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Milton Babbitt

Essay by   •  February 22, 2012  •  Essay  •  617 Words (3 Pages)  •  2,168 Views

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Milton Babbitt wrote an article names "Who cares if you listen" stating the way that his music and other complex compositions are and should be perceived. During the time this compositions were exposed audiences who listened to this music had many diverse opinions. Babbitt describes in his article that this music was not made for a public audience it was made for the educated listener. "It is the high degree of determinacy that most strikingly differentiates such music." Babbitt. In his article Babbitt wrote that his music was very complex and composed with for the music educated in mind. In the article Babbitt explains how some composers dedicated their life in composing music that had no real meaning. Babbitt was referring to popular music, which was good if you wanted to keep your record company and the uneducated audience happy. "Musical compositions of the kind under discussions possess a high degree of contextuality and autonomy." Babbitt. What Babbitt was referring to in his articles was to music that made the listener think and analyze before it could be understood. This was Babbitt's intention, to compose music that was full of complexity and was not fully understood by the common listener, he had no problem achieving this with his techniques. During the period he composed he was not seen as a famous composer by the common listener but he was a pioneer in the eyes of educated musicians.

Evan Ziporyn is a composer that used the ideas of such Avant-Garde composers to crate complex pieces of music. In his article "Who Listens if you care?" he takes a stand for complex music mimicking the article written by Babbitt. "All music is available to all people, all the time." Ziporyn. In the article written by Evan Z many ideas are stated to support how people now day perceived music. Back in the day when Babbitt wrote his article music was not as available as it is now day's. Common listeners have the ability to listen to many different mediums of music than ever before. Ziporyn states that music is music and the listener makes out of it what he wants. "People don't give a shit where the music comes from" Ziporyn. In the world that we live now listeners of music vary greatly from ones that look for the artistic component to others that just want a rhythm and a sound to dance to. Ziporyn states that music is going to be music but there will always be a separation from the everyday popular music and the music that composers work for years to create a breakthrough in classical music.

To me both Babbitt and Ziporyn care completely right. Different music is created for different audiences. There are always going to be different ears that perceive music differently. Some people might not like Avant-Garde style music and they don't have to because they will always have the everyday popular music to listen to. In

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