5 Matching Annotations
  1. Apr 2019
    1. She acutely felt the pull between family and music, or what she once described in a letter as her “‘career vs. love and children’ battle.”

      This is along similar lines to Fanny Mendelssohn, Being the feminine figure as she was in the household, she was to uphold certain standards and was forced to choose to commit to her family life over her music. It seems that we've seen many times throughout this class how women composers were stifled by the expectations of men, like Seeger on Crawford, to retain their place and their duties at home.

    2. She was soon heralded by ultramodernists like Cowell, who praised her as a “completely natural dissonant composer.” He recommended that she study in New York with his former teacher Charles Seeger, who had begun to develop a new model for avant-garde composition. This theory of dissonant counterpoint would invert traditional rules of harmonic writing and, Seeger believed, create a musical language at once radically discordant and uniquely American.

      This brings the contemporary composer and musician Jacob Collier to mind. Collier's compositions are infused with intensely dissonant chordal progressions and yet when they land on their diatonic moments, the listener is inclined to hear the movements as natural. Collier also piggybacks off of Ernst Levy's radical idea of negative harmony which creates pieces that transform through dissonance to resolution in non-conventional manners.

    3. As a woman of that generation, she wrote this piece that’s so ahead of its time,” Austin Wulliman, one of the JACK violinists, marveled in a recent interview. “You see people dealing with these same musical ideas still, to this day.”

      This reminds me of many prominent musicians throughout music history that we've discussed in class who have written pieces that are revolutionary for their time. One such example is JS Bach, the father of fugues. People thought that fugues were too sporadic in their polyphony but were later to be deemed as intricate pieces with disjointed but interconnected lines.

    4. “Fear of having nothing to say musically, fear of not being able to say it, fear, fear, a whole web of it.”

      I know where Ruth Crawford is coming from in this regard. As a musical arranger for an acapella group, there are times where I run into roadblocks of creativity on how to best express the song with my own spin on it, and I often fear that I won't discover what I want to say with my arrangement.

    5. “To work alone: I am convinced this is what I should do, to discover what I really want,” she decided.

      When you can work alone, you're more able to focus and fixate on discovering what you really want, and your issue-solving process. I relate to this because I've experienced this in my career setting where I take it upon myself to accomplish my work alone so as to develop my method of problem-solving.