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Classical Music For Dummies, 2nd Edition



Classical Music For Dummies, 2nd Edition

David Pogue, Scott Speck

ISBN: 978-1-119-04974-6 June 2015 384 Pages

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Haydn, Tchaikovsky, and Brahms, oh, my! The beginner's guide to classical music

Classical Music For Dummies is a friendly, funny, easy-to-understand guide to composers, instruments, orchestras, concerts, recordings, and more. Classical music is widely considered one of the pinnacles of human achievement, and this informative guide will shows you just how beautiful and rewarding it can be. You'll learn how Bach is different from Beethoven, how Mozart is different still, and why not all "classical" music is actually Classical if it's really Baroque or Romantic. You'll be introduced to the composers and their work, and discover the groundbreaking pieces that shake the world every time they're played. Begin building your classical music library with the essential recordings that define orchestral, choral, and operatic beauty as you get acquainted with the orchestras and musicians that bring the composers to life.

Whether you want to play classical music or just learn more about it, Classical Music For Dummies will teach you everything you need to know to get the most out of this increasingly popular genre.

  • Distinguish flute from piccolo, violin from viola, and trumpet from trombone
  • Learn the difference between overtures, requiems, arias, and masses
  • Explore the composers that shaped music as we know it
  • Discover the recordings your music library cannot be without

Classical music has begun sneaking into the mainstream — if your interest has been piqued, there's never been a better time to develop an appreciation for this incredibly rich, complex, and varied body of work. Classical Music For Dummies lays the groundwork, and demonstrates just how amazing classical music can be.

Introduction 1

Part I: Getting Started with Classical Music 5

Chapter 1: Prying Open the Classical Music Oyster 7

Chapter 2: The Entire History of Music in 80 Pages 13

Chapter 3: Knowing How to Spot a Sonata 91

Part II: Listen Up! 111

Chapter 4: Dave ’n’ Scott’s E]Z Concert Survival Guide™ 113

Chapter 5: For Your Listening Pleasure 137

Intermission: Taking a Backstage Tour 159

Part III: A Field Guide to the Orchestra 177

Chapter 6: Keyboards & Co 179

Chapter 7: Strings Attached 191

Chapter 8: Gone with the Woodwinds 209

Chapter 9: The Top (and Bottom) Brass 223

Chapter 10: Percussion’s Greatest Hits 235

Part IV: Peeking into the Composer’s Brain 247

Chapter 11: The Dreaded Music Theory Chapter 249

Chapter 12: Once More, with Feeling: Tempo, Dynamics, and Orchestration 289

Part V: The Part of Tens 297

Chapter 13: The Ten Most Common Misconceptions about Classical Music 299

Chapter 14: The Ten Best Musical Terms for Cocktail Parties 305

Chapter 15: Ten Great Classical Music Jokes 311

Chapter 16: Ten Ways to Get More Music in Your Life 317

Part VI: The Appendixes 325

Appendix A: Starting a Classical Music Collection 327

Appendix B: Classical Music Timeline 333

Appendix C: Glossary 341

Index 347