Music & Musicology.

Music & Musicology explores the history, culture, and critical mass of music and music-making.

Within culture and by way of available illustrative recorded works, there is an attempt to present and understand the composer(s), time period, style, and genre of different musics from ancient to modern, classical to contemporary, and Western to global.

Heino Eller (1887-1970) and Lepo Sumera (1950-2000): Two Influential 20th-Century Estonian Composers Whose Contemporary Classical Music Spanned from World War I to the “Singing Revolution” of the 1990s.

Heino Eller (1887-1970) and Lepo Sumera (1950–2000) were both influential Estonian composers and music composition teachers. Following his graduation in 1920 from the Saint Petersburg Conservatory, Heino Eller taught music theory and composition in Estonia for the next 50 years. The list of Eller’s students who are well-regarded composers in Estonia and internationally is lengthy […]

SUPERTRAMP: From Musician-Poets to Rock Stardom, the First Six Albums of the English prog-rock band, 1970-1979.

Roger Hodgson, co-founder of Supertramp, in 1979. Rick Davies, Supertramp cofounder, in 1979. Supertramp’s July 1970 debut album simply dubbed Supertramp, wasn’t released in the U.S. until 1977. That sort of distribution shortfall was not unusual in that decade. For an enterprising American traveler in the 1970’s, such a distribution shortfall could add to the purpose […]

6 Famous Modern and Classic Ballets.

Pointe shoes. FAMOUS INSTRUCTOR: Marie Rambert (1888-1982) was a prominent dance teacher in British Ballet. She is pictured here in the late 1940’s with her students. Rambert founded the Rambert Dance Company which is active today. In the late 19th century, Ballet developed mainly in Russia. That development included the revival of the male role […]

Christmas Choral Concert: Bel Canto Chorus, Basilica of St. Josaphat, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Milwaukee, Wisconsin’s independent 100-voice Bel Canto Chorus–founded in 1931–performs carols and hymns in the historic Basilica of St. Josaphat, a Polish-style church in Milwaukee completed in 1901 and boasting one of the largest copper domes in the world. The Bel Canto Chorus is made up of singers from throughout southeastern Wisconsin and northeastern Illinois. Their […]

Christmas Choral Concert: The Tuskegee University Golden Voices Choir, University Chapel, Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, Alabama.

Booker T. Washington (1856-1915) was called “The Sage” of Tuskegee Institute outside Montgomery, Alabama. Founded by Washington in 1881, the Institute thrives today as Tuskegee University, home to more than 3,000 students from the U.S. and dozens of foreign countries. The historically African-American college boasts several academic distinctions today, especially in the broad range of […]

Christmas Choral Concert: The Angeles Chorale, First United Methodist Church, Pasadena, California, performs John Rutter’s “Gloria.”

For over 40 years, the Angeles Chorale has brought inspiring choral music to greater Los Angeles, California. It is an all-volunteer choral group comprised of about one hundred voices. The Angeles Chorale was founded in 1975 as one of the local Valley Master Chorales and merged in 1987 with California State University Northridge’s Masterworks Chorale […]

Christmas Choral Concert: St. Bavo Cathedral Choir, Haarlem, Netherlands.

The St. Bavo Cathedral Choir performs Christmas carols and other seasonal music for voice, many in modern settings. Recorded in Haarlem in Advent 2012 (December 16) in the Cathedral Basilica St. Bavo –not the iconic Grote Kerk in Haarlem’s main square but the Catholic church constructed between 1895 and 1930 – the program includes well-known […]

Anglo-American musical duo: Flo Morrissey and Matthew E. White.

Flo Morrissey. English singer and songwriter Flo Morrissey (b. 1994) and Richmond, Virginia-based producer and musician Matthew E. White (b. 1982) teamed up for a collaborative full duet album of ten cover songs called Gentlewoman, Ruby Man. It was recorded in 2016 and released in January 2017 on Glassnote Records. Following months of preparation, the cover […]

5 African-American Classical Composers: William Grant Still, Florence B. Price, Harry T. Burleigh, William Levi Dawson, and Mary Lou Williams.

African American pianist, composer and arranger, and vocalist Mary Lou Williams (1910-1981). She  demonstrated remarkable musical talent in modern genres as diverse as classical, free jazz, hard bop, swing, big band, and gospel. By John P. Walsh Following the tradition set down by President Jimmy Carter in 1979, the White House officially announced that June […]

The Origin, History, and Meaning of the Irish Folk Song “Bríd Óg Ní Mháille” (“Young Bridget O’Malley”).

All variations of the name Brigid mean “power, strength, force, and authority” as well as “vigor, virtue and fortitude.” By John P. Walsh In Ireland a generation ago the girl’s first name of Brigid (along with Mary) was one of the island’s most popular. In the 1960s and 1970s, it seemed that a lot of Irish-American girls were named Brigid, or […]

The origin, history and meaning of the popular Irish Folk Song, “Weile Weile Waila.”

By John P. Walsh There are thousands of Irish folk songs, a traditional and often nationalistic musical genre that is experiencing today a renaissance and renewal as song collections are widely available that began to be compiled in the nineteenth century and continued into the twentieth century at a productive pace. These folk song collections […]

Leandro “Gato” Barbieri: From the “Last Tango in Paris” (1972) to the Latin Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award (2015), he was one talented “Cat” on the sax.

By John P. Walsh Released in September 2002 on Peak Records, the Latin jazz ballad “Beautiful Walk” is from Argentine-born saxophonist Leandro “Gato” (the “Cat”) Barbieri’s 50th album, Shadow of the Cat. Shadow of the Cat was Grammy-nominated for Best Latin Jazz. Gato Barbieri looked to two major sources for the album’s inspiration. The first […]

Fritz Reiner, Jean Martinon, & Georg Solti: A Critical Look at the Modern Music Directors of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Part 1.

By John P. Walsh PART I: Fritz Reiner, Jean Martinon, & Georg Solti. In 2013 just ahead of Game Four of the Stanley Cup Finals the principal conductor and music director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra dressed up in a Chicago Blackhawk’s sweater to conduct his orchestral version of their pep rally song.1 Riccardo Muti (Italian, born […]

Italy’s “Ensemble Accordone” writes contemporary music for the 21st century listener inspired by musical forms of the 6th and 16th centuries.

Featured Image is Ensemble Accordone in 2010. By John P. Walsh The Italian early Baroque ensemble “Ensemble Accordone” was founded in 1984 by two musicologists—composer Guido Morini (born 1959) and tenor Marco Beasley (Italian-English, born 1957). In the last decade the duo in collaboration with other musical artists has recorded and released 10 albums. This 45-minute opera composed […]

Marc-Antoine Charpentier at Versailles: Messe et Motets Pour La Vierge (1702).

Print (c. 1680s) of M. Charpentier in the lower left corner with two ladies displaying a sheet of musical notations. Text by John P. Walsh Intriguing facts coincide in this live early music performance of the Messe et Motets Pour La Vierge (Mass and Motets for the Virgin) by Marc Antoine Charpentier (French, 1643-1704) and the […]

Revolution of 1800: the early “new” music of 30-year-old Ludwig Van Beethoven.

Ludwig van Beethoven, 1804/05, Joseph Willibrord Mähler (German, 1778-1860), Wien (Vienna) Museum. December 16 is the birthday of Classical-Romantic German composer Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827). Throughout the 1790’s young Beethoven composed in the drawing-room tradition. In 1800, around his 30th birthday, Beethoven was telling friends that he was determined to “open a new path” for […]