Why New Classical Music is Important

And why we need to change the preception of new classical music

A hundred years ago classical music was going through growing pains. It had been in a 'Romantic' style of music since Beethoven premiered his 3rd symphony in 1805. Composers of the early 20th century were looking for something new, to make a change from the previous hundred years. Society was also going through changes from the industrial age to the age of steel. New inventions for the home and for the battle field were flooding Patent Offices - a new world was dawning. Some of these changes lead to two world wars and the invention of nuclear weapons which many still consider the ultimate deterrent. Now, in the 21st century, we are discovering a new kind of warfare - terrorism.

While the 20th century saw drastic changes in the way we wage war, it also brought changes to the music industry. Early on the invention of the phonograph brought music into the homes of people who couldn't play an instrument - music became readily accessible. After World War I, composers sought to change the way we think - the universal brotherhood or lush romantic emotions were believed to be causes for the Great War. It was time for a change.

In the late 20th century society moved from having information fed to you through radio, television and newspapers to the advent to the internet where people get to pick and choose what they want to read. Music is much the same way. Listeners have hundreds of download sites, thousands of Indy bands to choose from and millions of new songs to choose from. We are becoming a society of choice. Unfortunately, some people are choose acts of terror and destruction. Innocent lives are lost in senseless acts of violence.

Art is one way we have of reaching out - to think of new ways to deal with issue. I believe it is important for musicians to set the trend of coming together, crossing cultures and becoming one humanity, rather than separate cultures struggling over what should be common goals - to live in peace.

You've heard me speak a lot about TwtrSymphony, the music we're creating and the innovations in how music is made. But something I haven't talked about and really should, is how TwtrSymphony is bring musicians and cultures together.

I follow a feed of the various musicians in TwtrSymphony and am thrilled at how supportive the musicians are of each other. Musicians who have never met in person are becoming friends, sharing stories of their lives beyond their music - they are truly a community even though there are thousands of miles separating us.

THIS is the future I want to work toward. This is what music can do, what music should do. This is what TwtrSymphony is trying to do with our Kickstarter project. It's about bringing new music to new people - but it's also about bring people from all around the world together. Please be part of that. We need your donations to help our project succeed.

Believe in new music, believe in the power of music, step up and make a change in what the world will be in the future. Become part of TwtrSymphony.



Graham Troup said…
I can't help but feel that this post isn't really about new classical music itself, but rather the community that goes along with it.

A problem I believe is that classical listeners often have their ears and minds set in the past.

My piano teacher has been teaching purely Mozart, Bach and we're about to go on to Chopin. Now, While I agree that they were fantastic musicians and composers, they are still very old!

I'm doing my best to find newer classical music I can relate to, and I've discovered Rachmaninoff and Lizst, but they both died almost a century ago! How can classical music progress if we are learning from composers that died so long ago?

It's not the same with any other Genre. Jazz Musicians have Allan Holdsworth, Pat Metheney and many of the jazz giants are still Alive today. In Rock we learn from the latest musicians and that allows us to push the genre forward.

Very few beginner guitarists are learning Elvis songs, and very few DJ's are building their music on Donna Summers.

I've spent 2 years learning to compose now and the best book resource I've found is The Study Of Counterpoint, which is still severely outdated. I've moved onto Schoenberg's fundamentals now but even that hits incorrect definitions and rules early on.

I'm hitting lots of little topics here, but I think I'm trying to say Classical musicians need to embrace new classical music, and present it to new listeners straight away if the genre is to move forward.

Something newer that I appreciate: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lxRIxovS7nQ
Chip Michael said…

I very much agree. While the composers of the past are wonderful, brilliant, amazing - they are very old.

We need to embrace modern classical music. It is the ONLY genre that seems so set on reveling in the past. Classical music fans seem very much like the aging, over-weight guy at the HS reunion that used to be the star quarterback, looking back at his glory days and lamenting they are over. Great classical music is being written today - we just need to get it out there.

TwtrSymphony is attempting to do just that!

Help us with our project and you'll discover LOTS of new composers writing really great music, music worth listening to over and over again (like we do with other genres).

Percy Collins said…
I believe orchestras should move away from Classical ENTIRELY. Post-Aaron Copland/Igor Stravinsky, there just aren't enough GOOD modern classical composers to support orchestras with new music. Orchestras should play a variety of genres and styles. I don't go out to the Baltimore Symphony anymore because its redundant most of the time. I guess I just feel like you can't save orchestras with classical music- you save them with MUSIC itself...
Chip Michael said…
Perry - Consider this: Games and Film music are among the best selling genres in music download with most of it being modern classical music. The list of contemporary classical composers is far greater today than 100 years ago. The problem is orchestras aren't playing very much of this new music.

TwtrSymphony had a call for scores with over 100 responses of music all written within the last 5 years. The music is out there; it's just not getting played.

I agree that orchestras play a lot of redundant music - but to say there isn't enough good music is simply not an accurate statement.

Evelyn Jones said…
Classical music never fails to make everything better <3
Lilly said…
informative post, Classical music shines with time.

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