musical education to know whether a piece moves me or not. The amount that a piece has moved me has never been dependent on how much I know about it. Same with painting, poetry, film or pretty much any art.

Fiddle Peghead 08-21-2019 09:39 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cochrane (Post 21817080)
I like jangling guitars and a good drum beat, and music that gets my toes tapping and my head nodding. There's none of that in classical music.

Well, of course there's none of that in classical music. If that's what classical music is, then we would just call it rock music. :)

Humor me: put on the 4th movement of Beethoven's 7th symphony, and crank it up pretty loud. It immediately starts with a highly "toe-tappable" beat. Toe-tap along with the music, but don't try to intellectualize it or "approach" it with any particular mindset. Just let the music wash over you. And here is the key: it may not do it for you at first. Me, over the years I've bought numerous albums in different genres that just didn't do it for me at first. Being that I spent hard-earned dollars though, I felt obligated to give them second and third chances, and often they grew on me to the extent that I fell in love with them. If you aren't familiar with classical music (a term so broad as to be a bit useless, quite frankly) you very well may not like it. But you like music, don't you?

I say this to all of you who "hate" classical music, especially if you've never really given it a chance. And while I'm on Beethoven's 7th, might I also say that it is a very good introduction to what classical music is all about. You can listen to it in 45 minutes. From the optimistic opening movement, through the dour and melancholy second, and on through the lively and energetic third and fourth movements, it runs the gamut of all human emotions, requires no knowledge of musical theory, and despite others here pointing out the importance of development and the like, which I agree can be quite interesting, you don't need to consider this at first. Don't set yourself up for something that you may not get at first, and when you don't, think you've "missed it" in some way.

Fiddle Peghead 08-21-2019 09:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund (Post 21817184)
To put it this way: pop/rock music makes me want to dance, and classical music makes me want to direct with a virtual baton.

And there may be the problem.You are tempted to "interpret" classical music based on what someone else is doing, that is, the conductor. But if you must "direct", then consider Beethoven's conducting style:

Quote:

"[Beethoven had] all manner of singular bodily movements. As a sforzando occurred, he tore his arms, previously crossed upon his breast, with great vehemence asunder. At piano he crouched down lower and lower to show the degree of softness. If a crescendo entered he gradually rose again and at a forte jumped into the air."
Get into it, man! :D

Les Espaces Du Sommeil 08-21-2019 09:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Novelty Bobble (Post 21817680)
You just lost me. I don't need any musical education to know whether a piece moves me or not. The amount that a piece has moved me has never been dependent on how much I know about it. Same with painting, poetry, film or pretty much any art.

Then it means that what you really enjoy is talking to yourself. Your first, visceral reaction to an artwork is everything. That's fine, just not the way I work.

I happen to appreciate some pieces even more when I am told or shown something new about them, something that I'd never have thought of be myself. It's more like a dialogue, really or at least an interaction.

Dinsdale 08-21-2019 09:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acsenray (Post 21817637)
You know of course that they're just tuning their instruments. They're not doing that to be snooty.

You know, of course, that they could do it in ways that did not make it appear to be such a big deal, applauding the concertmaster as they come out after everyone else.

Orwell 08-21-2019 09:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by EinsteinsHund (Post 21816443)
I appreciate that most classical and Jazz is deep and sophisticated, and I even listen sometimes (but too rarely) to classical symphonies and classic Jazz albums. But there's one thing I can't stand, though I also appreciate that it's good music in a way, and that's opera. I just cannot stand the opera style of singing, it just grates on me, similarly like Bon Scott's or Ozzy Osbourne's voice will grate on many opera fans. But I acknowledge that those singers can sing, but it's JUST NOT MY STYLE.

My first thought when I opened this thread is very similar. I actually like some classical music, but only the instrumental pieces and performances. Like you, I HATE opera singing. While I have some appreciation of the vocal talent, I can't stand to listen to it, and 10 seconds is more than enough. I can't imagine actually going to see an opera. Uggh.

I don't like most jazz, either. It just sounds like musicians noodling around, with little obvious melody or rhythm. Dixieland jazz, which I like, is the exception, and I don't even know if that is considered "real" jazz.

Dinsdale 08-21-2019 10:07 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Orwell (Post 21817760)
My first thought when I opened this thread is very similar. I actually like some classical music, but only the instrumental pieces and performances. Like you, I HATE opera singing. While I have some appreciation of the vocal talent, I can't stand to listen to it, and 10 seconds is more than enough. I can't imagine actually going to see an opera. Uggh.

I don't like most jazz, either. It just sounds like musicians noodling around, with little obvious melody or rhythm. Dixieland jazz, which I like, is the exception, and I don't even know if that is considered "real" jazz.

Exactly what I feel, said better than I could have. I find it amusing that some people here seem to feel a need to persuade folk that they SHOULD enjoy classical music! :D

Like I said, my favorite is probably primitive old-timey banjo and fiddle music. Or rockabilly w/ a slapped bass and screaming guitar. But if YOU don't like it, that's fine with me.

Actually, I just realized. One thing I REALLY like abut old-time, folk, and bluegrass music is that it is very personal. "back porch" music. Really gives me the feel of regular people making music for their own enjoyment. Which is quite removed from the tux-and-tails environment of much classical music.

Boy, it would be tough for me to decide, if I HAD to go to EITHER an opera, OR a baseball game! :D Personal taste is fun, ain't it?


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