Archive for March 8th, 2009

08
Mar
09

An open letter to Smoke & Mirrors

ipod

Michael, my dear, dear friend and esteemed colleague:

I really hope you’re proud of yourself.  You have created an iPod/iTunes monster.  You don’t want to know how I’ve spent my day.

But I’m going to tell you anyway.  After I got done downloading all my Thomas Tallis and John Dunstable CD’s into this amazing little device, I went to iTunes and downloaded the Brahms Kyrie, WoO 17, and the Missa Canonica, WoO 18.  “WoO” means “without opus”; I knew you were dying to know that.  They don’t have an opus number because they were rediscovered and published posthumously.  I knew you were dying to know that, too.  The German Requiem is next.

I must say I’ve become profoundly impressed with iTunes.  I really thought that if it had any classical music at all, it would just be the Classical Top 40.  That they would have these supremely obscure Brahms pieces is nothing short of astounding.  I’ve never been more happy to find out that I was wrong.

Now at this point you may very well be saying, “Smith has finally lost his mind.  What the fuck does this have to do with me?”

But my friend, this has everything to do with you.  You see, I was going to buy them from Arkiv Music, (a site I still highly recommend, by the way).

You know, on a CD.

That you can play on a CD player.

Remarkably like the CD player we have at the store.

If you get my drift.

But no, Michael, I’ve decided to take pity on you.  The Brahms Choral works, sublime as they are, will remain safely tucked away in my iPod, far away from your ears.  For the moment, I will leave you to languish in your long dark musical night.

In some ways, of course, I feel profoundly guilty about this.  I feel like I’m letting you down.  I know it’s my duty as a friend to help you to appreciate this music.  You’re a tough case, it’s true, but James Taylor fans usually are.  But friends don’t give up just because the going gets tough.  I’m going to keep working on you, because I love you man, and because I care.  Deeply.  Someday, you will come to love the Brahms as I do.  Someday, I will take you by the hand and bring you to the light.

Then we can start working on Tallis and Dunstable.

The coolest thing is that I can plug the iPod into the new speaker system I got,** and voila!  The room is filled with the glorious sound of Brahms.  I really must say: thank you, my friend, you’ve changed my life forever.

Gotta go now; the Requiem is almost finished downloading.

Your friend,

Smith

** Blogmaster’s note: the page this links to is a little screwed up, but it is not a blank page as it first appears to be.  Scroll down a few lines and you can see the speakers.  Well worth the effort, I assure you.

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taking up a glowing cinder with the tongs and lighting with it the long cherry-wood pipe which was wont to replace his clay when he was in a disputatious rather than a meditative mood" ~ Dr. John H. Watson ************************
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