The Color of Chords

December 16, 2014

Good Music Speaks

Technically, winter doesn’t officially begin until December 21.  Although this is still autumn, the world outside my window is grey and dreary.  The burst of colors brought on by changing leaves left us weeks ago.  The blisters on my thumb from raking leaves have already healed.  Daylight is short, the sky is overcast, and the only bright colors to be found are in Christmas lights that twinkle on my neighbor’s porch.

schonberg Arnold Schoenberg

Sometimes colors are everything.  One musical example can be found in Arnold Schoenberg’s third piece in Five Pieces for Orchestra, Opus 16.  Now please, don’t everyone start running away just because I mentioned the name Schoenberg.  He was an alright guy, a bit stubborn at times, but shuttering in your seat at the thought of composing music with twelve tones isn’t going to do anyone any good.  Besides, Opus 16 was published in 1909, a good 12…

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